Nearly two years after it’s inception, Sam Buckingham is taking her potent album Dear John around Australia to celebrate it’s release. Revered for her soul baring, intimate performances, Buckingham’s new live show keeps organic sounds and storytelling at the core, with the bold addition of live looping and
Centring around issues such as gender equality, freedom of self expression and violence against women, Buckingham made a clear decision to use her platform as a creator to reveal her personal experiences of abuse, self censoring and the quest for self actualisation – while speaking to a broader experience of being a woman. Sam gives Hi Fi Way greater insight to her new album Dear John.
After the challenges of the last couple of years how satisfying is it to have the new album out?
Honestly, it feels almost surreal. I recorded it mid 2020 so this release is two years in the making…. I wanted to wait until I could release and tour at the same time…. It was a long wait.
How did you celebrate release day?
I went to bed at 8pm! But the next day I had some friends around for dinner and they were all so sweet, bringing me flowers and chocolates and hugs. I don’t usually celebrate birthdays or big milestones but releasing this album felt like a personal triumph… I needed to give it the celebration it deserved.
Do you think your sound has changed much on this album?
It’s completely changed. I don’t feel particularly tied to any one genre on this album… Our question in preproduction and in the studio was always “does this serve the song?”. If it did, it stayed. If not, we started again. It was very freeing to work that way.
Did everything go to plan in the studio?
Strangely, yes. I don’t think I can say that for any other recording I’ve done. We did a lot of planning beforehand, had a blueprint for all the songs, and were working with incredible musicians… everyone was on the same page and committed to making it work.
Is it too early to have favourite songs from the album?
Too early for me or too early for you?? I can’t have a favourite… they’re my babies!
It must be rewarding that your music supports really important causes such as Mullumbimby District Neighbourhood Centre’s Women’s Resource Service?
Yeah, when I was reassessing everything during the first lockdown (I think we all did that to varying degrees) it became really clear that I wanted my work to have a positive impact beyond people loving the music. The album is all about lifting women higher, so I need to put my money where my mouth is. We can talk or sing about change all we want, but unless we take tangible action, things stay the same.
From what you have seen through your involvement is there still plenty that needs to be done?
The work is never ending. Until all women are safe and treated as equals, there is plenty to be done.
It must be exciting to be getting back on the road to tour your album?
Well it’s been more than two years since I’ve done a big tour, with new music. Excited would be an understatement! I almost can’t believe I get to do this again. I’m so happy that live music is back.
Beyond the tour what’s next for Sam Buckingham?
More touring! I’ve got two years to catch up on.
Interview By Rob Lyon
SAM BUCKINGHAM – DEAR JOHN NATIONAL TOUR 2022
20 May – Marrickville, NSW – The Great Club
21 May – Bulli, NSW – Heritage Hotel
22 May – Canberra, ACT – Smith’s Alternative
27 May – Newcastle, NSW – The Stag & Hunter Hotel
28 May – Bathurst, NSW – Little Alberts
4 June – Northcote, NSW – Wesley Anne
10 June – Hobart, TAS – Republic Bar
11 June – Launceston, TAS – Royal Oak Hotel
17 June – Fremantle, WA – Aardvark
18 June – Perth, WA – Four5Nine
19 June – Thebarton, SA – Grace Emily Hotel