Founded and fronted by long-time songwriter Russell Leedy, Kings Of Carlisle are an alternative rock outfit who recently released the uniquely story-telling single Dirty Little Secret.
We caught up with Russell to find out more about the song, the band, and their plans for the future. Here’s how it went.
* * *
Hi Russell / K.O.C, thanks for the interview! Just to set the scene, where are you based right now, and how have you been keeping busy during the past year and a half?
I am living in a small town in Pennsylvania called Carlisle. And the last year and a half I have been both writing and in the studio recording.
What can you tell us about the song Dirty Little Secret – what inspired you to write it, and how does it feel to listen back as opposed to where your head was during the writing process?
The song is a self empowerment song about someone who was in a relationship where they felt like they were a Dirty Little Secret. This is that individual in a cathartic way saying I am more than that and being embolden to stand up for themselves. It feels good to hear the song on the radio, but I really hope that the message of the song is coming through.
Given your eclectic musical background, is this distorted, electronic-pop-meets-rock sound a new angle for you, or typical of where you hope to take things?
It’s a new direction for me. As an artist we are always trying to challenge ourselves to test the boundaries of our limits. What I am trying to do is combine the many genres of music that I have been so fortunate to play, into a unique sound with a strong message.
How long have you been making music, and how has your approach changed over the years?
I have been writing music since I have been a teenager. My approach to writing has been fairly consistent. I work from a melody I hear in my head and use the piano/keyboard to write the song and add all the other instrumentation to support the song.
How has the dynamic of the band changed over time, and who will you take on the road if and when you tour the new material?
The dynamic has changed in the fact that my best friend and beautiful guitarist passed away. That leaves a vacuum that has to be filled. As far as who will go on the road when we tour is yet to be determined. We will hold auditions and see how things go from there.
Is there a longer project in the pipeline, and if so – what can you tell us about that?
I have enough new music written to release over the next 5 years. The next single coming out October 22 is a tribute to the beautiful Latin musicians that taught me so much in Miami, Fl. Its called Show me The Light and in that song I sing part of the chorus in Spanish. And hope that the people will understand how important this song is to me and a reflection of those great musicians that I worked with.
In what ways have the pandemic and lock-down altered your perspective of live shows and musicianship?
It put a cold towel on the ability to play live and interact with the people that support you in that way. I believe that my perspective on musicianship artist continue to write under any kind of circumstance. Music is a part of the very fabric of your life. The creative aspect of it never stops.
What’s next for you?
As I said earlier Show ME the Light is coming out Oct. 22. Then in January we are going to Miami to shoot a music video for a song I wrote called Every Moment and then after that we are switching gears to a ballad I wrote called Lullaby. In the summer of 2022 I am going to release a reggae type song called Falling Like Rain.
Is there anything else we should know?
I want people to know that you can achieve in life whatever you want. Do not let anyone say that you cannot do something in life. Find what you love to do and perfect the skills you need to accomplish that. And most importantly believe in yourself. And the only failure is not trying.
* * *