Vail questions: Brendan Mckinney answers 7
One of the Vail Valleys most popular apres performers, Brendan McKinney, is getting national exposure these days. His CD, My Dads Car, is getting airplay on radio stations from San Francisco to Rochester, N.Y., and last month, McKinney celebrated the inclusion of his song Yeah She Does on a compilation CD called Words & Music Nashville. So far, the song has been getting great reviews. Yeah She Does literally stopped me in my tracks, said Jan Duke, of About.Com.Nashville. The raspy and oh-so-sexy voice of Brendan McKinney reminded me of Dylan and songwriting skills that reached way back into my memories of Neil Young. The lyrics immediately sent me searching for more of his tunes. McKinney took the time to talk to the Vail Daily about his recent success.
Brendan McKinney: My mom got me a guitar for my 21st birthday. When I started playing, I had already been writing for years, but learning and performing covers helped me create more sophisticated songs and ended up fueling my whole career.
BM: The CD release show was at the Rutledge on Feb. 24, and it went great. Part of it was recorded for Sirius Satellite Radio. Ive been traveling to Nashville for years now, writing and recording. It can be a real tough town to get a break in, so it was a big deal for me when Jim Tract, the president of Adroit Records, asked me to be a part of the label. This first CD, Words & Music Nashville, is a compilation of 10 songs from me and nine other Nashville-based songwriters. Jim really believes in spotlighting the writers in Nashville. Three or four of the writers have already had great success. For example, Vince Melamed is on this CD performing his hit Walkaway Joe (No. 1 song for Tricia Yearwood). My contribution is a track called Yeah She Does. Jim listened to it and liked a lot of my songs, but Im glad he zeroed in on this one. Im proud of it.
BM: Actually, another song, Just Like Zs Blues, already aired on a Showtime show called The United States of Tara back in January of this year. Thats cool because its the favorite of Carmen Allgood. Shes a great DJ on the Colorado Wave and has been responsible for getting my CD My Dads Car airplay here in Colorado as well as in towns from Rochester, N.Y., to San Francisco.
BM: I was born in Philadelphia and grew up just outside of the city in Ardmore. Ill be back that way performing in early June this year.
BM: I met a player, Robinn Tripp, while I was performing in the country of Denmark years ago. He introduced me to Dana Del Bosco and Diane Moudy at Resort Entertainment here in the valley. Resort introduced me to Phil Long at The Red Lion. Phil, more than anybody, helped me get established here in Vail, but Ive been helped by many of the players out here like Rod Powell, Shannon Tanner and Johnny Mogambo. I love performing in this valley. The crowds always want to have fun, and the support I get from the people Ive met here and work with keeps me going.My biggest supporter is my wife, Diana. We decided to stay here because we agreed it is a great place to raise our kids, Michelle and Jack.
BM: Ill be travelling to Nashville in April to perform and promote the new Adroit CD. Ill be writing with Vince Melamed and some of the other writers on the label, and hopefully, Ill get some recording in. Ill be back playing in Vail by June.
BM: This winter, you can see me perform at The Red Lion, The Park Hyatt, in Beaver Creek, and Mezzaluna, in Lionshead. This summer, Ill be performing at Pepis, in Vail, the Park Hyatt and, of course, The Red Lion.