Artist Interview – Lost Stars

Madison Mahady

Kansas City natives Damian and Charley create the duo Lost Stars. Now based in Nashville, the childhood friends are coming off of a tour and have released a new single, Hoodie. Charley sat down to tell us how he and Damian met, the inspiration behind their latest single, and more!

How was Lost Stars formed?

Damian and I met when we were 16 and 14, and have literally been playing music together since day one thanks to high school pep band! We quickly found ourselves in a rock band together, and eventually worked our way to Nashville. When we first got to town, we both tried to emphasize working on writing or producing songs for other artists, but ultimately found ourselves wanting to be in a band again. 

You’ve been touring since the middle of June. As you near the end of your tour, what has been the most rewarding part of this experience?

Touring for an extended amount of time equates to an extended amount of time with no day job baby!

Since 2021, your cover art has had a dramatic shift in tone and art style. What made you decide to go in this new direction?

Yo, Ceci Mula is a badass and she’s behind all of that. I think part of it has come with not taking ourselves so seriously, and trying to allow the other creatives we work with to just do their thing.

What was the inspiration behind your latest single, 'Hoodie'?

The original idea came from our co-writer Knox Morris. He brought it to us (with Spencer Jordan too), and Damian and I both latched on to the theme immediately. I’d been in a season of romantic strike-outs with a couple ex-girlfriends and flings, so it really hit home. Plus, I have a history of accidentally giving away my favorite clothes. If anyone reading this happens to know the whereabouts of my Tom Petty and Elvis tees, I changed my mind and I’d like them back please. 😉

Who are some of the artists you look up to the most?

There’s a long list that I’m finding constantly changes. For simplicity’s sake let’s just say Joe Walsh today, for more than just his music. Today I’m a sober alcoholic. Seeing what he’s gone through to get to where he currently is, and hearing him talk about his life gives me a lot of hope to keep chugging along through life.   

Your most viewed TikToks focus on the singles 'Here’s to Being Single' and 'Blacklist'. The comments on those videos are filled with people saying how the songs relate to their lives. What about these two songs do you think resonates with so many of your listeners?

Hmmm. I know that both those songs say things that I was initially scared to say. My default position is to hide the parts of me that are less than favorable. HTBS: I wanted to hide that I don’t have things figured out, that I’m afraid to make commitments to people, or that I doubt my romantic action. Blacklist: I didn’t want people to know that Damian and I had been a part of a hurtful relationship. I was hesitant to badmouth someone. But that’s the glory in collaborative songwriting – we can take our insecurities and share them with our co-writers, and hone in on songs that people can really benefit from hearing. I’ve learned that our art can quickly become bigger than myself.

How would you pitch your music to someone who has never heard it before?

Pop and roll, baby. It really depends on who I’m talking to. Sometimes I say we kind of sound like Coldplay, U2, and Green Day. Other times I’ll throw out The Band Camino, 5 Seconds of Summer, and The Jonas Brothers. Pop band. Pop-rock band. Alternative pop-rock band. 

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