We all know Fred again.. is a gifted music producer. But it’s actually his humanity which is his greatest weapon.
After being starved for connection throughout the isolation of the pandemic, our hunger for genuine bonds is ravenous. And no one is able to cultivate them with their music quite like Fred, a master of unfiltered storytelling whose new album, Actual Life 3, is a reminder to imbue color in life’s grey moments.
AL3 is a microcosm of Fred’s profound ability to turn life’s happenstances into visceral dance music. Interpolating samples from real-life encounters, transcendent songwriting sessions and even random videos sent by friends, the album is a collage of the mementos he’s collected during his breakthrough year.
We’ve pulled the yarn of AL3 and unearthed the origins of those samples.
“Eyelar (shutters)” samples a short video sent to Fred by London-based singer-songwriter Eyelar. The track was one of the first he produced for Actual Life a few years ago, Atlantic Records tells us.
“Delilah (pull me out of this)” samples a video sent to Fred by Delilah Montagu, who sung a live rendition of her track “Lost Keys.”
“Berwyn (all that i got is you)” utilizes a lyric from a session with Irish singer-songwriter Dermot Kennedy and samples a voice note sent to Fred by Trinidad-born rapper, producer and songwriter Berwyn.
“Bleu (better with time)” samples Bleu’s track “You’re Mines Still (feat. Drake).”
“Nathan (still breathing)” samples a TikTok video Fred found while scrolling through the app, posted by Indiana-based singer-songwriter Nathan Archie.
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“Danielle (smile on my face)” samples a recording of 070 Shake’s performance of “Nice To Have” live at Boston’s Brighton Music Hall in March 2020.
“Kelly (end of a nightmare)” samples Wet’s track “Take Hold Of Me.”
“Mustafa (time to move you)” samples an Instagram post shared by renowned singer-songwriter and poet Mustafa.
“Clara (the night is dark)” samples The Clara Ward Singers’ 1994 track “The Storm Is Passing Over.”
“Winnie (end of me)” samples Winnie Raeder’s track “The End Of Me.”
Speaking to Zane Lowe on Apple Music 1, Fred opened up about his sampling direction and why he films his nights out.
“The reason why I’m the person who films everything on a night out is because when you are hungover the next morning, it’s just nice to glaze through the memories and you kind of soften the blow. You’re like wiretapping yourself,” Fred said. “When you get that lovely sort of elevated energy of a group of people when you all spend 10 hours together on a proper long night out, and by the end you’re all kind of floating in the same ether. It’s a lovely thing. I’ve got some videos on my phone that I cherish, cherish for that reason.”
Check out the full interview below.