Country star Sam Outlaw touches down in NZ

He's a rising star in the US and has just about the coolest name in country music.

Singer songwriter Sam Outlaw arrived in Auckland for his first New Zealand show at the Tuning Fork on Thursday night.

"I got off the plane here and I was like it's like I'm back in LA, just another beautiful coastal place to be," he says.

His real name is Sam Morgan.

"Outlaw is actually my mother's maiden name, so it's a family name; it's something that means a lot to me."

Being a touring country musician is a far cry from what he was doing just a few years ago.

Outlaw had a successful career in advertising, but on his 30th birthday realised it wasn't what he loved.

"The thing about being in advertising and specifically in sales, which is what I was doing, is that your motivation has to pretty consistently be money. Which I think money is great and I'm a big fan of having money, but having that as a motivation for a reason to get up in the morning and go to work was not really working for me anymore."

So he eventually quit his job and moved into the music industry. He's since had two albums and several tours, but it hasn't been an easy journey.

"The big difference is I used to have a lot of money and now I don't, and so it is a drag … there are times where it's just a drag."

While it's been tough financially, Outlaw says making the switch was definitely worth it.

"Luxuries are nice but who cares? I feel incredibly lucky that I get to do this for a living."

Despite only releasing his second album Tenderheart in April, Outlaw's already working on a third which he hopes will be out this time next year.


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