Name: Sam Bickmore
Location: United Kingdom
Trinity qualification: Achieved a distinction in drumming at 10 years old
Notable achievement: Sam set up his own YouTube channel aged 7
Sam Bickmore is an impressive young musician, who managed to achieve a distinction at grade 8 in drumming and is now hoping to inspire other musician to go after their goals.
Sam and his family knew from early on that he had a special musical gift. “I used to always tap on the table with my knife and fork when we were eating dinner”
Sam’s mum remembers noticing this special skill even when he was a baby. “He just seemed to have some kind of in-built ability. As a baby he would rock and clap along to beats, especially in the car. He was really in time.”
By the time Sam was six years old, his parents Gary and Sarra knew he had a special talent, and wanted to help him develop it, so they set him up with drum lessons.
Within two years he had already achieved an incredible 97% in his Trinity grade 5 exam, and just two years later at 10 years old he was ready to take his grade 8
For his exam, Sam played Rosanna by Toto, Fire by Jimi Hendrix and for his technical piece, he played The Spirit of Radio by Rush. Once again Sam excelled - achieving another distinction.
Sam has played local gigs and open mics but this year he has a special performance coming up at a festival in a band of young musicians put together by Sam’s teacher, Pete.
Sarra credits the work Sam has put in his graded exams with Pete with building his confidence as a performer. “You can see his progression from grade 1 all the way up to grade 8. He’s definitely got more confident - It’s given him the confidence to perform.”
Dad Gary particularly appreciates the opportunities for improvisation in the graded exams.
“You have the freedom to put something in that fits with the song with a big fill or repeat. I think that’s made him really creative and really brought him on.”
Even though Sam has already more than met the requirements of Grade 8, he wants to continue to learn all the technical pieces at this grade before taking his next steps.
Sam had this advice for anyone who has a dream of achieving what he has with a musical instrument:
“I‘d say to just carry on doing it and just practice a lot and just don’t give up!”