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The Voice UK's Sami Nathan Talks Collaboration, The Creative Process, and Recording at Abbey Roads

Updated: Jun 16, 2021

After competing on Sir Tom Jones' team on The Voice UK 2021, Sami Nathan kicks off the long awaited British summer presents her latest empowering single 'Weekend'. Mastered in the notorious Abbey Road Studios, this self-penned indie-pop work is full of energy and ready for lockdown to ease and the sun to shine. A song-writing process filled with laughter, Sami Nathan wrote ‘Weekend’ with Samuel T. Lowen on a hilarious evening after a few drinks. With most of their writing together thematically encompassing all things deep and meaningful, ‘Weekend’ was an outlying happy and care-free track that Sami never thought would be released. Filming a video as whacky as the song has set this up to be an explosive start to summer. We can look forward to the music video release later in June. As the 1st song of 5, it sets the tone for a high energy sound for the EP. Sami hones the perfect fusion of a timeless sound with a modern edge.

We sat down with Sami and talked about collaboration, the creative process, and recording at Abbey Roads Studios

Since your time on the voice, what have you been working on? How has the pandemic challenged you as an artists

"Since being on The Voice I have continued working on my upcoming EP. Putting this latest song (with video coming on the 18th) has been one of the hardest things I have had to pull off as a completely independent artist. I am a complete workaholic at the best of times, but I definitely felt even more pressure to release quality material quickly. I really made some meaningful friendships on the show even though we were barely allowed to be together because Covid. The main reason for doing the show was to connect with more people and share my music so that has been the best bit."

In your feature on BTS, earlier this year you mentioned you’ll be releasing a lot of new music soon, and that you had to be quiet for the last few months but you can't say why, but now you’re ready to be loud. Without saying why, can you talk about how you and your art have changed throughout the process of being restricted, finding your voice, and taking back your power?

"As a songwriter I always feel restricted by the slow process of releasing music. If I could release a song once a week I would! There is so much that goes into a release, not least money. Every time I give a song away, the excitement is short-lived, I want to give you the next and the next! I have my next 4 singles lined up at the moment and I really want to keep up the momentum. I write all genres for other people so I’ve been working with some dance acts too so expect to hear some new vibes featuring moi!"

How did that experience influence the meaning being your most recent single ‘WEEKEND’

"The song is about absolute freedom, doing whatever you want with no regrets, growing out your pit hair and going out all weekend if you want and if anyone tells you otherwise tell them to do one. My music has been super personal and emotional up to this point and I really wanted to pump up the energy for the summer and have some fun. I have some really strong and high-energy songs to come in this vein."

Can you tell me a little bit about what creative process for WEEKEND looked like? What it was like collaborating with Samuel T and you experience recording in Abbey Roads Studio? When you think back on the writing and recording process for the single, what’s one specific memory that stands out in your mind?

"I actually wrote it with Samuel T. Lowen quite a few years ago on a hilarious evening after a few drinks. We had been writing together a lot at this point, mostly quite deep and meaningful stuff. I never thought we would release this song, it almost felt like a private joke between us. Now it’s coming out I’ve been listening back to our ridiculous voice notes from that day and how funny we found the whole thing. We fought a bit (a lot) about keeping the demo vocal from the day we wrote it but my perfectionist ass I ended up re-vocaling it in 3 takes with the mix engineer who I had just met about 12 hours before it went to Abbey Road Studios for master without telling Sam! He’s actually murmuring gibberish in my pre chorus backing vocals and we kept it with lots of laughing on the track too. Howling through the middle section together with no words. I don’t even know how I settled on that now, I normally love to write a bridge but it just works."

Can you tell me about the significance of that memory to you personally, how does it make you feel looking back now?

"I’m so glad I re-vocalled it so quickly, I think that allowed me to keep the free and wild feeling we had in the demo while I knew what I wanted to do a bit more than immediately after writing. It really was funny, me and Rob had literally just met and pretended that if we didn’t get this vocal down and edited within the hour that the computer would explode. It’s quite a vocally intense song. I might just vocal all songs this quick going forward and start renting studios for 15 minutes!"

How do you feel like your experiences throughout the last year have influenced your perspective on your art and as yourself artist? What have you learned about yourself?

"This year I’ve learnt that I can get a lot done without a social life! I really have missed my friends and I was a big party head, but I have really enjoyed nerding out on theory, playing the piano more and actually tidying my room instead of popping in and out the house and throwing clothes everywhere, sleep, repeat. As an artist I am just completely immersed in the work, it's an obsession, that hasn’t changed, if anything even more tragically balanced than before. Never mind."

Why do you make art and what does being an artist mean to you?

"Making art isn’t so much of a choice, well it is but I am pretty depressed and useless in all other areas of my life if I don’t get out my musical ideas. Being an artist to me just means to be authentically myself. I admire artists who can put on different hats and present an alter ego and put on a show. I put on a few hats – cowboy and joker specifically – when I top-line for other people but when I perform I have to keep it raw and true to myself. I’m sharing my pain and joy and everything in between and I want people to relate to that and feel me through my voice and music."

What are your plans for the rest of the year and what does the future look like for you?

"I’m really excited for this year, this is my first ever up-tempo and I hope people receive it slightly differently to my other stuff. I have some cool remixes on the way. The EP is on the way and the songs bang. I can’t wait to give them to you. I come to life when I’m live so I am gagging for a few decent gigs soon. The futures MINE. Lets go J"

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