An Interview With Musician SAM JAMES About His Breakout Single ‘The Song You Wrote’, Favorite Artists And More!
Posted On 14 Apr 2017
You can listen to “The Song You Wrote” here:
You can listen to “Love Hangover” at the bottom.
An uplifting ode to the ones we love, “The Song You Wrote” is an anthem for those that are blissfully in love day in and day out. Sam James delivers the fluttering heartbeat driving the song forward with a blend of ambitious, tuneful and anthemic Americana. With a vocal clarity soaring and warming the ears, he delivers a song that will be the tune of summer love.
A Worcester, MA native, Sam James is a singer-songwriter that first appeared on NBC’s The Voice as a member of Team Adam. He recently released his new EP title “It Never Happens,” which shot up on the charts to #5 in the US on iTunes. Since the release, his songs have been featured on Sirius Radio and the CBS NFL broadcast of Thursday night football.
Follow Sam James Here:
Learn more about Sam James in the following All Access interview:
Thanks for your time! What are some words you would use to describe 2016 for you and your music? How is 2017 treating you so far?
Amazing. Successful. Exhausting. Wonderful. 2016 was a grind. A labor of love, that paid off in the long run. After parting ways with my label, it was was time to step up, release my own music, and get back on the road. It was an incredible year. 2017 is shaping up to be everything 2016 was and more.
Growing up, did you always want to be a musician? Can you recall your earliest musical memory?
I always wanted to be on stage. Its in my blood. My dad was always writing songs and playing. My first musical memory is sitting on his lap while he played piano and sang in our living room. I was hooked.
Let’s talk about your recently released single “The Song You Wrote.” What was the inspiration behind this song? Generally, how do you go about constructing a song from start to finish?
TSYW is by far my favorite song i’ve done to date. It started with a little guitar riff and blossomed into this whole tune about life and love. My brilliant producer David StFleur “Saint” and my co-writer Nick Black helped me take this song to another level. We were walking around Davids apartment in LA yelling “ay yay ya” for hours and it just stuck. We figured if we couldn’t get it out of our heads then we must be on to something.
In terms of constructing a song….I don’t have a formula. I rely a lot on my gut.
How does “The Song You Wrote” compare to the rest of your new EP, “It Never Happens”? When do you hope to release a full-length album of new songs? Did anything surprise you about putting together the EP?
TSYW fits nicely in with the rest of my EP. We really wanted to have big hooks on these songs, but keep an organic vibe in the track. There are massive drums and claps and snaps on the entire record, but also real guitars, real mandolins, real bass, real banjos, etc…it was important to me to not have programmed instruments and samples on these tunes. I think there isn’t enough of that in music these days. A great song (topline and lyric) is always going to be great, but pop music in 2017 sometimes becomes a game of “who is best at computers”….I wanted to bring the live aspect back to my music.
I don’t think i’m going to release a full length album. I want to break it up into a series of EPs, and release them slowly over the next year. We have about 18 tracks ready to go.
I’d love to know how your experience on The Voice helped you grow as a musician? Specifically, what did you learn from being on Team Adam? If given the chance, would you go on it and do it all over again?
The Voice was a cool platform. It was totally different than anything I’d ever experienced. I think the show helped me grow as a person, not necessarily a musician. I learned exactly what I could handle stress wise, and how to use those new skills in my live performances. Adam was a great guy. He always had nice things to say and was a shoulder to lean on if we needed him. I wouldn’t trade that experience for anything.
Would I do another reality singing show in 2017? Probably not, but I’m glad the younger me had the opportunity to do it.
I saw that you recently sang the National Anthem at a Boston Celtics game! How cool was that? Were you nervous?
That was such a cool experience. It was my second time at the Garden for the national anthem, so I wasn’t as nervous. You always have the bubble-guts before you sing in front of 18k people, but I’m getting better at dealing with it. Also, it’s Boston. I grew up here. I know as fans we are brutal. You don’t want to screw up our nations anthem in Boston…so there’s that.
Do you have any upcoming shows? Where can your fans see you perform next?
Right now we are focused on releasing the music. I do have some New England stuff in the works, but while we work the single my team will be finding the best tour opportunity for me. Hopefully, I’ll be back on the road this fall/winter.
That is a tough question. I love so many artists. John Mayer, Ray LaMontagne, Brett Dennen…..there are too many to name. I would love to work with any of those guys. I guess if i had my ultimate wish it would be to do a session with Springsteen. I would probably be too enamored the entire time to come up with anything good, but it would be cool to experience his process.
At the end of the day, what do you hope is the message of your music? What do you hope people take away from your songs?
Each song has a different message. I just hope people enjoy the records, and that some of the lyrics mean something to them. It doesn’t have to be a specific feeling. That’s what is so cool about music. Every person is going to interpret a song a different way.
Is there anything else that you would like to share with our readers about yourself or your music?
I hope everyone enjoys the music. It was a great time making these songs, and I am just happy to finally be getting them out into the world.