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MUSIC, POP

Sam Smith: ‘My aim is for everybody to sing my song, no matter who you are, no matter who you like’

June 24, 2014

At this point, probably you and everyone you know has watched (and cried over) Sam Smith’s truly gorgeous rendition of Whitney Houston’s How Will I Know. And if you haven’t, GET ON THAT.

But making everyone at SiriusXM shed a tear wasn’t the only thing on Sam’s agenda: The British singer-songwriter also sat down with OutQ‘s Larry Flick to talk about the inspiration behind his debut album, In The Lonely Hour, coming out to his family and friends, and how — believe it or not — he’s not actually a sad person.

To start, Sam addressed his album’s title, which might indicate a certain innate loneliness within himself, but, in fact, the Latch singer has grown to love his alone time.

“I’ve kind of fallen in love with my loneliness,” said Sam. “I love being by myself. It’s really complex. It wasn’t that I’m lonely, it was that I became comfortable in that hour, in that space. And now I’m trying to re-wire my DNA in a way. I really need to start opening up and allowing people into my lonely hour.”

Later, Larry wondered whether it had been difficult for Sam to come out as a gay singer-songwriter. Judging by his answer, Sam, who is only 22 years old, made disclosing his sexual orientation sound like a total non-issue.

“Nobody flipped out [about my being gay]. Everyone’s on my side, and everyone’s been on my side since I can remember,” commented Sam. “I’ve had the most supportive family, supportive friends, everything — I’ve really never had that many issues. That’s why this whole thing is not an issue to me. I don’t ever want it to be the focus. I’m a singer, foremost. I’m a singer-songwriter, whether I’m gay, straight, black, white, anything. It really doesn’t matter. It’s about the music. It’s about what I’m saying, and my aim is for everybody to sing my song, no matter who you are, no matter who you like.”

Finally, Larry wondered whether Sam, who sings such morose lyrics, grew up feeling sad or gravitated toward sad music. Again, Sam provided a surprising answer, replying that he’s ‘not a sad person.’

“Going through puberty, I listened to a lot of Joni Mitchell and stuff like that. But no, I still don’t listen to sad music that much. I’m not a sad person. [My songs are sad] because when I wrote [them] when I was heartbroken,” said Sam.

“In The Lonely Hour is a snapshot of a year in my life where I fell in love with someone who didn’t love me back. And I just decided to use my music as a diary and write about it. I’m in a completely different head space now. If I was to start writing another album right now, I don’t think it would be sad.”

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