100,000 monthly listeners, thousands of playlists.
A Brooklyn-based singer/songwriter with a penchant for disarming melodies and hypnotic electronic arrangements, Stuart Leach’s earnest lyricism, aching falsetto, and sonic orchestration give his music an unorthodox twist in a genre that sometimes sacrifices intimacy at the altar of cool.
Leach was born in 1993 in Dallas, Texas, attending an all-boys Catholic school where everyone was addressed by their last names. He began writing and performing piano pieces as early as age 11, eventually releasing them as 2011’s The Diving Bell. By the end of middle school, he was performing around the metroplex in the violin driven pop quartet Seastroke, who by their junior year of high school had opened for their idols Maps & Atlases and been featured on Coldplay's homepage.
By 2012 at Bard College in upstate New York, Leach had turned his solo career towards electronic music, which lent itself to being quietly recorded in a dorm-room. After an initial creative drought, a broken engagement left Leach with plenty to write about. He processed this grief in 2014’s Roman Candles, featuring classmate Soubrette's voice on the eponymous track. "Little Taste of Heaven" would achieve viral fame years later, spreading Leach’s music to a global audience.
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Interview with Leach
Q: Analog or digital and why?
A: Both! My preferred signal chain involves bouncing tracks out to a Tascam Portastudio MKIII for some tape compression, then blending the tape signal and the raw digital signal to provide character.
Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?
A: What's the story behind your project? I like to establish an emotional connection to the work. What kind of help are you looking for? Working on a project is more fun when I know what my collaborators need.
Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
A: Neumann U87, Mac Pro, Distressor, Prophet, Adam A7X Monitor
Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
A: I've been recording and songwriting for 15 years. I interned in a studio running ProTools HD with tons of outboard gear, then spent time working with a smaller, remote studio, honing my skills with Ableton Live and Logic Pro.
Q: Can you share one music production tip?
A: Reference tracks, reference tracks, reference tracks! It's so important to "calibrate your ears" and hear what the listener will hear. Listen to a few tracks you know by heart while in the mixing process in order to get a better idea of how your song is actually sounding.