Get To Know Samica [Interview]

Ian Hansen

After releasing the long-awaited single, "Summer of ‘99," Bay Area singer and songwriter, Samica, proved she’s still got it. From posting covers on YouTube to releasing her own music, Samica was destined for success. Not only that, but she wants to push her Indian-American background musically. Get to know more about her below.

You just released "Summer of ‘99." How does it feel to have the song out and what it means to you?

I actually wrote that song during Covid in like summer of 2020. It has been really cool to finally see it come out into the world. I feel like I’ve been playing it for like all my friends for so long, and to now hear it produced and out there has been super exciting. No complaints.

What was the creative direction with it?

I wrote it on the guitar alone. It was funny because I went through a lot of processes of like, "Do we add drums to it?" Once we did add drums, I thought it took away from everything else. Then I wondered if I could put a song out without drums. I thought it ended up becoming a nice balance of straight acoustic and still produced musically which is really fun. It ended up working out.

I knew you grew up playing guitar and were also surrounded by Indian music growing up, how did that influence who you are and your sound?

I think melodically and the things I tend to write about are definitely experiences that I have been through. That influence subconsciously is still there because I grew up with all of that. I think as artists, we make the music we grew up with whether we realize it or not. There is always a twinkle of Indian stuff in there but not too much because I do come from both worlds, and I want to make it more authentic to me and not gimmicky.

I know one of your goals is to bridge the gap between cultures. Can you elaborate on that?

Growing up, there wasn’t anybody I idolized that had the same story I did. Luckily, when I was growing up, a lot of my friends had the same stories as I did, but I don’t see that represented as much as it could be. I’m excited to be one of the people to represent all of us. People in the community have been so supportive.

What do you want people who look up to you to get from your music?

I think it’s just relatable stories. I never wanted to be just a singer. I wanted to make my main focus on songwriting too. I want to be able to share the stories I’ve gone through that people can relate to. That would be one of the main things I want people to see. Even though we do come from something culturally unique, a lot of us do share similar stories. It’s cool that I get to say it through music.

How therapeutic is it to tell these stories through music?

It’s the best. If I’m not doing anything creative, I become depressed. When something bad happens, it’s therapeutic to write about it, but it is also the opposite in a sense because if I don’t write, I become upset. I’m just so thankful that this is the purpose of my life.

You started by posting covers on YouTube that were reposted by huge artists like Marshmello. How did that help you build your confidence?

That was so cool. It was just a random day where I meshed his song and tagged him. Another one that was really cool was doing a cover to Jessie Reyez’s song. She reposted that, and that was so cool. It was one I rewrote. It was another fun part of the journey. You have to celebrate those moments but it’s onto the next.

Shortly after that, you released your first song, “Alright.” Does getting recognized by those big artists really give you the confidence to really push your own music?

Yeah, that was a struggle releasing my first song. I wanted everything to be perfect. I definitely overcompensated time-wise making sure everything was perfect. Now, I have come to the realization that it’s never going to be perfect. You just have to put it out when it’s at least ready. I’m still learning that. It was fun releasing “Alright” and seeing the reception.

Now it has over a million streams, what does it mean seeing these people so receptive to your music?

It’s the craziest feeling ever. Sometimes you get lost in the numbers, and you have to remember it’s not about how many streams you have. The messages people have sent, that’s where it’s like, "wow." People sending messages, "This song changed me," or, "It helped me get through the worst break up of my life." That is what makes it worthwhile.

What kind of goals do you have this year or in five years?

I have so many. With "Summer of ‘99" out, it just feels like it is go time. This last year, I have been writing literally everyday with new producers, I switched my whole management team, and it all organically changed. The people I made music with changed so the music is more authentic to me. I did take that time to develop myself. I have the next song, then a new EP, then another EP. All of the music is ready.

What do you do away from music?

Artistic hobbies. I paint a lot. I tend to make paintings for my friends for like their birthday. Nothing much really. I’m at home a lot and introverted. I have a piano so that will be fun to mess with.

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