RGM INTRODUCING – WE INTERVIEW CANADIAN ARTIST KYLE RICHARDSON
What made you decide that music is a thing for you?
I grew up loving music and singing but I didn’t have any clue about how the music industry worked. Once I started to realize that I had a knack for writing songs and began performing a bit more, I really grew to enjoy it and realize that music was something I was interested in as more than just a hobby.
Introduce us to you and your musical history?
I used to be pretty shy regarding singing and performing, but I had a really enthusiastic music teacher who forced me to go on stage and sing at our school assemblies and Christmas programs, which really helped boost my confidence!
Once I got to high school. I started taking some voice lessons, learned a few guitar chords, and started writing some songs. I also joined my school’s musical theatre program and participated in various talent shows, eventually joining a cover band started by some friends and we played at coffee shops and different gigs on a weekly basis. After high school, I went to a music production and audio engineering course for a year, and eventually moved to Vancouver to start working with awesome producer Jeff Dawson on my original music.
What was life like for you before music?
Before I started taking music seriously, I was just working at a bakery, finishing up school, and living small town life.
I was pretty unsure of how to make any progress in the industry, so I was kind of biding my time, and trying to make industry contacts via e-mail outreach and trying to figure out a way into the industry before finally taking the plunge and moving to Vancouver where I knew there would be more ample opportunity.
What was the first song you heard that steered you into a music path?
I think the first songs that really resonated with me as far as really showing me a potential path I could take musically was the whole debut album “Chariot” by Gavin DeGraw. This was a singer who had real instruments backing him. He has a soulful voice that can do pop, rock, deliver ballads and sing with a lot of range and passion. I always wanted to make really melodic pop music and this album really showed me what that could be like.
Where do you feel you currently sit within the music industry?
I feel like I am an artist who can have a bit of a broad appeal. Genre-wise I’m fairly straightforward pop, but I really like a variety of sounds that influence my music. I love adding elements of rock, soul, and really stretching myself vocally to see what potential there is to make new and interesting music. I think this lends well to creating a pretty interesting body of work that can be enjoyed by people regardless of their musical background or preferred genres. I just want to inspire people and make them smile.
What’s the biggest thing you have learned from someone else in the industry?
My mentor Nancy Nash always told me that there is room for everyone. That has always stuck with me, so I always make a point to see the value in every artist and encourage other talent rather than viewing them as competition.
Tell us Two truths and a lie about you?
My first band opened for Steppenwolf.
I used to feed bears on the side of a mountain in the Okanagan.
I sang on a cruise ship.
If you could wish for one thing to aid your career, what would it be?
Right now, I’d love to open for a bigger artist on tour!
Do you ever worry about people taking things the wrong way or cancel culture? Discuss….
I haven’t put much thought into that to be honest in regards to my own career, however I believe cancel culture is pretty toxic. It leaves such little room for growth and change in individuals who have potential to take feedback and learn from it and better themselves.
Do you sign up to any conspiracy theories? If no, why not?
I don’t really indulge in the conspiracy theories, but my favorite so far was the longstanding rumor that Avril Lavigne has been replaced by a clone named Melissa in 2003. That one cracked me up!
What was the worst experience on stage?
I think my worst on stage experience was an early one where I was performing in my hometown and singing the amazing “Imagine” by John Lennon and my voice completely cracked. I didn’t think I’d ever recover!
Tell us something about you that you think people would be surprised about?
People would be surprised to know that I have never travelled outside of North America. That has to change, though.
What makes you stand out as an artist?
What makes me stand out as an artist is the message of positivity and hope I present through my music. I try to offer a fresh perspective on uplifting themes, so that my songs are inspiring and can make people happy or even offer comfort through the hard times.
I hear you have new music, what can you tell us about it?
My debut album just came out! It’s called “Louder Than Words” and I’m so proud of it. It’s eleven songs full of positivity, with themes of hopefulness and perseverance. It takes listeners through a variety of sounds while still fitting together remarkably well as a body of work. It’s emotional, modern, and nostalgic all at once. I hope listeners can take a lot out of it.
What was the recording process like?
The recording process was wonderful. Jeff Dawson and I really took our time with our co-writers to make sure every song was as strong as possible, and then carefully built each instrumental around a basic piano/vocal or guitar/vocal scratch track. Every song is specifically built around my vocal and I was able to take as much time as needed to ensure everything was how I imagined it. Jeff was an incredibly patient and detail focused collaborator!
What was the biggest learning curve in writing the new tunes?
The biggest learning curve was just to be open and honest in the writing session, to make sure we pushed through and strived for the best possible lyrics and melody, rather than just settle for something easy. I learned to be a bit more critical of my work and focus on the finer details.
Would you change anything now that it’s finished?
I don’t think there’s anything I’d really want to change. I can endlessly re-listen to the vocals and find tiny things I would change or improve but at a certain point you have to let go as an artist and realize your job is done and the songs sound great as they are! But we really did take a long time to sit with the songs after the initial recordings were done so we could come back with any tweaks or fixes… so I’m overall incredibly happy with the end result.
Is there anything else you would like to share with the world?
I always have new projects on the go, so stay tuned for updates! I’ll be putting out a bunch of acoustic versions soon, as well as starting to work on some new projects in the near future. I hope people listen to these current songs and feel uplifted and inspired!