Sammy Adams Talks "All Night Longer"
Mon, 01 Apr 2013 12:52:53
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Sammy Adams is the answer to hip-hop's prayers.
His music is undeniably infectious, but it's got an edge sharpened by a hilarious sense of humor. Tracks like the current single "All Night Longer" are as clever as they are catchy. The Boston native's about to bring rap's spotlight back to Beantown—ain't that the wicked truth…
In this exclusive interview with ARTISTdirect.com editor in chief Rick Florino, he talks the track, his upcoming tour with T. Mills, and so much more.
What's the story behind "All Night Longer"? What does it mean to you?
It's one of those songs that sort of sticks out. It catches high school and college kids. It's a little smarter than your usual college niche music. It's one of my favorite songs I've ever made. As for how it came together, we were brainstorming. We like to start song processes by usually having some sort of concise theme. The theme can be something cool and catchy from the start. If you have a song called "All Night Long", there are a lot of "All Night Long"-type of things throughout music history in rock and all types of genres. If you add the "er", it makes it immediately stand out. We basically made the song. Being a big fan of Jagermeister and other spirits, we came up with clever lines people could relate to. It didn't have to do with just partying. It related to Las Vegas. Then, there are certain girls who like certain kinds of drinks. It was a fun process. It reminded me of making "I Hate College". It just came together.
How does it figure into the album?
I definitely think it's one of the biggest songs. There's so much variety on the record. It's one of those songs that creeps up on you. It's relation to the other tracks, it's a bit more of a party track. It's not old Sammy Adams, but it's very in touch with the college scene. It ascends and brings a lot of energy to other parts of the record that are more introspective and reflective of my feelings.
Did you have one vision or vibe for it as a whole?
It's interesting. I went through ups and downs, especially with losing friends and making decisions in the industry. When I was 19- or 20-years-old signing deals and doing things, I learned a lot. The last two years have felt like ten years. Through trials and tribulations, I got more confident and became a better writer. It's like a snowball. You start writing, and you become way more confident. Now, we can pick what's on the album from over thirty songs. The original twelve weren't even close to the music we're making lately.
You balance a sense humor and hookiness with smart social commentary.
I just sent my brother a bunch of music, and he wrote back, "You've got witty, clever, and sometimes even hard bars, and then you have a hook. You've got your own lane". It's amazing to have that, and I'm lucky I found it. Usually rappers will have somebody else sing a hook, but when you can sing your own hooks, it brings so much to the live show. That's really cool you caught that.
Is storytelling an important part of this?
Absolutely! In hip-hop, you should be all about telling stories. I grew up listening to Big L who was writing stories about jacking people and songs like "The Heist". I can't necessarily relate to that, but I always took the craft of storytelling as a release. I could write about how someone fucked me in a deal and make it a whole different story with a new context, but the under plot is still there.
What artists shaped you?
There were a lot of older rock bands like The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Bruce Springsteen, and Jimi Hendrix. Those were guys my mom and dad raised me on vinyl. After I went to classic rock to punk rock, I got really into Green Day and other bands that were hardcore. I used to take a fake ID and go see bands in Boston [Laughs]. I draw upon good songwriters. I loved Depeche Mode. In the inner city, I was friends with kids from so many different cultures. Everybody rapped. Always being around hip-hop or reggae shaped my sound as well as having classic rock and jazz.
If you were to compare your album to a movie or a combination of movies, what would you compare it to?
That's a really good question! I'd say The Hangover remixed with Fast Times at Ridgemont High [Laughs]. Maybe it'd be those and GoldenEye with some James Bond shit. Being from a kid from Boston in the music industry, nobody necessarily wants you to win. Comparing it to The Hangover and Fast Times at Ridgemont High, that's all of the part shit. Then, you're sort of like a secret agent being in the music industry. You pick up all the information, and you have to fight the bad guys. There are a lot of people who are against you and want to do bad shit to you. You rise above it.
Have you heard Sammy Adams?