Although Sam had come out at a young age, in terms of coming out publicly, he told Ellen Degeneres, “I kind of just felt like I needed to mention it before I released the record so people knew what it was about.”
Sam told Ellen, “It didn’t feel like a coming out. I came out when I was like 4 years old. My mom said she knew when I was like three. So I didn’t have to actually properly come out.”
Sam’s first album, In the Lonely Hour, was released in the US in June and has since peaked at both #1 and #2 in several countries. Most recently, Sam won Best Pop Rock at the American Music Awards against John Legend and Pharrell Williams!
He added to Ellen, coming out “felt like a brave thing to do as well I wanted to do it before because if I did it afterwards people probably would have thought I was lying just to sell records.”
Ellen responded, “The most important thing is what matters is talent and this just happens to be who you are.”
However, Sam has faced some difficulties in being pressured to be a “spokesperson” (a “weird title”, according to Ellen), confessing “I’m a singer and a song writer. I get upset sometimes because I don’t talk about it too much. People say, he doesn’t want to be a spokesperson for the gay community. I do, of course I do, but I want to be a spokesperson for everyone. Ya know straight people, gay people, bisexual. I don’t want it to be limited.”
Sam, only 22-years-old, says, “I’m still trying to figure everything out”.
Before she awarded him with a very unconventional (but sweet!) plaque, Ellen responded positively, saying, “I think it is more important to have presence and awareness. And I think the most important thing is that everyone is represented on television and in music so that people at home that are scared and bullied and suicidal and all these things. There are a lot of people that are struggling. So it’s nice to have someone going ‘look I’m successful, I’m who I am’. And you don’t need to talk about it it’s just who you are. ”
Watch the video above to see the whole interview, and to see Ellen gift him with a platinum toilet brush plaque for scrubbing so many toilets (yes, scrubbing toilets) in order to earn money. The plaque reads: “To commemorate the hundred of toilets you have scrubbed and to certify that you will never had to do it again.”
Also, tune in to The Ellen Show today to see Sam’s performance of “I’m Not The Only One”!