Posted at 2018-04-17
Posted at 2018-04-17
Spring is seen as a time of change in nature, when things that were still and cold come back to vibrant new life. I truly love Spring, but it did not start off well for me this year. My beloved drummer and friend, Ed Timson, passed away of a sudden heart attack in late March. It would be an understatement to say this was a shock. Forget the music side of it...to simply lose a good friend with no warning whatsoever, is unbearably difficult. If you have listened to and appreciated my songs "Figure Out," "These Things Happen" and "If We Can Keep Dancing," that's Ed on drums on those recordings. I had hoped for much more musicmaking with him, and it's not to be. Just remember, folks, be good to your loved ones always. You simply never know what fate has in store, and it may not always be something you're ready for. I have continued to play some diverse shows, and there are big ones coming up, including a duo show with Ted Moniak at the Samuel Sachs library in Chesterfield on Thurs., April 26 at 7pm, and a Shakey Deal appearance at Naked Vine on Sat., May 5, 8-11 pm.. There are few things I love more than playing music for people, and doing shows in spring and summer is about the best. Remember that if you are ever wanting to book me for a private party or house concert, I can offer duo, trio or full band shows. We tailor the set to the kind of music you want for your show. Just drop me a line if this sounds like something you want to explore.
I finished teaching a wonderfully enjoyable new Songwriting class at St Louis Community College at Meramec in early April. What a talented group of students I had! Hope to repeat the class in fall or next year. Have also been continuing my work on a memoir, which will be full of surprises, and on writing new songs. Three new ones are in the works. And I've been performing my sweet little ode to transition, "Go In Peace," at my last few concerts. I started a recording of this one and will finish it in spring. Hope to include it on a forthcoming compilation album. There are many things I wish I could say about the state of America right now. I'm not going to do that, though. Anywhere in the world of social media you can read any point of view you relate to. What I WILL say, though, is that kindness and community are essential for all of us, and it causes nothing but pain to insult each other and aggressively maintain an attitude of divisiveness. I hope that things will change for the better, SOON. Music is a healing art, and no matter what struggles I endure, I am proud to be a singer and musician. I can't wait to record again, and I continue measured progress on an ambient collaboration with Walter Whitney. Also will probably record a new single in May or June. As always, I welcome correspondence, so feel free to drop me a line, and I'll try to answer all of you. Thanks for the continuing support, and Happy Spring to everyone!
Posted at 2018-03-11
Posted at 2018-03-11
"Little darling, it's been a long cold lonely winter." So sang the Beatles in their classic song "Here Comes the Sun" all those years ago. Actually here in St. Louis, it was kind of a mild winter overall, but I'm still glad to feel spring in the air. It's my favorite season, a time of new growth, nature coming back to vibrant life, a greater sense of warmth and comfort returning. That's the hope, anyway. For me, I have an increasingly busy schedule, teaching a Songwriting class, playing a wide variety of shows and continuing to work on my book. I have a working title for the memoir now; I'm calling it A Life Up In The Air: The Memories, Music and MAYBEs Of An Aspiring Singer/Songwriter. This could change, but I kind of like the title; my whole journey has been one of uncertainty, and it incorporates the name of my most famous song in a manner that feels natural. The book will be in three sections, and I'm about halfway through Section 1 right now. I am excited to share my full story, and my fans can be a part of it if they choose, as I explained in my previous blog.
March of this year represents the 40th anniversary of Brian Eno's hugely influential album Music For Airports. Although his previous Discreet Music is widely considered the first true ambient recording, the former disc is the one where Eno coined the term "ambient" and wrote the meaningful essay that formally contextualized this new genre. My friends know I am a devoted fan of ambient, and I find it to be the most personally relatable music: it serves as a soundtrack for the constantly changing flow of life events, the shifting moods of nature, and even a kind of commentary on thoughts and memories. I've written extensively about this and will continue to do so. Anyway, Brian Eno has been a huge influence on my life, and I doubt I'd be where I am today if not for him. If you've not encountered ambient music before, give Music For Airports and Discreet Music a listen sometime. You may find it revelatory. And I am hoping that my ambient collaboration with Walter Whitney, Lost In Familiar Territory, will be out in a few months or so.
