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Sammy Sum

Page Creation Date
2019.03.15

Page Update Date
2021.06.04

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Sammy Sum, continuously accumulating experience

In fact, I have always loved singing very much. The reason why I joined the TV circle was that I wanted to use it as a springboard and look for opportunities to develop a career in the music industry.

In the midsummer of last year, a busking band appeared in Times Square in Causeway Bay, playing the guitar while singing the song mentioned above. One of the members of the band is Sammy Sum, who is certainly a familiar face to people who own a television at home.

Music dream never stops

Sammy Sum, who started as a TVB artist, after leaving the nest in 2016, in addition to participating in online dramas and movie performances, he began to organize his own band more than a year ago, appearing on the streets to perform his own works. ‘No Regrets’, which he arranged, wrote lyrics and sang. The song is Sammy Sum's inner portrayal.

In the nine years of working for TVB, he started from playing small roles to the big villain who everyone hated. When everyone thought that he was one of the ‘great stocks’ among the male actors of TVB, he left the nest. In a heartbeat, people started to hear his singing from the radio. Two years ago, people could even hear Sammy Sum's voice on the street. ‘In fact, I have always loved singing very much. The reason why I joined the TV circle was that I wanted to use it as a springboard and look for opportunities to develop a career in the music industry.’ Even though his performance on the screen has accumulated good popularity for Sammy Sum, the music dream hidden in his heart was always ready to spring.

The busking atmosphere in Hong Kong is far less popular than that in foreign countries, and the status of buskers is not taken seriously.

Seize the opportunity to equip yourself

‘I am just changing from one “martial arts arena” to another.’ Sammy Sum uses ‘martial arts arena’ to describe busking because he thinks that there are too many talented or extraordinary people hidden from view in the field of busking. ‘The busking atmosphere in Hong Kong is far less popular than that in foreign countries, and the status of buskers is not taken seriously.’ In fact, if you are not prepared enough to perform, close to the people on the street, you must be prepared to be ‘booed down’ at any time. Sammy Sum says, when one is an entertainer, a large group of behind-the-scenes staff take care of everything, the entertainer only has to show up in time and do his/her part; but as a busker, one has to take care of all the matters, even the atmosphere control at the scene.

Last month, Sammy Sum's first concert was successfully held. The concert was titled ‘Let's do it first’. It turns out that this is a catchphrase he often says. He immigrated to Canada at the age of 11. After graduating from university, despite the opposition of his family, he returned to Hong Kong alone to pursue his music dream. Because he failed in a singing competition, he applied for the art training class. What followed was a long period of idleness. Because his income was limited and he didn’t want to overspend, he learned the piano online in his spare time, so he could be ‘closer’ to music. ‘Because I didn't have any special hobbies at that time, so I prepared myself well.’ Sammy Sum says, from acting to singing, from singing to composing and writing lyrics, all of this happened without careful planning.

My principle is that as long as it is what I like and want to do, I don’t need to think too much. I try it, do it first. The mentality I hold is to accumulate experience for myself from time to time.

Unforgettable busking on a Ferris wheel

‘My principle is that as long as it is what I like and want to do, I don’t need to think too much. I try it, do it first. The mentality I hold is to accumulate experience for myself from time to time.’ Sammy Sum’s example tells us that as long as you want something, starting anytime is not too late. More importantly, it proves that ‘opportunities are only reserved for those who are ready.’

Busking in the past two years, for Sammy Sum, his stage is no longer just a television screen. His footprints have spread in Causeway Bay, Tsim Sha Tsui, the Chinese sailboat ‘Duk Ling’ moored in Victoria Harbour, and he even went to the sky. ‘That time we sang in front of the Hong Kong Observation Wheel. The onlookers responded very enthusiastically and the atmosphere was heated. After that, the staff of the Ferris wheel asked us to sing on the Ferris wheel.’ Sammy Sum says happily. It's not hard to imagine that we are also immersed in the scene.

For Sammy Sum, being at the same time and space as the audience and simultaneously sensing the excitement of music is the biggest inducing point for him to love busking. Therefore, there were no seats at the previous concert, which let the fans stand and enjoy; it is actually to continue the spirit of busking. ‘I have an agreement with the group. If we want to break out of Hong Kong in the next step, I hope we can perform in Taiwan and Japan, two places where busking culture is extremely prosperous. The ultimate goal is to hold a huge busking concert outside the Coliseum.’

 

 

 

 

Written by: Kim Shi Fung
Original story in Chinese, English translation by: Daniel Leung & Sharon Huang

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