Damian Lewis opens up about the 'difficulties' of going from an actor to musician

Virgin Radio

7 Jul 2024, 13:37

Damian Lewis and Angela Scanlon

Credit: Getty

Damian Lewis joined Angela Scanlon on Virgin Radio UK this morning to talk about his upcoming debut at Latitude Festival. 

The former actor will perform alongside Kasabian, Duran Duran and Keane when the festival returns to Suffolk on July 25th in one of his biggest performances to date, so it’s fair to say there are some nerves. 

“I think latitude has developed this reputation of being as being the festival with one of the best lineups every year,” Damian told Angela. 

“So I hope I don’t let them down, but we're playing the second stage on Friday evening, and I’m just really excited to be there with my band. It's going to be fun.”

Damian is, of course, best known for his acting achievements, appearing in the likes of Homeland, Band of Brothers and Billions, but he’s always had a love for music and revealed he even used to busk around Europe with a guitar and a motorbike before his career took off. 

He explained: “Acting just became more serious. It really was the thing I wanted to do, and I just always played music alongside it in the background. I never thought of trying to do music or get into music in a professional way until I performed on the radio for a musical I was doing. 

After meeting musicians like Tim Minchin and Harris Matthews, Damian started to write his own songs and eventually had enough to put a record together called Mission Creep.

However, his previous career in acting has made things a little more difficult because, as Damian says, people have a certain perception of him, and the critiques can be quite harsh. 

“It’s difficult if you're coming from being an actor, and then you start making music,” he admitted. 

“Obviously people are lining up on the parapet, like snipers everywhere taking shots at you. So you've got to get past those guys first and just prove that you can do it before people can objectively decide whether they actually like it or not. 

He continued, “I think I've got past that first hurdle, which is good. I think people have been nice to say, ‘This is actually not terrible’. For me, that's like a five-star review.”

Latitude Festival will take place at Henham Park, Suffolk, from 25th to 28th July 2024. Tickets for Barclaycard presents Latitude are on sale now.