Exclusive: Lukas Nelson talks working with Lady Gaga on a Star is Born and musical collaborations

Lukas Nelson knows all about legacies, indeed he’s been hard at work carving his own for most of his young but extremely eventful life. Balancing his work as the frontman of Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real —  vital force in American music — with his regular gig as Neil Young’s band leader and lead guitarist — and of course, the never-ending road alongside his father in Willie Nelson & Family — in song after song, on stage after stage, Lukas has sharpened the edges of his unique sound, one that nods to his influences while also pushing forward into uncharted territory.

He is gearing up for the release of his latest album with Promise of the Real, “Turn off the News(Build a Garden)” which will be released on June 14th via Fantasy records.

Lukas is no stranger to collaborating with artists, he’s collaborated with Lady Gaga to co-write and produce the award-winning soundtrack for “A Star is Born”. His upcoming album is full of collaborations including Kesha and Sheryl Crow.

“It’s a really organic process. We just do the songs and then we think oh hey you know who’d be great on this? and then we ask them, they either say yes or they say they can’t. I am very grateful for everyone who did.”

The music industry is full of talent, we asked Lukas who he would love to collaborate with that he hasn’t already.

“Arcade Fire  does a great job so I’d maybe like to work with them or the Arctic Monkey’s, they are fantastic.”

Lukas is a guy that knows his music he has an ear for it having grown up around it and he constantly pushes musical boundaries, so him telling us he’d love to do something with “Chance the Rapper.”  without much hesitation has us dreaming of how fantastic it would be. He goes on to explain what he’d love to do with a collaboration like that, and we think it’s something we’d be very intrigued to hear.

“I think it would be cool to do a collaboration, sort of melodic songwriter with rock and roll, mixed with like a Tom Petty vs Hip-Hop vibe you know? I think it could be something that could become really cool. I think it would be very different, so that’s what I’ve been thinking of.”

Talk turns to his work on the smash hit, award-winning movie and soundtrack “A Star is Born”, which he wrote songs, for co-produced and even starred in the movie with Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper.

“The songs are very personal. I don’t like to write anything unless I feel it. These songs are more of a collaboration with different people. Everyone loves Gaga and she’s got an incredible team around her so I knew it would be successful. But not like that.”

“My band is playing on that song ‘Shallow’ and I wrote that little riff there at the beginning and I played it and you can hear it so it’s nice you know to be a part of something so amazing.”


You can pre-order “Turn off the News(Build a Garden)” here. It is released on June 14th via Fantasy records.

Keep your eyes peeled to @CelebMix for part 2 of our interview with Lukas and a review of the album on June 14th.

Written by Kelly McFarland

Likes to post in black and white on Instagram. Avid Tea drinker, preferably Yorkshire Tea or Lipton Iced Tea and lover of Pop Culture. Contact: kelly@celebmix.com