Celebrity Sam Smith Is a 'Huge' Lady Gaga Fan "Without Gaga, I wouldn't be here right now," Smith says By Jeff Nelson Jeff Nelson Instagram Twitter Jeff Nelson is a Staff Editor at PEOPLE. For nearly a decade, he has worked across the brand's entertainment verticals, reporting on breaking news and writing and editing across platforms, as well as securing A-list cover exclusives, including Barry Manilow's coming out and an at-home interview with Madonna. Jeff has appeared as an expert on Good Morning America, Extra, HLN and SiriusXM, as well as at RuPaul's DragCon as a moderator. He studied magazine journalism at Drake University, graduating with a B.A. in Journalism & Mass Communication. People Editorial Guidelines Published on February 2, 2015 02:10 PM Share Tweet Pin Email Photo: Maxppp/Landov; Jim Spellman/WireImage Update: In September 2019, Sam Smith announced that they use they/them pronouns. This content was written in February 2015 before Smith publicly announced their pronouns. Turns out Sam Smith‘s a Little Monster, too! The artist, who broke out last year with his megahit “Stay With Me,” tells Rolling Stone in its latest cover story that Lady Gaga inspired him to pursue his dreams. “Without Gaga, I wouldn’t be here right now,” says Smith, 22, who scored six Grammy nods. “I would go to those shows to feed my hunger, and I’d walk out of that show saying, ‘I’m gonna do that.’ ” In fact, the Brit was such a fan, he saw her on her Monster Ball tour four times and even skipped school once (earning three days of detention) to catch the show. Following in Gaga’s footsteps (the native New Yorker started out playing gigs on the city’s Lower East Side club circuit), Smith moved to London to pursue his dreams. “That story of her hustle – I copied it,” he tells the magazine. “I know I couldn’t do it in a tiny village in the middle of nowhere, so I moved to London, and I grinded. I focused on my trade and my art and my work, and I went for it.” Gaga (or Mother Monster, if you’re a fan) was ecstatic to find out she’d had a powerful impact on one of her contemporaries. “Watching Sam become a star, and then later finding out the influence and inspiration my work has had on him has been one of the most powerful experiences I’ve had as a growing artist,” she tells the glossy. “I couldn’t be more proud and honored. I was Sam. I still am Sam in a lot of ways.” They’ll have plenty of time to geek out over one each other at the Grammys on Sunday: Both are up for awards and slated to perform.