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21 Questions with Sam Hollander

A lighthearted Q&A series with our favorite local personalities

Multi-platinum songwriter and producer Sam Hollander is living his childhood dream. His memoir, 21 Hit Wonder, chronicles his storied career from setbacks to success, including his 22 U.S. Top 40 Hits, 10 Number 1's, 10 Top 5’s, and 87 Top 10 chart positions globally. A Bedford native, Sam has written and produced for the likes of Panic! At The Disco, One Direction, Fitz and the Tantrums, Weezer, Katy Perry, blink-182, Ringo Starr, Def Leppard, Carole King, Billy Idol, Jewel, and Train amongst others. His favorite song? If you’re reading this, he already hates it.

1. What’s your guilty pleasure? 

I’ve watched at least 30 seasons of Survivor on CBS. This isn’t something that gets you cool points on the mean streets of Bedford Hills.

2. What do you eat for breakfast?

I’m on a perpetual interment fast, so ask me after 11 am.

3. Biggest risk you’ve ever taken?

Answering these questions, Barb. 

4. What was your first car?

1980 Saab. It was a bold design. Unfortunately, it died prematurely. 

5. Current favorite song? 

Whatever I wrote yesterday. By tomorrow, I’ll hate it.

6. What item of yours was your biggest splurge? 

I’m pretty thrifty, but I did join Club Fit to unearth my long gone washboard abs.

7. What are three things you can’t live without?

My family, my dreams, my phone. 

8. Something that always makes you smile? 

My dogs are pretty great. They bark more than they should, but they do warm my frigid heart.

9. When do you feel most like yourself?

When I’m walking Reservoir Road and my phone is in airplane mode.

10. One person you’d like to meet, past or present?

I’ve always felt a strange spiritual connection to Jack Klugman. It might be our sloppy clothing aesthetic or our doughy Hebraic features, but it would probably be a fun day playing the ponies.

11. What’s your favorite board game? 

I have ADHD, so board games bore me. My Wordle skills are pretty legit though. 

12. Do you consider yourself a good dancer? 

My dad was a professional dancer. Sadly, those genes skipped over me. I have perfected a solid head nod to the beat though.

13. What’s an item you’ve kept from childhood?

My Fox Lane high school yearbook is pretty swell. It’s a nice reminder of the days when I had more hair and tons of delusion.

14. What scares you?

Golf.

15. Favorite spot or thing to do around town?

I’m a big oHHo fan. It’s a great shop in Bedford run by lovely folks with a community first spirit.

16. What’s your hidden talent?

Reading a room.

17. When was a moment that you felt proud of yourself?

The day I mastered the art of cooking scrambled eggs for my kid. My chef skills are nonexistent.

18. As a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?

At 13, I decided I wanted to be a songwriter. Never quit your daydreams. Sometimes they actually come to life.

19. Food: sweet or salty?

Swalty 

20. What’s your favorite childhood cartoon or TV show? 

I sort of skipped over cartoons straight to The Love Boat. Captain Stubbin was born at Northern Westchester hospital so for a kid with showbiz dreams, that was pretty huge.

21. What’s something you’re trying to get better at?

Not golf.

@samhollander

"I have a weekly Pound Ridge ritual involving a lengthy walk, coffee at BreadsNBakes, and scouring the record racks at the super cool Booksy Galore."

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