It’s no secret that the power of Sam Smith’s music is in their vulnerability. They first burst onto the scene with their debut album ‘In the Lonely Hour’ back in 2014… A time where Tumblr was still alive. There couldn’t have been a better time for Sam to strike their match because well, will there ever be a more angsty time in one’s life than their Tumblr phase?
NME once said that Sam Smith has the ability to turn “heartache into a goldmine”. Six years on from their debut album, their music has definitely proven this statement true. Well, if the multitude of awards didn’t already, duh. But, there’s something special and unique about Sam Smith as an artist.
Their honesty makes them worth more than a million goldmines. Sam Smith is the embodiment of R&R, refreshing and rare. For some musicians of their level of fame, you could mine as deep as you want but still only get coal.
Get ready to experience a goldrush because here are Top 5 favourite Sam Smith interviews. Open a packet of biscuits though because some tea is about to be spilled…
1. Sam Smith: Album Writing, Living Life and Happiness | Apple Music (2017)
We have a lot to be proud of as New Zealanders but one of our greatest national treasures is Mr. Zane Lowe. Born and bred right here in Aotearoa… He is also one of the greatest interviewers ever. It would be criminal if we didn’t begin this list with him.
This interview is holy despite well, being filmed in Sam’s haunted out… In it, we find out that Sam is an excellent tea maker and someone who is fearless beyond belief. From coming out at 10-years-old to living in a house where their sister feels a ghost watching them 24/7…. Sam clearly holds many talents. But one of them is definitely NOT being ‘not ‘Too Good At Goodbyes’ with paranormal creatures.
Let’s pray the ghost doesn’t haunt us for that joke. We personally wouldn’t live there (unless Sam asked us to move in) but at least we can enjoy this interview from the safety of our bedrooms.
Best Moment: Sam listing off their top 5 people they’re most obsessed with as Judy Garland, George Michael, Amy Winehouse, Joni Mitchell and Fifth Harmony. The result of which later led to this unforgettable Carpool Karaoke (Jacinda should definitely award Zane Lowe for manifesting this).
2. I-D Meets: Sam Smith (2017)
This interview made the list for one particular quote about ‘In the Lonely Hour’ (2014),
“That first album… To me, it’s like a gin and tonic with your friends gossiping about a boy you really fancy, he doesn’t know who the fuck you are.”
Okaaaaaaaay Sam, we bet the boy definitely knows who you are now. Some of us out here are still uploading Instagram stories just for that one person to see… Anyways, what an iconic description for an album. Music critics far and wide are shook that they’ll never be able to describe ‘In The Lonely Hour’ (2014) as good as T-H-A-T. Sam Smith once again takes the crown for being relatable.
Best Moment: Sam giving us a tour of his tattoos – our favourite being his replica of the first ever tattoo found on a human being. One who is long frozen now but hey, their legacy lives on through Sam and now us.
3. Sam Smith Talks Gender Identity, Break-Ups and Stage Fright | In Conversation | British Vogue (2020)
The post-Covid generation will definitely be dazed and confused by the set-up of this interview. Some possible questions they will have…. Why are they sitting so awkwardly far apart? Are they trying to take up room on the giant couch? What the hell is going on?
Luckily, we will be able to explain to them the beauty of social distancing. And if they manage to get pass the initial awkwardness, they can experience the magic of this interview.
Paris Lees is Vogue’s first ever transgender columnist. And her interviewing skills pop off! No one else could pull off such a heartwarming interview within social distancing rules like her. I mean, how often do you hear heartwarming and social distancing used together? Paris and Sam’s conversation on gender and sexuality is a MUST WATCH (starts at about 7:43). The manner in which these two are able to discuss such a personal and important topic together is very, very, very special.
Best Moment: There’s so many good moments but Sam discussing their journey of identifying as non-binary could warm the coldest of hearts (even the ghost). Nothing more beautiful than Sam saying they feel fully seen now. Sometimes when there is extensive media coverage on a musician’s personal life, it almost numbs us to the pain which they must have felt to go public with those struggles. Sam leaves it all in the open with heartbreaking honesty.
4. Marc Meets: Sam Smith (2020)
This interview is only a grain of the time compared to others on the life but that doesn’t make it any lesser. The chemistry between the interviewer and Sam is undeniable. It feels like you’re just eavesdropping on a conversation between two friends at a café. A good conversation though, definitely not one between boomers.
Sydney is known for its famous Opera House and the birthing of 5 Seconds of Summer. But we find out here that its queer culture was hugely important in shaping Sam’s identity. And that’s worth throwing another shrimp on the barbie!
Best Moment: Hearing about Sam was able to heal from a break-up on their last tour because they felt like they were getting a hug from their fans every night. God, we wish we had that instead of Ben & Jerrys during our last break up.
5. Sam Smith: Vulnerability on ‘Love Goes’ and Self-Expression
We told you we loved Zane Lowe. If it’s criminal to not begin with him, it would only make sense to end with him, right?
This interview is 40 minutes of pure heartbreak and joy. Something which lives rent-free in our head (and now yours) is Sam saying in their 2017 interview with Zane, “For the first time, I feel like I could fall in love and be loved back.”
3 years later here, they say, “Sometimes when I’m with someone, I’m with what I think we could be instead of what we actually are.” This interview tugs so hard at your heartstrings that you honestly feel like you could throw up. But in literally the best way possible?
The development of Sam between these two interviews represent what makes him so special as an artist. He isn’t and will never be afraid to talk about the filter-free version of life. And in our personal opinion, ‘Love Goes’ might be Sam Smith’s best album yet because in experiencing their first true heartbreak, they’ve come out of it finding the most beauty in themselves that they ever have during their life.
Listen to the dang album if you don’t believe us.
After watching these interviews, we hope you’ve got at least some tears left to cry. Sam Smith’s latest album ‘Love Goes’ is out now.