Album of the Week: Samia, 'The Baby'

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Samia, 'The Baby'
Samia, 'The Baby' (Courtesy of artist)
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Among the Gen Z song writers with a propensity for bright indie rock with a cynical twist, Samia isn't a newcomer. Yet her first full-length album has captured the attention of critics as one of the best debuts of the year. From the lead single, "Fit N Full," to the deeper cut titled "Minnesota," Samia's approach to writing and recording is refreshingly reminiscent of '90s college rock, but with the attitude you expect in 2020.

The songs on "The Baby" are personal, sardonic, and leave you wanting to know what's behind the words and lyrics that often have a charming irreverent tone. Jade connected with Samia for a virtual session last month to talk about recording in Minneapolis and the story behind the new album.

Interview Highlights


On deciding how to approach the album:
SAMIA: This is the first collection of songs or project that I've written with a thesis in mind. This is the first thing that I've written super intentionally for, and had an understanding of what I was trying to say. I think it's the most fun any writing process has been for me. I think before I started working on this album I was just like spewing content that I had been sitting on for a long time because I just wanted to get it out there and I wanted to have something to say for myself. Yeah, I think this is the only way I'm gonna want to do it from now on just because it was so fulfilling.

On writing about your vulnerabilities:
JADE: Do you feel, because so much of your music is very vulnerable, do you feel like there are any misconceptions that people have about you because of the songs that you've released?

SAMIA: Oh that's a really good question. I've gotten, "What you write is so empowering and so brave." I think people... I'm so grateful for that interpretation and that anyone resonates with the music in that way or feels empowered by what I'm saying. I just never feel, it never comes from a place of empowerment to me so I'm always kind of shocked hearing that, in a good way. I'm glad that it came across that way because it only ever comes from fear and desperation for me. That's a really positive misinterpretation of what I'm writing.

JADE: Yeah, I mean especially, like validation right? If you're writing songs where it's "these are my fears" and having people see it and get strength from that, what a wonderful thing.

SAMIA: Yeah, best case scenario.

JADE: Entirely. When you were growing up, I know you're in New York, you're surrounded by artists in your family and life in general. Was there an artist in particular that stands out that you saw performing live and you said, "That's what I should be doing"?

SAMIA: Yes. In high school, growing up I was obsessed with this Kitten and particularly their frontwoman Chloe Chaidez, who is a friend of mine now because I forced her to be, because I was obsessed with her. She's just the best, she's just the greatest performer still to this day that I've ever seen. It's because of how genuinely passionate she is and she's exciting to watch and she's all over the place because you can tell that she means it. She's so naturally and honestly expressing herself. The first time I saw them live I was like I will do anything I can to either know that person or do that thing. Either one will be fine.

Related Stories

  • Samia: Virtual Session SAMIA shares songs from her upcoming record, The Baby, and talks to Jade about recording in Minneapolis with members of Hippo Campus, getting over fears of being alone, and what it's like to release a debut record during a pandemic.
  • Jake Luppen talks about Lupin, Hippo Campus and the joy of producing other artists' work Jake Luppen talks with The Local Show's Andrea Swensson about what he's been up to, not only with Hippo Campus, but also with his new side project, Lupin, plus the production work he's been doing for a host of other artists.

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