posted by Jesse Kinos-Goodin, April 2nd 2013
Patrick Lehman is proof that three years of classical vocal training can't erase a childhood of listening to Motown and Stax records.
After listening to "Stop Pretending," the lead single off last year's independently released Soul Kitchen Vol. 2, it would be easy to assume the singer is from Memphis, rather than his hometown of Montreal.
"It’s just the music I grew up listening to with my parents, so I've always been exposed to that," he says over the phone, speaking in a deep voice that sounds as if it's being filtered through the baritone sax that gives "Stop Pretending" so much of its flavour.
"Classical training focused on operas and arias, and just a lot of technical aspects of your voice, that sort of thing," he says. "It’s about the technical side of singing, while soul music is just whatever comes out, so I guess I've been influenced by soul more than I realized."
Lehman, who was an early standout in our Searchlight competition despite not moving on, says he's equally as influenced by Bill Withers and Stevie Wonder as he is by the Rolling Stones and Creedence Clearwater Revival. That would explain his eclectic approach to recording Soul Kitchen Vol. 2, which also forays into singer-songwriter ("I Just Want Love") and rock ("Woman for Me"), even if everything ends up being filtered through soul. The latter, for instance, would seem to owe more to Lenny Kravitz than Mick Jagger.
"I was trying to make an album by concentrating on the songs themselves rather than the overall sound," says Lehman, who also wrote, arranged and produced the album.
The overall result is an album that holds its own with any of the young soul revivalists of today, from Michael Kiwanuka to Mayer Hawthorne, even if Lehman hasn't reached their levels of exposure yet. For now, he's Canada's best kept soul secret.
"A lot of people don’t realize that an overnight success sometimes takes nine years," he says with a laugh, adding that he's been making monthly visits to New York City for the last year — the home of Daptone Records, as well as a big audience for soul music — in an effort to increase his exposure.
"I was actually surprised when I started performing there because I wasn't blown away by the performers I was seeing," he says. "I just thought the calibre would be much higher and it would be a lot tougher. I mean, I've seen some great performers as well, but in a way it just gave me some confidence, like OK, I can handle this city."
And if all goes according to plan, Lehman could also be handling Amsterdam this summer, as a European label plans to release Soul Kitchen Vol. 2 in the Netherlands in May.
"There’s a pocket for soul music that I never knew about," he says. "They have whole radio stations there just dedicated to playing soul music, old and new, and apparently there was an article about me in the Dutch People magazine, so it's kind of cool."
It could be just the break Lehman's been looking for, not that he feels the pressure.
"It’s still just crazy for me that because I wrote a couple songs it’s going to get me a trip to the Netherlands," he says.
Patrick Lehman plays Montreal April 4 and 5, and Toronto April 18. Visit Patricklehmanmusic.com for details.
Montreal's Patrick Lehman easily stands up to any of today's popular male soul revivalists from the U.S., from Mayer Hawthorne to Aloe Blacc to Allen Stone, so I was baffled when he didn't make it through. His vocals are sharp, the lyrics surrounding a troubled love are on point for the genre and the band sounds like it would feel right at home on Menahan Street. If you're not nodding your head when that sax kicks in, then you have no soul. Do yourself a favour and catch up on his two independent releases, because I suspect it's not the last we've heard from Lehman.
URBAN EXPRESSIONS MAGAZINE
Published March 22nd 2013
As the birthplace of Arcade Fire, Leonard Cohen, Bran Van 3000, Chromeo and more, Montreal musicians have some very large shoes to fill. In a 2005 piece, the New York Times described our little city’s music scene as “explosive”. Luckily, there are more than a few local bands and musicians working hard to live up to that reputation. Today, we’re pointing the spotlight on three of our recent favourites, all from very different musical perspectives, from soul to pop to indie rock.
Patrick Lehman‘s music is the kind that takes only one listen to fall in love. A blend of soul, blues and rock, Lehman grew up on artists like Aretha Franklin, Stevie Wonder, The Rolling Stones and Fleetwood Mac. You may have spotted him at the Jazz Fest over the years, where he performed for over 150,000 people as part of the fest’s Paul Simon Tribute show. Look out for his latest single “Come Together” on CHOM 97.7, where it’s currently on rotation.
MAD FOR MUSIC
Posted on April 2, 2013
Patrick Lehman is a talented musician with a lot of cred to his name. He’s based in Montreal (for now), but he’s constantly touring on the road which means you should obviously go see one of his shows.
From sharing the stage with Elvis Costello to what the tattoo says on his left forearm, Patrick Lehman continues to cook up a whole lot of soul in the electric kitchen.
