Artist Profile: Sam Outlaw, SoCal Country
(photo: Braedon Flynn)
I can tell you from experience that being a country music fan in California can be tough— it gets lonely fast, and most people tend to think it’s pretty weird. I mean, isn’t country music supposed to be reserved for hicks and small town America?
It’s a shame, but it feels as though most West Coasters have all but forgotten their country roots. Gene Autry, The Bakersfield Sound and Dwight Yoakam all made a name for themselves on California soil. In an age when it feels as though the Golden State has all but relinquished its ties to country music, it comes as a comfort that Los Angeles-based singer Sam Morgan is making music that’s unapologetically country.
Morgan released his debut album, Nobody Loves, early last year under the moniker Sam Outlaw. Most people don’t believe him, but Outlaw is his mother’s maiden name.
At first glance, Morgan may seem an unlikely candidate for the makings of a country singer. “I’m not a country boy, I’m just not,” he’s quick to admit. Though he was born in South Dakota, he’s spent most of his life in Southern California, and while he didn’t grow up with much country music, he says his father played Asleep at the Wheel “constantly.”