Sam Smith / Cam

Sam Smith

2015 File Photo

Sam Smith / Cam at

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Dawn Burkes Recommends

At just 26 years old, Sam Smith has already made an indelible impression on the music industry. He sings from his heartbreak to break your heart, then puts it back to beating and breaks it again. That’s mostly because he was introduced to the American psyche with a record borne from loss, In the Lonely Hour. In turn, his vocal dexterity was introduced to a wider audience by virtue of winning four Grammy Awards including best new artist. He also holds a Golden Globe and an Academy Award for best original song with “Writing’s On the Wall” from the James Bond movie Spectre. All of that is dandy, but there’s another force at work here: Smith follows a line of British soul singers nursed on American R&B who learned their lessons well. If you go to his show, bring tissues because he’ll lead you through (to borrow from an R&B staple) “Joy and Pain.” -- Dawn M. Burkes

British soul singer Sam Smith tours in support of his new album The Thrill of It All.

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