Performances on my schedule include a St. Patrick's Day appearance at 5:30 pm with Matt Freeman at Meshuggah Coffee, a concert at Stone Spiral in Maplewood at 8 pm on Fri., March 23 with special guest Victoria Ziglar, the return of Shakey Deal to the Pub House in St. James 6-9 pm on Sat., March 24, a duo concert with Ted Moniak on Thurs., April 26 at 7 pm at the Samuel C. Sachs branch of the County Library in Chesterfield, and a big Shakey Deal concert in Granite City on May 5 (Cinco de Mayo!) at the Imperial Club with special guest Hard Rain (a Dylan and the Band tribute). More details on that show in the next newsletter. It seems that music and writing take up most of my time, with surprises occurring regularly. It's clear that communication is the most important thing to me, whether via a song or an expressive paragraph of heartfelt words. So I'll close by saying I value YOUR communication with ME, my dear fans. I welcome your thoughts and opinions, always, and I thank you for being out there. It's a lonely world, and when it comes down to it, we really are in this together! Blessings to you all... :-)
Posted at 2018-02-07
Posted at 2018-02-07
Hi again, my friends!
As the new year progresses, I continue to figure out ways to make my musical impact on the world. I've always said I want to be unpredictable and surprising in my career, and that means following the muse wherever it will take me. I'm excited about what lies ahead. First of all, I've posted a new song (actually it's older, but I've never posted it before) and made it available as a FREE download. It's a song about oil spills called "Black on Blue." I rarely set out to write topical songs, but this one, co-written by myself and Ted Moniak, emerged after watching one too many news stories about the ghastly effects of oil spills on the environment. I even posted the lyrics, something I don't do very often. I'd like to NOT have to mention this song in conjunction with any future calamities, but we all know that spills on the ocean are common, and there are sure to be more of them. In other news, I continue to get strong feedback on my new "Clear the Way" CD, and I recently had the privilege of playing songs from the disc at St. Louis' best record store VINTAGE VINYL (the retailer is carrying my CD). I also did a radio interview with Jackson, Tennessee's Steve Bowers, whose "Blue Suede Forever" show is carried on WTJK 105.3 FM. That was big fun! Thanks to Sandy Hardin of Redstarr Entertainment for arranging this. You can hear the archived interview here: https://www.facebook.com/bluesuedeforever/videos/1164025320394905/?fref=mentions Currently, I am hard at work on an ambient album with Walter Whitney called, we think, "Lost in Familiar Territory." It might seem perplexing to some of you that I would follow-up an introspective song cycle with an all-instrumental album like this, but to me it's the most natural thing in the world. I love ambient music, and this project came about in the most organic way possible. It strikes me as being a meditation on being "lost in nature," but you can judge for yourself when it comes out in May. As far as live appearances, here is what's on my upcoming calendar:
Feb. 10: I'm part of SPARK: Ignite Your Creative Magic, a themed production sponsored by the FLOW Literary Arts Center in STL. 7 pm at The Chapel.
Feb. 24: Shakey Deal: A Tribute to Neil Young performs at the Imperial Club in Granite City, IL. Show starts at 7:30 pm.
Feb. 28: Kevin & Denise (Chappell) perform at Piccione Pastries in the Loop, STL.
March 23: Kevin & Denise at Stone Spiral Coffee in Maplewood, MO.
March 24: Shakey Deal at the Pub House in St. James, MO, 6-9 pm.
I'm also going to be teaching a 6-week Songwriting course for FLOW starting in April; if you are in the St. Louis area and want to sign up, go here for more info: https://www.facebook.com/flowstlouis/
Finally, I am starting to write a book about my life, my career and the way that music creates instant and lasting communities. I am looking for some people to contribute little stories or commentaries about any of my songs that have especially moved you. Or maybe how you seek listening experiences outside of the normal channels and somehow ended up learning about me. Just send me a message if you have something to say, and there's a good chance you will be included in the book. I guess that's all until my next update, folks. Remember to be kind to your friends and families, and don't be afraid to take chances in your life. That's how magic can happen! Thanks for listening, and caring!
Posted at 2018-01-15
Posted at 2018-01-15
Hey, Happy New Year, friends and fans! I hope the year has gotten off to a great start for all of you! I'm excited about the prospects for my career and music, and I should have lots of news in the near future. I've written a couple of new songs that I am quite proud of, one of which is called "Back When Things Mattered." It's about the pleasures of growing up listening to classic rock albums. Some of you surely will relate! In spring, I will be releasing an ambient instrumental album, most of which is recorded already. It's a different thing for me, a collaboration with a friend in Sullivan. On the gig front, I'm doing a record store appearance at Vintage Vinyl here in St. Louis on Jan. 21. I'll be promoting CLEAR THE WAY, of course, an album I am getting such a good response to. Check out this amazing review of it from Shakedown News: I'm flattered, truly.
http://www.mmepr.com/shakedownnews/2018/01/kevin-renick-clear-way-album-review/ Remember, you can order the CD from many different sites now, including Amazon, CD Baby, iTunes, and of course through me directly if you like!
