The music world has been regularly embedded with prodigies. the latest addition to this cher-ished league of musicians is STEVEN SAMUEL, aged 9, who is creating waves and magic with his unbelievable playing on the drums.
The king of Percussion Sivamani recognized his rigorous practice and natural talent. He encour-aged him and was kind enough to take him along for various concerts. Steven was lucky to play along side him in the inaugural ceremony of the International Children’s Festival at Hyderabad in front of a distinguished audience, which was telecasted live.
Watch Steven Samuel perform on stage and you might think the little drum kit is playing itself. Look closely and you find a little drummer, at times standing and playing, as he can’t reach all the drum pads otherwise. All of four and a half years old, Steven’s latest feat has been to give a solo drum concert before a 20,000 strong crowd at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Chennai, with none other than the legend himself — Sivamani. In fact Sivamani is so fond of his protégé that he invites him to perform on many of his concerts. They now live opposite each other in Chennai, much to Steven’s excitement.
He has played for COGNIZANT-FEST 2012 Inaugural Function at Chennai. He also did a guest performance in Zee Tamil SA RE GA MA PA Challenge 2013 grand finale.
For Steven, music obviously runs in the family, for he is the nephew of keyboard maestro Ste-phen Devassy. Young Steven started experimenting on the drums when he was just two, and no one still knows how he gets the beats right, least of all his dad, Samuel Devassy, a sound engi-neer and Stephen’s elder brother. Steven’s skill was spotted early his mother Beena Sam. “What-ever he listens to, he imitates, and does it perfectly. Steven began by drumming on vessels and other toys, when he was just two years old” says Beena. Noticing his talent, his father got him a junior drum kit on which Steven displayed exceptional talent. His parents say that he is quite ex-traordinary in that he prefers to watch videos of Sivamani or Stephen performing to getting him-self into trouble like usual four-year-olds. “When he is not watching cartoons, he practices. A psychologist has approached us now, who wants to study him and understand how he does it,” says Samuel.
The imitation happens to such an extent that what Steven plays has an Indian flavor to it, similar to Sivamani’s. Steven has been accompanying the choir in the church for quite a while and has started giving solo concerts at his school, Chinmaya Vidyalaya.
Steven’s urge to practice and his dedication to perfect rhythm patterns is attracting the awe of all rhythm players. A busy schedule awaits this young drumming sensation.