Sam Fender

Ultimate Playlist: Sam Fender

Supporting the likes of Catfish and The Bottlemen, Hozier, Michael Kiwanuka and Daughter and penned as one of the BBC’s ‘Sound of’ 2018 artists, Sam Fender is one of our top tips to keep an eye on in this year. In his early twenties, Sam hails from the North East of England, penning tracks about love, disillusionment, raw relationships & youth culture in means beyond his age and we really think he is on the cusp of some great things come the latter end of the year. ‘Play God’ sparked something pretty massive for Sam, hitting the number 1 spot on the iTunes singer-songwriter chart & we have play-listed every single release since – but what we’re really interested in is the music influencing the upcoming indie-rock star.

We asked Sam to put together his ‘Ultimate’ playlist – somewhat unsurprisingly, renowned classics including  Jeff Buckley, Bruce Springsteen and Bob Dylan feature alongside a few left-wing choices including Young Fathers and Kendrick. We say left-wing, but check out Sam ‘s punchy, hard-hitting, vocals and you might think otherwise – tracks like latest release ‘Friday Fighting’ showcase a heavier drum that pump throughout the tune non-typical to the mellow nature of the singer-songwriter genre that really showcase his unique vocals.

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Sam ‘s full track-list in no particular order:

Joni Mitchell- Both Sides Now 
I’m listening to loads of Joni Mitchell at the moment, she’s an incredible artist, her voice flaws me every time and she’s a total wordsmith. This was the first Joni song I ever heard, I love both the original and the 2001 orchestral version of ‘both sides now’, if it doesn’t move you to tears then you’re clearly a reptilian shape shifter.

Bruce Springsteen – Racing In The Street 
One of my favourite songs by my biggest hero.

Jeff Buckley – Grace 
The title track of an album we all need in our lives.

Aretha Franklin – Chain of Fools 
Possibly my favourite vocal take of all time.  When she sings ‘my doctor said “take it easy”‘ I get shivers.

The Smiths – Frankly, Mr. Shankly 

One of the many bangers from the album ‘The Queen is Dead’. Love that album.

A Blaze of Feather – Dust in The Wind 
An Absolute hammer of a tune from a band of legends. Lie back and soak in the intense soundscape that is A Blaze of Feather.

Pinegrove – Old Friends 
Love the lyrics in this track.

Kendrick Lamar – The Blacker the Berry 
My favourite track off one of my favourite albums.

The War On Drugs – Strangest Thing 

I adore them. It’s very easy for guitar music to sound unoriginal due to the sheer abundance of it. However, this song made me feel like I’d just heard a guitar for the first time, it’s not often that a guitar part evokes this much emotion in me, I’m more of a lyrics and vocal lover, but this track never fails to make my hair stand up.

Brooke Bentham – Have To Be Around You
Her voice and songs are stunning. She writes with conviction and performs like it’s her last night on earth. I’m completely in awe of her.

Talking Heads – This Must Be The Place 
This song means a lot to me. It reminds me of my producer and best mate Bramwell. It’s a belter.

Bob Dylan – The Times They Are A-Changin’
A timeless masterpiece.

Warpaint – Love Is To Die

Warpaint have a knack for writing tunes with a great beat. I love the drum and bass tracks on this song, it makes me want to move. The vocals are eerie and lax but sit on a firm groove, that juxtaposition makes for a rad listening experience.

Joy Division- Love Will Tear Us Apart 

Young Fathers – Shame 
Such a gritty beast. I remember bouncing around like a psycho to this at a festival in the highlands.