sad alex: a vibrant and spunky soul that lights up the room with her unapologetic spirit. Self-referred to as “the happiest sad girl,” she lives up to that identity through her music. She uses her craft to empower the world to embrace themselves in all of their strangeness and encourages an acceptance of one’s own complexities. Her outlook is one of a genuine drive to become the greatest version of herself and inspire others to partake in a fun, yet vulnerable environment. With admirable character, sad alex ignites the music scene with the power of duality. SPIN sat down with sad alex as she dives into her musical style, career milestones, upcoming projects, and more.
Who is sad alex and how did you come to life?
Wow. sad alex is me. My name is Alex Saad, I am Palestinian. My friend and Creative Director Justin came up with it and it’s great.
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Tell us about your sound – where does your style originate from and what have been your biggest visual, social, and sonic influences?
It’s a culmination of all of my interests and loves. I grew up with a lot of emo and angsty music but always loved classic pop acts like Vanessa Carlton, Kelly Clarkson, Sara Mcloughclin, etc. so it’s sort of a blend of all of these influences. Visually my brand I guess derives mainly from my drawings and that’s just something I always did. It’s funny, originally I drew my artwork because I couldn’t afford to hire someone, but now it’s become part of who I am.
What does your typical songwriting/production process look like? Is there a set formula or does it consistently evolve and shape-shift along with your ideas?
It 100% shape shifts right now. I used to just start with something I’d write on piano and then sing on top of it but lately I’m getting inspired by all different types of media and it’s impacted the way I write without a doubt. I’ll read something in a book or hear a line in a show and it becomes a concept for a song. It’s always a constant changing evolution, but that’s where I’m at right now.
Was there a definitive turning point in your career? When did you realize the magnitude of your impact within the industry/community?
Oh man, well, I don’t want to over-inflate my sense of self, but I was recognized for the first time on the street recently and that was a pretty profound and wild moment for me. Even beyond that, it always means the world when artists and writers that I respect, reach out and have a positive insight on something I’m doing. It’s super validating and it’s cool to see that people appreciate the things that I’m doing.
In what ways do you wish to inspire up and coming artists/producers that are aiming to get their creative work out into the world?
It sounds stupid but it’s so important to be honest with yourself about your natural self, sound, identity, whatever instead of looking to be or sound like something or someone else. We’re all a little weird and different in our own way and I wish everyone would embrace that within themselves. I know that when I did it made all the difference for me.
As we’re coming through the other side of the longest & darkest tunnel, how are you planning to propel your career forward in 2021?
Well I haven’t been able to tour at all because the majority of the existence of my project has been during COVID, so wild. I’m planning to get on the road before the end of the year and it’s so exciting to take what I’ve been doing in the studio and on the internet and connect it with people out in the physical space.
Is there anything on the horizon that you can share with us?
Yes of course, my next release is a song called “one that got away” and features Mike. (formerly Mike Stud) and I’m so excited for people to hear that one. Beyond that, I’m going to do an EP this fall so keep an eye out for that.
Take a chance now and manifest something: ______________.
Peace in the Middle East
Any last words for the SPIN-verse?
Drink more water. Try mezcal. Reach out to someone you love and let them know. Also eat a really good turkey sandwich while you’re at it.
Check out sad alex’s exclusive live session below. For more SPIN Sessions, head over to SPIN TV.