Sam Smith has come a long way since they sang on their first album about the heartbreak that came with loving a straight man. After completing their second album, however, Smith has embraced their sexuality and the community that comes with it in a way that’s transformed them as a person. Now that they’ve fully embraced their identity, a whole new world of possibilities awaits.
Smith sang about their first love, a straight man, on their first album, The Lonely Hour. The songs were melancholy odes of unrequited love that instantly made Smith a household name. Their second album, The Thrill of It All, had a decidedly different feel to it. In an interview with V Magazine, where they was interviewed by friend Sarah Jessica Parker, Smith revealed why they think the past few years led them to become “a gay man properly.”
It should be noted that since this interview was published, Smith has announced that they do not identify as male or female and that they prefer “they/them” pronouns. They explained the circumstances behind the concept of their first album, stating they were “very comfortable in my longing” for a man who didn’t love them back.
Sam Smith’s Evolving Sense Of Self
With this second album, however, Smith “became a gay man properly.” They began having “proper relationships with men,” leading to them growing up a bit more and settling into their sexuality. It’s not just romantic relationships that have helped Smith grow into the person they are today. “When I made that first album,” Smith explained, “I was 19. I had never been in a relationship. I didn’t have any gay friends. Now, I have gay friends, and it’s changed my life.”
That’s not to say that Smith doesn’t have a romantic relationship in their life at the time. “On a personal level, I’m in a relationship right now and for the first time, I think I deserve to be happy. I’m actually asking myself if I’m going to be writing some happy love songs soon.” Brandon Flynn, of 13 Reasons Why fame, is thought to be the relationship they were speaking about in that interview. The two split later that year, however, so “happy love songs” might not be on the table anymore.
Beyond their personal life, Smith says they’re “proud” that their second album “couldn’t be more me—and it couldn’t be gayer.” “I’m excited to be singing songs like ‘Him’ in parts of the world that maybe aren’t as open in terms of sexuality. To be that raw in front of people is daunting and scary, but the high is incredible.”