CHEBOYGAN — The final two years have undoubtedly had an impression on the world and, by the turmoil, space artist and instrumentalist Ken Verheecke has discovered a method to ease minds and hearts internationally.
Nonetheless, it wasn’t simply the pandemic that noticed Verheecke’s music take off, it was years of touring, performing, writing, recording and a tenacity to maintain going and creating.
“I watched John Prine age,” mentioned Verheecke. “I do not understand how lengthy it will final however so long as I’ve the help from my household, loving spouse and the creativeness and drive to maintain going then I’ll.”
The 62-year-old musician initially received his begin and reduce his enamel watching and following the guitar participant in his church’s youth group.
He had only in the near past moved to South Dakota from Michigan’s Higher Peninsula and whereas attending church grew to become actually drawn to the guitar.
“We ended up shifting as my dad obtained orders from the Air Pressure to maneuver,” mentioned Verheecke.
“I have been going to church most of my life however there was this man within the youth group with a guitar. I used to be too previous to be within the youth group so, after volunteering, I’d are available early to look at him follow,” he mentioned.
The following week the guitarist introduced in a second one for Verheecke to be taught, decide up the chords and play alongside. The remainder is historical past.
“It was a month after I discovered methods to play guitar that I began a band,” mentioned Verheecke.
“I took to the guitar fast. I am not saying I’ve this great reward nevertheless it got here straightforward and I simply performed endlessly.”
The band toured the nation for 5 years with Verheecke touring one other 5 years on high of that with one other band earlier than lastly hitting the street solo.
He is seen virtually each mile of the nation having carried out in Tennessee, Kentucky, New York, Wisconsin, Massachusetts, California, Michigan and past.
It wasn’t till 1993 although that he determined to give up his full-time job of 13 years and pursue music full time.
Wanting again on the choice, he is glad he did.
“The actual reasoning behind it was I misplaced each my mother and father inside a yr of one another and I spotted that we aren’t right here without end,” he mentioned.
Verheecke has since saved touring, signed to Coronary heart Dance Information, has put out quite a few data and singles and has procured a following of listeners from all over the world averaging about 73,000 month-to-month listeners on Spotify alone along with his instrumental music.
“I did not begin doing instrumental music till about 1992 after I picked up an album by Will Ackerman,” he mentioned. “I put the needle on the report and listened to facet one and was blown away. I’ve at all times wished to emulate that by some means.”
The quite a few messages Verheecke receives every year speaks volumes to the best way he has finished precisely that whereas discovering a voice of his personal.
Tales and messages from folks internationally which have heard his music and the sense of interior calmness and peace he strives for reveals the ability of his instrumental creations.
“I received a message from somebody in Spain who advised me he was going to take his life however that he was listening to Spotify when my track got here on,” he mentioned.
“He sat there and continued to hear after which went by my catalog of music, fell asleep and, when he awakened, realized he was nonetheless alive. He advised me my music gave him hope to proceed on.”
Verheecke credit the shift within the music business and streaming to his successes, nevertheless it’s additionally his continued and by no means failing drive to maintain pushing ahead and writing.
He spends every day discovering methods to pitch his music to playlists on Spotify and Apple Music with a objective of turning his some 73,000 month-to-month listeners into 100,000 listeners.
“I do not know that I’ve figured it out however playlists are a really very important and vital factor to get your music on and I spend my days doing simply that and pitching my tunes to playlists that cater to peaceable music genres,” he mentioned.
“I got here to Michigan three years in the past questioning how I might make this work and I simply researched and researched and researched,” he mentioned.
Verheecke at the moment would not have a lot on his calendar by way of touring or performing in 2022 however is constantly engaged on new music to place out and share with the world.
Be taught extra about and hearken to Verheecke’s music on-line at www.kenverheecke.com or on streaming providers similar to Apple Music or Spotify.