2014’s most prolific artist slugs along with a never-ending second life. By now we all know him as Lewis; where more avid fans may refer to him as Randall Wulff or Lewis Baloue. It seems the polynomial man behind L’Amour and Romantic Times is adding yet another alias to his repertoire: Randy Duke. And with his additional persona we see the emergence of a third confirmed record – this one tenderly titled Love Ain’t No Mystery.
Elements of the recordings within match completely in tune with the Lewis we’ve all come to know: featherlight guitar work echoed by moony vocal hums. Although, unlike before, there is a frank audibility to his lovesick lyrics that jut out from the soft atmosphere which Lewis gently constructs. His voice still stretches, cooing and oozing through your ears to your beating heart, hitting where it counts.
What details are known about Love Ain’t No Mystery are as goes: the album was recorded in the early 2000s at Fiasco Bros. studio under his pseudonym Randy Duke. (In fact, the staff at Fiasco Bros. released a clip show of artists that have come and gone over the last 29 years at their studio – one of whom is Randy/Lewis himself. He can be seen at the 0:50 mark here.) While there, Lewis gave explanation to his Duke surname as being the son of tobacco fortune heiress Doris Duke. Reissuer of the first two Lewis albums, Light in the Attic Records, also has confirmed the legitimacy of this recent discovery.
By visiting the Fiasco Bros. studio page, the crew in their British Columbia headquarters have compiled a short collection of articles about Lewis, his album shortlist with the tracks for each release, a digital download option for Love Ain’t No Mystery, alongside two tracks off said album. “Heartbreak” and “It’s a Frail Thing” can be heard below (at best if contained under a pair of noise-nerfing headphones):
So, how is it we truly, truly know this isn’t some hoax? In all honesty, I don’t even know. Likely very few know the truth of the matter, which pins us all to rely on these artifacts to be a coherent story strung together upon faith alone. Figuring we’ve seen three albums from various time periods, locations and unique “making of…” stories to match – nothing points towards a massive duping. Lewis feels as real as you or I, when in fact, he is. His creed may be different than our own, yet none of that refutes the winsome music we’ve been given.
For a third single (one which finds no home among all perceived Lewis albums), give a listen to “Fallin’ Down.” It not only holds a familiar frail composure to his early 80s work, but preserves the hope that more records are yet to behold.