Sam Northwood – “Want To Be Home” – Single Review
You’ve absolutely GOT to love how authenticity and genuine artists are such a reoccurring theme here at sleepingbagstudios; I know that I sure do. When I stumble across artists like Sam Northwood…it’s the kind of thing that makes all this music-reviewing stuff worth so much more than any amount of time I could ever spend listening.
Northwood is singing the kind of song that can only come out when you’ve lived it. Thematically, the song deals with being out of place, in every sense of the statement. Whether it’s being homeless, or simply misplaced within the society or ‘home’ you know yourself; Northwood is speaking out and raising his voice up to the highest levels to reach you.
Inspiring right? Absolutely. We’ve popped the video in right below this paragraph for you to have a listen and look for yourselves; but tell me this isn’t the exact imagery you were already picturing in your head from the words, coming to life on screen right before your eyes…it sure was for me. I think he completely nailed this as a song, single and video…but more importantly, he’s singing a song that needed to come out…that needed to be made.
If you read my recent article on The 99, you’ll find the confession of me creeping social pages whilst I listen to your music…Sam was no exception. My first impression started before I even had a chance to listen! Here I am, looking at the side links of YouTube, and there his is…covering Tevin Campbell.
RAISE YOUR HAND RIGHT NOW IF YOU KNOW TEVIN CAMPBELL!
Damn youngsters. Alright…well…Campbell was a super-talented R&B singer from the….early to mid 90’s I believe? And if I remember the folklore right….he was another discovery of the super-talent known to us all as Prince. If I’ve got all this right (Yeah I could use Google, but I’m supposed to be a human music-Google…) then you already know, Tevin Campbell would certainly have some incredible skills to be hanging in a room with ‘The Purple One.’ Anyhow…it told me already that unless Northwood was completely delusional…that he would indeed have skills in the vocal department.
He didn’t let me down for a single note. He actually reminds me a little of another artist from around Tevin’s timeline…one named Jon Secada. There’s a mix of emotion, passion…genuine empathy and pain that come through on “Want To Be Home.” Some songs…when they truly come from a place you know, can really translate right INTO a listening ear; this is pain you can feel.
So…is he faking it like other pop-singer sensations? I don’t think so, not even one bit. I think this entire song and the tone to go with it are all based on his real-life experience…but perhaps not! The song itself is written/produced by Marie Virginie Pierre with additional production from Paul Miles; has Northwood turned it into a memorable performance-piece for them and the songwriting machines behind him…absolutely.
Combining the excellent sound of his voice with a meaningful song has given this single the impact and punch to the gut it’s intending to. Sam sings clearly with prevalent emotion and carries this tune from its beginning to end, driving home the lyrics through a dynamic and impressive delivery. Again, might be a little outside of my normal genres of choice, but that means nothing when it comes to good songwriting and great performances. When it’s good, it’s good…shouldn’t matter the sound of it every time. Just because I walk over a bridge every day of my life doesn’t mean I cross it and wish it was structured like other bridges I’ve crossed…variety is one of the best things in our life, and the ‘best of the best’ in any genre is one of the greatest ways to experience it.
As a person who deals with a vast amount of what Sam Northwood is communicating through this song and video…I definitely appreciate the extra time, thought and care he’s put into “Want To Be Home.” We all struggle with something…we all need help at points…but without each other lending that hand to help there’d be no progress at all. It’s comforting to see just how many artists like Sam we’ve come across lately that have the courage to speak out on what’s important.
Let them never be silent.
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