Samantha Sidley’s “I Can’t Listen,” written by Inara George, is about struggling with depression. But the Los Angeles-based jazz singer is positively ebullient about the black-and-white, noir-styled video premiering exclusively below.
“I love that video,” Sidley gushes to Billboard. The clip was directed by Nigel DeFriez, a friend who also helmed the clip for “I Like Girls,” another track from Sidley’s debut album Interior Person. “It feels like a movie, an old French film, this woman riding in a car, gonna get the f–k out of town, she can’t look at herself anymore…
“(DeFriez) said, ‘Can I just film you singing the song with a handheld camera?’ I said, ‘Sure, of course!’ We did it two days later. Barbara (Gruska, Sidley’s wife and album producer) did all the lighting, just switching things on and off. It was a real DIY thing, but I think it came off beautifully and it tells a really beautiful story.”
Interior Person came out Sept. 13 and features songs by Alex Lilly as well as George and Gruska, along with a cover of the Beach Boys’ “Busy Doin’ Nothin’.” “I never expect anything, but I think it’s been very well received,” Sidley notes. “It’s a jazz record, but I think it’s connecting with more than just jazz fans.” She has shows booked for early next year in Los Angeles and New York and is already at work on her follow-up album, which Sidley predicts will step forward and “deeper” than Interior Person.
“I think it will be even deeper and more honest about myself,” she says. “I think I was as honest as I wanted to be on this one, but I want everything to be very clear and very honest. It’s scary, but I work really hard at being OK with being scared. I feel like the more honest I am, the more I expose, people will relate more or just think it’s nice to feel something truthful. A lot of times I’m just flying by the seat of my pants; I’m gonna do what’s real for me and I don’t know what people are gonna think. But I have to try.”