SOSUPERSAM, or Samantha Duenas, is a performing artist born of Filipino and Irish descent, from Los Angeles.
With 10 years of professional experience, SOSUPERSAM is a seasoned DJ and a familiar name in the international music circuit. Her versatile range and genre-bending mixing style has given her opportunities to play underground clubs, music festivals, and celebrity and fashion events alike. She helped pave the way for today's modern female DJ, one of the pioneers who built a bridge between the nightclub, the red carpet, and the ad campaign.
SOSUPERSAM is co-founder of “143,” a monthly R&B party she hosts and DJ’s in Los Angeles. 143 prides itself in pushing the R&B culture forward and bringing in some of the hottest and most legendary names to share the stage such as ?uest Love, A-Trak, Ja Rule, Ashanti, Chad Hugo, and Ginuwine. Over the past six years 143 has become a global sensation and a cultural pillar in nightlife, attracting some 2,000 attendees each month in Los Angeles, and popping up in cities all over the world like New York City, Berlin, Amsterdam, Jakarta, Manila, San Francisco, Vancouver, Miami, Honolulu, Seattle, and Boston.
In 2016, SOSUPERSAM released her first vocal EP entitled Garden. In 2016 she released the “SUP” mixtape series, smartly interweaving her original music in with a curation of her favorite songs. The mixtapes would culminate in “Garden,” a 6-track EP showcasing her songwriting and r&b vocal stylings. 2018 she released a second EP called Priority, and self-produced a 10 city North American tour, with international spot dates in Jakarta and Manila. A budding independent artist, Samantha attracted the eyes of Red Bull Music who listed her as one of 2019's Artists to Watch.
How did you get started in the music industry?
I started as a back up dancer, believe it or not.
You are also a singer. Does each craft bring you a different sense of joy/accomplishment than the other?
Yes, I think that dj'ing gives me a joyful adrenaline rush. It's all creating a dynamic with your audience in the moment. Performing as a singer also gives me that same feeling, but i particularly enjoy the behind the scenes process of writing the song; it's collaborative, introspective, and takes more time. I enjoy that.
Do your own songs make it into your DJ set?
Sometimes I will perform my own songs in the middle of a dj set, yes!
Describe the vibe of your DJ set, and how would you say it differs from your singing style?
A dj set is flexible in terms of mood, so it can really range. I'd say my singing style stays in more of a static emotional state.
How do you approach being a DJ versus being a vocalist?
With djing, I approach it more collaboratively. I give myself a lot of room for improvisation, reading the crowd, and maneuvering based on the collective mood. I approach vocals and songwriting as 100% self-expression.
Are there songs that you make sure always make it into your set?
Ghost Town DJ's "My Boo," and usually some sort of Usher song. His catalog is so vast.
What are your Top 3 songs of the moment?
Kehlani - “Toxic”
Yussef Dayes - “For my Ladies”
Sza - “Hit Different”
What does “Better Days” Mean to you?
To me, “Better Days" symbolizes a chance to wake up, be your authentic self, and do your best.
The pandemic has forced deejays to turn to live streaming sets through various platforms. How many socially distanced sets have you performed over the course of the pandemic?
The pandemic has really altered the landscape for dj'ing and live performance. I have been streaming my dj sets weekly on twitch! It has been a surreal adjustment, and sometimes the whole thing feels absurd, but i am having fun with the learning process and it's been encouraging to see how me, and a lot of the dj community, have shown resilience and adaptability throughout this time.
How has it changed your approach to djing? Is it hard getting into the groove without an in-person audience?
When I first started streaming in March, it was very strange to create a vibe alone in my living room. But over time, I’ve found a special relationship with my chat audience. There are new ways to interact that create a similar energy. Dj'ing on stream allows for more flexibility in music range too. I can play a larger variety and switch up the pace or genre really easily. Without the pressures of a venue, a live stream becomes a canvas to create whatever vibe you want.
How did you approach this project? What were your initial thoughts when trying to find a sound for “Better Days”? And how did you achieve that sound.
I approached "Better Days" with a sense of empowerment and optimism, largely inspired by all of the artists featured for this project! The shoe is fun and the outlook is positive, so I wanted the sound to match.
Listen to the song featured in the "Better Days" Video.
Back to all the "Better Days" Artists