Exclusive Interview: Kyd the Band Talks About “Easy”

Kyd the Band aka Devin Guisande isn’t looking for shortcuts and certainly has no fear going against the grain. He recently unveiled a new track titled “Easy” with Elley Duhé (signed under RCA) and the official music video directed by Patrick Tohill. Written alongside Elley Duhé in one of his very first writing sessions, the track is particularly special in its arrival almost 3 years later. This one falls into a brand new “season” of videos as all of Kyd the Band’s videos are connected to tell one bigger story.

Image: Kyd the Band

While most artists flock to the city of Los Angeles to pursue their dreams, Kyd the Band left California to hone in on his craft in Nashville. Against the odds, the multi-instrumentalist, producer, and songwriter clocked in 40+ hours a week and worked so hard on music that after toughing it out and paying his dues, Devin landed cuts with Bone Thugs-N-Harmony, Robin Schulz, gnash, NF, and ROZES to name a few. It was his time in the studio as a songwriter that shaped his solo career and later gave way for his support slot on tour with NF under the Kyd the Band moniker.

Kyd the Band’s debut single “American Dreamer” has amassed over 2.5 million streams on Spotify while his first major-label release “Human” was featured on Apple Music’s ‘Best of the Week’ and ‘The A-List: Pop’ playlists. At CelebMix, we had the opportunity to sit down and chat with Kyd the Band to talk about his experience of working on “Easy” with Elley Duhé, about collaborations and future projects, moving from California, music journey so far and much more. Read the exclusive interview below with Kyd the Band to get more insights.

Hi Devin! Welcome to CelebMix. So, where does this interview find you today?

Hey, thanks for the welcome. Right now it’s 7:30 am and I’m sitting on my couch at home in Nashville chatting with you!

You’ve recently released a new single “Easy” with Elley Duhe. How did the collaboration come up? What inspired you to write and produce this track?
About 4 years ago I signed my publishing deal and Elley was the very first co-writing session that my publisher set up. It was my first week of being a “full-time” musician and that was really exciting, but it also made me think about everything I had been through to get to that point. I had also just come off working with a rap group that had a lot of success in the mid-’90s (Bone Thugs-N-Harmony), and they were wanting to make one last album together that was current musically but true to them lyrically and flow wise. It was a crazy experience that I’m super grateful for, but the main takeaway I got from it is that life doesn’t let up and just because you get older or because you experience high points. So I went into that session with Elley with the thought, “Life is a hustle for young and for old…never go easy”. 

 

How do you differentiate while writing, what ideas to pitch to other artists and to keep for your own projects? Are you more comfortable doing collaborations or your own solo projects?

When I write a song and it doesn’t feel 100% authentic to me and my story then I pitch it to someone else. I love writing for me, but sometimes I need a break from it because I put way too much pressure on the process if it’s for me. Elley is the first guest artist I’ve had on my project; the song and everything surrounding how it happened is such an important part of my story that I knew it was the right fit.
How did you come up with the idea of the official music video for “Easy”? Are you happy with the outcome?
I sent the song to my director Patrick Tohill and told him what I wanted to convey in the video. I never really talk about the specific stories behind my videos, but you’ll notice that all my videos tie together. “Easy” is the second video of this new season.
How early on did you recognize your love of music? Do you remember the first song you ever wrote?
I had a love for the drums starting when I was 2, at least that’s how old I look in the pictures of me playing my first drum set. When I was 10 I started playing in my church. I never wanted to be an artist, I thought I was going to be a baseball player. But that path was kinda altered for me around 15. The first song I ever wrote was called “Hey You”, and while that’s the least interesting title, the message of the song was great haha. The first line of the chorus was, “Hey you, I got your back till the end.”
Mostly the artists flock to LA, being the global center for the music industry, to pursue their career but you decided to move to Nashville to craft your music. What made you decide to move away? 
Honestly, my stint in LA came at the darkest time of my life. The weather is great and yeah there are a lot of creatives there, but for me personally, it’s just not a good place. I go there 5-6 times a year now to write and I always like what I do there and I like seeing the friends I have there. I guess we can just say it was bad timing for LA and me when we crossed paths.
Your music style is often compared to the likes of Twenty One Pilots or The Neighborhood. What inspires you to create music every day? Do you feel the music that you grew up on effects your current style and creativity?
Music is where I can get all of my problems and past experiences laid out, and addressed. And hopefully worked out. That’s what motivates me to write every day. I grew up only being allowed to listen to gospel music, and sometimes I hear those influences in my melodies. That mainly influenced me in wanting to create music that has depth and says something.
Who are your major music influences- dead or alive? Have these influences changed over time?
I’d say Sublime, Red Hot Chili Peppers and 90’s hip hop. And it has changed over time. Sometimes I’ll hear songs in other genres that inspire me.
As an artist, how do you feel that you’ve evolved over these years? What’s that one lesson that you have learned while working in the industry?
The songs I’m writing now and over the last couple years sound completely different than “Hey You”, and are hopefully better songs lol. When I first started writing I thought I’d be a southern rock act. Clearly, I wasn’t that. The biggest lesson I’ve learned in this industry is that you have to do it yourself, and you need to want to do it yourself. Even when a team starts to form around you, you have to be the one that cares the most about your career and the one who works the hardest.
At the end of the day, what do you want your listeners to take away from your music? What idea do you want to deliver them?
I really hope my listeners hear their own story in my music, and I hope that they feel that they are just as much a part of Kyd the Band as I am. I hope they know this is about more than me.
You’re currently working on your album. What can your fans expect from the sound of the album?
Grit and transparency. 
Are there any other exciting plans for 2019 in the career bucket list of Kyd the Band? Where can we catch you next?
Lots of music and a lot of shows. Will be announcing very soon!
Let us know your thoughts about the latest video for “Easy” by Kyd the Band on Twitter at @celebmix.

Written by Khushboo Malhotra

Autodidactic Ambivert!
Music gives wings to my mind, flight to the imagination and life to everything.
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