Sam Smith is a British singer, best known for their ballads. Now, they are an award-winning artist, but before the success, what was their first song?
Read more about Sam Smith’s life and career so far.
Sam Smith grew up in England and spent their early years in a modest, two-bedroom house.
However, when their mother got a high salaried position working for a well-known bank, their lifestyles changed. They moved to the affluent county of Cambridgeshire, which is where Smith found a passion for singing.
At the age of only eight years old, they were performing for family and friends. Soon, they were having private vocal lessons.
As a teen, they got their first manager, with their sights set on a career in music, however, the family faced new challenges. Accused of spending her working hours to manage Smith’s career, their mother was fired from her job, leaving the family financially struggling.
“The climb to money was sudden,” they tell the Guardian. “We were doing nicer things, building, traveling around the world. But just as quick as the climb was the decline…I really do know more what it’s like to be poor than I know what it’s like to be rich.”
Throughout their teenage years, their father played an active role in building their career by driving them to studios and encouraging them to work on their weight.
“I was a very big teenager,” they explain.
When Smith was 18, their parents split, and they moved to London to pursue their music career. Their success did not come immediately, with Smith having to work as a cleaner to sustain themselves.
“I was 19, and all my friends were at university and traveling and I was stuck in London cleaning toilets,” they say. “I was like, no, if it doesn’t happen next year I’m going to leave and travel and see the world.”
It was at this point that they wrote the tune ‘Little Sailor’ which details their struggle to make it as an artist.
Their career so far had seen Smith use six different managers, but it was the seventh that saw their career take off.
Elvin Smith, the seventh manager, had previously been a singer himself. He introduced Smith to Jimmy Napes, a songwriter, who had an association with Disclosure.
Smith, however, would go on to become more than a featured artist. In 2014, they released their debut album, ‘In The Lonely Hour’.
‘Stay With Me’, a romantic track addressing a heartbreaking split, became a standout single. The song reached number 2 in the US charts, paving the way for Smith’s success as a solo artist.
Their romantic songs address their past and present relationships, and they have spoken honestly about this in interviews. In 2019, Smith announced that they are nonbinary, an issue they had discussed with GQ only a few months prior.
There is one accolade that they boast that is perhaps the most exclusive of all. For the James Bond film ‘Spectre’, they created the track ‘Writing’s On The Wall’ – a song that would make Smith an Oscar winner.