By Johnny Griffith
There is a story in ancient Greek mythology about a father, Daedelus, and his son, Icarus, imprisoned on the island of Crete. As the story goes, the father built two sets of wings for them to escape but, even after being warned of the dangers of flying too arrogantly or being too lazy, Icarus came crashing down after flying so high the Sun melted his wings. The key to success had been to fly straight, steady, and with patience and when he didn’t, a hard lesson was learned. Flash forward a few thousand years and half a world away, there is an East Texas band that, although they might share a name in common with the ill-fated Greek, are demonstrating they aren’t about to make the same mistakes when it comes to their musical journey to success.
The Kid Icarus Project (KIP) is a hard-working area band that has been around in its current form since 2013, but has origins as far back as 2006 when founding guitarists, and former members of Tyler area band The Papers, Clint Alford and Ian Chandler, decided to start a band to have fun and play some “silly covers.” After adding percussionist Mike Hill and rounding out the quartet with Klint Killion on the fiddle, The Kid Icarus Project was ready to bring its particular brand of Americana to this area, along the way leaving no doubt that these guys are 100 percent East Texan. Clint, Ian, and Klint are all products of Rusk (the town, I was informed, not the hospital) and still live in that area, while Mike, originally from Kilgore, has lived in Tyler for the past 18 years running a local ad agency and DJ business. According to Hill, the band has embraced this region and their roots in it, focusing on “building momentum into a steady stream of bookings, both with local venues and private gigs” and counts that as one of the band’s biggest accomplishments to date. Much of that momentum has been built playing small towns and even smaller venues in the area, but in no small part due to the reception they receive at those venues. “They are the most receptive. The patrons are regulars. They cheer. They dance. They tip well. They truly appreciate what we do.”
Clint Alford and Ian Chandler are the acoustic wielding front-men for the band, and much of the appeal of their live set is brought out in the dynamic they share with the rest of the members on stage, as well as the audience. The sets can range from playful acoustic covers of everything from Van Morrison, Snoop Dogg, Metallica, and everywhere in between; to soulful, original ballads penned by Alford. Killion’s artful fiddle melodies weave in and out of the guitar rhythms, creating a musical tapestry held together by the raspy bass of Hill’s percussion. They are part Tom Petty, part Dave Mathews Band, part Zac Brown Band, with a dash of Drive-By Truckers, sprinkled with some Counting Crows and served on the rocks.
A KIP show is a confluence of acoustic talent, skillful vocals, and laid-back attitudes reminiscent of coffee house jam bands of the 90’s. With a lack of over-processed effects, flashy light shows, and amp stacks turned up to eleven, these gentlemen rely on rock-steady talent combined with creative takes on a wide variety of covers and originals to keep the audiences engaged over the course of the show. It’s pretty obvious that when the band takes the stage, they are completely in their element; relaxed, care-free, and surfing the wave of the gig wherever the crowd takes it. Hill states, “We play to the audience. We don’t build a set list and shove it down their throats. We shoot from the hip with no rules and nothing rigid. It makes our shows much more loose and, from what we’re told, that’s part of the draw. We do lots of medleys combining several songs. Those are always a hit and we get lots of requests for them.”
While the shows may purposefully have an unstructured feel to them, it is certainly not an indictment of the band’s approach when it comes to their source material. The Kid Icarus Project has built an extensive catalog of over 300 cover songs and 50 originals which can work their way into the set list as the mood dictates, and they are constantly working to improve the audience’s experience with new surprises. “Not long ago we came up with our own twist on the Phil Collins classic ‘In the Air Tonight.’ The crowd seems to love it and we do, too!” muses Hill. “Clint recently wrote a new track called ‘Rusted Strings.’ It’s a winner. No doubt. I would not be surprised to see it get some radio play.” In addition to the ever-evolving stage show, the band is currently working on a double album in response to longstanding requests from fans. “Folks have been asking for far too long,” Hill states, “and we really have made an effort to get that done. We laid down scratch tracks in the studio a week or two ago, and we are very excited about what’s coming.”
