Interview with charismatic, award-winning purveyor of bitter-sweet melodies). New single ‘Alone In Paradise’, shimmers with a true story, eloquently.
As founder and frontman of indie rock band The Shys, musician, composer and producer, Californian, Kyle, took LA by storm, then joined his musical hero’s (incl Talking Heads, The Cure, and The Smiths) on Sire Records. Krone’s songs featured on multiple TV and movies. The Shys also topped Billboard’s US Garage Rock Charts.
After extensive touring, a solo career and sonic shift earned new fans (Kings Of Leon included), impressive record sales and myriad co-writing partnerships. A good soul, Kyle Krone is on some musical ride! Kelly Munro joins in…
Kelly : “Tell us, how long have you been making music?
Kyle : “Twenty three years”.
What have been some of your highlights so far on your musical journey?
“Making music is an enduring highlight for me. Music is my angel, saves me over and over again.”
Your latest single is called ‘Alone In Paradise’, who would you pick to be alone in paradise with – and why?
“My loved ones…
When you dedicate your life to something like music, its enormously significant to have supportive friends and family around you because like anything worth doing its no easy feat to attempt to make this thing your life and make a living doing it. So I derive a great deal of joy from all the people around me who are supportive encouraging and understanding.”
Tell us more about that single. Is there a story behind it?
“It’s this bitter-sweet love letter to my life in Central America. I think anyone who has moved to a foreign country on their own will understand this particular kind of loneliness.
Its a long story but the cliff notes go something like this… After many years of living on the road and in the studio I needed a change of pace, I wanted to move to a foreign country and live a different kind of life, more peace, more nature, more quiet. Sort of a live off the land type thing…
I found that in a little remote fishing village in Central America for the better part of three years. I lived simply, little apartment on the beach, an old motorcycle, a nylon string guitar, a couple surfboards and a lot of books and journals. Life there can almost feel like going back in time, technology and status has a much less significant impact on daily life and you’re surrounded by raw natural beauty and you find yourself with a lot more free time just to think, feel, read and write, for the lack of a better description life is just a lot more simple there for me. You find yourself more in tune with yourself.
You slow down, the noise dissipates and its like you can hear a lot more clearly and you get a deeper sense of what really matters. There also exists this sort of bittersweet element of missing all your loved ones or experiencing all this beauty on your own and then you have visitors and you share it and its incredible and then they leave and its its own kind of emotional challenge.
The song was born out of those experiences and musically inspired by the landscape culture and geography. There is this kind of emotional inventory you take on yourself and theres some voice in me that drives me to keep pushing with my music, I have too many ideas, too many things to say, I feel too much and its as if life in the tropics just let me rest and recuperate and eventually I kind of felt like that life let me go and I feel all this desire to come up here to California and surrender myself to my music”.
We hear you’ve lived in Los Angeles. Tell us about life there…
“I moved there when I was eighteen, for a little while and ended up back down south at the beach. The city life thing has an early expiration date with me. I prefer a slower pace, less people and more of a natural environment. I lived there off and on from twenty to twenty-five, mostly because of music.
I like the east side, the little neighborhoods, the cafes, the record stores, the bohemians, artists etc. The beach is also cool, Topanga, certain parts of Malibu. Every-time I lived there it was about music, making records there, playing shows there. It can be really exciting all the action that comes along with it. Most days were spent in the studio when I lived in LA and then the nightlife of playing shows and going out on the town. These days I visit to surf.”
What albums do you never get tired of listening to?
“Anything from Astrud Gilberto, Louis Armstrong, Stan Getz, Robert Francis, The Strokes, Scott Walker, Bob Marley, Leonard Cohen.
Lately I’ve been listening to a lot of French stuff. Polo And Pan, Parcels, Benjamin Biolay. I found this amazing playlist called Cote’D”Azur cause I had written a song with that title and wanted to see how many others were out there and came across this insane playlist and its so good.”
What can we expect from you this year?
“I started a new band called Casual Vice with my very talented friend Brandon Hoogenboom and we recruited more talented friends Danny Franks and Billy Yarbrough.
We have some singles out and our debut EP comes out in early August. I am in the studio every day writing recording and playing and making art and visuals. I work with my friend Wes Chiller on most of his stuff, we’ve got a new single coming out, its one of my favorite collaborations. I co-wrote a song with Eagle Rock Gospel Singers for their new album. Mark Batson and I have made a lot of new music for various film and tv projects that will hopefully see the light of day sooner than later. I am making this blissed out instrumental music under the name Floating Islands kind of in the vein of Brian Eno stuff and I’ve been releasing new solo singles.
I don’t plan on slowing down anytime soon. For the past three or four years I’ve essentially been working every single day on music and its been insane and pretty amazing, I’d like to claim that I have some kind of otherworldly work ethic but the truth is I am just obsessed to to achieve the stuff I hear in my head. I’m excited, I feel really positive about the future, feels good that folks are listening.”