Breaking the Silence - Sam

“On 27 November 2020 I released my debut solo piano album, ‘Breaking the Silence’, to raise money and awareness for mental health. The album is a set of 18 musical stories/compositions that reflect my mental health battles during some tough and emotional times in my life.

In 2017 I had a rough and complex break-up, and for the first time in my life, I became depressed and struggled with my mental health and ability to cope. I was too ashamed at first to admit I was struggling and instead tried to battle it out myself. This didn’t work and eventually, after having some very dark days and thoughts, I found the courage to ask for help. While difficult at first, talking to those family and friends I trusted gave me the support I needed to start my journey of recovery.

The majority of my piano compositions were originally improvised in 2017 when I was suffering from depression. As I recovered during 2018 and 2019, I started structuring these compositions with a vision to professionally record a solo piano album as a way of putting my mental health story forward – and raise awareness and money for mental health and suicide prevention. In recent years suicide rates in New Zealand have been rising, particularly with young people, with similar rates overseas.

Through the release of this album and Givealittle fundraiser, and possible future concerts, I am determined to raise money and awareness of, and help break the stigma and silence around, mental health. My hope is that by listening to my story woven through my music, people may feel they can talk to somebody they trust instead of ‘toughing it out’ and staying silent like too many are doing.”