Over the past few years, Sam fender has launched an increasingly astonishing career. With each new release, he has grown from strength to strength with a unique sound that also appears derivative at the same time. The Geordie singer-songwriter has a whole host of rock and pop forbears to thank for his impressive back catalogue of insightful lyrics and punchy instrumentals. His style can sometimes show strains of Jeff Buckley or Radiohead in his slower, more brooding numbers, and then at other times, he can give a flavour of stadium sellout acts like Kasabian or Oasis.
Fender appears to have been shaped from a very young age by a family who seemed to have rubbed off an eclectic range of influences on him. He began learning the guitar from the age of eight and, by the time he was 10-years-old, he had become a proficient player, wisely learning from guitar heroes such as Jimmy Page, Jimi Hendrix and Slash. In his early teens, he began jamming alongside his friend Dean Thompson and covering songs by Kings of Leon.
It had been around this time when the youngster had decided that he wanted to be a professional musician: “When I hit 13, it was the only thing I wanted from life,” he said. At 14, Fender decided to work on his vocals and learned from one of the best. He had been given the Jeff Buckley album Grace by his brother and was drawn in by the late singer’s impressive four-octave tenor voice. It’s certainly apparent in Fender’s music that he had learned his style from Buckley, and with a tenor voice himself, it seems he couldn’t have chosen a better coach.
In his mid-teens, Fender had begun writing his own lyrics and composing accompanying chord patterns following his introduction to Bruce Springsteen. Again, it had been Fender’s brother who had delivered the goods by gifting him the albums Born to Run and Darkness on the Edge of Town.
In interviews, the 27-year-old has never shied from identifying his key idols and influences. In 2018, he was interviewed on BBC Radio 2 for Scott Mills’ Tracks Of My Years feature. Amongst other rock classics such as Nirvana’s ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’ and Led Zeppelin’s ‘Houses of the Holy’, Fender highlighted Bruce Springsteen’s song ‘Born To Run’ as one of his most formative rock anthems and his favourite from The Boss’ extensive discography.
Watch the official video for ‘Born To Run’ by Bruce Springsteen below.