Interview with Birmingham Sensation Samuel Rogers

Samuel Rogers has been making a name for himself across the West midlands and throughout the UK. The Birmingham lad is a regular face at many festivals and attracts a massive following wherever he performs. He covers many well-known of Brit-pop, soul, indie and funk tracks but his real talents are writing, producing and making his own music & lyrics. He has a huge amount of his own digital material out there that will blow you away.

As well as a soloist he formed his own band called The SRB (Samuel Rogers’ Band) who have supported the likes of indie-mod bands Stone Foundation, The Moons, Steve Cradock (Ocean Colour Scene/ Paul Weller) and the Lambrettas. The SRB have now gone their separate ways however Samuel continues to develop, write, experiment & produce his own music & lyrics.

He has recently formed a band called White Flag Dares. They are a collective of musicians from Birmingham with varied musical backgrounds and styles & collaborate to create bold and exciting universal music. The current live line up consists of energetic principal songwriter Samuel Rogers (Vocals/Guitar), beatboxing hype-man Rich FX (Beats) and the Mod-funk-punk Chris Moulton (Bass).

I witnessed Samuel Rogers talents first hand at a Mod May Day all Dayer at The Winning Post in Tamworth (Great Venue). He Performed many covers as well as his own material which the crowd enjoyed every moment of. He brings a sense of charm & warmth by interacting with the crowd and making them feel part of the show. His performance makes you want to sit up and listen or step onto the dance floor. As Samuel continues to gig and produce his own material who knows what will be in store for him and “White Flag Dares”.

Who are your favourite artists, bands & musical influences.

At the moment, I’ve been listening to The Good, The Bad & The Queen’s latest album ‘Merrie Land’, which is kinda like a dark ‘Parklife’ album, looking at modern Britain, which is well worth a listen.

But to name a few, some of my favourite artists include Damon Albarn, Paul Weller, David Bowie, Nick Cave, Ian Brown…I tend to like artists that think outside the box.

You have gigged all across the UK and toured with many big names including The Stone Foundation, The Moons, The Spitfires, The Lambretta’s and Steve Cradock (Ocean Colour Scene/Paul Weller) Is there any plans to tour with anymore bands in the future.

No plans on touring at this moment in time as I’m currently in the process of recording new material but once that’s been released and out there in the big wide world then we’ll see what comes of it…

There are plans for a few intimate acoustic gigs in and around Birmingham, along with my guitarist Kev Casson so expect dates within the near future.

Do You identify as a Mod? and how did you get into the scene and did anyone influence you?

I’d say there will always be a bit of Mod in me… but I wouldn’t say I was a ‘fully committed’ Mod nowadays.

I very much like the style music and the clothes. My father Peter and mother Debbie were big Jam fans as teenagers and that of course led to a lot of Paul Weller’s music being played around the house and in the car when I was growing up.

Your currently working on your solo album. What can fans expect from it and will it be something different than we have heard from you before? & where can they buy or download it?

There’s definitely enough material for an album that I have been working on, recording. How to release it, an album? 2 EP’s? …is still to be decided.

The material I have been working on for my solo material I’d say is quite melancholic, but also uplifting, acoustic/piano based songs would be the best way to describe them. Some of them I have had for years, some of them I have come up with very recently. I’m very excited on getting these tunes out there because I feel in the musical form of my life right now and I think that all the years of learning and ‘finding my way’ has led to this.

Expect songs to be released digitally first.

You formed a collaborative group called “White Flag Dares” and released your debut EP “We Dare Ya”. How did the idea to combine a variety of different musical styles together.

Myself and Rich FX (beat boxer and close friend) have been jamming on and off for the past 10 years…we’d

Just come up with good music from the get go, either he’d have a beat or I’d have a guitar riff or what not. We’ve known each other since nursery so go way back.

Chris Moulton (bass player and long-time family friend) has been my bass player since The S.R.B started and have always had a fantastic musical relationship…and I have learnt a lot from his eclectic musical knowledge.

As a collective, it’s fun to work together and learn from each other’s different styles. I like to be out of my comfort zone sometimes when it comes to music. It keeps me on my toes creatively.

Chris is into his funk and soul and Rich likes his hardcore dance anthems so it’s always interesting when we put our minds together and come up with something that’s truly unique amongst us.

