Sam Ryder on going for number one during 'chaotic' Christmas: 'It's like Home Alone at my place'

Sam Ryder on going for number one during 'chaotic' Christmas: 'It's like Home Alone at my place'

From TikTok sensation, to Eurovision runner-up, the end doesn’t appear to be in sight for Sam Ryder’s music domination.

The 34-year-old is currently busy working on his second album (he hints there could be some of his dream collaborations on there, but won’t elaborate), and is hoping to reach Christmas number one with his festive track, ‘You’re Christmas To Me’.

In the spirit of Christmas giving, the Essex native headed up to Edinburgh this week to surprise locals with a performance of the single, as well as an acoustic rendition of other seasonal favourites, including 'Jingle Bells'.

It was in aid of Deliveroo’s campaign with the Trussell Trust, which found Edinburgh to be the UK’s most charitable city when it came to rounding up their orders to help fund food banks.

Following the friendly welcome from the Scots, we asked him some quick-fire questions about his own Christmas traditions - and how his family definitely don’t want him performing around the table this year.


So, what’s on Sam Ryder’s Christmas dinner?

Well, I'm vegan. So nut roast used to be the worst part because they weren't very good. But now my partner's mum makes one and everyone goes for that instead of the dry turkey, whether they’re vegetarian or not.

I mean, classically, everyone moans about sprouts but I'm telling you, if you don't like sprouts you’re just not having them right. You need to burn them with loads of chilli oil. Those sprouts are wicked.

Sam Ryder - You’re Christmas To Me [Amazon Music Original] (Official Music Video)

What do your Christmas plans look like this year?

It's going to be chaotic. Christmas is getting bigger and bigger these days with the family increasing in size. It’s like Home Alone the night before they go on holiday. I love that about Christmas. It's always been the same in our house growing up.

To be honest, in my private life away from music and stuff like that, nothing has changed. There’s no extra boujiness in my life, it was glorious before, so if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

Do your family not ask you to sing at the table?

They don’t want me to!

@samhairwolfryder We all follow one another around with cameras nowadays, but I don’t want that to take away from the fact that this was one of the most special moments I’ve been able to experience, captured or not ❤️ Thank you @Alicia Keys ♬ Lifeline (From the Original Motion Picture “The Color Purple”) - Alicia Keys

Why is it so important for you to give back at Christmas, particularly through your work with Deliveroo and The Trussell Trust?

It’s the reason for the season, isn’t it? They do such amazing work. I think the fact that we celebrate coming together, and sitting around the table with those that we love most in the world, whether it's family, or family we've chosen, we're all making a commitment that we're there for each other - and we should be doing that for complete strangers as well.

Unfortunately, it's a shame that we need it [The Trussell Trust]. People are struggling with food poverty, needing food banks in general - what a shame that we need them. But we live in a world where we do, so thank God for the Trussell Trust and people doing amazing work.

I can't fiddle with the politics around why we need things like this. People are going through such harsh conditions to prepare a meal for a whole family, not just for Christmas, but throughout the year.

That’s why there’s also a need for music, because music is something that we turn to throughout the highs and lows in life. And you can always find joy, I think, or some kind of comfort in music.

So, apart from your own…what’s your favourite Christmas song?

My absolute favourite is Darlene Love’s ‘Alone On Christmas’. I think it's an absolute blow against that classic, late 80s, early 90s, Home Alone soundtrack vibe.

Although the old ones do it best, I have a lot of faith that there's such an amazing amount of new artists now that could take the mantle forward.

What would it mean for you reach Christmas number one this year?

I mean, it'd be amazing, but you can't measure your gratitude based on where your song gets in the charts. I keep reminding myself that because when I wrote this, there was no expectation of it even hitting the charts at all, and I remember being in the studio just having the best time.

It’s out of my control, so I'm just going to focus on being stoked whatever happens, and it'll be amazing. If the listeners want it to be Christmas number one, they’re the ones to do it.


What’s the inspiration behind the track?

Originally, it was about these two people that hadn't seen each other for a year, and they had Christmas plans to come back together. But then I sent it to Amazon and they loved it, but told me it had nothing to do with the movie it was soundtracking. So I had to change it all.

But I’m glad I did because I kept the melodies the same, but then just wrote about Christmas and what it means to me, and how stoked you should be about Christmas regardless of any material gifts. I love seeing people hunkering down for the festive season.

You can belt - but can you hit a Mariah Carey whistle note?

No, but I’d love to get into it at some point. I mean the schedule is hectic enough without putting whistle tone practice in there! We’re out for a while now writing album number two, so maybe I can shove some whistle tone on the next record.

Who would your dream collaboration be with?

Well, it happened the other day. I was singing with Alicia Keys when she was in London, and that was just a dream come true.

I'm running out of bucket list things because every time I say something, the magic seems to weave in the background, and it happens…like when I sang with Queen. You know what, singing with Iron Maiden, I’m going to put that out there now.

Can we expect any of them on the next album?

We’ll see if they answer the phone.

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