Taking it back to the islands with Kevin Miso

Katrina Andaya

“I heard a quote from Marc Ford who is the lead guitarist of the Black Crows and produced this track I just did called ‘Sweet Love,’ and he said ‘You know everybody’s style is defined by their limitations,’ which is an interesting quote because that’s exactly what it is,” said musician Kevin Miso, 29. “If you are pushing your boundaries as an artist or anything you do, you’re style is defined by your limitations.”

Having played more than 600 shows and counting in the past four years, Miso is ready to show off his music, influenced by his Hawaiian roots to Saddleback College.

Miso, who performed in the Saddleback College quad, Thursday, will be performing again for an even bigger crowd at the Free Moonlight Movie Night featuring the film Ted, Thursday, Oct. 25.

Born and raised in Southern California, Miso is an independently signed singer/songwriter who describes his music as having a pop format with “reggae elements and island infused rhythms.”

His musical influences include Bob Marley, The Beatles, Ben Harper, the Dave Matthews Band, and Van Morrison.

He is a self-taught guitarist/musician. You can always find him jamming on his guitar, but he also plays the drums, piano, ukulele, harmonica, and other various instruments.

His live shows are very unique in which he’ll loop multiple instruments together, as well as perform some acoustic pieces.

“I’ll layer tracks where I’ll do a beat on my guitar, I’ll play rhythm, and then I’ll do shakers and stuff; incorporate keyboards and then I’ll loop it all into one song,” Miso said. “It’s like a one-man band sort of show.” 

His favorite part about performing live is the connection between him the audience, while he is playing.

“What I have learned is that there can be 10 people, or there can be 10,000 and it’s all about the vibe of that day and the people,” Miso said. “The music is not just about me it’s about the connection with whoever is listening and whoever I’m playing for.”

Miso has put out two EPs:  the first is his first showing of his music to the world basically saying, “hey, this is me,” and the second, released back in July 2011, is a summer themed EP.  He is currently working on an album to be released in vinyl in 2013. 

“Now I want to marry the two (EPs) and do a full-length album and the entire concept of a record, but I also want to experiment with the studio,” Miso said. “To put out something I’m really, really proud of is my goal.”

Miso will be playing at the Ted screening on Thursday, but you can also catch him headlining at the Coach House on Oct. 28.

“I get fired up to hopefully inspire someone out there or just show them a good night of music,” Miso said on what he’s most excited for during his performance for Ted.


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