For such a young man, Julian de la Celle certainly has a very capable grasp of the history of rock, as you’ll hear on the debut of his band Secret Smiles’ brand new single “Stay Blue.” This is actually the quartet’s debut single, and it impresses in so many ways with its vintage sound and excellent production, a song that sounds like it’s coming from a well-established act.
There’s an unmistakable ’70s rock influence but also a healthy dose of desert rock and maybe a teeny bit of psychedelia as well. “Stay Blue” is the first song that was completed by de la Celle while he was writing for this project during the pandemic lockdown, and it really defines exactly what he and his bandmates want their band to sound like.
On the song, de la Celle shares with us:
“When lockdown first started, I found myself being really inspired by Leonard Cohen’s Songs Of Love And Hate and Lee Hazelwood’s extensive discography. I spent a lot of time at my godfather’s rehearsal studio writing songs and recording demos and ‘Stay Blue’ was the first song that I finished.”
It was only last year that Secret Smiles officially formed in Los Angeles. Joining de la Celle are drummer Ann Seletos, guitarist Ian Waters, and bassist Zeh Monstro. de la Celle may be a familiar name thanks to his standout work as an actor over the years in shows such as How To Get Away With Murder, Black-ish, and The Fosters. After several months of live shows, they began recording with Starcrawler guitarist Henri Cash, who helped them in recording a four-song debut EP, which is where you will find “Stay Blue.” It’s a stellar song to call a debut single, and even more than that, it shows a lot of promise for what’s to come in this young act’s future.