Kim Churchill can’t remember picking up a guitar for the first time, but he first wrapped his hands around the instrument at the tender age of four.
He knows about the story through his parents.
“I can’t remember this, but I guess when I saw my mother play, inspiration just happened,” said Churchill in a press release.
His father, seeing his son’s potential, enrolled him in classical guitar lessons when he was six.
“My dad would say if you get an A in this next class I’ll get you a new Fender guitar, so I put two hours in the morning, grab my board, catch a few waves, and make the school bus by 8:30 a.m.”
He would then practise his guitar again after school. Churchill earned his Fender.
Churchill is an Australian musician who creates percussive beats and hand tapping music on his stomp box, along with his harmonic melodies. He’s performing during the inaugural Newcastle Nissan Music Festival Saturday (Aug. 3), which runs noon-5:30 p.m. He’ll take the stage from 4:30-5:30 p.m. Admission to the concert is free. Money raised through food purchases and other activities, such as face painting, will be donated to the Nanaimo Hospice Society.
The festival’s opening acts include Jupiter Jill, Eric Harper and The Distributors.
“Music has always been good … to inspire people’s hearts to give to a good cause,” said Harper about the fundraising concert.
He performs from 3-4 p.m. during the event.
Harper became interested in music when he was a child. He remembers being in the kitchen washing dishes when he was seven and hearing a song come on the radio. The song, which he can’t remember, drew him away from his task and he made his way into the living room and just stood and listened.
“It made me feel so good that honestly I wanted to make people feel like that,” said Harper.
The musician said his inspiration for songs comes from many sources. It can be from a cup of coffee, listening to music or just watching his young son pluck away at the ukulele he gave him.
During the festival he’ll play some fan favourites including his songs Cream and Sugar and Rain. Harper said Cream and Sugar was just a “silly little song” he wrote one day when he was at a café.
“Rain is what I call a musical hug,” said Harper. “If you’re having a bad day and need something to solace your spirits that’s what Rain is about.”
Brett Bourcier, The Distributors’ bass player, said he’s excited about performing during the festival.
The Distributors, consists of Bourcier, singer Kaylie Russell and drummer Austin Perison. Earlier this year the band was in the running for B.C.’s top teen band contest.
The band will perform during the festival without their regular drummer. Perison broke his foot and Tom Morris is filling in while he recovers.
The Distributors just finished recording their album, In Colour. It features eight songs written by the youths.
“We make music that comes from us and not anybody else,” said Bourcier.
The festival takes place at the Newcastle Nissan car dealership, located at 3612 Island Highway North.