01 Sam is a singer-songwriter who grew up in England and Canada, but now lives in Berlin. “It’s the first city I’ve been where I felt safe being openly gay,” he says. “That’s a feeling I can’t undervalue – I now have great friends here, a wonderful partner, and the time and space to make the music I want to.”
02 Growing up, Sam sang in Oxford’s famous New College Choir. There’s a nod to his musical background in the vocal arrangement of new single Prettyboy, which is all about an androgynous guy who’s completely irresistible. “All the straight boys want him / And all the pretty girls wanna look just like him / Because he’s fiiiine,” Sam sings on the chugging indie-pop chorus. Check it out – it’s a real tune.
03 Sam says he’s
“frustrated” by some of the queer music he’s heard in the past, and thinks he can provide a fresh perspective.
04 “Today I didn’t rue my victimhood or march through the streets proudly proclaiming my sexuality. Tomorrow I might, but queer life is about more than that. Our sexuality is not the be-all and end-all of who we are,” he argues. “Being queer can be a question of situation, not definition or even identity, I think. And artistically, that gives us a lot to work with. It means we can make art that doesn’t just speak to gay people because they’re the only ones that will understand. We don’t just have to preach to the choir. Maybe we don’t have to preach at all. I’ve never been a fan of preaching anyway.” –
05 His debut album Homotopia is due early next year. “I’ve written a record that plays with stereotypes or ignores them, or tries to go to places we haven’t worked out stereotypes for yet, or goes to places we might not normally describe as queer,” he says. “To be honest, I probably ballsed it up. I thought the effort was worth it though!”
06 We think so too. And Homotopia is already our favourite album title of 2018.
Prettyboy is out now, @samvancelaw