Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Tom Kimmel at Mile Hi

I just returned from listening to Tom Kimmel at Mile Hi Church. He did a 30 minute set and then came back for reprise at the end. It was very interesting going to hear a well known songwriter playing as the opening act at church. Overall I was very impressed his songwriting and clever lyrics.

My first reflection was how he set up his songs. He started fast with a full band behind him. He then played a solo acoustic song, followed by two poems, and then finger picked with the band quietly behind him. This was followed by the sermon. My overall impression was that the choice of his tunes and their order, set a path that lead to the sermon. By chance, I think not.

In the sermon, the minister, Barry talked about how one of Tom's song, Angel, moved him over five years ago. He was dealing with the death of a friend's child, when he heard Tom sing the song Angel at Swallow Hill. . He felt that Tom was singing directly to him and it was exactly what he needed to hear. Five years later, Barry was still choked up about that song. It was a great example of the power of a song, and the greatest compliment to a songwriter, to be able to comfort and move people. I hope one of my songs has that impact.

A final thought - Tom played the song Angel as his lead-in with the band. He also sang it solo acoustic as the reprise to the sermon. The solo acoustic version blew me away. Partially because of the sermon, but more for the ability to understand what he was saying. My take away point was that I was better able to appreciate his songwriting prowess on the acoustic version. Too much going on with a band to appreciate the lyrics.

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