As artists grow and evolve, so does their sound. Such is the case was Sam Cary and her new single “Bonnie & Clyde.”
With her first release since August of last year, the San Diego native brought out the electric guitars and cranked them up to create a fuller, more energetic sound than she has show in the past. As the track builds, so does Cary’s impressive vocal range, making for a single that should be a live staple when live music returns.
We chatted with Sam about diverse influences in rock and country music, all about “Bonnie & Clyde,” what listeners can expect on her upcoming album and more!
Pro Country: Who are some of your biggest musical influences that have shaped your sound?
Sam Cary: I’ve always been a huge fan of classic rock, as well as southern blues, so I definitely pull from those types of artists while still maintaining a modern country sound. I love classic rock artists like Fleetwood Mac, Bonnie Raitt and The Animals. On the other end of that, I really draw inspiration from artists like Chris Stapleton and The Civil Wars, and I also really look up to love current female artists who break genre barriers like Maren Morris and Kacey Musgraves.
PC: Your bio says that you got your first guitar at 13 and haven’t put it down since. What was it about music that connected with you so early in your life? When did you realize that you wanted to pursue a career in music?
SC: I’ve always loved music since I was a really little girl, but it wasn’t until I got older and started writing music that I realized I was able to use it as a way to express my emotions and really speak my own truth. Ever since then, I knew as long as I was making music, I was going to be wanting to pursue this crazy dream, and nothing was gonna stop that.
PC: You released your newest single “Bonnie and Clyde” last week. Can you talk about the inspiration behind the song?
SC: I wrote “Bonnie and Clyde” with a friend of mine in Nashville, Jennifer Smestad. I had always been interested in history and was fascinated by the Bonnie and Clyde story. I really wanted to tell a modern-day risky love story, but connect it to the infamous duo. The song conveys feelings of a crazy, chaotic love where you would risk it all for the other person, even if it meant ending in something as dark as death or prison.
PC: While most of your previously released singles feature a more acoustic sound, “Bonnie and Clyde” features a fuller, more rocking sound. Was that more electric sound something that was done intentionally, or was that a natural step for you to make?
SC: I feel like as a musician, we are always evolving. I had written more rocking songs in the past, but never cut them. With my first few songs, it was just about experimenting with my sound and trying to find myself as an artist. With all the songs I will be releasing this year, I definitely feel like I’ve found myself as an artist and there is a good balance of more electric sounds as well as a few acoustic songs.
PC: “Bonnie and Clyde” blends country, contemporary and rock sounds. Is it at all important to you to have that versatility in your sound?
SC: I definitely wanted to start leaning into that contemporary country and rock blend. I’ve always loved it, but hadn’t been able to execute it the way I wanted to. As I’ve grown, I’ve really discovered where I sit in that realm of music and you will definitely be seeing more of that kind of sound from me.
PC: You’ve had the opportunity to play at the legendary Bluebird Café. What did it mean to you to be able to play at the Bluebird, and what were you able to take away from the experience?
SC: Playing the Bluebird was so amazing. Even just to step foot in that building is an honor. There are places in this world where you can just feel the history around you. When I was at the Bluebird, the history of songs and writers that I have played there is really overwhelming and magical. I can’t wait to be able to play many other venues like that in the future, and every show you get to play, no matter how big or small, is always a blessing and a stepping stone.
PC: Your bio mentions that you are set to release your debut album this year. What information can you give about the album? What can listeners expect to hear?
SC: Yes, my album will be coming out in late 2020. It definitely pushes genre lines and some of the songs may feel very unexpected from me. I loved to challenge myself in my songwriting, and this project definitely did that for me. You can expect to hear a wide variety of sounds from country-rock, pop-country, and even a little blues. I really poured my heart into it and can’t wait for the world to hear it!
PC: 2020 has altered most of the plans of artists so far. Of the things you can control, what are your plans for the rest of the year?
SC: Most of my live performances have been canceled, so probably won’t be doing much of that until 2021. However, I have some music videos coming out with my new songs, lots of online appearances, and of course, the release of my album. Although it is gonna be a very different type of year, I have plenty of things keeping me busy and I can’t wait! 🙂