Wednesday, 04 May 2016 16:52

Swift Current singer, pastor finds help in many forms

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Swift Current singer, pastor finds help in many forms File

Keith Kitchen is not your ordinary performer.


When the singer, songwriter and ordained minister is described by fans on his website, a common theme comes through, that of being inspiring.
It seems whether it’s through his musical prowess or his devout Christian faith, Kitchen has never failed to life people’s spirits.
Now, the reverse is true. Kitchen sought help to fund his latest music compilation.
He had a goal of raising $10,000 which he had to meet by April 19 and fans came through by April 18.
It’s not unchartered territory for Kitchen as he has done it before with other albums. He explains his last album was completed because of funding via donations. It speaks volumes of what his loyal fan base thinks of his abilities.
“I’ve always relied on my fans to support my albums in one way or another. I’ve used a few different avenues in the past,” explains Kitchen. “This is the second time I’ve used a service like ‘Kickstarter’ to fund an album. As an independent artist, I don’t have the benefit of a label with ‘deep pockets’ to put up the finances to produce an album, but I do have a really loyal and enthusiastic fan base.
“Every time I’ve reached out to them to help me make an album, they’ve always responded so generously. My last album was completely funded by fans and donors. The response has been overwhelming, frankly. I’m surprised at the generosity my fans have shown, and how quickly and easily the funds have come together. Even though I’ve done this several times now, there’s always a moment of trepidation. I always think to myself ‘What if they don’t go for it this time?’ But my fans have never let me down. This time has been no different. After I made the announcement on Facebook, it was literally about three minutes before the donations started rolling in, and there was a huge donation of about $1,000 within the first hour. Someone chose the ‘House Concert’ reward.”
The total cost of the album will be more than $20,000, but Kitchen says they are using a few different avenues to come up with the rest. Extra funding will go towards making a better album. The plan is to release the work this fall.
Kitchen can’t wait to get the album out there. He’s been writing since his 2012 Restless was released. He says he’s been working the songs into shows since then.
“Every night after the show, it’s the new ones that are getting the attention. Everyone’s been asking, ‘When are you going to record that?’,” explains Kitchen. “This is some of the best material I’ve ever written, and it’s not just me saying that. Long-time fans who are familiar with my work are saying there’s a depth and a perceptiveness to these songs that surpasses what I’ve done before.
“They’re deeply personal songs. I went through a pretty significant battle with depression a few years ago. I wrote these songs after that experience. So they come from a unique perspective. They’re hopeful songs, but there’s a sobriety to them as well.”
Kitchen has been working at Swift Current’s Trailview Alliance Church for more than a year.  He is thankful the church community as a whole has been supportive of his work .
Kitchen explains he is grateful for the opportunity there and says it has not only refocused him, it has allowed the multi-talented resident to get revitalized.
He says after seven years of being on the road full- time, it has been nice to scale things back a bit and sort of regroup and focus on writing.
“Trailview recognized that I had something to offer to them, but they also see that my music has something to offer that’s beyond them too. So they asked me to come on staff as a way of not just benefitting from having me around, but also to support and enable me to continue to write and tour,” he explains.
“For years, I had to tour to keep food on the table. Now I get to tour because I love to. It’s somehow both easier and more difficult simultaneously. I’m experiencing a flood of creativity, but I’m also being stretched to become a better writer.
“The songs, the ideas that are coming to me are wonderful, but they’re beyond me, if that makes sense. I feel like it’s going to take a better writer, a better musician, to write these songs. So I catch myself asking, ‘How would someone who writes better than I do write these songs?’
“I feel like the work of this album is more than just writing these songs. It’s about becoming the kind of writer who can write these songs.”

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Ryan Dahlman

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