“Hold On Beirut! I’m Coming!” says Charlie Winston…

It is amazing when artists can mold different sounds together to make one unique style. English singer-songwriter Charlie Winston has done just that. Pop, Folk, Jazz, Indie…all of these combined will give you a taste of Charlie Winston’s music. Charlie broke into the scene with his recent wild ascension to the top of the charts. Some 600,000 album sales in France, driven by 4 singles including “Like A Hobo” which reached number 1, making him the second best-selling artist in 2009 just behind the Black Eyed Peas, is more than enough for us to praise this great talent. Charlie Winston will be performing here in Beirut on September 29th, 2012 as part of the International Beirut Jazz Festival. Just a few days before his performance here in Beirut, BeirutNightLife.com caught up with the artist to get the scoop on Charlie Winston

Is this your first time in Beirut? If so tell us what you expect…

It will be my first time. I am happy to come and see what its like. I have read a little bit so now I know that I will be ok to speak a little French and English. I’m sorry to say that I don’t speak Arabic too. Perhaps ill learn some when I get there.

– What can the fans expect form your performance?

My fans can expect a lot of energy, a lot of connection with the audience, a strong band with a big sound and moments of tenderness with many surprises.

– What are your inspirations when it comes to your music?

The mills brothers, Ella and Louis, Mozart, Beethoven, Nirvana,

Chilli Peppers, De La Soul, N.W.A, Nina Simone, The Kinks, Hendrix, Shostakovitch, Ravi Shankar, Aphex Twin, Radiohead, Nusrat Fatta Alla Khan, Philip Glass, Steve Reich, The Beatles, Glenn Miller, Miles Davis, Stevie Wonder, Ray Charles, Tom Waites, Bob Dylan, Eminem, Bjork… and the list goes on. 

– Your album sold around 600,000 in France as well as singles such as “Like a Hobo” reaching number one on charts. Did the success come as a shock or were you confident the album would do so well.

I was confident the album would do well. I had spent enough time there before releasing it to see that people liked it.

– To what do you owe the success?

Hard work and a little bit of talent. 

– Do you feel Jazz gets the recognition it deserves around the world?

Jazz has become a type of classical music. It had its day when there was plenty of recognition for it but music has moved so much into the world of its production that few people are interested in it, because there are few jazzers that care about production. That’s why one of my favorite contemporary jazz bands is the Esbjorn Svenson Trio. They took jazz into the mainstream by tapping into the mood of contemporary interests.

– When you are not making music how do you spend your free time?

Free what? [Laughs]

– Send a message to your fans in Lebanon?

Hold on Beirut! I’m coming!

For more information about the event: