Yesterday, Young Academic caught up with two time winner of the London Club and Bar Awards, Sam Young who gave us the lowdown on life as a world-renowned DJ. As the new academic year fast approaches, keep your eyes peeled for the latest fashion, music and student news.
Sam Young is a self-taught DJ who set up his own record label and is now the only European artist to be signed to the prestigious American Agency, SKAM. As any Sam Young fan will know, he has an individual and eclectic style that has set him above the rest in the world of DJing but what is it that makes him tick.
His hard work has definitely paid off over the years. He has a rather impressive CV and has partied with some big names like Justin Timberlake and Elton John in the past. He DJs in some of London’s best clubs, including Chinawhite and Boujis and has just returned from New York. On top of all that, he’s the winner of two London Club and Bar Awards in 2007 and 2010 (and was the first person to win the award twice!).
So, how did he first get into DJing and what are his musical influences. Sam Young told us that he’s been interested in music ever since he was a kid. He riffled through his dad’s record collection (who by the way is famous photographer, Richard Young who has photographed the likes of Princess Diana and Mick Jagger in the past) and bought his own vinyls. He shared decks with his brothers and they started to spin their own songs. At the time, the music he listened to was pretty underground so making his own music was something of a revolution to his little friends who were regular receivers of his mix-tapes. In 1993, the release of Snoop Dogg’s album changed everything says Sam.
Whilst at college, Sam did two years work experience at Sony Music. It was when he got a job as an intern that he found his first break through, not that he got any credit for it.
This was the “perfect opportunity and dream job for anyone who wants to work in the music industry.”
Some may know of the Kasabian vs Sam Young feud. Most won’t. At the age of 22, whilst working at Sony BMG, Kasabian dropped a demo in. Their music was somewhat of a new concept in the music industry and Sam wanted a piece of the action. He wanted to work with them but they were reluctant at first. Sam told me that he paid for them and got them a deal. For Kasabian it was just the start but they’ll never admit Sam’s involvement in their band.
“If you take me out of the timeline, they might not even be around” says Sam.
That’s not the only crossed wires connected with the famous DJ. When asked about his friendship with Prince Wills and Kate, he seemed somewhat confused. The internet is bursting with features on how Sam is their favourite DJ and their supposed friendship but apparently their friendship isn’t as deep as the press make out. Sam laughed at the revelation that he’d even been at the Royal Wedding. He certainly burst that bubble when he told me that in fact he was lying in Vegas at the time ‘half-concentrating on the wedding coverage on TV’.
One thing is for certain and that is his involvement in record label Nod Factor. Sam set it up in fact. At first it was launched as a channel for music. The label was launched in 2009 and to date he has produced and remixed music with a number of big names including Wiley, Crookers and Loose Cannons.
He is now signed to US Agency SKAM where he tours America twice a year. Working with SKAM is massive for his career because he is working with lots of other big name DJs and he is the only European artist to be signed to it. He has just released his new track ‘Fun Music’ which he hopes to push to Radio 1 and he is currently working with Tiesto and Mark Wright.
He left with some advice for anyone out there looking to get into the industry:
“Don’t leave your bedroom until you’re good enough. First impression is everything but play what you want to play, not what everyone else wants to hear.” – keep that in mind, kids.
Check out Sam’s new track, Fun Music, on Soundcloud at //soundcloud.com/djsamyoung/fun-music-vanilla-ace-vs-sam-young
Watch out for Sam Young in the future because guaranteed he’ll only get bigger!