Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2020-05-27
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News  Entertainment Features Donate Bars & Clubs Calendar Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Benjamin Scheuer releases "I Am Samantha" for International Transgender Visibility Day
2020-03-31

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


Canvasback Records/Atlantic Records is proud to announce the release of "I Am Samantha" from singer-songwriter Benjamin Scheuer. The touching track recounts the real-life journey of Samantha Williams — a transgender woman who Scheuer first met and befriended at a coffeeshop in New York City.

As Scheuer learned about Samantha's story — and she in turn learned about his career as a singer/songwriter — she reflected on the fact she'd never heard a song about someone named Samantha. He promised her to change that, filling notebooks with details of her life and her journey to transition, and ultimately writing what is now "I Am Samantha." Included below is a note from Samantha which beautifully illustrates the origins of the song from her perspective.

"I Am Samantha" is the story of one trans woman. It is also the story of what it means to love and be loved. With uncommon empathy, Scheuer unpacks not just Samantha's journey, but the human journey we all take to find identity, acceptance, and love.

Today's release comes accompanied by a powerful music video directed by T Cooper [director of the award-winning documentary Man Made] and starring a cast of 27 trans actors ( believed to be the largest trans cast assembled to date ). The visual was also helmed by an all-female, LGBTQ, and/or person of color crew. Notable cast members include Monica Helms ( creator of the Transgender Pride Flag ) and Skyler Jay ( Season 2 of Queer Eye ).

The official video comes joined by a touching behind-the-scenes "making of"documentary directed by Allison Glock-Cooper, herself an acclaimed author + director.

WATCH "I AM SAMANTHA" + BEHIND THE SCENES DOC: www.youtube.com/watch .

The song is being released today, March 31st on International Transgender Day of Visibility in partnership with a host of incredible organizations including the Transgender Legal Defense & Education Fund ( TLDEF ), GLAAD, Trans Lifeline and The Ally Coalition.

Of their partnership on the project, TLDEF Program Manager AC Dumlao shares: "'I Am Samantha' is more than a song and a music video, it is a message that trans communities are resilient and multifaceted, and our stories are meant to be seen and heard. At TLDEF's Name Change Project, where we connect low-income trans folks with legal representation in the name change process, we work with hundreds of trans folks every year, who like Samantha, are looking to live in their truth with their chosen name. TLDEF is excited to collaborate with Canvasback Music for the release of 'I Am Samantha.'"

Benjamin Scheuer's journey to this debut is not your standard singer/songwriter story. Well known throughout the theatre world on both sides of the Atlantic for his one-man show THE LION ( 2014 ), ( which delivered a clutch of awards including a Drama Desk Award for "Outstanding Solo Performance," an off-West End Award for "Best New Musical," and an ASCAP "Cole Porter Award for Songwriting" ), Scheuer is also a published children's author ( with his wife Jemima Williams ) for Simon & Schuster, having written Hibernate With Me and Hundred Feet Tall; and the author of Between Two Spaces, which documented his diagnosis with — and successful treatment for — stage IV Hodgkins Lymphoma.

For additional information and resources, please visit:

IAmSamantha.Net Facebook Twitter Instagram

Samantha Williams

Brooklyn/June 6, 2019

He's a customer at the West Village coffee shop where I work, a fellow artist ( I'm a writer; he's a musician ) who attended a reading of one of my screenplays and gave truly helpful notes, a tall guy with a boyish face and steampunk style, with cherry-dyed hair, elaborate boots and epaulets, and yet announcing his presence most resoundingly with his seemingly ever-present smile and earnest, enthusiastic greetings. Benjamin Scheuer ( pronounced SHOY-er ) is a storyteller with a guitar, sharing through song his own very personal trials and triumphs as well as those of others. I already knew this when in his presence I complained to a coworker, as we listened to the Foo Fighters song "Sean" ( also my fellow barista's name ), that there were no popular songs about "Samantha," the name I had taken as my own about a year before ( though I'm still not sure this oversight of songwriters throughout contemporary music history is actually true ).

