Artwork by @mystupidsketchbook
WHO is he?
Nerve Leak is Sam Friedman, 23-year-old Brooklyn-based producer and singer-songwriter. “I started playing guitar when I was thirteen because a friend told me the song he was playing was so easy that even I, someone who had barely held a guitar, could play it. It turns out he was right. From there, I had my mom take me to the mall so I could buy this really, really cheap acoustic guitar. I took lessons, studied music theory, explored rock, jazz, classical, and singer-songwriter music. A few years ago, my friend gave me a copy of Ableton Live, and production has been my main focus ever since.”
WHAT is the inspiration behind his new single DR34M5?
“In DR34M5, I’m singing about being with someone new shortly after leaving a difficult relationship, and the battle that comes with that. It’s a lyrical confession to myself, really. I didn’t feel like I knew enough about myself on my own, so I chose to try to focus on me. But with that came the conflict of still having feelings for this new person.”
“Musically, DR34M5 started off as a dark, minimal beat I made late at night. I fleshed it out with synths and falsetto vocals inspired by FKA Twigs and The Weeknd. The beats are inspired by Metro Boomin — a few of the snares are actually taken from a Metro Boomin sample pack!”
“In general, I often try to bring together two aspects of music. One being the joy and entertainment side, such as music that makes you dance and sing. The other being music that provokes emotion, pensive thought, and technical analysis. There has to be a balance. I don’t think music that’s super technical or “deep” is necessarily better than a simple Fetty Wap song. I just aim to find that sweet spot between accessible and challenging.”
WHERE did he grow up?
“I grew up in Richmond, VA, but have been based in Brooklyn for a little over a year now. In Richmond, I actually was heavily involved in the jam band scene. My guitar is even a Trey Anastasio lookalike. However, once I got into experimental and electronic music, I began to look for a more progressive music scene, which ultimately brought me to New York. Beyond the eclectic, inspiring music scene here, there’s so much inspiration to soak up, from fashion to art to food to architecture to culture. Though, as many people say, being such a small fish in a huge pond can make it difficult to stand out and find community, but I’ve been more focused on writing and producing than playing shows. That will likely change soon, though!”
WHY is he called Nerve Leak?
“Nerve Leak came from the title of a singer-songwriter song I wrote during my freshman year of college. I had been making electronic music without a moniker, and my girlfriend at the time suggested calling the project “Nerve Leak”. As you can see, I took her advice.
“The lyrics are very old, but they essentially read: “Your nerve’s washed away, a leak in your mind. Your nerve’s washed away, a tear on the inside.” I want Nerve Leak to communicate to people that when you’ve lost your nerve and your confidence, that you aren’t alone. That might sound a bit cliche, but I’m always worried that I’m not enough, and I find solace in writing and releasing music as a way of putting yourself out there and trying to get that nerve and confidence back.”
WHEN can I see him live?
“I’m hoping to plan a mini-tour across the Northeast and down to my home in Richmond, VA late this summer. So, look out for more news on that!”
HOW can I get to know him better?
Listen & Watch: Soundcloud // Youtube
Like & Follow: Facebook // Twitter // Instagram