Hailing from southern California, country singer Sam Outlaw only decided to pursue a career in music on his 30th birthday in 2012.
He put out his first album, Angeleno, in 2015. Another fine effort, Tenderheart, followed earlier this year, and both have helped establish Outlaw as a popular live draw in his homeland and beyond.
On November 2, Outlaw – his late mother’s maiden name, his actual surname is Morgan – will be appearing at Dingwalls in Camden, his third visit to the UK in 2017. He spoke to me from Copenhagen.
“It’s been really good,” he says of his current European tour. “I guess we did five shows in Spain and we’ve done two in Sweden, now we’re in Denmark for the night.”
On what keeps bringing him back to the UK, the star – who is off to tour Australia and New Zealand later in the year – says: “I think I’ve been lucky that the audiences in the UK have seemed pretty enthusiastic and really receptive to the shows. This time I’ll get to play some towns I’ve never played before in England.”
Discussing his popularity on this side of the Atlantic, he continues: “You always hope that it’s because people like the music… I think to some extent people kind of crave something that they don’t have; they crave the different thing – and there aren’t a lot of country singers based in LA.
“Then I’ve been lucky to have people like Bob Harris really championing the songs from his platform at the BBC. I know that the title track of the new album, Tenderheart, is a song that Bob has played a lot – he’s publicly said that it’s his favourite track of the year, which is a crazily welcome compliment.”
Outlaw has already started work on album number three. “I’m kind of in the writing stage for that,” he reveals. “I go to New Zealand and Australia at the end of November, and then the hope would be that I’ll come home and continue writing the rest of the record in December – then probably do the recording in either January or February. So it’s in process; I’m as anxious as anybody for new music.”
Sam Outlaw appears at Dingwalls in Camden on Thursday, November 2 at 7.30pm.
by Adrian Peel