Q: You have quite the resume to your name, such as sharing the stage with Elvis Costello. What was that like?
Patrick Lehman: That was an amazing experience. It was infront of 150,00 people at an outdoor festival. The crowd was amazing and the artists I worked with were all so kind, such proffesionals. I was able to meet alot of great performers that week.
Q: I see that you were also featured on hip-hop artist, Karma Atchykah’s first album. Does that exist somewhere on the internet? ..I think that would be awesome to check out.
Patrick Lehman: That was a great album I sang on many years ago now, probably about 7 years. I did a few hooks and improved on some tracks too. I don’t think it’s out there but I was contemplating posting it on youtube after finding it last night in a pile of CDs.
Q: Who would you like to collaborate with in the future? Any other hip-hop artists?
Patrick Lehman: So many artists I’d love to collaborate with. Hip hop is one of my first loves and I grew listening to alot of Missy, Roots, Puffy, Talib, Outkast, Biggie, Kanye, Fugees, JayZ, Lauryn Hill. I’d love working with any of those but especially Kanye, Outkast and Lauryn! We’ll see haha
Q: So you are from Montreal. I’ve been there before but unfortunately have never caught a show. What’s the music scene like in Montreal?
Patrick Lehman: The music scene in Montreal is interesting – there’s many cool little venues to perform spread all over the city. The scene has a little bit of R&B, some jazz and indie hipsters making noise. It’s a great city to live and create in.
Q: Are you fluent in French or any other foreign languages?
Patrick Lehman: I am fluent in english and french. My mom is french and my father is english. I’d love to speak spanish but haven’t learnt yet.
Q: It seems you travel quite a bit. Are there any cities you haven’t been to that you really want to play at?
Patrick Lehman: I really want to make my way to DC! I’d also really like to perform in LA soon, and New Orleans.
Q: I’m a huge fan of ‘Stop Pretending‘ and noticed some writing on your left forearm in the video. Is that a tattoo, or….? If so, what does it say?
Patrick Lehman: Thank you! Yes I have two tattoos on my forearm that looks like one big one. One part is the adress of the home I grew up in, and the other is a line from psalms “I will sing aloud of your mercy in the morning for you have been my defense and refuge in the day of my trouble”.
Q: Is it too soon to ask if there will be an Electric Soul Kitchen Vol. 3?
Patrick Lehman: There will most definately be a Vol.3, and I think I might end that series there. But I have a few things I’ll be putting out first. I have a remix EP coming out this summer, all remixed material from Vol.2 and a few extras. And another album coming out in 2014 before Vol3!
Q: You have a really great voice and maybe you already do this in your live shows now, but ever think of trying out some acoustic tracks?
Patrick Lehman: I actually did many acoustic shows in 2012 – sometimes it’s easier to travel that way and allows people to hear my voice a little better. I’ll be some more this year too. I also want to record a more subtle, with just guitar or piano.
Q: This next one is very important. When do you plan on playing a show in DC?!
Patrick Lehman: I hope to be there this summer with some luck!
MOD CITY MAG
By Stephanie Noel — January 09, 2013
Patrick Lehman is a Canadian singer, songwriter and a producer. The modern day soul artist began performing at the age of sixteen and later studied vocal performance while in college. Testing the waters with the rock and hip hop genres over the years, Lehman decided to stick with a genre he grew up loving listening to, soul. Lehman has created and mastered a sound that can be considered a fusion of pop, jazz, and soul. He has released three full length albums first being a self titled album in 2008 followed by Electric Soul Kitchen Vol.1 in 2011. Most recently Lehman released Electric Soul Kitchen Vol.2, a follow up to the well received 2011 release. Having toured the US and Canada extensively over the past few months, his music has been heard and discovered by many. His most recent single “Stop Pretending” has been added in regular rotation on Canadian radio networks such as Galaxie and CBC.
As the new year begins, Lehman doesn’t have any plans on resting any time soon. With a fifteen date winter tour already in progress, he will be hitting many of the large cities in Ontario and Quebec as well as some northeast dates here in the States. Additionally, he plans to release an Electric Soul Kitchen Vol.2 remix EP this spring.
Whether in the States, Canada or China, Patrick Lehman is a voice that shouldn’t go unheard. Take a listen to some of his latest album on Spotify and pick up a copy on iTunes, you won’t regret it!
Here is a playlist Patrick put together of some of the songs he has been obsessed with lately. While taking a listen to Patrick Lehman’s playlist make sure to follow him Twitter and Facebook.