Fire and pandemic help forge new musical style

Kim Yang Trio
Royal Hotel Queanbeyan
7pm Sunday 4 April 2021

Expect to hear some jazz, blues and perhaps a little pop along with folk when Taiwanese-born singer-songwriter Kim Yang performs with her band at Good Folk in Queanbeyan at Easter.

Kim says her style has changed dramatically since her performance at the 2019 National Folk Festival. It’s hardly surprising, given what she’s been through over the past two years.

Kim Yang talks to Richard about the forthcoming performances at Good Folk. The interview includes her song Garden of Eden and her latest track, Dominoes

‘There were a lot of things happening in 2019 and 2020, obviously, it’s kind of a bit of a blur. I also try my best to do a bit of a fundraising concert online for the bushfire survivors, and even wrote a song about it because I was stuck in Eden on the New Year’s Eve before 2020,’, she says.

She had been camping in the town, and the song, Garden of Eden, was her reaction to the mixture of peoples’ emotions that night – some fearful, others just seeking to get drunk.

‘ I just got inspired by all people’s behaviours, and I wrote it down in my head and went home the next day. I was really lucky because the roads were open. And I had this riff in my head all the time.

‘And then COVID started, and then I was back in the studio recording a couple of songs.

‘I had this epiphany: “Well, I think I want to do music full time now.” So I left my day job in December last year.

‘I’ve become a full time musician since then. And I’ve been teaching music with young students, but also doing gigs around town as well, being quite busy with music these past couple of months 

In 2021, she feels fortunate that she’s back to folk events and can again see her audience, though she doesn’t see her future purely in folk.

‘I really don’t see myself to be limited in just one genre of music. I’m interested in jazz and blues, and a bit of a pop,’ she says.

‘But what stays original is my lyrics and my stories. I just have stories that I want to tell and and I think that will resonate with people throughout our daily life.’

As well as her concert on the Sunday, Kim Yang will also support The Stiff Gins at a concert at Queanbeyan Bicentennial Hall at 5.30pm on Saturday 3 April. Tickets for both concerts are available at https://www.folkfestival.org.au/good-folk