Steven, I know you’re always on the go, so thanks for taking the time to join us! You seem to do everything.
Thanks for the introduction Jeremy! I’m just as impressed by your accomplishments and feel honoured to be part of your Espresso Shots series.
Thanks! So, tell us about HUM. What is it and what do you do?
HUM is a non-profit organization dedicated to using music as a way to bring happiness to the world. We provide free live music performances to schools and care facilities as a way to share our passion for music and to bring happiness into people’s lives. At HUM, we believe that music makes life better and providing live music is our way of improving the lives of people in our community.
You know, that was one of the biggest draws for me – how giving you are. I think the same goes for your team at HUM as well. How did it all begin?
Thanks Jeremy! The idea for HUM started about two years ago.
During the holidays, I noticed that there were a lot of caroling events taking place in the community. Whether it be in schools, care facilities or even at the mall, the carolling music from these events help create such a festive atmosphere and brings people together from all walks of life.
However, once the holidays are over, the number of performances in schools, hospitals and care facilities die down as well. This is unfortunate. There is no reason why live music should only take place during the holiday; it should happen all year long, especially in places where music isn’t nearly as accessible.
I wanted to create an organization that would provide music performances to schools, hospitals and care facilities throughout the year, and hence, the idea for HUM began.
And for you, where did your mission to help others come from?
I have always been involved with music and charity from a young age. When I realized that I could give back to the community through music, everything just clicked.
To me, there is more to music than simply mastering scales on the piano or learning new guitar rifts. Rather, I want to use music as a way to effect change in our world, and HUM is a perfect avenue for me to fulfill this purpose.
I admire that. For someone who wants to check HUM out, what can they expect? What makes a HUM event great?
The main difference between a HUM event and any other event is the amount of effort that we put into engaging the audience and creating a friendly and open atmosphere. Music is meant to be enjoyed by all without prejudice and without barriers. The musicians who volunteer their time with HUM are typically those who want to use their talents for a greater purpose and want to give back to the community.
Looking ahead, what’s next for you and your team?
Next, HUM is expanding globally to Asia, which is exciting and has kept us quite busy in terms of figuring out the logistics of our global expansion. I am fortunate to have such a strong and talented team working with me. They continue to inspire me every day, and without their support, I know that we wouldn’t have achieved such success at HUM.
And locally, is there anything we can do to help HUM grow? How do folks get involved?
To get involved, check out our website, sign up for our newsletter and find us on Facebook as well.
We have events every month, and we’re always looking for people to get involved. If you play music and want to give back to the community, come chat with us. You can reach out to us via email or on any of our social media channels.
If you’re involved in the community or know of organizations who may be interested in having us perform, let’s get in touch, and we would be happy to chat further.
Awesome! In closing, a personal question? I’m always amazed at how much you get done. Do you have any advice on how folks can up their game? What drives you?
A lot of coffee … just kidding.
I love reading and listening to audiobooks. In particular, I remember learning about this one idea in a book called The Compound Effect by Darren Hardy, and it has changed my life ever since.
“Things that are easy to do are also easy not to do … it is the simple positive choices added up over time that will lead to life-changing results.”
For me, this rule applies to everything from taking a few seconds to reply to an email to pumping out an extra rep at the gym. It is the small, daily choices that matter the most and when compounded over time, lead to great success and productivity.
In terms of what drives me, I am continually inspired by friends like you who have achieved so much in life. However, if I were to name just one source, it would be my family. My parents immigrated to Canada with almost nothing to their name, started at the bottom and worked their way up the ladder. They worked day and night to make sure that we would have a better life in Canada, and I’d like to think that they did a pretty good job so far!
They definitely did! I need that quote on my wall. Steven, thanks so much again for your time!