My Skills

I would like to think that my skills are the main reason I am currently in the place I’m in. My ability to maintain focus and a solid work ethic is what aids in gaining skill and consistency. Without determination, natural skills can only take you so far. I do believe that I was blessed with a musical ear to a certain extent but there is so much more that is actually important. Natural talent can only take you so far in life. What serves as the best successor is a healthy balance between talent and pure dedication. I wouldn’t say I was born with the skills to play trumpet. But I have managed to mold myself to settle on a constructive path of efficiency in my practicing. I would have to say that most skills I have, such as my instrumental diversity, comes from experience and pure curiosity. Growing up I wanted to know why the guitar sounded like it did, why the piano has so many keys, how to sound like Phil Smith on the trumpet. My skills that I have obtained come directly from my ability to pursue my interests without holding back. One of the hardest lessons to learn is how to take and use criticism but not take it personally. Most people say if you can’t handle rejection then going into the music business isn’t the right choice. For the most part I agree with that statement. Just because you think you are skillful at your instrument and you’re crazy talented does not mean every person listening is going to agree. It’s necessary to keep an open mind and a listening ear.

Elevator Pitch

Please, help me help you. My name is Sam Burns and I’m an up and coming orchestral trumpet performer as well as a singer/songwriter in an acoustic based group. I work tirelessly for focus and vision to captivate my audience and bring them on a musical journey to prove what my passion means to me. Music is the most extensive and difficult aspect of my life I have ever experienced, but I love every minute of it. No matter the success rate, my life work will be based off of happiness and exceeding my dreams. I want to show the world a new depth in music capability and give away an experience worth remembering.

Motivation and Me

I find it hard to pin point my self motivation as well as my external motivation when it comes to figuring out why I do what I do. To be honest I have never really had a big problem with motivating myself based on my surroundings. I have always been self-driven and have always had more of a conservative attitude towards my motivation.

I would have to say my main internal motivation is the strive to be heard and respected as a performer. The main motivative feeling comes from the performing aspect of my focus of study. I feel the want to create a musical experience from what I have written and what I feel. It’s a matter of expression and a lack of a way out of my body and mind. It’s such an addicting feeling that really can’t be described but can be felt. So as far as motivation goes, I feel like the main source is just the feeling of expressing emotion and portraying answers through song in hopes that others can connect in the same way.

I’m not too motivated to do much outside of my little area of music. It can be a real struggle for me to spend much time doing anything else. I definitely have to work at finding the significance in doing something I really have no passion for. For school, I would say grades are a great motivator, as well as tuition. I mean I feel lucky enough that I’m going to such a great school and have this kind of opportunity so it’s only right that I make the most of every class and every experience I can be a part of.

Not only am I motivated to perform at a high level of musicianship in which the work I have put into it is ultimately paid off, but it’s just what I love and enjoy doing. It’s truly the hardest thing I have ever had to work at in my life, but I live for every minute of it. I don’t necessarily believe that you have to explain your motivation and identify each aspect of why you work so hard at what you do. Personally, I think that I don’t really have everything figured out to fullest yet.

How I work

Growing up and still today I deal with the issue of stress in my life. Not only does it make my day to day life complicated but it can cause some pretty big problems. Seemingly it has driven me insane but at the same time it has help mold many aspects of my character and my personality. Stress drives me to be determined and it is always setting the bar higher. There’s just something about me that makes me feel like I’m never truly satisfied with certain things in my life. I always feel a drive to set my goals a little higher and to push myself a little further. To be honest I don’t have a complete explanation as to why my determination and stress drives me, it just does.

So how do I work you might ask? I may not seem like I always have my life together or I know what the next move is, but mentally I’m thinking ahead and I’m stressing the importance of the next big thing. As far as my music and study, I do best when I’m alone and I have my guitar sitting next to me. Whenever I’m practicing or getting really intense about studying, etc., I can sometimes get to the point where it turns into a headache. After a certain amount of time of being completely focused and accurate with my practicing, I step away and maybe mess around on the guitar for a little bit, or just sit there and work on some lyrical composition. I find it extremely relaxing and healthy to have a solid outlet of creativity apart from what you are currently doing just to exercise the mind and to regain focus. For the most part I’m a very conservative person, but when I have the opportunity to show what I have a passion for I like to take advantage of it.

For the most part I keep a steady routine and I wasn’t really phased by some of the info in the article. Although it’s probably good to change up your atmosphere when you’re learning or practicing. But personally I feel like I get the most done and spend my time most efficiently when I’m in an environment I’m familiar with. Change can be good but I find it to be good in small doses. Something I do need to work on is taking more breaks and pacing myself when it comes to school. Taking care of work at the right time and not procrastinating as to add to the stress. Like change, I think stress can be effective in small amounts. I feel that with the right amount of stress you can work to obtain your optimal balance and be able to fulfill your life and work the best way you can.

My calling

People often look down on the idea of majoring in music or in the arts. It’s often referred to as a dying field, an area in which you won’t make a lot of money or live up to modern standards. Personally, I’m not phased by this judgement and assumption. Instead I accept the challenge and I work to get by.

Most of my life I was brought up being told what I need to do to make a good living, study hard, go to college, get a steady job, get married, etc. I guess it was around the time I entered high school that reality set in.

I first picked up playing the guitar when I was about 10 years old. Doing my best to learn the fundamentals because at that time all I wanted was to be a rockstar. To tour the world singing my music, my words, and my ideas. To this day there is nothing more I want then to perform music in such a way that the audience will take something away from me.

For the most part I’m an extremely conservative person and I only tend to get out of my box when I’m with close friends. But no matter what when I pick up an instrument, whether it be the guitar, the trumpet, the piano, the ukulele, or the mandolin, I feel alive and I feel expression flowing out of me. I feed off the audience and put emotion into every aspect I can control.

It’s hard for me to explain exactly why I feel such a calling towards music but in a way I guess that’s what makes it a passion. A passion is something you long for, something that completes your soul, something that fills you up and gives you that drive to live out loud. It wouldn’t matter to me if I was barely getting by financially, if I had to work multiple jobs just to survive. As long as I am spending every waking moment knowing that I am doing what I love to do. To be honest, when you love what you do, the money just comes, it’s no longer a factor but a bonus.