My Kind of Karma Interview

Isaac Balson

My Kind of Karma

Multi-instrumentalist, inspired reggae and folk musician

On Friday the 16th, I was at The Well at UBCO and was able to meet up with my friend Isaac Balson from the band My Kind of Karma. These guys always play a great live show and after their set, Isaac and I had a smoke and talked music.

When did “My Kind of Karma” Start?

Well it started through an amalgamation of people, who came to Kelowna. We’re all from Southern Ontario and moved out here. What he have now, which is a four piece, started in June of this year.

What kind of music, would you say your band plays?

We play a lot of reggae, folk, rock style music. So there is a lot of reggae peppered throughout our music because that’s where a lot of our influences come from.

Is there a specific sound you’re going for?

Yeah, the sound that we play. I mean, you have to be there to hear it.

Does your band have any albums released, other than your E.P?

We have an E.P on Facebook, it’s just me and our guitar player Garrett. It’s not really telling about how we sound, because it’s just acoustic. We are in the process of going to Music City Studios this winter for a full album, ready for April 1st.

Are there any plans for touring?

Yes! Good friends of ours from our hometown are starting a tour in Toronto, so we’re going to catch on in Kelowna come spring time. Then tour with them all across the west coast.

What’s your favorite bar/venue in Canada?

Well, we have a certain affinity for our neighborhood bar in our hometown called, “The Village Inn”. But in Kelowna, there are several bars for amazing live music, “Fernando’s” and “The Grateful Fed” they always have a serious amount of energy, it’s beautiful.

Give me the names of some of your biggest influences?

As a group I would say a lot of “The Wailers” and “Sublime”, lately we’ve been into a lot of “Patrick Watson & The Wooden Arms”, “Mumford and Sons” and the “Stone Sparrows”. 

What’s the music writing process look like for you?

What we end up doing is each song is written by one person in our band, lyrically and the main melody line. Slowly we layer that idea more and more, until we get something we like.

Have you played in other bands?

Yeah, I’ve played in several bands all the way up through high school, this band is the main one that’s started where we’ve played shows. Essentially all our members have played in other bands too. Our drummer used to play for a Toronto band called “Earthtone”, which was a reggae band. We’ve been working together on and off for years and years.

Why did you choose the name “My Kind of Karma”?

The name came from an article that our bass player and I read about. This elderly Australian woman had a granddaughter and she was attacked, the guy who attacked her got off. He got shot later on and we thought that’s my kind of karma, the ideals of buddhism, reaction and reaction and creating your own sense of karma in the world, et cetera. So that’s where our band name formed. 

What instruments do you play?

Personally I play many different instruments, just because my father owned the only music store in our hometown. In the band I play the banjo and ukelele. 

Who has your band collaborated with?

We have worked a lot with “Crowd The Joanna” and “The Dirty Earth”. Basically any other singer/songwriters around town, we’ve jammed with most of them.

What inspires you most, to write new music?

Really just the feeling you get when you have a really intense emotion and you’d really like to find a way of writing it down. We use music as our only outlet to express ourselves and it’s what we know best.

Home or studio?

I would have to say neither, the studio is more professional but the comfort at home is definitely worth noting. 

Where are you playing next?

Next we are working on another show at “The Grateful Fed” for December 8th, which we hope works out. Other than that we’re going back home to Toronto to play some shows. 

For more information on this band click here.

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