One of our most enjoyable blog series is the Many Hats series, where we learn more about our employees! We get to know what they do outside of the workplace, how they are involved in their communities, what brings them joy, and other interesting information they share with us!
This one is no exception. Read on to see what Sam Hould, Facilities and Security Safety Officer, does when he isn’t working on bank projects.
Born in Malta and receiving his education in Miles City, Sam Hould has seen and done so much– all while never leaving the state of Montana. He is a former contractor and has now been with the bank over ten years, building a very successful facilities and security program. The bank has been in growth mode for the past several years, so to say Sam has been busy with new building projects would be an understatement! But one thing has always been certain – music is in his blood and the passion to write, play guitar, and sing has been unwavering.
His love of music started at an early age, growing up with a dad who played guitar and sang. The influence was always there. He even learned to design and build guitars and worked at Gibson Guitars in Bozeman. Some of Sam’s guitars can be found across the U.S. – from New York City to Sidney, Montana. This talent is commendable, but what really ignites his musical passion is writing his own songs and lyrics. Although he considers himself a “rocker” at heart, he likes all genres of music.
Writing songs is no easy feat. Asked how he accomplishes this while working full time, he laughed and said, “when I have to drive from Miles City to Missoula for work, I have at least 7 ½ hours to think. That affords me a lot of time to see the sites and formulate a song in my head. I always keep a pen and notebook with me in case something comes to mind and write it down. If a melody starts going through my head – I record it on my phone and I write it down.” Asked how the song “Montana” came to be, Sam said that it originated on one of his work trips to Missoula. Once he arrived, he went straight to the hotel and wrote it down, sang it in his phone, and sent it to his bandmates. The rest is history!
Playing guitar and singing in a band gives Sam the opportunity to expand his musical passion even further. “Top Shelf Racket” consists of Sam Hould, Jake Elwood, CJ Desjardin, and Rich Ruland. They started out as a cover band and evolved into writing and playing their own music. They’ve opened for several groups and played many varied venues around the state. Sam said the name Top Shelf Racket means “really good noise from the top shelf.”
They hope to begin performing again once the state fully reopens and the pandemic has passed. In the meantime, Sam and the group are busy recording an album which they plan to release later this summer. It will include songs inspired by the wonders of Montana and performed with a heartfelt love of all that this state has to offer.
Successful contractor and department head during the day, and rocking musician at night. There may not be a more rewarding way to live life. We tip our hat to Sam and wish him all the best on his musical journey!