GRAMMY-winning artist Dave Stewart recently visited The Recording Academy's headquarters in Santa Monica, Calif., to participate in an exclusive GRAMMY.com interview. Stewart discussed his brand-new album, The Ringmaster General, writing and recording the Eurythmics' No. 1 hit "Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This)," winning a GRAMMY, and collaborating with other artists, among other topics.
"The great thing about creating with other people is you have to jump in the deep end of the relationship and there's not a lot of wasting time," said Stewart. "On life's great journey, the more interesting people you can collaborate with or have conversations with about these very interesting questions about relationships, the world [and] life in general, [the more] enriching [music can be]."
As a member of the innovative pop duo Eurythmics with Annie Lennox, Stewart earned his first No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for "Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This)," the title track from the group's breakthrough album of the same name, which peaked at No. 15 on the Billboard 200. That same year Eurythmics received a GRAMMY nomination for Best New Artist. In 1986 the duo won a GRAMMY for Best Rock Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocal for "Missionary Man," a song from their fifth studio album, Revenge.
In 1989 Stewart released his debut solo album, Lily Was Here, which peaked at No. 11 on the Billboard 200. He has also collaborated with artists including Jon Bon Jovi, Bob Dylan, Mick Jagger, Aretha Franklin, the Neville Brothers, and Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, among others. Most recently, Stewart produced Stevie Nicks' 2011 album, In Your Dreams; recorded an album with SuperHeavy, an all-star project featuring Jagger, Damian Marley, A.R. Rahman, and Joss Stone; and released a solo album, The Blackbird Diaries.
Released Sept. 4, The Ringmaster General was produced by Stewart and Mike Bradford (Stevie Nicks, Deep Purple, Uncle Cracker), and was recorded at Blackbird Studio, a Nashville-based facility he owns with Martina McBride. The album features collaborations with Diane Birch ("Just Another Fall"), GRAMMY winner Alison Krauss ("Drowning In The Blues"), Stone ("I Got Love"), guitarist Orianthi ("Girl In A Catsuit"), and singer/songwriter Jessie Baylin ("God Only Knows You Now"). Musicians contributing to the album include guitarists Tom Bukovac and Orianthi, drummer Chad Cromwell, bassist Michael Rhodes, and pianist Mike Rojas.