Sam Griffiths

Sam Griffiths is the kind of singer/songwriter who’s talent is only matched by his modesty. Despite blowing the crowd away at his recent support slot for Marika Hackman and having landed a slot at Live at Leeds on Saturday, he remains charmingly self-deprecating. We caught up with him ahead of his appearance at Holy Trinity Church to talk about going electric, his new backing band, and being the musical Batman.
By Ruth Hunter

 

Hi Sam, so you’re playing Live at Leeds on the 2nd of May. How did that come about?

Couple of emails sent my way, bish bash bosh, landed our coolest gig of the year. Not really sure otherwise, but we’re a little chuffed. 

 

What do you have in store for the audience?

Songs people haven’t heard yet, especially not in this full band set-up, which is still pretty new for me, I’ve “gone electric” recently, a la Dylan minus the shades, so trying out these fresh-off-the-press ditties while being a little louder than people may expect. In a good way.

 

Are there any acts that you’ll be checking out whilst you’re there?

I reckon I’ll be sticking around the Holy Trinity Church stage, where we’re playing at 1pm – hint hint, most of the day, and probably shoot off to see Hookworms and a few more heroes at various venues during the day.

We think the venue where you’re playing, Holy Trinity Church looks pretty impressive. Where’s the most unusual place you’ve played?

Erm. Living rooms are always pretty cool. But nothing beats a good rooftop. But I can’t really tell you which one or they’ll block it off and we can’t go up there anymore. But if you hear music somewhere in North Yorkshire and don’t know where it’s coming from, look to the skies. Me and my friends are like a musical Batman.

A Noise Such As You

Sam Griffiths

Filmed by: Chris Parker & Matthew Judge

Edited by: Matthew Judge

Audio: Max Hopkins

Video via YouTube

 

We recently saw you supporting Marika Hackman with a band in tow. Can you tell us a bit about them?

I can, and I can also tell you that they actually will be joining me at Live at Leeds, not sure if that’s an exclusive or why anyone thinks otherwise but there we go. It’ll be a full band set. We’ve got Liam ‘The Powerhouse’ Ledgeway on the drums kicking out the jams, Charlie ‘The Tones’ Tophill as a harmoniser and occasional extra instrumentalist and Bradley ‘The Fingers’ Blackwell whacking out the bass lines. They’re all ten out of ten, but you’ll have to come and see to find out. Also they’re all really fit, and have two heads. Make sure to get down early to bag a seat.

 

You have a real way with words. What inspires your lyrics?

I do a lot of pretentious things like work in a coffee house and read books, but mainly chasing girls and weeping into the sound hole of my guitar works a treat.

 

You’re also playing at Platform Festival in Pocklington this Summer alongside some pretty big names such as The Magic Numbers. How does that feel?

Pocklington is our Mecca really. We’ve played there a few times and really love it. I had laryngitis recently so had to cancel a gig at the Arts Centre there which is a shame because every time we’ve played there we get treated like long lost nephews but this time we’ll be back to rock that festival. Yes, with the Magic Numbers, and Al Murray.

Any plans after that?

Plenty. I’ve got to move house. Charlie’s just bought an alsatian. Liam’s started a small but prosperous travel company, and Brad has had to become a street magician for his own good, so we’ll see how many gigs we can squeeze in, but hopefully you’ll be seeing the band a lot more after Live at Leeds, in and around York, and beyond!

 

What’s your opinion of the York music scene?

Anyone that complains about it is an idiot, or is probably just in a bad mood really. As soon as you start listing any local musicians, you get filled with a weird sort of pride that they live round the corner and write songs on a global scale, but also that you probably had coffee with them half an hour ago. Some of the best songs I’ve heard this year are coming straight from this wee town, and even if that’s just because I drown myself in all the releases from this wee town, that’s because I choose to.

 

Any last words for your fans?

Where are you hiding?

 

Sam Griffiths is playing Holy Trinity Church at Live at Leeds on Saturday 2 May, 1pm.