Sam Phillips

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About Sam Phillips

Sam Phillips went through one of music’s most striking career shifts, evolving from a Christian rocker in the ’80s to a moody, quirky alt-pop chanteuse in the ’90s. Born Leslie Phillips in Glendale, CA, in 1962, she became a songwriter in her teens and found her way to Christian pop-rock in her early twenties, releasing her first album for the Christian label Myrrh in 1983. Over the course of four albums, she became a reliable hitmaker, but when rocker T Bone Burnett produced 1987’s The Turning, he introduced more idiosyncratic elements into Phillips’ sound. She soon shifted to Virgin Records and, starting with 1988’s The Indescribable Wow, began making darker, more musically varied albums under the name Sam Phillips, often incorporating a postmodern take on ’60s pop influences via Burnett’s production. The following year, Phillips and Burnett inaugurated a lengthy marriage. Her albums would achieve only cult renown, but from 2000 on, she reached millions as composer and performer of the scores for TV’s Gilmore Girls and The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, while continuing to perfect her subtly offbeat sound on her own albums.

Glendale, CA, United States
January 28, 1962
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