Soulful songwriter Sam Burchfield, unarmored

Black Mountain News

Sam Burchfield's sonic palette ranges from lyrical ballads to upbeat funk jams. From banjo, to brass, to traditional rock four-piece, Burchfield has blended American music in all its diversity into a personal multiple-genre style.

With a voice that can be soft and sultry or full of exuberant Southern soul,  Burchfield returns on Friday, Dec. 30 to the White Horse Black Mountain, a venue where his previous shows have drawn large and appreciative crowds.

Sam Burchfield turned down an American Idol golden ticket to Hollywood to forge his own way.

After appearing on American Idol Season 13 and receiving a golden ticket to Hollywood, Burchfield declined the trip west and opted instead to maintain creative independence with the release his first EP, "Where to Run." Completed shortly after the singer’s graduation from the University of Georgia, the EP gained notable attention from industry professionals after it charted number 1 on the college music blog and number 8 on Billboard’s Regional-South Atlantic Heatseeker chart. Following up on the recording’s success, Burchfield booked his own tour of the Southeast.

  During the relatively short arc of his career, he has already shared stages with marquee names like St. Paul & The Broken Bones, Casey James, Ben Rector, Josh Garrels, Emily Hearn and YouTube sensation Noah Guthrie. His sound masterfully melds blues rock, funk and folk, influenced by the likes of ZZ Ward, Ray LaMontagne, Van Morrison and early Jack Johnson. Since his recent move to the R&B hub of Atlanta, Burchfield has also been working with a talented four-piece band who flesh out his eclectic musical vision.

Burchfield’s sophomore EP, entitled "Unarmored," represents an artistic evolution. “'Unarmored' is about digging bit deeper,”, he said. "It’s about unveiling more of who I am as an artist and as an individual. You’ve got to be vulnerable in order to connect, and to grow and to love. Sometimes that is beautiful, and sometimes it hurts.”

Ticket to ride

Who: Sam Burchfield

When: 8 p.m. Dec. 30

Where: White Horse Black Mountain

Cost: $12 advance, $15 door