VIDEO PREMIERE: CHESTER LOCKHART- “SPELL ON YOU”
photos / Tyler Rowell
Halloween is the perfect time to embrace, more like celebrate, Chester Lockhart’s witchy vibe. If his face seems familiar it could be from his cameos in Todrick Hall’s YouTube videos, in which he always seems to take a little bit more than his alloted spotlight. He’s a singer-songwriter / creative director/actor/ artist/producer whose music is just one extension of his canvas.
His music lends a certain magic to dark-pop that has cemented his sound in a genre made famous by the likes of our faves FKA Twigs, and Lana Del Rey. Just listen to Lockhart’s newest release, ” Spell On You” premiering today and imagine the three of them burning candles and humming together in tune of sorcery that will, well, put a spell on you.
We get to know Chester and find out where he is casting his spells these days.
Ok, Who is “Spell On You” about?
I rewrote the lyrics to be about me getting over my hangups with asshole dudes I’ve dated and becoming a totally free/happy little kinky pop ghoul. I wanted to feel totally in control.
I love the vibe and your whole vibe. How would you want people to describe you?
Thank you!!! I’ll Venmo you for saying that. I like to say I’m like a gay haunted house. Part poltergeist part West Hollywood. Like if Pinhead was a DJ at The Abbey.
Name a few playlists Spell On You” should be on?
Halloween Hookup, Wholesome Dungeon, Alternative Apparitions…. Apple Best Of The Week.
Your voice is beautiful! When did you start singing? Who is the first person who told you, you sounded good?
Wow… again with the compliments! I would blush if I wasn’t dead. My parents have footage of me at 2 or 3 naked in the kitchen belting “I Wanna Dance With Somebody” with a towel wrapped around my head. So I think at that moment they knew I was gonna be in entertainment (and subsequently have daddy issues).
What are your favorite things to do over Halloween season?
Well, normally I would say go to a pumpkin patch with my BOO but I’m currently alone. I usually watch Hocus Pocus upwards of 30 times in October (which is partially what inspired me to cover this song).
What are you going to be this year?
What’s the spookiest thing that has happened to you in the last 5 years?
I went on a date with a guy in Vegas. Very handsome, funny, in his late 30s, clearly had his shit together. Halfway through dinner, he says he’s in the mob and I laugh. Then he shows me the gun inside his coat. I know this isn’t necessarily spooky but that’s the story I wanted to tell.
Who would you want to be stuck in a haunted house with?
Hugh Jackman. Just in general I want be to stuck with/to him.
What was the first song that made you fall in with music?
My dad played David Bowie a lot while I was growing up and every time I heard Changes I started to perform like I was at Madison Square Garden. Also, I listened to Friday, I’m in Love by the Cure when I was in high school and I think something woke up inside me.
Who is your community and what do you think it needs most right now?
As a very proud mixed race gay ghost In this nightmarish political climate I think we need each other. To see your opinions voiced by someone who walks a similar path as you is empowering in itself. I think it’s really easy to become discouraged by everything happening in our government at the moment but I am constantly reminded of how beautiful and brilliant my LGBTQ / Slaysian sisters are.
Tell us about the “Spell On You” video.
This whole thing came together at the very last minute. I wanted something that was VERY GAY and very spooky. I wanted to bring together some of the most ghoulish and gorgeous underground queer artists and club kids I know and showcase all of us in a sexy way. As a darker artist, sometimes I feel like I don’t fit in at all with the LGBT music scene let alone mainstream music. I wanted to show that you can be gay, trans, queer, spooky and seductive all at the same time.
Who would you want to collab with on a “We Are The World” type of record?
Banks, Depeche Mode, Charli XCX, FKA Twigs, G-Dragon, Sophie & Partynextdoor.
What’s it like navigating a music career these days?
Being an independent artist is both outrageously rewarding and also PETRIFYING. Right before I do a release or get ready to film something I feel incredibly alone. I do everything myself and although I have amazing artists I get to call friends giving me feedback, I am really doing this 100% on my own. I reap all the benefits but at the cost of constant uncertainty and figuring things out as I go. I wouldn’t have it any other way.
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