David Stewart is a 23 year old singer songwriter from West London with deep sights on taking the world by storm. After touring with Mercury/Sony signed artists Example for 3 years and working with the likes of Wretch 32, David has developed the performing experience and has had time to groom a sound that comes naturally to him. The pop singer/producer heavily influenced by the classic 80s artists such as Phil Collins and Michael Jackson, spoke to myself about all the latest in his journey, how he got started and the future plans for himself and Sun Dream City.
He speaks about his influences, “I feel hopefully the more I listen to them something will filter out of that from my ears onto paper.” His transition from his previous body of work, with a OVO Drake style was very interesting to me, so we got deeper into the darker David days. “Well previous to doing the R&B stuff, this was the stuff I was writing I’ve always written pop music I love doing it but when I was on the road with Elliot (Example) when I was making this mixtape that’s kind of what I was listening to, loads of The Weeknd, loads of Drake, loads of Frank Ocean and it was like this is what I feel will be right to do now.”
David’s R&B era was very expressive to the environment that he was surrounded by, he even questioned himself to whether or not he wanted to be performing this style of music five years down the line and states that the wise words of Example “Mate don’t worry about that, just do what you do now and then move on”, gave him the support needed to express himself. He goes on to say that Example uses an example of himself and says “He doesn’t play what his first record that he made with Mike Skinner seven years ago, so he said just make what feels right now.”
He feels that the mixtape was more about how he felt at that moment in time, “Content wise on that mixtape there was a lot more talking about girls being a lad on tour and all that stuff, and now with my new material it’s a lot more about the part of my life I’m in now. So I think everyone eventually has to go through these transitions. But also I feel that if you want to do the pop stuff and still be seen as credible I think you need to come from a darker place”.
Having seen David perform on stage previously at Pop Review in Soho, it felt that he seemed very comfortable and relaxed. “With Example alone, I done about 350-400 gigs, previous to Elliot I done about 100-150 gigs on my own with my older material and also as a drummer playing for another artist. Literally, before Example I was on tour with Simply Red playing drums so it was important to soak in as much as possible really. But yeah I do feel very comfortable on stage because I’ve had a huge amount of experience but in different places, so behind the drum as MD making sure the rest of the band are tidy and also as a guitarist moving further forward each time and each gig. And now i’m in the front.”aa
From displaying his own personality on Justin Timberlake covers to getting the crowd all deeply engaged with his own single ‘Pouring Rain’ David has embraced the theatrics in performing to sweetly conveying the same cinematic elements within the music video of ‘Pouring Rain’. How did the video come about? – “I went out to LA not knowing anybody and I emailed 30 different directors and one person came back to me who was the guy that ended up directing it he was 21, it was literally like the stars aligned I had four days to shoot it before I left for London to go back home because I self funded the whole project and obviously had a budget to work on and he came through which was amazing. I mean I knew exactly what I wanted”. From an 80s influenced pop song with a similar 80s style “walking down the street looking very American” music video, and an equally 80s sounding record label name ‘Sun Dream City,’ David is bringing back classic characteristics.
He has his sights on being more than just an artist, he is also planning to build an empire. As well as Sun Dream City being the title name for his Album, it is also the independent label he releases all of his content under – “Eventually I hope to house other artists under this label, this is a huge thing of mine, I don’t want to just be an artist. My endgame I want to run an empire that’s what I want”. Sun Dream City is six months in on the master plan and hopefully we will hear a lot more from David Stewart and Sun Dream City. If you’re interested to find out more about David: