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  • Tessa Brainard

Interview: "Come Back to Me" - Keegan Israel

"Come Back to Me" is such a beautiful song. Can you talk a bit about the inspiration behind it?

Keegan: Thank you! 'Come Back to Me' was actually written quite a while ago, I penned down the main ideas during the peak of the pandemic. It was definitely an odd moment for us, all, and I myself was stuck in the middle of a foreign country, 15 hours away from home, in the midst of my first year of college. During that time, I had to part ways with many loved ones, friends, family, and most importantly my partner/girlfriend at that time. It wasn’t easy for any of us, that was kind of the original inspiration behind the song. It is intentionally a love song but whenever I'm singing it, it's always just about wishing I could bring all my favourite people along with me through the little journey we call life.

You got started in the underground metal scene before pursuing formal music education. How has that start influenced the music you continue to create?

Keegan: Very much in the vein of utilising chords and organic methods of making music. Creatively, I have always gravitated towards jamming on my guitar, pen and paper, and collaborating with other musicians. Starting off any project with just a guitar or a piano is quite a traditional way of making music but it has worked for so many people and for such a long time. Having grown up making music in basements with minimal resources, I tend to start my love ballads similarly to how I would on a progressive metalcore tune; singing with a guitar in hand!

What is the best part about creating music for you?

Keegan: Being able to direct and express emotions/passions to a whole new level. It sounds cliché and pretentious, but I believe that art, whether it may be music, photography, painting, etc, was created by us due to the lack of being able to express ourselves fully. There are only so many words and body language we can use to portray our souls. The best part of music for me, is being able to pour out in detail and mould such messages to the world.

Do you have any funny or interesting gig or busking stories from your early days?

Keegan: As of now, I'm having a blast, gigs are going great, but in the past, I used to busk and play underground shows. People would leave, try to steal my money, or I would play in empty rooms. Clearly not the best musician at that time but we've all been there and I think looking back it's pretty funny. Especially when I'm trying to sing a heartfelt love song and in the corner of my eye, I spot someone trying to swipe all my cash.

If you could only listen to one album for the rest of your life, which album would you choose and why?

Keegan: Why?! That's the equivalent of asking a chef to eat one thing for the rest of his/her life. Um, have you heard Shrek's soundtrack? I'm joking, but 'Accidentally in Love' was an absolute tune. On a more serious note, probably, Zach Williams: Chain Breaker, or Chris Stapleton: Starting Over. Both wholesome, classic, shattering, and complete music mastery.

What is something you wish you could tell the person you were when you wrote this song?

Keegan: I guess it speaks for itself in the title and choruses of the song, but if I could add more. I'd say, "Forgive me for not being able to bring you along, I wish you could've been here for all my highs and lows, and I wish we could've done life together, grown together, and moved forward together. But that's rare, so thank you for making the time I had with you so amazing. I will never forget it."

Interviewed By Tessa Brainard



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