INTERVIEW WITH S.A.M.
By Stephanie Stevens
Welcome to the world of S.A.M. (SAVAGE AFTER MIDNIGHT), a band that came storming into 2019 with a ton of fire and intention. “11:59” was the EP that drove the band into the ears, hearts and mouths of the rock world. With singles like ‘10 FEET TALL’ and ‘UNLEASH’, songs that penetrated with so much melody, elaborate groove and vocals that made you understand what diversity is! It was no wonder this band was gaining a fanbase at a powerful rate!
Just about the time that an explosion for the band was on the edge of hitting, a pandemic of the world hit and everything came to a standstill. The members of S.A.M. didn’t let this hinder or halt them from continuing to interact with fans and grow the bands fanbase more! They also created and, when I say creating, they did an outstanding job as they worked with friends Jack Fowler of Sleeping With Sirens and the one and only Danny Worsnop of Asking Alexandria to put together a new single that not only blows away their older work but showcases the strength in songwriting and growth this new band is achieving on a daily basis. ‘REMEDY’ fires on all cylinders; intricate, ballsy, energy packed and melodically enticing, It’s a track that’s addictive. This Memphis quintet is ready to hit it even harder in 2021 and I am absolutely stoked to be part of the mix supporting them for their future.
I had a chance to chat with band member JT about future tour plans, the new EP they have in the works, how ‘REMEDY’ took shape and the fun they had making the action packed video for the single.
Q: Welcome new fans of your band into the world that is S.A.M.! How did you guys form and what makes your band members stellar people to work with?
A: What’s up everyone, we always love adding new members to the S.A.M Fam! We formed a number of years ago and have evolved through a few different name changes through the years before settling on S.A.M. This current line-up of the band is pretty awesome! Most of us have a long history with each other from playing in various bands around Memphis – so it’s been pretty smooth to transition into this latest version of the project.
Q: You had some massive momentum going before Covid hit with your amazing EP “11:59”. With all the hype with the release did that keep you guys energized and positive during quarantine or was it an emotional time for you all?
A: Thank You for the kind words on “11:59”! Yeah, we kept positive through the pandemic, despite the pause in touring. We took the time to take stock and write a ton of new material with a killer group of collaborators! I think it was emotional in the sense that no musicians had the chance for over a year to connect with their live audience. That part was certainly challenging.
Q: During 2020 did you stay active on social media to stay close with fans? Or did you take the downtime to focus on making new music?
A: A little of both, the entire world had plenty of time to sit at home and do nothing, and we tried to stay as active on social media as we could. I think the hard part was we had nothing to promote – so at times it can be difficult to stay connected.
Q: The new single ‘Remedy’ is brilliant! How did the song take shape in your mind and how did both Jack Fowler of Sleeping With Sirens and Danny Worsnop from Asking Alexandria come into the fold?
A: Thank You!!! We’ve been blown away at the response ‘Remedy’ has gotten and we’re truly grateful. Both those guys are family to the band, so putting those collaborations together was actually sooth despite the pandemic. They both did such a killer job making the song what it came to be.
Q: With having both Jack & Danny work with you on the song – how did that change the creative process for S.A.M. and what was the biggest thing you learned from working with them?
A: Our process is a bit different and really works for us in the sense that none of the band ever gets too personal or territorial with the writing process, in fact we ADORE having other people come in and contribute to our music. We think that it adds to the diversity and growth of the band’s sound. As far as what we learned, we learned Danny can sing his ASS off!!! And Jack absolutely rips when push comes to shove. It was crazy how naturally that song came together!
Q: Most people ask band members what motivated them to be in a band. I want to know what motivated you or inspired you to compose and write songs? And do you feel you grow in knowledge with every song you create?
A: We’ve always been inspired by the song writing process in general. I think in the beginning stages for any songwriter, you call upon personal experience to create the song. Many years ago, we changed our approach to songwriting, and started writing based on characters of a story rather than what’s happening in our own lives. We found that approach has opened up a whole universe of concepts we can touch on now. Of course, you’ll always derive material from personal experiences, but we don’t feel as tied up with that as we used to.
Q: Lyrically with ‘Remedy’ what do you hope people take away after hearing this track?
A: To cut out those toxic people in your life that bring no joy, and serve no purpose other than to hinder your personal growth.
Q: Another cool aspect of your band is the amazing videos you put out. Do you feel making videos is as important as songwriting?
A: It’s certainly a different art form, it’s strange because you never want to assume that your version of the song means the same thing to every type of person, you always want to leave the door open for fans to create their own experiences and interpretations of your music…I think that’s part of the magic in art. With the video to ‘Remedy’, we swear Shi & Danny just wanted an excuse to make a 4 minute action film!! 😉
Q: How did making the ‘Remedy’ video test your creativity? How fun was it having Danny onboard for it?
A: Wayyy too much fun! The making of ‘Remedy’ didn’t necessarily test our creativity like a normal video concept would, I think it was more that we wanted to capture the essence of the moment. Danny and Shi were in the moment and doing things on the fly. I think that’s why the video came out so well, it was natural and just flowed.
Q: You have an EP in the works for later this year – how would you compare the vibe of it to “11:59”?
A: The vibe is different because we’ve grown as a band and as songwriters. We think we’ve also taken the production to another level. We’re excited to share more as the year goes on – because it shows the natural growth of the band.
Q: Being in Memphis/Nashville – have you been able to play locally yet? I’m sure you’re excited to get back to playing live!
A: Other than a live stream show we did for Amazon Music on Twitch a couple of weeks ago, we haven’t yet. But we hope to soon.
Q: Will you be touring in 2021? Any hints on who you may tour with?
A: There’s a lot of discussions in the works – but we can’t make any announcements just yet. Follow us on our Socials so you can see when we’ll be coming to your town! I think it’s safe to say that in 2022 we should be back in full swing again on the touring front.
Q: Any special words to your fans and the new people who will be hearing ‘Remedy’ for the first time and becoming fans?
A: Check out our stuff, and connect with us everywhere – we always love hearing from the fans. Be sure to go listen to ‘Remedy’ on Spotify and all the other streaming platforms. Most importantly – Keep your heads up, we’re almost past this Pandemic mess. Thanks everyone!!
CONNECT WITH THE BAND:
S.A.M. feat. Danny Worsnop – ‘Remedy’ (Official Music Video)
Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Stephanie Stevens and East Coast Romper, and has been released to Ever Metal on this basis. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this interview, unless you have the strict permission of said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.