Soulful Sam - he has the voice of an angel, but is that where it ends...?
This month I’ve been talking to lead singer Sam Wilson.
What musical influences did you have at home when you were growing up? Do you come from a musical family? You mentioned in a previous interview in 2019 that you and Seb played together from quite a young age?
As Seb explained, Dad was in bands, initially alongside work, but at one point a band he was in – ‘SWELTER’ - were picked up by a record label. I remember going with him to a recording studio one day when they were recording an album.
When I mentioned me and Seb playing music together, I probably meant a music game – Guitar Hero - which at one point we played every waking moment!
You shared in a previous blog that you were into anything from pop to heavy rock. Any particular artists?
When I was a teenager, I was a ‘Grebo’ – a massive heavy metal fan. Slipknot were my favourite band. My taste has broadened greatly over the years!
When did you first realise you could sing? Were you in the school choir?
My step mum used to get me to sing Elvis songs around the house, and when I was 6 or 7, a teacher (Miss Hickson) heard me singing to myself at the back of the classroom and persuaded me to join the choir.
We started every day at school with assembly which always included singing. It was probably my favourite part of the day.
Who do you listen to of current artists?
Silk Sonic – a collaboration between Bruno Mars and Anderson Paak
Joy Crooks, Sam Fender and James Bay
You didn’t study music at school or college, so what were you doing and how did you get into full time music?
The secondary school I went to didn’t really take music too seriously so what we did in lessons was very limited.
I did the first year of A levels, but then went to college to study art. That didn’t really work out but after moving to Penzance I went back to college to study Music Technology. By that point I’d started to get into playing and singing.
I’d come across a local bluegrass band (Flats and Sharps) busking in the street, with onlookers giving them money. Back in Cheltenham busking was tightly controlled, so I’d only ever seen solo performers. Flats and Sharps were a full band, with multiple instruments – banjo, mandolin, acoustic guitar. They also did vocal harmonies. I’d never seen anything like it, and it really piqued my interest.
Seb and I went to an open mic night at a local bar in Penzance. We started with a cover of 21 Guns by Greenday, but I was so nervous I completely forgot everything I’d learnt about playing guitar! Very embarrassing. We just about got through the song, and I swiftly handed over the guitar to Seb who ‘seamlessly’ moved on to a Metallica version of Whiskey in the jar (the Thin Lizzy song). Somehow, we got a great response, with people dancing on the tables and singing along. It gave us such a buzz and was probably the defining moment that led us to pursuing music as a career.
You mentioned Boundless Brothers began life as Blue Horyzon. How did that group come about?
A member of Flats and Sharps was leaving to form his own band, and I persuaded Seb to move back to Penzance to form a band with us. Blue Horyzon was born. Our band mate taught Seb to play bass, and another friend taught me to play acoustic guitar. The members of Blue Horyzon and early Boundless Brothers changed a few times as people came and went, and we tried different things before we developed the sound we have today.
Why the change of name, and where did the name come from?
As the line up and style of music changed, we wanted to mark this with a change of name. I guess Brothers is obvious as it symbolises the relationship with Seb, and later Bo. Boundless expands on this to reflect the strength of the bond we have.
Which instruments do you play? Do you really play the violin!
Predominantly acoustic and electric guitar, but I can also play piano, and yes basic violin! ….. oh, and I also played Ocarina (a small wind instrument) on a track we recorded. Between the three of us, we’ve tried to learn whatever instruments we’ve needed over the years.
Who have you seen live and who is still on your bucket list?
I’ve seen The Killers three times, and the Manic Street Preachers twice. The 1975 and Joy Crooks are also favourites.
I’d love to see Biffy Clyro and U2, but my dream is to see Oasis if they ever re-form.
You have other siblings – are any of them musical?
There are a few of us – its only me and Seb doing music full time, but brother Ryan was really into rapping, and brother Seth was into DJ’ing.
What’s your favourite aspect of being in Boundless Brothers?
Undoubtedly the friendship with Seb and Bo.
Its half the enjoyment – I just wouldn’t enjoy it the same doing solo, so I have no interest in that.
Its great being creative with people on the same wavelength as you. We’re all comfortable enough with each other to both suggest our own ideas and to say so if we don’t think something will work.
Can you share a couple from your top tunes of all time?
One – U2
Welcome to the black parade – My Chemical Romance
The only living boy in New York – Simon & Garfunkel
Finally, tell us something else we may not know about you?
Although I didn’t pursue art at college, I do still like drawing, and I find it a good way to relax.
In my spare time I'm developing a comic book. Don't expect to see the fruits of my labours any time though!
Thanks for reading. Comment below to let me know what you think, ask any questions, or suggest anything you'd like to hear about in future blogs.