Lewis Hamilton’s transition from Formula 1 star to full blown celebrity has continued with the Brit readying to release his first musical album.
The 30-year-old, who spends extensive time between Formula 1 commitments mixing with musicians and fellow sports stars in the United States, previewed his album on CBS’ high rating 60 Minutes program.
As part of a feature on his life and career, Hamilton opened up on his passion for music and desire to explore interests outside motorsport.
“Music’s been a huge passion of mine since I was really young,” he said, playing samples from songs “J’Adore” and “Lookin’ at You” from his own music studio.
“I started playing guitar when I was 13. In here, I can be me, I can be vulnerable. I can show a side of me that people don’t get to see.
“The plan was that it always started as a hobby but it’s got to a point now where it’s very serious and we spend a lot of time in here. If I’m not training, getting ready for the race, I’m here.”
The Brit first captured attention in the music world and celebrity social scene when he began dating singer Nicole Scherzinger early in his Formula 1 career.
Hamilton’s lifestyle has received a mixed reception from the Formula 1 world over recent years, with some criticising the driver for becoming distracted by fame.
The Brit’s growing profile is also seen as beneficial to the sport, particularly in the perennially difficult to crack United States market.
Although stating a desire to race in Formula 1 for the next “seven or eight years”, Hamilton made it clear that a fourth F1 title is just one of a number of goals ahead of him.
“I’m 30 now so there’s targets outside of racing,” he said.
“The racing world is a comfortable world for me in which I’ve grown to be able to do what I need to do in it.
“I love doing that part and I don’t want to get rid of it, but now I’m realising there’s a big world out there.
“There’s so many things you can do, places to see, people to meet, different cultures, languages, learning instruments, reading books, there’s so much knowledge out there.
“Now I’m on a quest to figure out what I want to do, particularly when I stop.
“Nine years have gone really quick in Formula 1, I’ve probably got another seven, maybe eight.”
VIDEO: Lewis Hamilton’s music on 60 Minutes
— 60 Minutes (@60Minutes) December 14, 2015