Crooner Troy Kline debuts new, polite CD
March 30, 2010
By Chantelle Lusebrink
If you’re looking for life on the sunny side of the street, then Troy Kline’s new CD, “Please and Thank You,” is the pick for you.
With catchy tunes that hark back to the days of big band, a little doo-wop and some bluesy ballads thrown in, you’re bound to get into the swing of spring.
“It’s a fun, bouncy album that has a lot to it,” Kline said. “The theme is really escapism. I wrote it at a point when I hadn’t had a vacation in five years, so I felt tied down. It’s all about where I’d like to be.”
It’s been a 14-month labor of love for the Issaquah-based hair stylist, who started moonlighting as a self-professed crooner about three years ago.
“I’ve always loved music,” he said. “But it wasn’t until really I turned 40 that I reached that turning point in my life where I felt I have to do this. It wasn’t a choice anymore and I haven’t stopped since.”
Stepping into the recording studio for the first time, he laid down tracks for many memorable songs, like “My Funny Valentine,” “I’ve Got the World on a String” and “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow.”
What came from that session was his first recorded CD, appropriately titled “Crooner.”
At about the same time, he began gracing Issaquah’s hot spots for music, like Pogacha and Vino Bella, as part of Half Pack LIVE, where audiences quickly warmed to his velvety voice recreating the stylings of greats like Frank Sinatra and Tony Bennett.
When considering a follow-up to “Crooner,” Kline said he wanted to get ambitious — and ambitious is what he got in spades.
For the first time in his long love affair with music, which began in childhood, he’s written his own songs, and helped chart arrangements, organize fellow musicians and produce the album.
“For me, it was finding the self-confidence,” he said. “I needed to realize that I could write a good song.
“So far, this album has been a validation of that.”
“There are a lot of things that were successful with this album,” said Steve Rice, a pianist and co-producer for the album. “Troy has got natural songwriting instincts and an incredible voice, and for it all to come together on one great album is really impressive.”
Kline said he used his love for all types of music as inspiration.
“I listen to a lot of types of music. I don’t just listen to one type,” he said. “It’s highly inspirational and of course, there are influences from my favorites, like Etta James, Ray Charles and Bobby Darin.”
Using the wealth of knowledge from those who came before him, Kline said he didn’t let anyone or anything pigeonhole him into one genre for the album.
“We call him a swinger songwriter,” Rice said, of Kline’s affinity for various genres and for his ability to sing and write.
His favorite type of song, though, is the ballad, because “it is a true expression of my emotion I can convey to listeners,” he said. “I am really proud of ‘I Will Always Love You.’”
Of course, having Rice’s 30 years experience on the album certainly allowed him to keep with his vision, he said.
“I’d walk around with a digital recorder, because if I didn’t get it down it’d be gone forever. Then, I’d come in with hooks and some things written down and Steve would help me put it together,” Kline said. “He really is a musical genius. I couldn’t have done it without him.”
“One thing that really surprised me is how directed and focused he was on taking on this huge project,” Rice said about Kline. “We took one step and then another because of that.
“I think it is amazing and we emerged with a pretty full-fledged album for his first big songwriting effort.”
For their efforts, Kline said, they’ve already had great feedback from several music catalogues, like Crucial Music, which purchases rights to songs for use in television and film soundtracks.
“It’s always been a dream of mine to have a song as part of film soundtrack,” Kline said. “To have them accept my song is amazing, since they reject 96 percent of the music submitted.”
Kline hopes to enjoy more success locally and hopefully abroad, he said.
“I’m really well known in Issaquah,” he said smiling, “but it’d be nice to be known out of Issaquah, too.”
Chantelle Lusebrink: 392-6434, ext. 241, or firstname.lastname@example.org. Comment at www.issaquahpress.com.