Sam Fender | Wonderland
We caught up with Newcastle born and bred singer-songwriter Sam Fender to discuss his latest EP; Dead Boys, gigging on the moon and how he had to call upon an old friend to be an emergency guitarist on his UK tour. Sam has been nominated for Sound of 2018 by BBC Music. He has already supported Catfish and The Bottlemen, Ben Howard, George Ezra, Hozier, and Nick Mulvey as well as joining the soundtrack for FIFA 19. An exciting future ahead!
What’s the inspiration behind Dead Boys?
It was written purely as a reaction to losing a friend to suicide, I knew two people who did it in the same year, one I was particularly close to. It's essentially about the shock; initially there was no real message, I was genuinely just singing about the abject confusion and hurt that comes with that type of loss although subsequently, the conversation has been raised, and that in itself carries a positive message. Like a lot of people, I use writing as form of therapy, Dead Boys helped me put that loss to bed.
Tell us about Dean, (guitarist) how did his accident happen? And how has your mate got on with replacing him?
Dean snapped his leg in a freak trampolining accident. We went to a trampoline park when we had some down time, Dean got excited, he's like a greyhound when you let him loose. He sprinted into this trampoline course, dropped into a trench with a trampoline at the bottom, landed on one leg on a funny angle and that was that. Looked like the opening scene to Saving Private Ryan, blood and bone all over the place. He'll be back soon enough, he's a trooper. Joe has been incredible, he learnt the set in a day, had a couple run-throughs and off he went.
How's tour been? Any amusing stories?
It's been incredible, finished the UK run, now it's time to hit Europe. In Glasgow two girls started having a fight during one of the quietest songs. That was pretty hectic. A girl fainted in the front row at Newcastle which was pretty intense.
What musicians are you enjoying listening to at the moment?
I'm listening to Pinegrove, Big Thief, Kendrick Lamar and A Festival A Parade.
What you getting up to outside of music?
It's rare that I ever have time off, when I get it I'm just resting and seeing the people I love.
What are you hopes for the Magpies this season?
To not get relegated.
New merchandise is brilliant, what’s the story behind the kebab shop?
Thanks! We absolutely love our bait. Newcastle is famous for its rowdy nightlife, most nights out end in the kebab shop, seeing as a lot of my songs are about where I'm from, we thought it would be fun to our share our love of kebabs with the fans. My manager actually opened a kebab shop a few years ago and it won a national kebab award, I was meant to be at the ceremony but broke down in Doncaster or somewhere. It was a bit of a dream to create the Sam Fender chilli sauce, it’s naughty!
What’s next for Sam Fender?
Release my album and play a gig on the moon.
Interview and photography for Wonderland Magazine.