Sam Weber turned down the chance to attend the prestigious Berklee School of Music to pursue his own path in the industry. He performs in Nanaimo Wednesday (Dec. 11) at the Buzz Coffeehouse.

Sam Weber turned down the chance to attend the prestigious Berklee School of Music to pursue his own path in the industry. He performs in Nanaimo Wednesday (Dec. 11) at the Buzz Coffeehouse.

Music major: Sam Weber follows his own path

NANAIMO – Sam Weber turned down a full-time scholarship to Berklee College of Music to pursue his passion on Vancouver Island.

Sam Weber was still a teenager when he was offered a full-time scholarship to the prestigious Berklee College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts.

He turned it down.

“I decided to build my own recording studio and work on my music from that angle,” Weber said.

The Victoria native had previously attended Berklee on a summer scholarship when he was just 17-years-old. However, he felt that that the program was not for him. “It wasn’t really optimized for what I was doing musically and where I wanted to go,” Weber explained. “It was not the right thing to be doing with my time or money.”

Weber, now 21, returned to Vancouver Island and has since released a full-length album, toured as a member of the Juno Award-nominated band Jets Overhead and has been featured in Guitar Player Magazine.

On Wednesday (Dec. 11), the alternative-pop-folk singer will be making his first ever live performance in Nanaimo at The Buzz Coffee House, with his friend Luca Fogale.

Despite the fact that the first CD he ever purchased was by the Spice Girls, Weber’s major musical influences include Fleetwood Mac, Bruce Springsteen and Joni Mitchell.

The best way that the 21-year-old can describe his style of music is “Rocky Mountain desert vibes.”

“My producer and I coined the term Rocky Mountain desert vibes and while that doesn’t really translate to everyone, I haven’t been able to come up with a better way of describing it,” Weber said. “Despite that it was a joke at first. I really haven’t been able to come up with another way.”

This past summer, Weber released his first full-length album titled, Shadows in the Road.

“There is a lot of space in my music,” Weber said about his sound. “It feels like ambience but not like ambient alternative style of music but there is an ambient component to it.”

Over the past couple of years Weber has been working hard on finding his own sound.

“Achieving the sounds that I want to hear is something I’ve really fought with,” Weber said. “These days it has become something that I’ve gotten better at and I feel like it’s happening more and more. I am hearing the things that I want to hear come out of the monitor that I want to hear.”

“That is something that is always a battle but ultimately it is something that I am getting better at,” Weber added.

While there are challenges to being an artist on Vancouver Island compared to being an artist in Vancouver, Weber said the musical community in Victoria is extremely supportive.

“In Victoria everybody knows everybody pretty much. New bands are embraced much more as they start playing shows . . . Whereas in Vancouver you really have to break in much more before you can start playing shows.”

For more information on Sam Weber visit www.samweber.me.

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