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Spotlight Interview With Sam Louis

Sam Louis just dropped a single that pours heart and shines with an unbeatable passion.

"A Little Bit Yours" is a cover of JP Saxe's original and Louis has given his all to this track and it's incredible performance.

Sam Louis has a natural love for what he does and you can hear and see it with every note. He has taken a great song and made it even netter by painting his version of it with an infectious energy.

Piano and swelling strings flow and pound while Louis belts out with everything he's got.

The accompanying video really shows the color and sheen Louis boasts even more so as he performs the track at the piano and in front of neon lit backgrounds showcasing his presence.

This cover comes through powerful and bright, dripping with soul and with an ever growing intensity.

With such an alluring and vibrant track, we wanted to have a chat with the artist to talk about as much as we could.

RAG: Okay Sam, let's start with "A Little Bit Yours". This song was very intense and passionately performed. What made you decide to do this song? Sam: There was something that just hit different when I first heard “A Little Bit Yours”. I was drawn in by the hypnotic melodies but it wasn’t until I started learning the lyrics that I truly connected to the song. The meaning behind the words had so much weight, it was easy to get lost in them. When a song can truly do this, attach itself to a person's emotion, that gut feeling that makes you feel like it’s your story to tell, it’s literal magic. This connection can be obvious or it can link to an emotion that was buried, one that you didn’t think needed to be expressed. This doesn’t happen all the time, but when I heard JP Saxe’s version, it preyed on some lost emotions of mine from past relationships and experiences. This is when I knew I had to cover it.

RAG: This is a cover song originally by JP Saxe correct? Is this your first time releasing a cover song like this? Sam: A Little Bit Yours is the first cover I’ve recorded and ever released on streaming. I love making cover videos, I’ve done quite a few in the past, but never have I gotten to release one like this. I worked with a killer team on this track and we wanted the audience to be able to experience our version of the song in as many ways/forms possible.

RAG: Your version of the song is very heartfelt. What other musical influences really changed you as a songwriter and artist? Sam: When I was growing up, my dad would always be jamming Eric Clapton in his jeep, my mom would be playing Celine Dion in the living room and my cousins would be watching Michael Jackson music videos. Music has been influencing me subconsciously and consciously for many years haha. I think different artists have inspired each aspect of my artistry, from attention to songwriting/lyrics, to vocal/musical technique to performance and showmanship. One thing I’ve learned overtime is that at the root of all these successful long term artists is raw passion.

RAG: When did this all start for you? Sam: Growing up I didn’t really know what music I connected to personally, I wasn’t critically thinking about it that way yet. Having all these influences at a young age I learned how colorful music could be. But it wasn’t until about grade 8 that I experienced a true musical epiphany. I was at one of my friends house, we were working on a project when he asked me if I’ve ever heard of the band Queen. I said, yes but mostly just We Will Rock You and We Are The Champions, he said I’m about to show you the greatest song of all time, and proceeded to play Bohemian Rhapsody. Hearing this for the first time, so much creative obscurity and artistic ambiguity, the different movements of the song itself, the multiple emotions that I felt from this one track… it changed my perception of music and art forever.

RAG: Doing "A Little Bit Yours" is a bit of a step away from some of your previous releases like "Shiny" which was a great pop song. What sort f advice would you have for up and coming artists trying to get heard out there? Sam: I’m just constantly trying to illustrate different parts of me and my artistry. I think that’s really important in being a musician these days. Not only do we have to be multifaceted but we also have to be relatable and vulnerable. I think a way to do this is to never stop writing and playing music. This consistency in artistic expression allows for a more raw and real depiction of us. If we’re constantly putting out art, it can be taxing yes for sure, but it can also help shed all these layers of protective skin that society has forced us to build up.

RAG: What is someone like you doing when you're NOT working on music?

Sam: Music is my life and I’m lucky I get to be surrounded by it everyday. But when I’m not writing/recording/teaching or performing ( RIP live shows) I geek out pretty hard haha I love video games, they chill me out and I’m a pretty heavy foodie haha cooking is definitely another big passion of mine.

RAG: What sort of things inspire you to write? Sam: One thing that 2020 was good for was a different type of inspiration. I’m an observant writer, I like to write about other people's experiences or situations. But this next set of music that I’ll be releasing will be more introspective, and that’s because of 2020. Since most of us people were isolated for the majority of the year, the inspiration had to come from a more personal aspect. Without that physical human interaction, my mind had to extrapolate a lot of these emotions. Don’t get me wrong though, 2020 was also chock-full of unforgettable and forever-changing experiences to pull from, and we all have our individual takes on the year.

RAG: Did you used to perform live? Will you be putting any focus on performing live when the time comes? Sam: Yes and definitely yes. Performing live is where I feel most at home. The stage is where my love for music originated and remains. Nothing can beat the adrenaline of screaming lyrics with a crowd of folks in a packed and sweaty mosh. Trying to really boost that visual here haha. We played quite a few killer Toronto venues before the pandemic and we placed second in The Bout’s 2019 nation-wide battle of the bands. We haven’t forgotten about live shows, in fact the new stuff we’re writing is designed with a live crowd in mind. These next songs crave a live setting, and our stage show for this next album is gonna be something no one’s seen before in this city.

RAG: I love how the video for "A Little Bit Yours" ended up. Was that easy to pull off? Sam: Appreciate all the love you have for the “A Little Bit Yours” video, the easiest thing about it all was the hangs haha. I was lucky enough to work with a pretty gnarly dream team on this, and they made sure we had a good time during filming. It definitely wasn’t easy, everyone had their own missions, and working in multiple locations with time crunches can differently make a crew anxious, but this team knew how to keep their cool. We had two days of filming, day 1 we had to record the actual vocal and piano that we’re used in the final track while filming the live performance at the same time. I learned that day that there is such a thing as a piano stank face lol. Day 2 we had to focus more on the emotional aspects of the song and create a different contrasting mood which meant lots of HAZE haha. If it wasn’t for the unstoppable minds behind Roadhouse Productions (AJ Astle & Jonathan Diano) this project wouldn’t be anything close to what it is today. Jonny took care of the editing and mixing, as well as recruiting Telan Wong adding her sobre, heartbreaking cello to the final track. While he was building the mix, AJ was busy editing, compiling and structuring all the shots for the final video. Toronto photographer Daniel Dorta was on set to capture it all, while local hair stylist Angie Valente (Dye Mannequin) made sure my locks looked like Keanu Reeves’.

RAG: Before we go, what would you want to say to fans out there? Sam: Keep pushing each other to be better, better creators, better innovators, better friends, better people, a better society. We are so interconnected and involved as a community even though we are all completely isolated right now. Believe in one another, and be there for one another. Everyone likes to say how the new music they’re creating is so personal so “me”. But with this new stuff I’ve been writing, I think it’s so “US” so depictive of our collective situations and emotions. This new album is about our manic culture and the constant hunger for more which ironically can make us feel less. - 8 Ball / 2021

Sam: That should be everything there!! Let me know if that's all good or if there's anything else you need from me! I can send promotional pictures as well! Thanks again guys, excited to see the final!!


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