New Look, New Voice, New Music, New Zealand’s Sam Verlinden

“Music has always been me. There was never one defining moment that I thought “I think I might like to be an artist” … it has been in my veins from day one.”             Sam V 

Sam Verlinden Profile Photo 2015
Sam V (Verlinden)

It has been almost two years since we have turned the spotlight on for New Zealand’s Star Vocalist Sam Verlinden. This is why we are happy to be bringing Sam back into focus especially at this time with the launch of his Brand New Original Song and New Music Video.

Sam V 2015
Sam V

Quite a lot has happened over the past couple of years with Sam and his musical career with the most notable being his more mature vocal sound and original single releases.

Gone forever is his lovely high range where he could belt out covers of Beyonce and other great female artists. It is now replaced with a rich lower register, which opened the door for Sam to try many new genres, including the world of classic croon.

Sam V 2 2015
Sam strikes a pose for us!

This new voice and sound help launch Sam into his school bands and orchestra at his High School. Following a standing ovation he received at one school performance of Mac the Knife – he became fondly known as Sammy Sinatra or Sammy Buble by many of the teachers, students and other student families. Having followed Sam closely over the years, I always knew that his vocals would someday rock the entertainment industry. However, he totally blew me away with his rendition of

Mack the Knife
with his High School Orchestra backing him up!

Sam was also given the role of his School Senior Cantor, which involved leading mass and a wonderful introduction into classic gospel and hymns. In addition he was given the role of Senior Choir Coordinator, leading the school choir time.

All of this musical involvement at his High School enabled him to mould gently into his new vocal range which now ranges strongly from tenor to baritone.

He also decided to audition in the School Production in 2014, and was delighted to get the lead role of Bobby Strong in ‘Urinetown’. He really enjoyed this experience and he auditioned once again for this year’s Musical ‘Pippin’, and again – landed the lead role of Pippin, which will come to the stage in July 2015.

Sam is not only musically gifted and talented; he has also been excelling academically, achieving top marks in the school for Music and Global Perspectives the last 2 years in a row.

Sam V What You've DoneOutside of school, Sam has also been incredibly busy.

He has been working with an incredible Producer Vince Harder (Harder Music Group) who is currently based in Australia. Together they have created several new tracks, with one of them (What You’ve Done) already winning funding from NZ On Air – for production and release of a music video. The music video was filmed 2 weeks ago and it is targeted for release in March 2015.

Use both the photo (left), and text links to purchased Sam’s new single from either iTunes or UK.   Listen to and Like it on the NZ On Air Sound Cloud Site!

Here is Sam’s Brand New Music Video

What You've Done Sam V“What You’ve Done”

Sam Verlinden Pop Star
Sam Verlinden Pop Star

They have mixed and mastered another 4 tracks, with the hope of releasing an EP later this year.

The experience of working with such a top quality Producer has helped launch Sam into the local New Zealand music industry, where is he continues to gain a solid reputation for being a very talented and credible artist in his own home country.


2015 will continue to be busy for Sam as he prepares for his final year in High School, establishing himself into his leadership Prefect roles and launching his upcoming single, music video and EP.

Sam V 3 2015
Sam V

He has a Music Tour to Europe scheduled in April, where a group of 20 students will visit Rome, Croatia, Austria and other countries sharing their music.

Later in the year a smaller group of 15 students will travel to Rarotonga, Cook Islands to perform in their celebrations of 50 years of independence. This will be very special for Sam as his grandmother is from Rarotonga and he holds a great affinity with the small Pacific Country.

I must admit that having Sam be a part of this website since its conception has been a real honour and privilege. Observing his development and growth both as a young artist and young man has been a special joy and rewarding experience. There has never been a doubt in my mind that Sam Verlinden is headed for greatness and I look forward to many years of great music, concert performances, stage plays, and even Broadway in his future.

In closing Sam asked me to publish the following which we are humbled to do. Since Sam was one of the very first to ever be published on this website I have given Sam the honor of leaving a hint regarding some changes that are in the works for this website which continues to grow and expand in amazing ways to the benefit of many young musicians, aspiring actors, stage performers and vocalists.



“I’ve never taken anything for granted – and as every new door has opened for me, or when every new opportunity arises, I’m always surprised and sometimes overwhelmed – but always really grateful when people enjoy what I do.

I’m still learning and developing – and have been really lucky to work with some incredibly talented and supportive people that I’ll always be so grateful for. I think that’s the key to this thing – to make sure you surround yourself with people who have walked the road before you, people you can trust and people with the best work ethic. Then whatever happens, you’ll be ok.

I’m incredibly grateful for all the support I have received from Rivenmaster and from all the supporters and readers of the Rivenmaster websites in addition to the fellow artists Rivenmaster features on his pages – several of whom I have made friends with.”

I would like to thank Rod from Rivenmaster for everything he has done for all the young artists he has featured on his site over the last few years. I have met so many new friends and supporters from all around the world as a result and have been able to glean much from the good advice and support they have provided on the site.   In addition, I wish the very best to the new team who will be taking over the reins during the next few months”.    

Thank you again Rivenmaster for the unconditional support from the start – and I know I speak for all the young artists when I say WE are lucky to have had such a supportive and safe place as Rivenmaster’s Place to launch our music careers. Blessings!

Sam Verlinden

For More About Sam V visit:


Side note* will soon acquire a New Name, New Domain, New Team and New Ownership. will soon be transferring ownership to a brand new team who will be taking this site to even greater heights and deeper depths of promotion of young artists from all over the world. The full article about this expansion and growth will be made public on March 20th. Fear not! Rivenmaster “Rod Johnson” is not going anywhere. He will continue to support and publish occasional articles to this website.  We are confident that this site can do nothing but become even more successful in helping the youth of today become the stars of tomorrow. Be watching on March 20th for this very special article detailing this transition.

Ash Graham Musician, Songwriter, Performer

AshGrahambwWhile this blog mainly consist of young treble singers, we also feature young men in their late teens who’s voice has already broken and has developed a clear sounding mature sound.  Ash Graham, 16, from New Zealand is one young man who fills this description to a tee.  Not only are his vocal abilities astoundingly pleasant, but his musical prowess is enhanced by his song writing capabilities and composing genius.

I first was introduced to Ash on Tommy’s site, in November of last year!  Following an exchange of letters with Ash’s parents I’m happy to now introduce him here on Rivenmaster’s Place.

Ash’s story begins long before he sang his first note. Being in a hurry to come into this world 6 weeks prematurely, Ash showed that he was going to be special from the start.  His mom was told that Ash would be in the neo-natal intensive care unit for about a week and would then move into the neo-natal ward, most likely being in hospital until his due date. However, by morning the doctors were stunned at his progress. He was already in the regular neo-natal ward and was doing so well they thought they may be able to move him to the ward with her. By day 3 and he was in the ward with his Mother and following sounds and people around the room. Continue reading “Ash Graham Musician, Songwriter, Performer”