Sam Perry is a name thousands of Australians have fallen in love with this year. The young vocal loop artist struck a chord with Australian music fans and viewers of The Voice, where he took out the winner’s title for 2018.
Shifting the goalposts of what was considered the norm for music contestants on this platform, Perry’s musical style and curiosity when it comes to the manipulation and delivery of sounds in different ways, quickly made him a household name. A seasoned performer, The Voice gave Perry the opportunity to finesse an already thriving skill set on a huge stage, connecting with his fans and continuing his creative journey.
Working in such a national spotlight in the way Perry did would be enough of a challenge to shake the confidence of any artist. Nerves were replaced with excitement however, leaving Perry eager to embark on a bright new chapter of music. Learning to adapt and use the platform he’d been given to continue on his grind behind the scenes, eventually leading him to this point – branching out on his first ever national tour.
2018’s experiences have set Perry up for a wild ride, one that he wants to get some exciting new artists in on too. A strong supporter of new talent, Perry has put a call out for young artists to submit their music, with one selected to support him on his national tour in each state. The nationwide tour will start in November, you can buy tickets here! Here’s a taste of the Sam Perry show – clever, dynamic and primed to strike at the core of every music fan looking for something unique in a live performance.
1) Who was your first musical inspiration? Why? Who inspires you now?
My first musical inspiration was probably Michael Jackson, I grew up listening to him and liked the way his music made me feel. Michael Jackson was passionate in the way he sings and performs and, in the messages he spreads within his songs. He brought joy to people by doing something he loved, and I want to be able to do that.
Nowadays I am inspired by artists like Dub Fx and Tom Thum, who found different ways to make music. I like that they were innovative and used technology and their voices to create. There is all this cool technology out there, and so many avenues to explore, and I see them as the pioneers of the style of music I create. They both continue to inspire me with the way they perform and record music.
2) What advice do you have for someone who is about to set off on their first tour?
Be prepared to feel a whirlwind of emotions. The big highs that come with performing, and then the lows of normality. Have people around you that you trust and love because they are important when things get tough. Touring isn’t as glamorous as it may look on peoples Instagrams. There’s a lot of travel days which can be draining so pack things that will keep you entertained in the down times.
When I toured Australia with a theatre group one of the breakdancers brought his PS4 with him and that was a solidly good way to kill time on days off and before and after shows. Just have things with you that make you happy like a book, guitar, or a hard drive full of movies, being away from home can get a bit lonely (especially as a solo musician) so have activities to fill your spare time.
Most importantly have fun, explore the new places you get to visit and meet the local people. Touring is a wonderful thing and something that only a few are lucky enough to get to do, so embrace it.
3) What has been one of the most defining moments in your career?
There have been a fair few. I have been in the music world for quite some time now, so lots of little defining moments. Obviously winning The Voice was one, it has been a huge boost to my career, but there have been heaps of smaller moments before that. Like winning the fringe award in both Perth and Adelaide for my audio-visual show, that was really cool for me.
4) How has your music practice changed over time?
My music practice has changed dramatically over time. I started off doing musical theatre (shh don’t tell anyone). I then started playing guitar and singing in bands. I started doing the looping thing about seven years ago and since then my music practice hasn’t changed too much. I guess it is always slightly changing because I am always learning more about the equipment I am using and making new effects. The way I make music means I rely on my voice so I am always making noises and finding new sounds that I can bring to my songs. I am constantly practicing my beatboxing and gaining new weird vocal tricks. I’m probably a bit annoying to be around. Some musicians will practice playing guitar or piano, for me my instrument is my voice, so I have to keep training it.
5) My top business tip for new artists is…
Be yourself. Find something different and unique and do that. There are so many talented musicians out there, you have to be doing something slightly different to be noticed and to stand out. Remain true to yourself, there will be a lot of people telling you how to do what you do, but you’re the one doing it so just do you. Also, be a good person, people like nice, genuine people. If you’re a good person, people will want to work with you so be kind, always.
6) My biggest career mistake has been… What would you do differently now?
I don’t think there have been mistakes as such, I think all of the things I have done in my career have made me the artist I am. Everything I have done has got me to this point so I don’t think anything would be a mistake… I guess if I had to do something different I might not have toured with the theatre group for as long as I did. I guess I could have believed in myself and known I could do it by myself. But I don’t think that was a ‘mistake’, I think it was a learning experience and I have performed in some cool places and met some amazing people through the journey. No career mistakes (yet)…
7) In my opinion, the most important issue facing the music industry is… What do you think can change that?
I think just change in general. With technology growing so quickly it’s far more accessible for great artists to release exciting new music, but not enough platforms for them to be heard on. I’d love to see the major platforms have more segments for up and coming Australian artists and be more open to showcasing sounds/tracks that don’t necessarily sit within a certain bracket.
SAM PERRY ‘NOT A DJ’ AUSTRALIAN TOUR DATES
Friday 16th November The Toff in Town Melbourne
Saturday 17th November Dub in the Park Adelaide
Friday 23rd November The Helm Sunshine Coast
Saturday 24th November 256 Wickham Brisbane
Friday 30th November Civic Underground Sydney
Friday 7th December Settlers Tavern Margaret River
Friday 14th December Jack Rabbit Slims Perth
Friday 21st December Magnums Hotel Airlie Beach
Saturday 22nd December Dalrymple Hotel Townsville
If you enjoyed Sam Perry’s Savvy Seven, check out more here!