The British group Lawson has established itself well in its homeland.
Now it has the U.S. in its crosshairs.
The quartet's 2012 debut album, "Chapman Square," was a Top 5 hit in the U.K., and it's logged five Top 10 singles across the pond. It's renewed U.S. push, meanwhile, includes the new single "Roads," an EP in August, an album possibly before the end of year and, frontman Andy Brown says, plenty of touring.
"It's about being here, to be honest. That's the most important thing," Brown, 28, says by phone from Washington, D.C. "You really need to be here (in the U.S.) for a certain amount of time. You can build up a buzz then go back to the U.K. for the next six months and people can forget about you. You need to put the time in here."
And, the Liverpool native quickly adds, he and his bandmates don't mind that at all. "That's what we want to do; we want to spend as much time here as possible," Brown explains. "Our music really suits the American market, I think. Hearing what's on radio, it fits nicely among the other things being played."
Lawson also made the plunge to record in the U.S., working on its sophomore album with producer John Fields at the famed Blackbird Studios in Nashville. "Four U.K. guys living in a house in Nashville, we were just loving it and loving life and getting out there and being part of it all," Brown says. "We definitely made our mark on Nashville."
Many of the new songs, however, were inspired by dark times for Brown. He actually named the band after the surgeon who successfully removed a brain tumor when he was 20. But during late 2013 and early 2014 he was hospitalized with liver failure and "sort of knocking on death's door, really." But the resulting songs, he promises, are anything but downers.
"The whole thing was an inspiration for me, really changed my whole perspective on life," Brown explains. "I had a new lease on life, a chance to write these uplifting songs. They're about staying positive and in the moment, not letting your head drop or anything. Writing them definitely kept my spirits up."
Lawson and Sheppard
Friday, July 31. Doors open at 6:30 p.m.
The Pike Room in the Crofoot, 1 S. Saginaw St., Pontiac.
Tickets are $12 in advance, $15 day of show.
Call 248-758-9770 or visit www.thecrofoot.com.
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