Artist to Watch: Sam Burchfield

By Carolyn Shields

This guy's sound can be described in two words: soul + funk. The equation is simple, and it gets you an upbeat tune with low vocals that sound like they are coming straight up from the south. That's what makes Sam up and coming—his folk-influenced and soulful vocals provide perfect listening to whether it’s a blizzard outside your window or a budding tree, which is convenient since March is always somewhere in between.

The lyrics to one of his tracks off his latest EP, Spring, is too darling: If you're staying with me baby I'll treat you right/ we can keep on dancing till the morning light/ I don't want to be alone if I'm not alone with you/ people say that there's a silver lining now I know it's true/ so I'm trading in my silver gonna buy a diamond ring/ it ain't winter time love so it must spring

Sam made his first appearance on American Idol (remember, that was a pre-Voice show minus the chairs). Now at the age of 25 in the middle of a tour and with a new EP out, Sam is doing music his way, from breaking out into an Outkast version of Sorry Ms. Jackson at one of his live shows to incorporating a trombone into high energy songs such as Accidentally Cute. He’s shared the stage with critically-acclaimed St. Paul & the Broken Bones, Noah Guthrie, Josh Garrels, and Family and Friends.

He’s like some kind of hip lumberjack with a whole lotta soul. His must listen to? Here Tonight, which is his latest single.