His music has been described as hypnotic, psychedelic, explosive, sonic and when you hear him for the first time, ordinary words may elude you as well, trying to describe Australian singer/songwriter, Kim Churchill. The classically guitar trained Aussie left home when he was just 17, living a nomadic lifestyle in his van while busking up and down Australia. Six years and three albums later, has seen concerts and recordings in Canada, performances at SXSW in the US and even recently supporting English singer Billy Bragg on his 23 date UK and European tour. Beyond that are multiple festivals, awards and international recognition. With his fourth studio album on its way (UK), Churchill is releasing a limited edition 7″ vinyl and free download of his new single “Some Days The Rain May Fall”.
A surfer and traveler, the only time period spent under the same roof for any length of time over the past 5 years, was in a remote rural village last year on Vancouver Island, Canada while recording his new record. The sandy blonde headed, Merimbula born singer can usually be seen on stage barefoot, playing everything from acoustic guitar, harmonica, percussion, bass drum and tambourine. Watching him play guitar alone will have you lost in a captivated gaze, as his hands and fingers dance among the strings as if they’ve been bewitched. While a track like “Some Days The Rain May Fall” will sail you along upon swirling waves of acoustic guitar and angelically blended vocals, it’s double A-sided companion song, “Fear The Fire” will move you to dance about to its mystical strings and driving percussion. You don’t just listen to Kim Churchill’s music, you experience it.
We recently asked the young singer/songwriter from down-under, to tell us a little more about his start, his music and his future.
Hello Kim and welcome to DaysTune, today we’re featuring your new single “Some Days The Rain May Fall” as our Song of The Day. Whether it’s “Smile As He Goes Home”, “Loving Home” or One of your latest “Fear The Fire” – your music is rich and almost mystical…
1) Tell us about your musical journey to this point?
Even when I was very young, I always identified myself as the kid with ‘the guitar’. It’s all I’d ever wanted to do. When I became old enough, though I really had no idea how one creates for themselves a career as an artist, I bought a van, built a bed in the back and left with the hope of creating some sort of life where I would be able to play my songs exclusively. It’s been 5 years; I have several vans across different continents. Everything is quite colourful, there’s little that is solid and the songs stem from this kind of electrifying lifestyle. The goal for the rest of my life is purely to keep it going.
2) You’ve been labelled, folk, blues, rock – how do you describe yourself musically?
Creating music is a journey and with any luck there’s never a moment in what you’re doing that is still enough to be labelled. Beyond this I’m happy for other people to put whatever label on it they want.
Here in the US, busking is not something that we experience on the level people do in places like Europe and Australia. Michael Rosenberg (Passenger) has recently come on the scene here and even took time to busk while on tour, with his single going number one on Billboard…
3) How has busking fit into your career and what’s the drive initially and even after you’re able fill a venue?
It was my career in the beginning. There’s a certain energy and field to performing on the street that is incredibly unique. It’s really a wonderful experience. You get a perfect cross-section of people whose reactions will be completely honest. It’s great to see what turns people’s heads and what doesn’t, what draws in children as opposed to hipsters or the elderly as opposed to a middle aged couples. This is great for performing because it shows you what grabs people and what doesn’t. Beyond that it’s a brilliant way to be paid to rehearse.
We know you can play the guitar like a master and make a harmonica sound like a string section…
4) What other instruments do you play in general and on your records?
I love that in the studio there is often a a sense of complete freedom and I feel confident to tinker. I did quite a lot of the drums and piano and a selection of other odd bits and pieces. It’s always a lot of fun to pretend.
You’ve done a lot in Canada and some in the US like SXSW…
5) How has the reception been here in the past and what are your plans for the US in 2014?
Really brilliant! Love the audiences in the states. You’re a passionate bunch and I’ve always felt like I’ve fit right in. I really hope I get to do a lot more with you guys.
The British singer Adele once said that the music she sings is not the actual type of music she listens too…
6) Would we be surprised by what type of music you enjoy on a regular basis? What artist and songs are you loving at the moment?
Arctic Monkeys, I want to be yours. I’m loving that album. I try to honestly gravitate to the music that I enjoy and inspires me. It comes from all kinds of places and genres.
7) Who are you apart from music?
I’ve always loved surfing and travelling and luckily my music facilitates these. They also facilitate the music which it nice. But honestly, music is my life and I am almost entirely consumed by it which I’m all for.
You’re getting ready to release a limited edition 7″ vinyl and free download which includes the songs “Some Days The Rain May Fall” & “Fear The Fire”…
8) Tell us about the two tracks? (Album coming?)
‘Some days the rain may fall’ is about surrender. ‘Fear the fire’ is about the double edged nature of one’s own drive and passion. The whole album in a sense is a reflection of my own psychological battles and victories and learning to live with myself.
A lot of your tracks feel like there is a message behind them and definitely more meaty than what would be expected from someone mid-twenties…
9) What’s your driving inspiration and writing process?
I try to be really honest and I think I’m a bit of a tripper. The lyrics are exactly how I feel or at least the best words I can think of to describe it. I think the trick is to allow the audience to find their own message. I try not to put a message in a song but rather facilitate the listener in creating for themselves.
10) If you had to choose between touring the world surfing or playing music?
Luckily I don’t, but music will always come first.
Check out Kim’s new single and our Song of The Day, “Some Days The Rain May Fall” below and see him in action via the YouTube video underneath the player (You won’t regret it!).
Kim Churchill performing “Smile As He Goes Home” for NOMAD Sessions, September 2013 from his Montreal Attic Recordings: Vol. 2. Watch the multi-instrumentalist command the audiences attention, as he fills the room with amazing sound all on his own. Stay till the end and watch as he plays every instrument and finishes with one last incredibly passionate song. Visit Kim’s official website below the video, for more on the singer and to get your free download.
Visit Kim Churchill: Official
Photos: Courtesy © Kim Churchill/Republic Media