The sting in the tale of early success is that from there on, the road is guaranteed to be rough and on a gradual down slope. Sorry Justin Beiber but keeping thinking of the money. Andy Kim was kind of a Justin Beiber figure in his day, a 16-year-old dreamer turned darkly handsome dude with a wicked knack for crafting nuggets of pop perfection.
On the eve of his 6th Annual Andy Kim Christmas Show, the man some folks call ‘Canada’s Neil Diamond’ talks about its genesis and being back in the spotlight once again.
“ In 2005, I hooked up with Ron Sexsmith to write a Christmas song"What Ever Happened To Christmas’. Out of that came the idea of the show and so The Andy Kim Christmas Show was born.” It was meant to be a one time thing when some friends would come up and play. Then I thought if it was going to be an event, it should be of benefit. When I put it out to other people, the response was gratifying. The first to come on board were Sexsmith and the late, lamented Haydain Neale. With the help and encouragement of so many people, the show went on at the Mod Club in Toronto and that’s where it has lived ever since.”
“ It was meant to be a one time thing when some friends would come up and play. Then I thought if it was going to be an event, it should be of some benefit. When I put it out to other people, the response was gratifying. The first to come on board were Sexsmith and the late, lamented Haydain Neale. With the help and encouragement of so many people, the show went on at the Mod Club in Toronto and that’s where it has lived ever since
Each year it benefits a different children’s charity. This year it’s the Regent Park School of Music in Toronto. At this tjme of year I reflect on Christmases past and I miss my family and friends. Selfishly, this is a way for me to get through the holiday season. The fact that I get to do it with my musical peers is a bonus and a blessing."
This year’s show has one new factor. Kim has returned to the pop arena, armed with his new album Happen Again, which he credits to the influence of Barenaked Lady Ed Robertson. Robbo is among that select group of Canadian artists who are aware of and respectful of the songwriting skills of Kim and when the chance came about to write together, both jumped at it. The result was a Top Ten Chart position for ‘I Forgot To Mention’.
That parlayed into a full album, its ten tracks a mix of fresh material and new songs.
“When it came to picking the tunes for the album, my biggest job was simply getting out of my own way. There were so many to pick from. It came down to a vote; each day we’d listen to songs and the one that got the most votes that day is the one we’d record."
Who he is today is still Andy Kim from Montreal’s North End, still penning tales of romance dressed in uplifting melodies. “There’s always the need for more romance in music. I became a songwriter because of the romantic vision I conjured up by listening to pop music on my little transistor radio. When I started writing, my inspiration came out of my surroundings in Montreal, with the influence of French Quebec and the access to listening to my dj heros Cousin Brucie (WBAC) Joey Reynolds (WKBW).
“ It seemed very natural for me to start writing songs. I do believe that songwriters are born, not made. You can’t teach someone to be a songwriter. You can teach the craft but you can’t teach the inspiration". Wise words from a very respected songwriter in his field.
“ I realize I have been given many successes and a satisfying life, but there is still a need in me to continue writing and performing. It is as much a part of me as living and breathing.”
Sentry Investments, CP24, and Long &McQuade Present
THE 6TH ANNUAL ANDY KIM CHRISTMAS SHOW
SPECIAL GUESTS…Alex Lifeson, Ron Sexsmith, Tom Cochrane, Platinum Blonde,
The Regent Park School of Music Choir AND MORE
WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 15TH, 2010
MOD CLUB – TORONTO
Doors: 7:00PM Show: 8:00PM