Fans will be happy to know that regardless of what the future holds, The Kid Icarus Project has no intentions of changing the way they approach their craft and will let success come naturally in whatever form it takes. “I think that’s the beauty of it all,” Hill confirms. “For us, making it a mission would be a mistake. It would destroy the looseness and the fun. If it were to develop into more, we would of course be happy, but putting that on paper as a goal just doesn’t fit our personalities.” When asked what they wanted the fans to take from each show, Mike gave a parting thought. “Shows can be fun. Bands can be friendly, and bands can play covers without being labeled as ‘cover bands.’ Music is everything, so let that show through.” One can’t help but notice that it does when these guys take the stage, and perhaps if the Icarus of all those years ago had taken the same approach as his namesake, he’d have ended up on a beach sipping a beer at the end of the day.
Kid Icarus Project on the World Wide Web:
Bibeau in Concert August 25th
Bibeau has a rare Tyler show booked at Click’s Live on Saturday, August 25th with our Louisiana brothers, Anxiety, the mod blues band, Matt Coats Trio and the fantastic female duo from the Dallas area Sweet Chaos (who recently opened for Bowling for Soup). Help break 500 people in attendance! Tickets will be available at the door for the low rock ‘n roll price of $7. Must be 18+ to attend unless accompanied by a parent/legal guardian.
Upcoming 10th Anniversary Season at Old Firehouse Announced
The Old Firehouse is an intimate, smoke-free and alcohol-free “coffeehouse” that has made a name for itself by bringing national folk musicians and their all-original music to Edom’s unique listening room and stage. Info can be found at theoldfirehouse.net or by calling (903)852-2781.
Concerts are typically scheduled each month from October through April and can be found at theoldfirehouse.net, along with links to samples of the music.
For the 2018-19 season, Old Firehouse will once again be offering Season Tickets for all nine Acoustic Music Concerts. By purchasing this season ticket, you will receive: admission for one person to all nine Acoustic Music Concerts, reserved seating of your choice that will remain yours throughout the season, one “bottomless” cup of coffee at each concert, freedom from having to remember to buy concert tickets month-to-month, advance ticket price for all concerts, and 20% discount on concert series merchandise (hats, t-shirts, tote bags, bumper stickers).
The cost per ticket is $111 (includes sales tax). Once the season begins, these tickets may no longer be available. Checks may be made out to “The Old Firehouse” and mailed to: The Old Firehouse, 8241 FM 279, Edom, TX 75754.
If you do not want to purchase season tickets, admission prices for concerts are $12 in advance and $15 at the door, and events are on Saturday evenings beginning at 7:30pm with doors opening early so the audience can enjoy coffee and desserts that are always available.
Scheduled this season is:
- October 20th: Tony Ramey
- November 10th: BrownRandy & Friends (Neal Katz & Connie Mims)
- November 24th: Beth Wood
- December 8th: Terri Hendrix
- January 19th: Andy Gullahorn
- February 2nd: Beyond the Pale
- February 23rd: Tom Kimmel
- March 23rd: Jacob Johnson
- April 6th: Edie Carey
If you would like to sponsor any of these concerts, please contact email@example.com.
Jeremy Camp & Matthew West Comes to The Oil Palace, November 9th
Tickets are on sale for this legendary concert November 9th at 7:30pm at The Oil Palace, 10408 State Hwy 64E in Tyler. Tickets range from $19-$75. Event parking is $10.
Grammy®-nominated and Dove Award-winning artists Jeremy Camp and Matthew West are partnering this fall on “The Answer /All In Tour,” headed to 20 U.S. cities during the months of October and November. The tour marks the first time that two critically-acclaimed, chart-topping artists have co-headlined their own tour together,. This event will create an unprecedented experience for concert attendees getting to see them share the stage for an energy-filled night of hit songs and fan favorites.
