By: Zak Kolesar
It's hard to pin down an interview with an artist plotting their rise. That happened to be the case with Parker Louis, a man who wears many hats in various bands and who is planning a solo takeover of his own.
Despite being of former Forest & The Evergreens fame, Louis is still busy as a resident guitar player and singer for Small Movies, T.Wong and Doc Robinson. Being involved in numerous projects while trying to launch his solo career can be tasking at times, but he's up for the challenge. With the launching of his own Spotify page, Parker Louis is a name you’ll surely hear standalone around town.
Recently releasing his first solo venture, All Good Things Pt. 1, on streaming services, Louis is back to work with the laid-back, self-reflective, relatable tunes. The first batch of songs takes you to a hammock in your favorite hanging place, somewhere deep in the woods where the sun peeks through. Mellow vibes pour through Louis’ voice and guitar, taking you to a sanctuary of chill.
On the intro, "No Love, Lately," listeners are greeted with a smooth piano slide, a perfect lead into the wavering, soul-filled voice of Louis. Drums and tambourine keep the song upbeat, while Louis croons, "Feels like I'm losing touch/Maybe I'm not in love." Like most tracks on the four-song EP, Louis simply takes the lessons that have crossed him in life and just puts them onto rich R&B palettes.
Despite Louis’ busy schedule, he had the chance to catch up with In The Record Store over email before his EP release show at 9 p.m. on Friday, May 11 at Skully’s Music Diner. Tickets for the show are $5 day of show and doors
Be sure to check out the interview below.
ITRS: What's your favorite Forest & The Evergreens moment?
PL: Honestly, over the years Forest has had a countless amount of incredible moments. It’s hard to pin down anything that tops the others. Tour highs and lows (plenty of crazy stories there), band trips, big shows/tiny shows—it was all such a wonderful, wild growing experience, truly.
ITRS: Has Columbus molded your style as a musician, and if so, how?
PL: Columbus is such an inspiring city, musically and beyond. There are so many incredible players/producers/writers/creatives that—if you are really into the craft—you need to be constantly working on being better, meeting people, always be searching and learning to keep up. Which is what you want; to be scared into honing the spear all the time!
ITRS: Who are a few of your favorite soul singers to draw inspiration from?
PL: I'm a fan of so many artists/genres. It’s always changing through friends showing me things, to stuff just coming across the radio that I've never heard. Classically, though, with Soul Music, I'm listening to the masters all the time: Sam Cooke, Marvin Gaye, Donny Hathaway, Stevie Wonder to more modern stuff like D'Angelo and the whole Soulquarians catalog. There’s plenty more where those names come from too. It runs deep if you look.
ITRS: How did you know who to go to when assembling the band for Parker Louis?
PL: I've known the members of the Parker Louis band for a few years now, but we never really put together a group until I kind of made it known to them that I was looking to build something. Incredible people-artists-creatives-friends that have been such a joy and pleasure to work with. We clicked with a certain intangible presence right away, and that’s when you know you have something special.
ITRS: How does "All Good Things, Pt. 1" define Parker Louis?
PL: All Good Things, Pt. One is really just some self-reflection put into songs I had been writing. It doesn't “define” me or anything like that. It was more a personal look into what I had/have been going through. Certain things all 20-somethings go through for sure. I was lucky to have been able to put it down and have some incredible friends trust me enough to aid in bringing it to life.
ITRS: What are some of the main musical selling points of your EP that will help draw in people who don't know Parker Louis?
PL: For the new listeners, All Good Things has a thick groove, lush harmonies, a few guitar solos, wonderful keyboard arrangements; really most of what you'd want from a soul/R&B record. It's not perfect by any means, but for now it'll do.
ITRS: What can listeners expect from "Pt. 2"?
PL: "Pt. Two" is going to have a similar feel and energy, with a few new special guests along the way. Many more Good Things for sure.