“Jolly Hockeysticks” This is how I was introduced to the mandolin playing of Kym Warner! I was at an indie book store on the west side of Michigan, when I was literally stopped in my tracks as this tune played! I immediately went to the counter to find out the name of the artist playing. The person at the counter raved about this new band called The Greencards. Sold. I bought the record and every one since then! The band is incredible, they have a great balance of songwriting and musicianship that lots of bands have a hard time juggling. The band has had a #1 album, has been nominated for a Grammy, and was the opening act for the highly successful Willie Nelson\Bob Dylan tour.
This year the band has taken a hiatus and Kym has just recorded and released his very first solo album titled “Everything That Brought Me Here”. The album is absolutely beautiful sounding! It’s got an “ethereal” quality to it that a lot of mandolin players with Kym’s skill and firepower sometimes miss the mark on. It’s definitely not your run of the mill release from a mandolin player, and that’s the beauty of it! On first listen you really don’t know what to expect. It’s an acoustic album, plenty of mandolin family instruments are included, but there are so many fantastic layers on this album that you really have to put a set of headphones on and really take it in! This album could easily be the soundtrack to a movie…..it’s fantastic.
(Also check out the video of Kym playing “Tipsy Gypsy” with Adam Steffey here. Wow.)
Without further ado…….5 Quick Questions with … Kym Warner of The Greencards.
- What are you currently playing (mandolin brand, strings, picks etc)
KW– I’m playing a custom made Collings A style mandolin with an Engelmann top. I use Elixir strings and I’m using a Dunlop Primetone 1.4mm pick.
- What are you currently listening to?
KW —I’m always listening to a lot of very different types of music but my go to album at the moment is ‘Camino’ by Gustavo Santaolalla.
- What’s your favorite beverage when picking some tunes?
KW–I’m preferably a single malt scotch guy, but I wouldn’t say no to an icy cold Stellar Artois beer.
- If you were to pick up your mando at this second, what tune would you play?
KW–Well I’m releasing my debut solo record and about to embark on some shows that will showcase that music so probably something from that! Perhaps this choro type thing on it called ‘Waves of Ilhabela’..
- What is the best advice you’ve been given?
KW–“Lower your action and use lighter strings”. Many moon’s ago in my early days of learning about the mandolin I had no idea about set up or the types of strings available. My action was so high it was almost unplayable and I wasn’t aware of strings specifically made for the mandolin so I was using these crazy heavy acoustic guitar strings.