News Column

Kimber & Kompany brings a musical range to Musical Chairs

May 23, 2013

YellowBrix

May 23--There are people who play music and there are people who live music. Living the music is an emotion and personality. It's when music becomes more than a hobby -- an expression of the heart. And as far as living the music goes, Dale Kimber is no exception.

Music is in his bones, rooted deep down in his soul. Born and raised in Burlington, Kimber moved to Los Angeles in the mid-1970s to pursue a career in music. He played lots of smooth tunes and met many famous musicians, including the "fifth Beatle" Billy Preston and his musical inspiration, Chaka Khan.

In the '80s, he and his band Royale were signed with Sony Music by Randy Jackson (of "American Idol"). After that deal fell through, Kimber continued writing music in L.A. and finally moved to New York City where he took a break from the music and toured as a stage hand with several Broadway shows.

His exploration in theater didn't last long, though, as the music of his heart yearned to be free. So he finally decided, "I will do music until I can't; only this time, it's for me."

He moved back to Burlington and started his present band, Kimber & Kompany. The main three members are Andrew Patterson on drums; Quinton Moore on the bass guitar and of course, Kimber on vocals. The band brings in different keyboardists and background singers, depending on the sound they're looking for.

"That's why I named my project 'kompany,' " Kimber said, "because if I want something really jazzy, I'll call in a jazz keyboard player. If I'm doing a wedding, I'll call in a R&B keyboard player."

Kimber has high standards when it comes to the people he plays with.

"My musicians are professionally trained," he said.

Patterson has recorded three CDs and Moore is endorsed by the company Brice Bass. Their guest musicians for the Musical Chairs concert Friday in downtown Burlington also have their fair share of accomplishments. Guest guitarist Rod McCoy is attending Film and Production school at Central Piedmont College, and Kenny Leonard is the main guitarist for the R&B singer/songwriter Anthony Hamilton.

The show will be from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the Depot Amphitheater in downtown Burlington as part of the Fridays On Front portion of the Musical Chairs summer concert series. Admission is free, but donations of children's art supplies are appreciated.

Kimber refers to his band's genre as Jazz and R&B -- but with a grown-up twist.

"We're sultry. I have a very sultry-sounding voice. When I was younger, people couldn't tell if I was male or female." He also described their sound as funky with a hint of Neo soul sound. "My band is for everybody. I do Stevie Wonder for dancing and ballads by Michael Jackson. Then I'll throw in a couple jazz standards by Billie Holiday."

Kimber has noticed that when doing covers of popular songs, many artists and musicians will try to mimic the sound of the original singer. Kimber has no interest in copying anyone, he gives the song a twist and makes it his own.

Friday's audience can definitely expect to be entertained and to connect with the music.

"A good thing about being old is you don't pursue the music anymore, you just do it because you love it." Kimber mused.

In case of rain, the concert will be canceled. You can call the Leisure Line at (336) 222-5147 for updates, or get more details at www.artsalamance.com or (336) 226-4495.

For more information on Kimber & Kompany, visit www.dalekimber.webs.com.

Upcoming concerts

--MAY 31: Hip Pocket, Alamance Crossing

--JUNE 7: Back Porch Orchestra, First Fridays, Graham

--JUNE 14: The Dickens, Sunset Rhythms, Burlington City Park

Elisa Abele is a second year Culinary Arts student at Alamance Community College and an intern in the Accent department.

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(c)2013 Times-News (Burlington, N.C.)

Visit Times-News (Burlington, N.C.) at www.thetimesnews.com

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