"I Am Samantha" was conceived in that moment of everyday food-service-industry banter, both songwriter and subject knowing this wouldn't be just another lighthearted serenade or would-be rock hit in which the name was chosen simply because it rhymed with something or had the right number of syllables. This was highlighted for Benjamin when I told him the origin of "Samantha," that it had been the only name my parents could agree on prior to my birth, not yet knowing what was between my legs—which would ultimately lead to a name I went by for decades before all but erasing it from identifying documents ( Ohio being one of four states that don't allow changes to one's birth certificate ).

Benjamin and those involved in every aspect of the recording, producing and upcoming release of "I Am Samantha" have each endeavored to understand and do right by the story of my transition from [dead name] to the fully realized, confident person I am today. Each of them I've had the pleasure of meeting is just as evidently excited as I am to share this song, this story of struggle and self-discovery, with the world—so that it might do what art uniquely can, which is to increase empathy by revealing the world through someone else's eyes, while also, I can attest, making some of us feel just a little less lonely.

ABOUT BENJAMIN SCHEUER

Benjamin Scheuer is an award-winning singer-songwriter, performer and playwright. His one-man show THE LION premiered off-Broadway in 2014 to critical acclaim, earning Scheuer the 2015 Drama Desk Award for "Outstanding Solo Performance" and the 2013 Musical Theatre Network Award for "Best Lyrics", and the recipient of the 2013 ASCAP Cole Porter Award for Songwriting. He has also been nominated for two Outer Critics Circle Awards, the Drama Desk Award for "Best Lyrics", a Lucille Lortel Award, and a Helen Hayes Award. He has been a writer-in-residence at Goodspeed Opera House, Weston Playhouse, Williamstown Theatre Festival, and The O'Neil Theater Center, and is an alumnus of the Johnny Mercer Songwriting Workshop.

Download/Stream I AM SAMANTHA benjaminscheuer.lnk.to/IAmSamanthaPR .

—From a press release


facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email





Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

Ann Hampton Callaway Live Stream Birthday Celebration May 31 2020-05-30 - Tony nominee Ann Hampton Callaway presents a special birthday celebration live stream May 31 at 7 p.m. Eastern, 4 p.m. Pacific. Tickets are ...


Gay News

Global Pride event announces first wave of speakers, artists 2020-05-30 - A worldwide LGBTQIA+ Pride event has announced the first wave of speakers and artists appearing at the online event Saturday, June 27, and ...


Gay News

Chita: A Legendary Celebration to stream May 29 2020-05-27 - Chita: A Legendary Celebration , Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS' one-night-only evening of song and dance celebrating the legendary Chita Rivera , returns this ...


Gay News

SHOWBIZ Rufus Wainwright, LGBTQ films, Billy Porter, Janelle Monae 2020-05-27 - Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright unveiled the latest single from his eagerly anticipated new pop album, Unfollow the Rules, a press release noted. "Alone ...


Gay News

DCASE annouces new online series Millennium Park at Home 2020-05-24 - Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events today announced new virtual events for everyone missing Millennium Park's renowned cultural programming. The new ...


Gay News

Patti LuPone: A comeback in quarantine 2020-05-22 - In Ryan Murphy's Hollywood, the wife becomes the boss, the "Black screenwriter" is simply a screenwriter, and the gay leading man is just ...


Gay News

Lola Lennox lives a legacy 2020-05-19 - At the age of 29, singer Lola Lennox is finally ready to release music and show listeners what she's all about. She was ...


Gay News

SHOWBIZ 'Idol' alum, PBS series, LGBT film, concert series, Bad Bunny 2020-05-18 - Openly gay American Idol alum David Hernandez has premiered his new song—"Sorry"—and the accompanying music video, a press release noted. "Sorry" is described ...


Gay News

Melissa Etheridge's son dies at age 21 2020-05-14 - Beckett Cypher—the son of Melissa Etheridge and her former partner Julie Cypher—died, according to media reports. He was 21. Etheridge, on Twitter, said, ...


Gay News

Ravinia's production of Bernstein's 'Mass' on PBS on May 15 2020-05-13 - Ravinia's 2019 presentation of iconic conductor Leonard Bernstein's little-seen music theater masterwork Mass will be shown as an installment of the PBS series ...


 



Copyright © 2020 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 



About WCMG Publications News  Entertainment Features Donate Bars & Clubs Calendar Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.