Garage Punk / Garage Rock / Rock

Taverne Tour Day 2: SAMWOY Gets Real For a Sec

par Lyle Hendriks

Something about SAMWOY’s onstage persona just cracks me up. He has a boisterous confidence up there, cracking goofy jokes nonstop like an emo version of Jack Black. It’s an ease of motion, a sure sign of someone who has been through the wringer of live music and discovered that they actually had what it took to make it. But beyond the humour and armour suit of confidence, Sam Woywitka also has no problem with vulnerability, with expressing his gratitude and love for everyone who comes out to listen and dance. 

Musically, there’s a youthfulness that instills Sam’s work, with upbeat, yet aggressive indie alt vibes that get you moving and perhaps thinking about your ex. Initially, his set was relatively light, with the kind of emotional lyrics and angsty instrumentation we were all hoping for. But in a moment, I went from dancing around and having a good time to simply standing there, slack-jawed and a little misty-eyed as Sam played a song I’d never heard before. 

Sam delivered a monologue that was part spoken word, part half-sung rap, telling the story of how he got into music. I guess this is common knowledge for many, but it was my first time hearing Sam’s story of waking from a coma at 17, his life irreversibly changed by a car crash that robbed his friend of life and Sam of his memory. He talks about nearly dying, about seeing his mom in a strange, purgatorial hotel room and being pushed away, back to life, back to the world, and back to the music that, today, drives him so completely. It was an unexpected twist of sensitivity and vulnerability that I hope to see more of in future SAMWOY shows.

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