Lee MacDougall Has Opened For Van Morrison, Bob Dylan and Bon Jovi. He's Met None of 'Em.
Singer-songwriter Lee MacDougall hails from England, but the guy just can't seem to get enough of America. Earlier this year, MacDougall made his maiden tour of our fair country. Just a few months later, he's back for more. And, seeing that MacDougall's music is heavily influenced by Bruce Springsteen and Tom Petty, America seems a pretty good place to ply his craft.
This is your second tour of America. Did the first one go well?
Yes. The fact is, I couldn't wait to get back.
A few years ago, you played in China -- and in front of a huge crowd. Were you nervous?
It's far scarier to play in front of 10 people. When the crowd is that big, you don't have to focus on individual faces. You just see this sea of people and you almost go beyond being scared. I remember being nervous, but at the same time your adrenalin just kicks in. You're just filled with this rush of energy.
You opened for Bob Dylan and Van Morrison. Did you get to meet either of them?
No. I didn't, actually. It's weird because I also opened for Bon Jovi and I never got to speak to him, either! He's really isolated from everyone else. It would be tricky to get a minute with him. I mean, Bon Jovi was driven from the stage to his dressing room in a blacked out, people-carrier. I suppose they all have security issues.
I'd much rather meet Dylan or Morrison than Bon Jovi.
That's true, but it was cool to share the same stage with all of them.
How did the song you wrote for Rob Pattinson come about?
I am just friends with him in London. We hang around in the same crowd and one day he told me about a film he was going to do called How to Be and I thought the idea was very interesting. I told him that I would write the theme tune to it. He thought the idea was cool. I wrote the tune and he really liked it. He took the song to the director and we didn't realize that the director had already picked out someone else to do the music. But I remember going out and playing the song at a gig that same night, and it got a really big reaction. It's kind of a funny story now. At the time, we were both kind of broke. I'm still broke, but at least I got a good song out of it.
Do you get emails from fans of the Twilight movies?
No, not really. I get a few fans of the movies that come to my shows. They are actually really supportive. Some of them are friends of Rob's.
How have the crowds in the United States reacted towards your music?
Everything has been really positive. It just seems that people over here have always appreciated British acts. I think Americans just like good music. It's a good vibe at the shows. I've heard and seen some good things from people here.
Your song "Smile" is reminiscent of Springsteen, while "All the Wrong Places" sounds like Elvis Costello. Are those two of your primary influences?
I'm glad you liked those. I'm quite pleased with the way they came out. Elvis Costello is a really good songwriter. I am a big fan of his.
Are you working on a full-length?
Yes, I am. I am actually trying to record a single at the moment in the U.K., and I think that will be a precursor to a full-length. I think I've pretty much got the entire thing written. It will be some tracks from the EPs and some new stuff. I will be really happy to finish it and release it at the end of this year.
Didn't you once work in a fish processing factory?
Yes, for a short while. One day, I finished working and found that somebody had stolen my shoes. I had to walk home without shoes. I knew then that I couldn't work there any longer.
Someone actually stole your shoes? There has to be a song in that story.
I have that written down in a notebook somewhere. Perhaps I will use it soon.
Somebody Stole My Shoes would be a great album title.
[Laughs.] That might work! You're right!
Lee MacDougall plays with Albert Aguilar on Saturday, August 26, at Poor David's Pub
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