Lewis Capaldi offers what he calls honest expectations of his forthcoming show at The Van Buren in Phoenix.
“Expect a slightly overweight Scottish man in his early 20s, sweating profusely, singing sad songs and doing his best to entertain a roomful of people.”
Despite that, he’s become one of the most captivating personalities of 2019. He and Noel Gallagher, formerly of Oasis, have been embroiled in a war of words since the 52-year-old musician’s wife Sara MacDonald, who is from Edinburgh, compared Scotland to a “Third-World country.” He called Capaldi “Chewbacca.”
Capaldi didn’t take it personally. At a show, he donned a T-shirt with Gallagher’s face inside a heart. This has gone on for months—and even include social media photos of Capaldi with Gallagher’s estranged brother, Liam. Noel’s daughter, Anais, tweeted she wanted to be Capaldi when she grew up.
The affable Capaldi laughs off questions and remarks about Oasis.
“That was priceless,” he says. “It was all a good laugh from what I remember.”
Instead, he wants to focus on breaking his music in the United States. His ballad, “Someone You Loved” spent seven weeks at the top of the U.K. Singles Chart making it one of the longest No 1 singles in U.K. chart history.
“It’s genuinely confusing,” he says with a laugh. “I’m very happy about the success. I can move out of my mum and dad’s house at some point. Mum doesn’t want to wash my underwear anymore. I never expected to do this—and I’m being 100% honest. It’s been incredible to watch. It’s like I’m watching something happen to someone else. I think the best way to get through all this is to have a laugh and have fun.”
Capaldi is prolific nonetheless. He sets times to write songs, or else his music wouldn’t be recorded.
“If I waited for inspiration to help me, I’d be waiting a long time,” he says. “I’m a lazy bastard—for real. I always try to sit down at the piano and write a song here and there. If inspiration happens, I can write a song in a half hour. Other times, I sit at the piano for five hours and question everything and envision my life. I just want to pack it all in and go work as a fisherman somewhere.”
There is a serious side to Capaldi. He recently released a special version of the “Someone You Loved” video that heightens awareness of the need for organ donors and stars Capaldi’s distant cousin, Peter Capaldi, who portrayed the 12th Doctor in the British TV show “Dr. Who.”
“Someone You Loved” is from Capaldi’s debut album, “Divinely Uninspired to a Hellish Extent,” which is the fastest-selling U.K. debut of 2019 with 90,000 albums sold in the first week.
“I don’t think it’s fate, though,” he says. “Fate is, perhaps, overrated. If I hadn’t actively worked, I wouldn’t be here talking to you right now. I always try and I always push.
“I would be lying to you, though, if I said I don’t feel pressure for my next album. It’s one of those things where I write the best songs I can write. If it doesn’t work, it doesn’t work. I just try my best to write songs I enjoy and I’m happy with. It’s all about pressure. If you put pressure on a grape, you’d crush it.”
Lewis Capaldi w/Saint Phnx
The Van Buren, 401 W. Van Buren Street, Phoenix, thevanburenphx.com, 8 p.m. Saturday, September 28, show is sold out, but tickets are expected to be released closer to showtime.