It’s not as much of a journey from religious music to Jerry Lee Lewis and the Die Hard movie franchise as you might think. For someone who began her recording career as a Christian artist, Sam Phillips has had a very secular professional life. Born Leslie Ann Phillips in 1962, she cut her last album of religious music, produced by future husband T Bone Burnett, in 1987. (Phillips and Burnett divorced in 2004.) Phillips then jumped ship to the Virgin label in 1989 and began recording albums of thoughtful-yet-stirring music to document her new life as Sam Phillips. Critics’ fave Fan Dance, her 2001 debut record for Nonesuch Records, featured lovely string arrangements by the legendary Van Dyke Parks. Phillips is currently in the middle of a year-long multimedia project called Long Play and also has a tune placed in Oscar-contending film Crazy Heart with Jeff Bridges. In addition, Phillips will be guest editing magnetmagazine.com all week. Read our Q&A with her.
Phillips: California’s 17-Mile Drive is one of the most beautiful and mysterious places. The only problem is there is a lot of golf around here. Maybe you like golf. I once met Mary Morse, whose dad developed the Pebble Beach Golf Links. I loved hearing her talk about running around the beach when she was a little girl. Ignore the golf and visit the rocks where a lone gentleman built a little hut to live in. Video after the jump.