Sammy Virji

Photos and Review by Emily Gringorten

When I walked into Sammy Virji’s show at 1015 Folsom last week, I expected to hear some great tunes and catch a glimpse of his trademark shining smile. However, what I didn’t expect was to witness the most engaging and high energy set that I have literally ever seen. The UK based producer and DJ delivered a stellar performance that had me wishing I could ditch my camera equipment and hop right into the packed chaos of the crowd. He’s currently making his way across the US on an almost completely sold out tour, and this San Francisco stop was nothing short of spectacular.

Preceded by the crowd chanting his name, Sammy took the stage around 1 am. He immediately got to work, starting with a crowd favorite “Daga da,” a bass heavy yet bubbly and infectious track that perfectly set the tone for the rest of the night. He is a master at blending elements of old school UK Garage with modern production techniques, resulting in a sound that is vibrant, bouncy, and uniquely his. He “Virji-fied” many songs from all genres throughout the night, some of my favorites being “Gorilla” by Little Simz and “Chamber of Reflection” by Mac DeMarco (which had my jaw on the floor).

Other highlights of the set for me were his latest release “Moonlight,” his light and fresh remix of UK rapper Unknown T’s “Goodums,” and his biggest hit to date “Find My Way Home,” which he teased briefly before getting into the full song. He also did this with “Shella Verse,” but hey, if it’s nice, play it twice! I’m definitely biased because 1015 Folsom is a favorite spot of mine, but I feel lucky that I got to catch him in such a small room; it was intimate enough for fan interaction from behind the booth, but big enough to host the production that a set like his deserves, complete with screens at the front and back of the venue and plenty of flashing lights and lasers. He ended the set by grabbing gifts from the crowd, shaking fans’ hands, and even obliging to an encore.

Overall, the people were people-ing, the vibes were immaculate, and Sammy Virji proved that his sets are truly a can’t miss event. It was just a perfect night!