BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) – Sammy Rae & the Friends will be performing at Birmingham’s Saturn on Oct. 5, the indie band’s first-ever show in Alabama.
The date is part of Sammy Rae & the Friends’ “If It All Goes South” tour, which includes stops all over the U.S., including Nashville and New Orleans.
Samantha Bowers, known musically as Sammy Rae, is the band’s leader and primary songwriter. Bowers describes her group’s genre of music as “difficult to pinpoint exactly”. She says the answer can even vary depending on which band member you ask.
“Typically, I call us a rock and roll soul band and or funk band,” Bowers said. “I usually say something like a rock and roll funk band with influences in the jazz world and folk music. A little disco in there as well.”
Sammy Rae & the Friends’ diverse style of music is attributed to the seven-person group coming from all ways of life over the U.S., meeting mutually in the New York music scene.
“We come from a couple of different studies of music, and I think we’ve created a cool environment where everybody can share their influences and collaborate in a way that is pretty atypical, interesting and unique,” Rae said.
Alongside the band’s frontman, Sammy Rae’s members include Kellon Reese (alto saxophone), Max Zooi (tenor saxophone), C-bass Chiriboga (drummer and percussionist), Will Leet (lead guitarist), James Quinn (electric bassist) and Debbie Tjong (keyboardist).
While Sammy Rae & the Friends is a diverse bunch within themselves, their fanbase is also made up of people who express themselves in various ways. Bowers says she looking forward to seeing what the band’s audience in Birmingham looks like compared to other parts of the U.S.
“Our audience demographic is pretty young, predominantly creative, predominantly queer. We run into a lot of like small business owners, makers and artists,” Bowers said. “I’m curious to know what that community looks like in Birmingham and how that differs and is similar to the way that our fan community looks in our hometown in Brooklyn or in some East Coast metropolitans like, you know, Philly and Boston and D.C.”
As for hopes and expectations of the upcoming tour, Bowers says the band wants to provide an atmosphere similar to the song itself.
“‘If It All Goes South’ is about living in the moment, being fully satisfied and fully present with the moment, because anything could change at any time,” Bowers said. “I hope that that message rings true by the end of this tour and in every room that we had played: if it all goes south, if it doesn’t work out, at least we had a lot of fun and we had a great time.”
Bowers says she hopes the message of the song and tour can leave audience members with a new sense of confidence as they leave the venue.
“I hope that watching us up there do that and be so authentically ourselves encourages them to do the same as they walk out into their own lives,” Bowers said.
Tickets are for the Birmingham show and others are available on Sammy Rae’s official website.