Roger Kisby, Getty Images Toro y Moi front man Chaz Bundick has released two…
- Posted on Jan 19th 2011 3:00PM by Jesse Ship
Henry S. Dziekan III, Getty Images
"I feel like Twin Shadow is a product to every kind of musical path I've tried to take balled into one thing," he tells Spinner. "I'm not trying to pull from any one thing -- it just came out that way because its everything I've experienced."
Starting off in a metal band in his teens before playing in Bob Dylan-loving '60s pop groups like Drug Rug, his current incarnation is the progression of years of experimentation.
"My music in past bands doesn't sound like Twin Shadow, but it's all the same thing to me," he says. "I've just been writing songs; it doesn't matter to me what they sound like."
An elusive black-and-white YouTube video from 2007 shows him crooning over rhythm and blues. "At that point, I didn't really like what I was doing with the music, but my punk band had just broken up and I was just figuring out what to do next," Lewis Jr. explains. "The style in that video was influenced by my teens when I had left high school and used to hang out at this blues bar."
Being of mixed descent, with a Jewish father and Dominican mother, and growing up in Florida, Lewis Jr. often felt like an outsider.
"I tried to sing for a metal band when I was 16 but got I kicked out because I was too 'not metal,'" he reminisces. "Race has definitely played a factor in my non-acceptance in the music world, and it probably played a huge factor in me being kicked out of the metal band."
"I don't know -- it is but it isn't," he says, considering his words. "I don't feel it much these days. But I do admit, being a black dude and playing this kind of music is definitely a bit of a novelty."
As if to uphold his novel status, Time Out New York has recently dubbed him one of the city's most stylish residents. He attributes his style to spending much time in the gay scene.
"They care about the way they look. I grew up with sisters and a more effeminate type of nature. Fashion and getting my hair done has always appealed to me. It's just a part of my life, as if I was born a girl."