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Capitol 10th: Kim Churchill Enchants Capitol Crowd

Article and Photos by Melanie Macpherson


On Friday, May 10, The Capitol Music Club's 10th Anniversary celebration was gifted with a performance by Kim Churchill, the alternative-folk-indie singer-songwriter from Australia.  He’s currently traveling across Canada in a van with Felipe Baldomir who was originally from Uruguay and 'Jimbo' their sound tech (Jim van Schaick) who is from Holland.  


The night started with Felipe Baldomir, taking the stage; everything about him whispered 'beach bum energy'. Wearing denim overalls and a beat up ball cap, he stood on the stage with bare feet.  Appearing a little shy and unassuming at first, as he got into the music, he opened up and you could see the real joy that came with playing and singing.  He had that blow your mind street performer feel and used a looper to create magic seamlessly as he moved easily from drums to acoustic guitar to keyboard to saxophone in an endless swirl of sounds and smiles.  All that while he’s singing with the gravelly voice of an angel that has been gargling with sand and surf for his entire life.  The comfortably crowded audience was enchanted and an unmistakably positive vibe filled the room. The lyrics themselves were simply beautiful, with life affirming brightness entangled with a raw 'realness' that kept it from being sugary sweet.   


Lay in my arms and rest your heart

Close your eyes, I'll try to ease the pain

I'll take you far away and I'll keep you safe  

Where the air is clean and the colours roll in 


These are just some of the heartbreakingly lovely lyrics from Baldomir's song “Colours”.  Baldomir was joined on stage for a song by Churchill and the two of them together was lovely. The closeness and comfort between the two only added more colour to the performance.  



Kim Churchill continued the beachy sun soaked vibe with frayed jeans, bare feet, and sun kissed curls.  The set was an oddly satisfying blend of stories featuring real life struggles with mental health, happy memories of lost loved ones, failed relationships, and life in general that provided a backdrop to beautiful songs played with an exuberance and joy that absolutely lit up the room. Churchill created a calm ocean of sound with only an acoustic guitar (played in a strange and wonderful way), the most sweetly mellow harmonica I've ever heard, and a single kick drum.   


The night was like sound therapy with songs like “Hobbies” which gave us all permission to be a little bit  lost.


You don't have to hold all of your answers

They will fade and go with the times

You are not gonna run out of chances

To fall in love with the world and its light


You don't have to be good at your hobbies

You don't have to feel right all the time

You don't have to havе planned where your homе is

You can be just one light in the sky


The song "Window to the Sky"  is a heartbreaking tale of loneliness with lyrics like:

 

Falling at my feet, I knew my time was gone and I was alone

Sick thinking of me, what can I do for you and what do you want?

What do you love?



A particular highlight for me was when Churchill performed a mind blowing bluesy one man cover of Led Zeppelin's "The Lemon Song (Killing Floor)", his fingers were a blur and my mind was blown.  Another memorable moment came when Winnipeg's Cec (Cec.mp3 on Instagram) joined Churchill on stage for a beautiful duet performance of "Please Come Home".


No matter the topic, you could feel the bliss radiating off Churchill as he gave himself over to the music.  His smile warmed and charmed the room and it was impossible to be anything but content.  You could practically feel the sand between your toes and the glow of the sunrise over the water.  The night was a balm for the soul in every way. For the fact that I barely knew either of the night’s performers before this, I am absolutely in love with these two now.   That seemed to be the consensus of everyone I spoke to afterwards, and the mile long line to speak to Churchill at the merch stand assures me I was not alone in that impression.   According to sound man extraordinaire, Colin Klassen, this was the kind of music that should be listened to on a patio next to the ocean with a fruity umbrella topped drink in your hand.  I couldn't agree more, and that really is the only way this night could have gotten any better.







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