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I've known Joel Kachel for a few years. A fellow Minnesotan, he was in L.A. for the week on business, recording, shooting a music video, and performing. I had the chance to catch his set at a small resteraunt/bar called the Witzend in Venice (about ten minutes from the beach). Upon walking through the door I felt right at home. The place has an intimate, acoustic, vibe, perfect for a singer-songwriter such as Kachel. Definitely a venue worth checking out a show at. With an early slot time, the crowd was small and made up of a lot of family and friends, ready for a good time. This show was a shared set with Chris Snyder, who played a few original tunes of his own, and accompanied Joel on percussion. Also renowned producer David Becker, who had been working with Joel all week.

Joel started off the night with a new song "Leavin" written about Alaska. I found the tune a bit melancholy, but decent. Next was "Wonderful", a positive ballad which I particularily enjoyed. One of the more serious songs of the night, "The Dent" was next. When Joel was a teenager he always wanted to take his dads classic old guitar out to play, but was afraid something would happen to it. Sure enough, he took it out one night to a gig, and put a dent in it in this otherwise flawless guitar. Not having the heart to break the news to his father in that moment, this song was later born. Though pleasant to listen to Joel seemed to be holding back at first, but soon grew more comfortable.

L to R David Becker, Joel Kachel, Chris Snyder

David Becker was in attendance, and brought onstage. Having Becker accompanying him on guitar was a special treat for Joel, and the audience as well. First they "Crow" an old song of Joel's with its crazy lyrics about a talking bird. Maybe it was having David up there with him, but Joel became more alive. Seeming more at ease, Joel began to give more to his performance, reaching out with his vocals. Next came "Away Away" with its fun catchy beginning (as shared below), and the energy level continued to rise. To close his set Joel performed "Burn", the tune he'd been working on in L.A. all week. For me, this song was the best I have heard Joel sound. It had that extra oomph in everything, the vocals, the guitar playing, the charisma.

I enjoyed the show. You could tell Joel was having a blast, playing his music for new fans. After all isn't that what is most important? To be able to share your passion with others and have them enjoy those songs you worked so hard on creating. The set had a complete singer-songwriter vibe, which I liked. Those in attendance seemed to enjoy the music. The Witzend invited Joel and Chris back, so hopefully I will be seeing him again soon.


You recorded a new song "Burn" in the studio. Tell us about that experience.
The song "Burn" was written last fall while I was on tour in Alaska with Chris Snyder of Third Wheel Project.

This was my first time in LA and recording this song was the main reason why I was in LA . I always love going in to the Studio. There is something about it that gets you that musical high that I love and live for.

What was it like working with producer David Becker?

As far as David Becker this is my second time in the studio with him. He is a truly wonderful producer. I love all the work he has done for me in the past and this new recording of burn is exceptionally amazing! I can't wait to share it. :)

You also shot a music video. Tell us about that.
The video we produced is actually for another single I will be releasing before burn. The song is called "Away Away" and I wrote it with a couple I met from Australia while I was on Tour in Nashville for the first time. I have been skyping with them for the last year working on this song! I am excited to finally release it. That song and single will be getting released in the next month or so.

The video is a fun Reggae style of song. Some partial lyrics include. "Pop some sunshine, pour me summer, want to see it spilling up and over. Taste the good times hear some Laugher, I'm a crowd surfing bouncing dreamer."

The video is just about get in out and having a good time at the beach. Most of our shots were at Newport Beach and Laguna Beach.

Wednesday night you performed at Club Eleven. How do you feel it went?
I felt Club Eleven went really well! I was first to start off the night but I got a great reaction and I had a ton of people came up to compliment me on my voice, lyrics, and my energetic stage presence. Over all I had an awesome time sharing a stage with Chris Snyder and Jose Pena.

Saturday you performed at the Witzend. How was this show compared to Wednesday's?
I really enjoyed WitZend and I will be sure to be back! It had a great setting and a great vibe. I had a few friends and family come out and support the show and it was so great to see them and hang out. It was also a honor to have David Becker join the stage with me. He is so good! I felt really good about this performance.

Anything else you want to add?
LA was great! Can't wait to be back in the area! Thanks again for coming out to the shows! Great to see you again! I hope everything works out for you out there! It is a lot of fun! :)

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Check out Joel Kachel's music here.

Review by Tracey Ecklund, Editor In Chief, Pop Blitz Magazine
Thanks to Joel for the tickets and show.