Plus we are open to collaborations, which we hope we do more of in future.

Where do you find the inspiration for your song writing & lyrics?

Sometimes, songs just come to me from out of nowhere. The melody, the lyrics, the instrumentation. When that happens! Result! …some

songs I started years ago and I still haven’t finished them off. It’s just how it goes. Inspiration can come from anywhere really. It could come from my current views on the modern day world, from an act of kindness I’ve experienced throughout the day, or from something that has saddened me during the day…it totally depends on what mood I’m in and what I need to get off my chest I suppose.

You cover various songs when gigging. What is your favourite cover to perform & why?

Always a tricky one to answer, but at the moment I’d say performing ‘There She Goes’ by The La’s with Kevin Casson playing guitar with me is always a good cover. It’s just a great song all in all! And I love nailing the falsetto vocal live!

You have a vast style of original tracks as a soloist and previously as SRB and now “White Flag Dares” which experiments with Rock & Roll, Funk/Soul, Folk & Psychedelic Rock with a mod sound running all the way through. How else would you describe your song writing and music?

Nowadays, I just go with what feels right to me when creating music. I try not to think too much about what direction to go in. If it sounds good then that is the right direction to me.

I suppose if it was to be categorised though, it would be labelled as ‘Indie’ music, but not in the traditional indie sense.

Your first headline gig as “The White Flag Dares” was at the Sunflower Lounge in Smallbrook Queensway, Birmingham. How was it and what was the crowds reaction to the bands unique sound?

It was a good show! I remember there was a good belief on stage from the band and we played confidently. We had a good reception from old fans and made some new fans too, which is always a bonus!

White flag dares

You have performed at a variety of festivals up & down the country including the “Solihull SummerFest” were you shared the stage with UB40. As well as being a regular performer at “Birmingham’s Music Festival” to name a few. Do you have an memorable moments from any of the festivals you have performed?

Well most of the festivals I have played at have ended up in some sort of messy alcohol-fuelled session one way or another…gotta be done!

But there was this one called Mello Festival in Worcestershire in which after the festival, a group of us took a wonder and got lost and ended up in a nearby village called Upton which appeared to be a welcoming friendly village when we turned up at the pub, we were jammin’ and chatting, all was cool. But as the night went on it all turned a bit Hot Fuzz and the locals decided they didn’t like us after all. We were getting a few snidely comments here and there and I got a plant pot thrown at me whilst I was performing. This resulted in an exchange of words and we ended up getting chased out of the village by what seemed like the whole village and had to lay low until a taxi come and picked us up. Fun times in Upton!

When did you start songwriting and playing the acoustic guitar?

I started learning guitar at the age of about 14. I was playing it to a decent standard by 16. And have always been into writing poems/lyrics whatever you want to call then from an early age.

Some of my earlier songs will never see the light of day again as there were awful, but there is one I wrote for my mother when I was 15 called ‘Good Times’ which will definitely see the light of day again at some point in the future. I was and still am very proud of that song.

Samuel Rogers 2013


What can fans look forward to in the future to in the future from “White Flag Dares” or you as a solo artist?

There are a couple of WFD singles in the pipeline, one to be released very soon. Plus a few solo songs I plan on releasing once they’re all studio-perfected. Hopefully within the coming months.

What was the first record you ever bought?

I remember buying 3 singles from Woolworths. Stereophonics’ Have A Nice Day, Gorillaz’ 19-2000 and Eddie Grant’s Electric Avenue…and then we take it higher!!

Where would you like to see your music career in 5 years from now?

Who knows where I’ll even be tomorrow! …Hopefully still making the sweet music and people get on board with it an enjoy it. That’s all I can ask for really.

…Though at some point in the future, I would like to write a score for some kind of musical maybe, or a film score… we’ll see!

How do you produce your music as I have heard you produce a lot of them yourself at home?

I have guitars/keyboards at home and link them up to Garageband on the Mac, add some chords down to the track and take it from there and let the song grow.

They usually end up sounding quite different to how I first imagine it would sound but more often then not, in a good way.

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“When I met Samuel he seemed a genuine guy with a passion for his graft and kindly agreed to feature in this interview. I feel personally privileged to feature such an incredible talent and wish him all the best in the future.”

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