Local Spins on WYCE spotlighted the West Michigan singer now based in Nashville as she prepares for a GR concert Friday. Plus, the show debuted new music by Phabies, Lost Magic, Coldville and more.
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Shifting her longtime musical focus from country to alt-rock and pop may feel like a departure to some fans, but for Kari Lynch, it’s like “coming home.”
“It’s a sound I’ve always loved,” she says of her most recent singles and other tracks set to appear on an upcoming solo album.
“I’ve always had a broad spectrum when it comes to my musical tastes. I said, ‘I’m gonna record these songs how I hear them.’ They’re not trying to fit in any box. To me, I feel the best I’ve felt right now – making music and writing songs. It feels great.”
The once West Michigan-based singer-songwriter who now makes her home in Nashville says she grew up admiring the music of artists such as Sheryl Crow, Coldplay and Alanis Morissette, so her move from country-driven music while fronting the Kari Lynch Band to a rock-based tack feels natural.
Sparked by unexpected time off during the pandemic and participation in “The Song Haul” songwriting group led by West Michigan’s Kyle Rasche of Chain of Lakes, Lynch’s musical repositioning also reflects her longstanding “no rules” approach.
She says she wondered, “What kind of music do I love writing? What kind of music do I love performing? What do I love listening to? That’s just how these songs came out.”
Recorded and produced with her best friend, Nate Stone, Lynch calls her fresh collection of songs “Sheryl Crow meets Jimmy Eat World,” with plenty of ’90s alt-rock and pop influences.
“I’ve never been more proud of this work. It’s the most I have felt like myself in the last 12 years,” she says. “It’s the style of music that has always spoken loudly to me as a solo artist. I don’t feel like I have to hold anything back and there are no disclaimers.”
For this week’s edition of Local Spins on WYCE, Lynch showcased her two latest singles from this rock-propelled project, “Cigarettes” and “Monsters.” Watch the lyric video for “Monsters” here and scroll down to listen to the full interview and radio show.
VIDEO: Kari Lynch, “Monsters”
For the first time, Lynch plans to focus mostly on her newest songs and musical direction for tonight’s homecoming show at Grand Rapids’ Listening Room. It’s also Lynch’s first appearance at the 200-capacity downtown venue, and one hat’s likely to draw a cadre of her devoted West Michigan fans.
The show begins at 7:30 p.m. with a set by Rasche, who’ll also join Lynch on stage for some of her songs. Tickets are $20 and available online here.
REALLY LEANING INTO HER INFLUENCES FULLY
“The Listening Room will be my first true indoor venue show since the pandemic hit,” Lynch says. “I’m feeling more at ease with live music coming back. It definitely took a minute to get there.”
Her current band members include guitarists Travis Radaz and Eric Ellis, drummer Brian Vannieuwenhoven and bassist Sam Corey with additional musicians on board for certain shows.
Lynch – who plays a series of Michigan shows this summer, including Allegan’s Rolling on the River, Kalamazoo’s Lunchtime Live and Lowell’s Sizzlin’ Summer Concerts series, among others – plans to release her new solo material as a “two-part project” later this year.
“My goal was just to write music I love and record it exactly as I heard it produced in my head when I wrote it,” she says. “I think, in a sense, I have always had this influence, even in my alt-country releases, but with this solo music, I really got to lean into it fully.”
In addition to spotlighting Lynch’s new music, this week’s edition of Local Spins on WYCE – which focuses on music by Michigan artists at 11 a.m. Fridays on WYCE (88.1 FM) and online at wyce.org – also featured tracks by Phabies, Lost Magic, Chain of Lakes, Jordan Vanhemert, Coldville, Ralston Bowles & The Accidentals, Luke Winslow-King and Cabildo. Listen to the radio show here.
Today (April 28) is the final day of the WYCE Spring Fund Drive. Support community radio by donating online at wyce.org. And donate at least $150 today and your name will be put into a drawing for a special Local Spins gift pack with concert tickets, local CDs, Local Spins T-shirt, stickers and more.
PODCAST: Local Spins on WYCE (4/29/22)
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