I'm always interested in hearing YOUR opinions also, friends. Feel free to post comments to me at any time. I do try to answer my messages. Anyway, some other gigs coming up include a Feb. 24 show at the Imperial Club in Granite City, IL with Shakey Deal (a big Neil Young tribute concert), a unique Feb. 10 extravaganza at The Chapel that I can't talk about yet, and my Stone Spiral Coffeehouse show with Denise Chappell on March 23. I'll debut some new material that night. I am always trying to do lots of things at the same time, which can be a bit challenging to say the least. But as this is my tenth anniversary year, I feel there is a lot to be celebrated and so much to do. I'll have a redesigned web site in a matter of weeks (that'll be something I can announce in the next bulletin), and hopefully other things to share. So stay tuned, all! Keep listening, keep communicating, and stay warm this winter. I'm glad you are all out there, truly! :-)
Posted at 2017-12-06
Posted at 2017-12-06
A blogger on the West Coast wrote an incredible review of CLEAR THE WAY. He writes that it "transcends the limitations we typically place on our understanding of an 'album.' What Renick has created here feels most comparable to a conceptual show performed by Sufjan Stevens, or a classic album by the Moody Blues or Pink Floyd...At its honest and vulnerable core, Clear The Way is the most intimate of personal statements expressed on the most epic scale." I'm so pleased about this, as the artists mentioned are definitely influences of mine. And another major review, I believe, is scheduled to come out today here in St. Louis. The point is, you never know how a new work is going to be received, and I feel that for a certain kind of listener, Clear The Way will provide a truly memorable listening experience. I'm seeing that take place! For the purposes of a new flyer and other upcoming promotional materials, I'm doing a little contest. For those of you who listen to my music, I want you to write a little paragraph on the way it affects you, the kind of insight or emotions generated by the songs. You can mention certain songs or no. I'm going to pick the two best paragraphs to use in 2018's new photos and quotes. Those two winners will get a FREE CD and an autographed 8x10 photo. You'll also have the pleasure of knowing you are mentioned in my publicity materials. So give it a whirl, folks! You can send it to me through the site or write me directly, at firstname.lastname@example.org!
I also want to offer a Holiday Special. Although both of my last CDs, "Clear The Way" and "Under the Wishing Tree" (which contains "Figure Out" and "The Box It Comes In") are available digitally, I'm offering a gift pack of BOTH CDs plus an autographed 8x10 photo, for just $25, postage paid. You can order via Paypal, by sending your payment to: email@example.com. Or you can mail a check or money order to: Kevin Renick, PO Box 31785, Des Peres, MO 63131. This offer is only good for customers in the U.S. Overseas customers, the shipping will be more, and you'll need to write me to find out. I am making this offer available just through the end of December, so don't delay! You'll be getting some great music, I promise!
I am grateful that my music had an impact in 2017, and I have even bigger plans for next year, which will mark my 10th Anniversary in the music business. I want you all to come along for the incredible ride! Meanwhile, everyone have a truly Merry Christmas and a Happy (and SAFE) New Year! You guys really keep me going, and I appreciate having you as fans! See you again soon!
NumberOneMusic © 2003—2018
Kevin promo pic
Kevin closeup pic
Kevin at the Ivory Theatre 2-28
Kevin AA Japan pic
Kevin and the Springfield Boys at the Flea
Kevin at Chapel 6
Kevin alone, beige hat
Kevin alone, beige hat 2
Kevin with guitar, by truck
Kevin, relaxed pose at winery, taken by Sue
Kevin at a winery
Kevin today, on Pascal show
Kevin at Innsbrook with guitar on deck
Kevin, Denise and Mark at the Muny
Kevin at Vintage Vinyl appearance
Kevin closeup at Sept. SD show
Kevin by firelight, with glass of wine
Kevin at SD show in Sept, solo pic
Clear The Way CD cover mockup 2a grey with blue
Kevin, HQ alternate clear photo from Tokyo in March 2010
Shakey Deal at DH, cool pic in red light
Shakey Deal Sept. show, another energetic fivesome
Kevin with cordless mic
Kevin at Innsbrook lake, cropped
Kevin and band foursome, Vintage Vinyl Jan 21
Kevin at Three Squirrels, relaxing