A limited VIP ticket package will include early entry seating, an exclusive signed photo, and a post-show Meet And Greet/Photo Op with both artists.
About Jeremy Camp
Throughout his 15-year career, Capitol CMG artist, Jeremy Camp, has established himself with landmark accolades. He has sold 4.5 million albums including four RIAA Gold-certified albums, a RIAA Multi-Platinum long-form video and a Gold-certified digital single (‘There Will Be A Day’).
On the radio, Camp is recognized as a staple artist with 38 No. 1 radio hits across all formats spending more than 175 weeks at No. 1 at radio in his career. Camp’s awards and nominations comprise of a Grammy®-nominated project, three American Music Award nominations, four ASCAP Songwriter of the Year awards, an ASCAP Song of the Year award, and five GMA Dove Awards including two-time Male Vocalist of the Year and New Artist of the Year awards.
Camp was named in Billboard’s Christian Artist of the Decade chart (No. 2), as well as having five songs listed in the Top 50 Billboard Christian Songs of the Decade.
Adding author to his name, Camp penned his first book and autobiography, “I Still Believe” (2013, Tyndale). In 2013, Jeremy founded Speaking Louder Ministries, which provides free crusade-style events and comes alongside local churches or missionaries in the countries where the Gospel needs to be heard. Locations of Speaking Louder Ministries’ trips so far include Ukraine, Japan, India, Uganda, Guatemala and Kyrgyzstan. For more information, visit JeremyCamp.com.
“This has been one of those things I’ve been wanting to do for a long time,” Camp says. “We’ve been good friends. I love his heart. And I knew that this would be an awesome time!”
About Matthew West
Matthew West is a four-time Grammy® nominee, a multiple-ASCAP Christian Music Songwriter/Artist of the Year winner and Dove Award recipient. West was also awarded an American Music Award (2013), a Billboard Music Award (Top Christian Artist, 2014), a K-LOVE Fan Award (2016), and named Billboard’s Hot Christian Songwriter of the Year (2016).
West also received a Primetime Emmy® Award nomination for Original Music & Lyrics for “The Heart of Christmas” from the film of the same name. In addition to his own recording career, he has co-hosted the K-LOVE Fan Awards three times and has more than 130 songwriting credits to his name, including cuts by Rascal Flatts, Scotty McCreery, Michael W. Smith, Amy Grant, and Mandisa, among others, and number one cuts by Casting Crowns and Danny Gokey.
Selling more than 1.6 million albums to date (TEA), West’s discography includes acclaimed releases: “All In” (2017), “Live Forever” (2015), Grammy-nominated “Into The Light” (2012), “The Story of Your Life” (2010), “Something to Say” (2008), “History” (2005) and “Happy” (2003).
Well known for communicating stories through song, Matthew West has received thousands of stories from around the world. His studio album, “Live Forever” (2015), continued that storytelling theme and debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Christian Sales Chart. He has obtained numerous No. 1 singles, most recently with ‘Broken Things,’ while achieving a record-setting No. 1 for 17 straight weeks at radio with ‘Hello, My Name Is’ and ‘The Motions’ for 15 weeks
“I’m really excited about this,” West adds. “We believe this is going to be more than a concert. I know Jeremy’s heart, and both of our teams pray every night for this to be more than just a concert. We want God to show up in a big way.”
Buy tickets while still available, this event is expected to sell out fast!
EGuide Magazine’s Gig Guide
Make a Splash This Summer at The Waterpark at The Villages Resort
Blue Moon Gardens: More Than a Family Nursery
Fall Fun in East Texas: Fall Festival Guide 2018
Off Road Biking: Hitting the Local Trails
East Texas State Fair Returns Sept. 21st-30th!
7th Annual Butterfly Hope Luncheon, November 1st
And the Summer Fun Continues at Tyler Public Library!!
Bibeau in Concert August 25th
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