Kym Gouchie’s latest album is fuelled by the power of collaboration and community.
Northern Shining Star Woman would not be possible without an “angel investor” who attended a performance of Gouchie’s in 2015.
“He basically told me he really believed in what I was doing and wanted to spread my music. Months later he passed away. This album is really in honour of him,” Gouchie said.
The album took just under a year to record. Gouchie lives in Prince George, but considers Penticton one of her two homes, spending half of her time here.
Coming in with her original songs and a melody, the arrangments are influenced by producer Thurein Myint of Ellis Avenue Analog Studio in Summerland.
Local musicians Olivia Walsh, who contributed cello, Stefan Bienz on upright bass and Maiya Robbie on backing vocals, join Gouchie on the album, each adding their own special touch.
“I bring a story with my song and allow others to contribute the way they feel. I’m not a musician, I don’t write music,” Gouchie said.
“This album has been a complete collaboration. Even the artwork on the cover is by a local artist Lee Claremont who lives in the Okanagan,” Gouchie said, adding the album was also mastered in Osoyoos by Greg Reely at The Green Jacket
The album was released digitally on Valentine’s Day this year and Gouchie is launching the release of the physical copies with a CD release party for on April 28 at the Riverside Conference Centre, 152 Riverside Dr. next to the Days Inn.
“It certainly is taking my music into a different genre. I consider myself a singer/songwriter and working with other musicians, the album is influenced by other artists, my produce especially. It’s been quite an amazing journey. A discovery for all of us,” Gouchie said.
The album also features Danny Sameshima on drums, Brigitte Demeter bringing keyboard/piano/background vocals and Gary Leggott.
Gouchie also felt a strong sense of community after she had reached out on social media for help promoting the album and was pleasantly surprised at the response.
“It just blew up, people all over the place, as far as way as Ontario,” Gouchie said. “People all over the place have my albums now and they’re helping me sell them. These are people who are friends and fans. I thought that was pretty great.”
Northern Shining Star Woman also has a song featuring Gouchie’s daughter, Shayna Desjarlais, who is performing as a special guest at the CD release party.
Gouchie said it was an amazing experience to record with her daughter, who is a singer/songwriter in her own right. The fifth song on the album, Feather, was written by Desjarlais.
“I’m so proud of her,” Gouchie said. “I’ve had her join me on stage ever since she was a little girl. She’s really moved into her own. She has her own stage presence. I’m really hoping this album will help pave the way for her.
Gouchie is playing two shows in Vancouver before heading to Penticton for rehearsals for the album release party and plans to have a show in Prince George as well.
Tickets are available in advance at The Dragon’s Den on Front Street, Classic Guitars, and Saint-Germaine Café or call Ellis Ave Analog Studio at 250-809-5572. Tickets are $25.
For more information or to listen to some of the songs off the album visit www.kymgouchie.com.