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Damian Lewis reveals 'gorgeous' late wife Helen McCrory inspired album

Damian Lewis on Tuesday’s This Morning (ITV)
Damian Lewis on Tuesday’s This Morning (ITV)

Damian Lewis said releasing his debut album, which features lyrics dedicated to his late wife, brought him a sense of solace.

The British actor-turned-singer's wife and Peaky Blinders star Helen McCrory died in April 2021 aged 52 after a battle with cancer.

The 53-year-old is currently touring his album, Mission Creep, and reflected on the writing process, revealing how McCrory had inspired the record.

Asked about the writing process by Cat Deeley on Tuesday’s This Morning, he explained: “If I had written a song it went on a record. I wrote 10 songs and that felt hard enough.

“I looked at some of my old songs and they were so terrible! But I felt comfortable with Mission Creep.

Adding: “There are some personal songs on there, people will know about my gorgeous late wife Helen. So, there's one or two personal songs on there so it’s quite an intimate album for that reason.”

 (PA Archive)
(PA Archive)

The Billions star, who welcomed daughter Manon, 16, and son Gulliver, 15, with McCrory, also shared that their kids have been supportive of his choice to take a break from acting and explore music.

He continued: “They're being really sweet about it and they are actually really talented musicians themselves.

“I think it can be a bit annoying that your dad is doing music when that's what you want to do, but they are a more talented than me so I have told them to keep going at it.

“There isn't a chance in hell they will ever [perform] with me.”

While Lewis hasn't explicitly stated which songs are about the late Harry Potter star, his track She Comes explores themes of grief and the lingering presence of loved ones who have passed away in our surroundings.

The lyrics include: “She comes as a blackbird, she comes as a fox. She sits at the window, she sings from a rock.

“She's the moon in the day and the sun that shines in the dark. She rests in me and she rests in shade. She's my joy, she's my pain and she rained on me.”

The Band of Brothers actor began writing the songs during lockdown when McCrory was ill, and explained how “undeniably” some of the tracks are “just directly” about her.

 (ITV)
(ITV)

He told Cambridge Independent: “They're quite a personal collection of songs.

“Many people will know that I lost my wife about three years ago. This album was written in that time. So inevitably, there's a reflection of that time in the songs.

“One or two of the songs are, undeniably, just directly about Helen. The rest of it is storytelling. I like storytelling through songs. Little short stories about events, either imagined or real.”

Mission Creep peaked at number 38 in the UK’s albums chart, following its release, according to the Official Charts Company.

Lewis won an Emmy and Golden Globe in his role as Nicholas Brody in the drama Homeland, which premiered in 2011 and starred Claire Danes and Rupert Friend.

He has also featured in TV mini series Wolf Hall (2015), adapted from Hilary Mantel’s book trilogy, action film The Sweeney (2012) and a remake of Shakespeare’s famous love story Romeo And Juliet (2013).