Chris Willis is kind of famous in the world of house music. He was a frequent collaborator with French DJ David Guetta and their songs have been played in clubs all over the world. Songs like “Love is Gone,” “Just a Little More Love,” “Gettin’ Over You,” helped sell millions of albums and soared to the top of the charts. Willis, who has lived in New York City and Atlanta, moved to Fayette County last January and is now about to release his first solo EP, “Premium (Songs from the Love Ship) Part 1.
“The songs on the EP are from a collection of songs I’ve been writing,” Willis said. “They are very personal and I am able to explore things like working more with harmonies, which goes back to my Gospel roots and my time as a backup singer.”
Willis is now in a leadership role and that means a lot of travel and promotion. The first track released from “Premium,” is “Louder” and it has been popular with the DJs at the clubs that Willis has visited and performed at.
The music industry has shifted from a radio focus to one on the internet and artists like Willis embrace web sites like YouTube where viral videos and remixes of his songs all serve the purpose of spreading the word.
“It really helps to get things to the hands of DJs and listeners early,” Willis said. “By the time I get to the club, they are familiar with the songs.”
The work on “Premium” has allowed Willis to reach out to some of his favorite artists, including Lenny Kravitz. One of the songs on the EP uses Kravitz’s riff from “Are You Going to Go My Way,” which will certainly strike a chord with a lot of listeners. Willis also covers “Stand By Me” on the EP.
“It’s just a great message, to be there for somebody or to have somebody there for you when you need it,” Willis said.
When Willis welcomes someone to his home or into his car, he often quips, “Welcome to the Love Ship,” so giving a shout out to that remark in the name of the EP was only natural for Willis.
“Love is such a big deal to me, whether that’s social love, spiritual or compassion,” Willis said. “The songs are just a message for everyone including myself.”
Willis will be traveling and performing a lot as “Premium” is released and begins to find its way to the ears of listeners and the world’s DJs. To stay up to date with him, follow him on Twitter @chriswillistwit.