Return to Lee DeWyze

Lee DeWyze gives sneak peek of new album in Tahoe

Lake Tahoe music fans have the opportunity to hear songs from Lee DeWyze’s new album before it’s even released when he appears Friday, Dec. 15, in the Vinyl showroom at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino.

The 31-year-old singer-songwriter’s Tahoe debut will be the final stop on an eight-show West Coast tour. He was the winner of “American Idol’s” ninth season.

“I’ve heard only amazing things about (Tahoe) so obviously I am very excited to come out there and play and see what it’s like,” DeWyze told Tahoe Onstage. “It’s going to be a fun tour and I will be playing new music supporting the new album. It’s going to be a fun time.”

DeWyze recently signed a publishing deal with SONGS and his sixth album, “Paranoia,” to be released Feb. 16, will be his second with Shanachie Entertainment.

“It’s a more mature record for me,” he said. “It’s a new sound and I think it’s quite a bit of a darker record. It’s a very warm record but it’s also very dark. It’s a good combination of the singer-songwriter and a mix of other elements.”

A trancy electronic styles comes across on the single, “The Breakdown,” which is receiving airplay on Spotify’s “Chill Mode” list and on Sirius XM’s “The Pulse” and “Train Tracks” channels. The song is about being prepared for the breakdown of a relationship, he said.

“Every song on (“Paranoia”) is coming from a different place, whether it be something I’ve thought up in my head or saw someone else experience or I experienced myself,” he said. “So there is inspiration from different places and different things.”

DeWyze elaborated on his three greatest musical inspirations.

“I learned how emotion gets poured into a song through Cat Stevens, and I learned how harmonies work through Simon & Garfunkel,” he said. “I learned how to turn a phrase through Paul Simon, and how to make a guitar feel a certain way.

“I used to emulate Paul Simon’s guitar picking and Cat Stevens, how he would put all the emotion into the singing and lyrics. It always rang true to me. I was a fan as a kid and and I’m a fan of it now. It was super inspiring to me then and what got me into music.”

In addition to music arenas, DeWyze has appeared on the largest of sports venues. He sang the national anthem before a Celtics-Lakers NBA Finals game, played at halftime of a Bears-Packers NFL Championship, and threw out the first pitch at a Cubs game.

“Of the three, standing on the mound and throwing out the first pitch at Wrigley was the most special to me,” he said.

A native of Cook County, Illinois, DeWyze played pitcher and catcher as a youth. He’s a big Cubs fan.

Former Cubs manager Leo Durocher famously said, “Nice guys finish last.” But with Chicago finally talking the World Series last year, and DeWyze winning “American Idol,” the adage has become outdated.

Catch the new sounds at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe on Dec. 15.

-Tim Parsons