There are so many undiscovered indie artists out there that deserve to be heard. As an artist and A&R myself, I understand the importance of exposure in this industry. And not in the “perform for exposure” way. Independent artists need an audience now more than ever.
I also really enjoy discovering new music and having the chance to hear these artists before they blow up. I want you guys to discover these artists with me, that’s why I have started Le Café Music Blog’s Indie Artist Interview Series. That’s a mouthful.
Are you ready to meet our first indie artist?
Introducing: Sam Phelps
Sam is an independent singer-songwriter out of Brooklyn, NY. He recently dropped his brand new 3 track EP on all streaming platforms. I’ll let Sam tell you all about it.
Indie Artist Interview Time!
Ryan: Welcome, Sam! Thank you so much for joining us today. Let’s start off with a little introduction. Tell us a little bit about yourself!
Sam: My name is Sam Phelps. I’m a singer-songwriter from Kentucky. My hometown is Pulaski County. It’s a dry county…not like, “you can’t buy alcohol on Sunday…?” No, you can’t buy alcohol. Period. Legally anyway. So I got to experience bootleggers and real moonshine from time to time. I threw a backpack out a window at 17 and never really went back. I’ve lived in Brooklyn the last few years and it feels like home for now.
Ryan: Damn, man. I’ve been to little towns in Kentucky exactly like that. Definitely a massive change from a small, dry county to New York City. So, tell us a little about your latest release.
Sam: My latest release is a 3 song EP titled “Talking To A Friend.” It’s basically a nostalgic look at relationships I’ve had the last few years. One ending in a bad way. And two others that have been over for years.
Favorites and Influences
Ryan: Heartache is a bitch…but it can lead to great music. What is your favorite song you’ve ever released?
Sam: That’s a tough question. Maybe I Can’t Sing, because it was kind of the moment when I found the direction I wanna go in when it comes to songwriting. Or Talking To A Friend, for the simple fact the song came out of nowhere and wrote itself in minutes.
Ryan: I really enjoyed both of those songs. I can feel the personal connection in your lyrics. Who are your musical influences?
Sam: I’d have to say guys like Steve Earle and Tony Rice. I love a good sad song.
Ryan: Sad songs are my favorite. I’m kind of emo like that, I guess. Now, I want to talk about collaboration. If you could collaborate with one artist, who would it be?
Sam: Steve Earle!!
Ryan: Man, I would love to hear that. I can definitely hear his influence in your music. It would be fun to see what you guys come up with. What is your collaboration process like?
Sam: It sounds fun and inspiring, but I haven’t actually done it yet.
Ryan: Solo all the way. Nice. If anyone reading this would like to collaborate with Sam, check his links below! Speaking of “collaborating,” if you could take one artist out on a date, who are you picking?
Sam: Probably Tinashe!! Cutie!
Life Outside of Music
Ryan: What are you doing when you’re not making music?
Sam: I like to read. Try to exercise a little. I kinda keep up with the fights.
Ryan: Nice. I hate exercise. So we’ve heard a bit about your life back in Kentucky. What were you like as a kid?
Sam: Not what I wanted to be. Didn’t get to have a lot of imagination. Had to stay focused. Nerves were a mess a lot of the time.
Ryan: Sorry to hear that, man. Imagination is the best part of being a kid. Being from a strict small town with a strict family must have been hard. I could imagine there were some interesting day jobs in Pulaski County. What’s the weirdest day job you’ve had?
Sam: Probably car salesman lol. I realize that’s not a weird job but it was for me. I hate dress shoes!
Getting Back to Normal Life
Ryan: It’s been a brutal year for all of us…it’s been especially brutal for artists. What are you doing to stay connected to your fans during the pandemic?
Sam: Trying to keep some social media stuff going. I wanna start doing a short IG live once a week or every other week.
Ryan: That’s a great way to do it! What if music wasn’t an option? What would you do?
Sam: Ouch! Don’t say that. But if that were the case I’d like to do something kinda secluded. Work on the water somewhere. Maybe fishing voyages on the ocean!
Ryan: That’s cool. I couldn’t do it. I get super seasick. Worked on a cruise ship for 6 months and thought I was going to die. As much as I hated that, I would kill to perform again. If you could perform in any city in the world, where would you go?
Sam: Probably Rapa Nui! Just to go back there.
Ryan: Ah, Easter Island! I’ve never been to Chile, but it’s on my bucket list. I’d go for the food alone.
Ryan: If you had to pick your “last meal,” what would it be?
Sam: Sushi. Sushi for sure. I had never had sushi before I moved to New York ( don’t know if I’d ever heard of it.) A girl took me on a date to a sushi restaurant and I plowed through a piece of sushi with a fork! She laughed at me and I was so embarrassed. It was definitely a “fresh off the farm” moment. But I loved it and eat it whenever financially possible now lol.
Ryan: I hear that. Sushi isn’t easy to figure out the first time haha. So you’re in New York…I gotta ask, what’s the best pizza in Brooklyn?
Sam: Oof. In Brooklyn I don’t know, but Proto’s in the lower East Side is clutch.
Ryan: I just looked at the menu and started drooling. Then I saw the New York prices. Yikes! Money is tight these days.
Ryan: So, here’s a deep question. What keeps you awake at night?
Sam: Wow! Regret. Nostalgia. Concern.
Ryan: All valid reasons. Good answer. What’s next for Sam Phelps?
Sam: Recording more music. Hopefully a little touring. Hopefully no more 9-5!
Ryan: Preach it, brother. Do what you love. One last question for you. Is there anything you want to say to our readers?
Sam: Anyone who’s ever been encouraging, I really REALLY appreciate it. It means literally everything to me. It’s what I want to do. It’s the only thing I know of passion and love.
Follow and Listen to Sam Phelps!
Here is Sam’s new EP, Talking to a Friend. Tell us what you think in the comments!
I also want to give a shoutout to Courtney Sultan for setting this interview up. If you ever need to organize your life…look her up.
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