Spencer Sutherland is an American soulful pop and R&B singer and songwriter from Columbus, Ohio, United States. Sutherland released his first single, “Heartstrings” back in 2013 and since then has been releasing songs that immediately will tug on your “heartstrings.” In 2017, Sutherland was picked as Elvis Duran’s Artist of the Month appearing on NBC’s Today show with Hoda Kotb and Kathie Lee Gilford performing his summer hit “Selfish,” this was his debut appearance on U.S. national television. “Selfish” has gained over 4 million streams on Apple Music. Just this summer, Sutherland has released three songs, “Talk,” “Tell Me” and most recently “Fine.” Currently, Spencer Sutherland is one of the opening acts on In Real Life’s Tonight Belongs to You Tour. CelebMix had the chance to talk with Sutherland in Boston, MA before his set.
What does “Fine” mean to you?
“Fine” is actually one of the first songs that I’ve written that’s super true and real. I use to try to, a lot of my old music I have written is kind of written for the radio, written to be a pop song, and this is one of the first songs that I didn’t try to hold back anything. It means a lot to me and so many people are connecting to it and sending me messages saying that the song has helped people with their anxiety or depression and that means everything to me. That is a lot of the reason that I do this, is to connect with people and make them happy, so it has been awesome.
You released two other songs earlier this summer, between those three songs, what is your favorite song?
Between “Talk,” “Tell Me” and “Fine” I think “Tell Me” might be my favorite. It’s so left of center and weird. As far as lyrics go, I think “Fine” is my favorite, in that aspect but production and vocals and stuff probably “Tell Me.”
You’ve only been releasing singles lately, can we expect a full album or EP soon?
I have another single coming out before the end of the year and then top of the year a body of work is coming. I’m very excited, I’ve been writing a lot the last few months, I mean I’ve always written a lot but in the direction that it feels perfect, so lots of good stuff coming.
Being 26 and being in the music industry when so many artists are young (teens), is it challenging?
I honestly don’t care about age. In the entertainment industry everybody is scared to get older, it’s so weird, I don’t understand. I feel like, truly, I never have to actually grow up because I get to do what I’ve always loved to do my whole life. Like I said, there are so many people, one of my friends just turned 21 and she said that she’s so old. One, you’re not, two, why does that matter? That should be better than when you’re 15. So, personally I don’t like to hold onto my teenage years because I’m actually happier now than I’ve ever been and I feel like I’m living life a lot more now, which is funny, maybe I’m just a late boomer. If there’s a 75 year old doing it, now there’s a little age difference.
What are you excited for most about tour and how did you meet In Real Life?
My manager is one of the managers for the band, so we had that connection but I became friends with the guys on my own, like we would go to this cafe in LA called Crave and we would all go eat there once a week and we just became homies. Then it very naturally happened. I’m excited man, to be on tour with my good friends, but also I’ve never been on a full national tour before so this is the first time. I’ve been on little week long runs and stuff but this is the first full one and I’m so excited for that.
What has been your favorite memory of this summer?
I think overall getting to release music that means something to me personally. Each of those three songs that I have released, it’s just a special feeling, usually when I would release a song it would be great, I’m stoked, lets see how well the song does but these have been special. To have something that really means something to you and people hear it and connect to it, it makes me not even care about the numbers, even though I really do. I also sold out my first headlining show, which was unreal. It was in Columbus, Ohio, my hometown, it was one of the best nights of my life, I’ll never forget it, those were probably my top two highlights.
Since “Bad Influence” how would you say your music has changed?
Like we talked about earlier, I started to write real, genuine stuff, lyrically wise. I just think that as a musician or writer, you just continue to evolve. For example, Bruno Mars, his first album compared to now, they’re completely different and he grew as a person over nine years and just constantly got better or different and I think that has happened with me a little bit, not to that extent. I think you just evolve as an artist and a writer.
Do you have a dream collaboration?
Bruno Mars for sure, Taylor Swift definitely. I’m such a Taylor Swift fan, especially the Red album, one of the best pop albums of all time in my opinion, but also I think she has a really cool energy and I would love to write with her in a room.
You were on the X Factor over in the UK, what led you to do that? Why didn’t you audition for American Idol?
All the American shows were back and we’ve gotten emails from all of them, we still just did a month ago. But, I’ve never been interested in doing shows really. I got a DM on Instagram from somebody at Sony and thought that this wasn’t real, so I passed it to my manager and she said that it was real. It was SYCO, Simon Cowell’s company, and we got word that Simon wanted me to come over and do the show and he wanted me to audition and show up, they were looking for an American and I thought it was a really cool idea and I wanted to go to England because I’ve never been so I thought that it was great. I went over and it was amazing and it led me to find out who I am as an artist.
What do you miss most about England?
I just miss being there, I wish I could go there for a week and come back. I went there in May but I don’t know when I’m going back next, it’s a really cool place.
Make sure you catch Spencer Sutherland on the Tonight Belongs to You Tour by purchasing tickets here!
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