Kenan here and welcome to my little corner of the internet. It appears that you have clicked “get to know me”, so here we go! I’m a songwriter, storyteller and enthusiast of all things folky. A lover of Crocs, flannels and dad jokes.
I was born and raised on the outskirts of the north inner-city of Dublin, in a place called Cabra. My area was far from perfect, but it’s a home filled with life-changing memories. There wasn't a lot to go around, but we had a big collection of Records, CDs and Tapes that belonged to my parents. Not a single minute passed without music being played, which planted the seed of my love for it. I was raised on mainly Reggae, Irish ballads and Ska music but my parents were lovers of all weird and wonderful music so I got to spoil my ears each and every day. This exposure to all sorts of music helped shape me into the songwriter I am today.
They encouraged me to take part in every and all musical avenue. I played the tin whistle, flute, drums, bass and violin from a young age and even now, this helps me to pick up instruments really quickly. The moment I realised music was the right path for me was when I was 16 years old. I had started playing in a band and we would have band practice every week in a youth centre. In the centre, there was a writing group and though I was nervous I decided to go, I started writing about emotions, how I was feeling, and stories I saw and heard and very early on I knew that this is really what I wanted to do!
If I had to describe my music to an alien today I would say above all else that I am a folk songwriter and to me, folk at its core is all about the stories. Lyrics are everything. My guitar playing has a raw, incompleteness to it because I’m not the most precise player but the imperfections are what make it folk! My hope for my songs is that they will make you feel something. It could be some sort of memory or maybe a strong emotion, laugh, cry or even just smile and be present in the moment.
All of this would mean nothing to the alien because they probably don’t speak English…
One of my main influences for songwriting would be life itself. Seeing the ups and downs, the heartbreak and joys this world can throw at you. It can be a lot, but I use what I see and feel to hopefully make sense of it. Along with that, I write about the little things. That first sip of morning coffee with the one you love, that cuddle with your dog, that feeling of leaving, that feeling of pure loneliness and loss, that memory of their smiles that fades in your mind over time, that sunrise and that sunset...
When I close my eyes I see these memories and I know you see them too in your own life. Two different people are sharing two different memories from one song. That is what drives me to create music. Some of my songs come from loving places such as dealing with heartbreak or happy family memories and others from stranger and wilder places. I wrote a song about a sunset and personalised it as a massive war in the sky between the sun and the stars. Writing like this helps me think more creatively and ultimately helps me to live in the moment more...
Other passions that influence my music are travelling, people-watching and dreaming. Travelling near and far and trying to avoid tourist places, hitting up the backroads of Wyoming, sitting around a fire on an island off the coast of Maine, sleeping in a carpark in rural Tennessee. You see some wild stuff at 3am in a Walmart carpark!
We’re all told that the music industry is a ladder, climb it and punch down. Well, I couldn't disagree more! To me, the industry is a plateau, and to succeed and go higher we all must support one another, work together and encourage the success of all those who travel down this winding, wild musician road. As they say, high tides raise all ships. I have the pleasure and privilege to call some of the most talented musicians my friends. Working together takes our projects to the next level, because we lift each other up, surrounded by love.