Reno singer-songwriter Liam Kyle Cahill's record release party will double as a fundraiser for a local restaurateur battling cancer. The event is Sat., June 21, at Bodega Nightclub, 555 E. Fourth St., and will feature live performances by Cahill, with a full band, as well as Leify Green, DirtyPretty and My Acoustic Heart. Doors open at 7 p.m. Tickets are $10 in advance or $15 at the door. For more info, visit www.liamkylecahill.com.
Tell me about what you do.
My name is Liam. I’m a folk rock artist—between folk rock and singer-songwriter. I work as a geologist, but what I’m trying to do is transition into doing music full time and being able to hit the road as a singer-songwriter, playing my songs for people.
Tell me about the new album.
The new album is called The Key to Happiness, and we got 23 different guest musicians from Reno to be part of the album. Basically, it's just a collection of my favorite songs that I've ever written, and instead of just putting them out acoustically, like I tend to play them live, we really wanted to put together something bigger, something a little more commercial, so to speak.
Who played on it?
Tim Snider, formerly of Sol Jibe, Eric Andersen from the Novelists, Mark Sexton from the Mark Sexton Band, Dave Berry from Jelly Bread, Lucas Young from Lucas Young and the Wilderness, Mel Wade from the duo Wanders On, and numerous other musicians. … I tried to basically get the names of all the different people who I have been listening to their music for years, people that I trust, people that I like what they do, and I wanted to incorporate them into what I was doing. So I just hand-picked all these people, and between [producer] Tom Gordon and I, we put together this cool team.
And you’ve got the record release event coming up?
The event itself started out just as a CD release. I had it planned for this. I knew it was going to be in June. I started putting it together. A couple of months ago … Nikos from Nikos Greek Kitchen was diagnosed with cancer for the second time. And when that happened, I switched gears and turned my CD release into a giant fundraiser. My girlfriend and I created a nonprofit called Reno for Nikos in order to create some legitimacy around what we were doing. Originally, I was just some bearded guy showing up to local restaurants and local business owners and saying, “Hey, I’m a singer-songwriter trying to raise money. Would you like to donate gift cards?” and they were like, “Who the heck is this guy?” Then I started working Reno Tahoe Tonight magazine, Shop Small Northern Nevada and once I got these names backing me and we got some official paperwork together—I got an official tax number and all that jazz—people started taking me a lot more seriously. We have over $5,000 worth of prizes to be raffled and silent auctioned at the event. … The main raffle prizes that people can win are a Martin acoustic guitar, a two-day studio time with Colin Christian at Wires & Noise [recording studio], Reno Tahoe Limousine put in a four-hour limousine ride. Guitar Center donated another guitar. … A local bike place donated a cruiser bike. And then just dozens and dozens of gift cards, from everything from Great Full Gardens to Burger Me to hair salons and whatever.
It’s your record release, but you also have a good cause and a bunch of different businesses coming together.
Absolutely. It’s been kind of a double-edged sword because once we started doing this, it was like, this will get totally different eyes on it, people who wouldn’t have looked twice at a CD release show. Oh, it’s a benefit, I’m willing to check this out, but I never in my wildest dreams could have imagined how much work it was to raise all of that money and jump through all the hoops that we had to in order to be a legitimate organization raising funds for someone. But it’s been worth it.