Sylvain Lewis aka Tender Kid is a multi-disciplinary artist based in Paris with an eye and an ear for all that is beautiful. Blackfists was fortunate enough to learn a bit about the process behind the making of his new song “few missed calls” as well as its video.
Few missed calls features Spring and was recorded in Lewis’ studio, Silence Wireless. With Madeintyo, Spring, JMP, Killy, Andy, Big Man Alex, and Lovely Nils keeping him company in the stu, Lewis decided that the infectious riff that was stuck in his head for the better part of the day needed to be projected sonically and permanently, as quickly as possible. While his label-mate and friend, Spring, was in the booth, he jumped on the instrumentation and recorded the introductory vocals.
Content with the intro, Lewis then entered the booth with nothing more than the lyrics “Why do you like it when I smoke so much?”
Channeling his unfiltered heart, he was able to freestyle the rest of the track without breaking a sweat or overthinking.
Lewis’ sound was once described as being the love child between King Krule and The Kooks. His layered harmonies in “few missed calls” add a distinctive personality to the sound without any aid from pitch correction. Everything he does is fait maison, as the French say. The electronic drums are a nice contrast to its lamenting lyrics. The song, impossible for the listener to describe in any way other than emotionally, has the feel of a café crême and the first cigarette of the day.
Being very DIY, inventive, and smart with his money, Lewis shot the video on his phone, enlisting his entourage over a cup of joe to bring their most authentic selves and share in their collective joie-de-vivre.
The visuals to the song lack the pretentiousness of all-too-drawn-out and premeditated videos and rather showcase the celebration of cafe culture, youthful camaraderie, and the beauty of Paris in an homage to 2000s indie rock vids.
New and old fans alike will be delighted to know that Tender Kid is planning a 6 track EP to be released in late March or early April called “Lucky Angel.” It’s about a love that cannot last when one person craves distance and another wants to be close. The muse who inspired its creation was “a beauty to [his] eyes,” as Lewis put it, and now the EP is sure to be a beauty to our ears.
To those who don’t know, Lewis is also a professional photographer and ambassador for Hasselblad. Some of his eye-candy photography can be seen on his Instagram: https://instagram.com/lewisylvain. He also successfully operates a clothing company called Silence_SC with 10, soon to be 11, other creatives. Here’s a photo of Madeintyo rocking his ski mask.
Purchase some of the clothes he’s designed here: https://silencesc.com/sccollection/
As a child, he grew up in New York City. At age 14 or 15, he created a funk band with his friends Gael and Quentin whom he met in Vietnam and who are now his backing band when he doesn’t perform solo. He used to be deceptively curious and would often tell his mother that he was going to the library when he was instead going to the Caveau des Oubliettes to hear live Jazz.
Combined with his friends’ rotation of music from the The Kooks, Guns & Roses, and the Arctic Monkeys and his dad’s affection for Thelonious Monk, Jimi Hendrix, and Carlos Santana, his creativity was well-fed as an adolescent.
Now as a ray of light, nobody may have guessed that he was once a depressed and dark teenager, but music was his saving grace and those who love him and his art are glad for it.