Rising Talent Sam Smith’s Debut Album ‘In The Lonely Hour’ and Live Duet Performance With Mary J. Blige
If you haven’t yet heard of Sam Smith, you’re missing out on a true musical genius. The singer-songwriter from the U.K. is a rising star with his recently released debut album In the Lonely Hour, along with several of his songs, already hitting the top charts. Taking into account that he just turned 22 in May, Smith’s talent becomes even more impressive.
Smith found the spotlight when he was featured on Disclosure’s song “Latch” in October 2012 and then on the even bigger hit “La La La” by Naughty Boy. Produced by Capitol Records, his first album debuted less than three weeks ago and is already hitting the top charts. In the Lonely Hour ranks tenth on iTunes Charts top albums, with his songs “Stay With Me” at number three and “I’m Not the Only One” at 71 on iTunes Charts top songs.
In the Lonely Hour is about unrequited love and the pain that accompanies it. In an interview with Digital Spy, Sam Smith stated:
My debut album is just a diary from a lonely 21-year-old…It was my way of talking about the only real issue in my life. I don’t have that many sad things going on in my life and it was the only thing that was really affecting me last year: I fell in love with someone who didn’t love me back, and it made me get into this head space of, ‘Will I find love? When will I find love?’…So, it’s my way of defining what is love, and how unrequited love is just as painful, just as powerful, as what we call ‘normal’ love.
When asked if he was happier now, Sam Smith said:
I am happy. The album is not a sad album – it’s an empowering album. This album is supposed to be the soundtrack to those quiet moments in life.
This year, Smith won the BRIT Awards for Critics’ Choice and the BBC Award for Sound of 2014. He also came in fourth for MTV’s 2014 Brand New Award honoring debut artists of the year. In addition, his song “La La La” with Naughty Boy was nominated for the Brit Awards’ Single of the Year.
On March 29, 2014, Smith made his American television debut on Saturday Night Live, performing “Stay with Me” and “Lay Me Down” from In the Lonely Hour:
To date, one of the biggest musical collaborations for Smith was his June 2 duet with Mary J. Blige, who lent her smooth vocals for the song “Stay With Me.” Although the duet version is not drastically different from the original, Blige’s refined voice and vocal accents add a special touch and extra emotion to the song. As the singers harmonize, layering their soulful voices, they create a hauntingly beautiful rendition of the song. Afterward, in an Instagram post, Mary J. Blige complimented Smith on his talent and said what an honor and fun time it was to work with him. She also revealed that the two will collaborate this summer, possibly on “new” music.
Smith has opened up about his homosexuality and obsessive-compulsive disorder, parts of his life that have influenced him and the way he has lived and matured. Watch the videos below for four of his songs, as well as “Becoming Sam Smith,” to learn more about this incredible talent, how he came to be and the path he’s taken to get to where he is:
Download Sam Smith’s album In the Lonely Hour on iTunes.