Lewis artist Willie Campbell unveils new single Stars Reappear

Willie Campbell

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Stars Reappear is the new high-energy single from Isle of Lewis-based singer-songwriter Willie Campbell.

The pop single, set for release on Friday August 20, is an uplifting synth-infused track that celebrates the highlights of daily life and has a message of hope as we re-emerge from lockdown.

Willie is a well-known artist in the Scottish music scene after achieving widespread acclaim in the late 1990s while co-fronting guitar-pop foursome Astrid. Alongside Snow Patrol’s Gary Lightbody, he was a founding member of the turn-of-the-century indie collective The Reindeer Section. More recently, Willie has been releasing records as The Open Day Rotation and has three critically acclaimed albums.

In 2012, Willie was the subject of a BBC documentary, An Estate Car and a PA, which documented his return to Lewis after successful writing trips to Nashville, where he signed to Big Loud Shirt publishing in 2010.

Stars Reappear was recorded in May 2021 at Willie’s home studio and at Black Bay Studio with Pete Fletcher, who also mixed the track and plays bass and synths on it. As well as performing the vocals on the single, Willie plays guitar and synths, with James Clifford on bass and DC MacMillan on drums.

The single has a different sound to Willie’s usual indie or country material, with a distinct pop sound, showcasing lyrics inspired by feelings of hope and positivity.

He said: ‘Stars Reappear is about appreciating the good relationships in my life, particularly my marriage and how good my wife has been to me. It’s about the contrast between my life 20 years ago and now, and how it has changed for the better.

‘The weather and seasons on the Isle of Lewis, particularly in winter, also influenced the single a lot. It’s such a beautiful landscape and the clear view of the night sky can be very inspiring.

‘The song has a positive vibe that seems like a good fit for right now, with the feelings of hope we’re all experiencing again, it’s nice to think that’s something people can connect with.’

As a Isle of Lewis native, Willie is also known for celebrating Western Isles culture and heritage. He was commissioned in 2018-2019 to write songs for the Dìleab project, which was centred on the history of emigration and war experience of island communities in the Outer Hebrides. He also collaborates on the Between Islands project – an inter-island songwriting collective with Kris Drever and Arthur Nicolson.

Stars Reappear will be available to stream and download on all digital platforms from Friday August 20.