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Green Bay, Wisconsin, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2000

Green Bay, Wisconsin, United States
Established on Jan, 2000
Solo Pop Singer/Songwriter


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Local Musician Focus: Kurt Gunn"

By Lemmy Thru
Two songs into his Thursday night set at Fox Heights, Kurt Gunn asks the fairly full bar if everything sounds okay.
“Neil Young would sound better,” shouts back an older patron, slightly embarrassing his peers.
“Well, unfortunately Neil couldn’t be here; he’s off protesting … something,” replies Kurt. The older patron goes back to his cribbage game as if the exchange never happened.
I’m at my first Kurt Gunn show, and I’m liking it! I’d had a lame day at work, and some live music — okay; a cocktail, too — is chasing my blues away.
Sophia-ImageryKurt wraps up his solo acoustic portion of the set before Chris Hanaway and Troy “Ham Sandwich” Haumschild join on electric bass and congas, respectively. It all sounds pro. Kurt’s a versatile player, who relishes the variety and diversity of playing with different lineups.
“People never know what they are going to get,” says Gunn. “I can play a song with a full band, and it will sound a certain way, and then the next night I’ll play it acoustic, real chilled out, and now it’s a different song. Keeps it fresh; keeps it fun.”
Some of the other local players you can catch Gunn with are Riki Schulz on guitar, Eric Johnson on drums, and Amanda Gorbette on vocals, who along with Hanaway and Haumschild will perform under the name Painters’ Light.
“Everybody I perform with, I’m friends with, and that helps. They understand that I change my mind a lot,” says Gunn with a smile.
From solo to six-piece, the different line-ups allow Gunn to express a variety of long-time influences, which range anywhere from singer-songwriters like Ryan Adams, Tom Petty and Warren Zevon, to hard rock groups like Metallica, Megadeth and Danzig. Two of his favorite concert experiences are — wrap your head around this — Dave Matthews and the Descendants.
“I just downloaded the Decemberists; I’ve been listening to that non-stop,” says Gunn when I ask about any of his more recent discoveries. “And I just picked up Justin Townes Earle’s new one at Rock N’ Roll Land. Milk Carton Kids … you have to check ‘em out; they’re phenomenal.”
Kurt’s been playing out for quite a while now, but in some ways he’s still under the radar. I’m a bit ashamed to admit that I was uninitiated until he’d recently e-mailed me. Part of this is because he focuses more on writing and performing music than self-promotion (priorities: straight). If you haven’t seen Kurt solo you may have caught his former band Commonplace, but that was a few years ago. Not to mention that for a while, Kurt actually thought he was done with music.
“I was gigging pretty heavy a few years back, and sort of got in a funk where it wasn’t fun anymore. I stopped playing for about a year, completely,” says Gunn. “Just packed it up. Actually sold a bunch of equipment. I was done.”
Gunn had played music since he was 15 years old, though, and in retrospect, shutting down music completely may not have been an option.
“Eventually I started picking up a guitar around the house, and then from there I starting writing songs again,” says Gunn. “I wrote a whole new batch of tunes when I came out of that phase, and then came the itch to play them (live). I started slowly doing shows, and I was actually nervous again, but it didn’t take too long to find my sea legs, I guess (laughs).”
These days some of Kurt’s favorite places to play are Fox Heights, La Vie Boheme, and Jimmy Sea’s.
“With performing a majority of original songs, I have to be selective with my venues; I can’t get booked in a lot of places without playing ‘Top 40,’ which I won’t do anymore,” says Gunn.
While he did play a few creatively arranged covers — they came off almost like remixes — during his set at Fox Heights, Kurt focused almost entirely on original material, including several songs from his brand new six-track EP.
“Underneath” was recorded at local musician/engineer Paul Hanna’s home studio. Kurt’s talented live band is featured on the recordings, with Hanna also contributing some high quality guitar work, and Green Bay’s best keys player, Alex Drossart, chipping in as well. The EP’s production is impressive, and Gunn’s vocal melodies, which are somehow both natural and clever, are particularly strong.
One of the new songs that stood out is “Abraham.” Kurt, a bit of a history buff, was inspired by the letter President Lincoln sent to console Lydia Bixby, whose five sons were all believed to have been killed in the Civil War. I had to ask Kurt if he worried about how crowds would react to things like songs about young soldiers being killed, or topics that don’t exactly get a bar on its feet.
“I’m over that [stuff],” he replies. “That’s one of the things that put me in a funk. I don’t want to sit here and play Nickelback. I’d just stay home.”
If Gunn did just stay home, though, one could hardly blame him; he’s a full-time firefighter and he’s got three kids: Emily, August and Josie. He’s always fought to fit music into his busy lifestyle; the name Painters’ Light was inspired by his need to wake up at 5 a.m. so he could work on songs before his kids woke up.
Gunn does appreciate the occasions when he gets to see other bands, though, citing “the Cool Waters Band, because they’re original,” adding, “and I wish the Blueheels would get back together.”
One of Kurt’s potential goals would be to get into music licensing, writing songs for other musicians to record. But for now, he’s simply hoping to spread the word about his new EP and get his name out there a bit. Hopefully this article helps! You can listen to some of his songs and check his upcoming show schedule at Reverbnation.com/KurtGunn.
Chris Aaron
Between songs at Fox Heights, Kurt paid respect to local musician Chris Aaron, who had tragically passed away the night before. Chris was an outstanding blues guitar player, who’d only just days earlier played the grand opening of Titletown Brewery’s new Tap Room. Aaron’s talent and personality will be greatly missed. RIP, Chris.
Lemmy Thru is a two-year veteran of Scene, covering music in and around Green Bay. Check Twitter.com/LemmyThru for often-updated local music happenings, and e-mail LemmyThru@gmail.com to request coverage, show booking advice, whatever! - Scene Newspaper

"Kurt Gunn EP Review"

February 12, 2010
Hailing from Northeast Wisconsin is singer songwriter Kurt Gunn, who has just released his first EP, "This and That." Normally I'm out on the town looking for music to write about, but this week I was asked to put Kurt Gunn's latest release under the microscope. So let dig into "This and That" right now.

"What I Need" This is a very groovy track with a very laid back rocking rhythm, Comprised mostly of acoustic guitar, electric guitar, organ, drums and hand drum percussion. The music hits right away into a very roots type feel, and has a little pop sound to it. The guitar solo is a warm, slightly over-driven distortion and soulful in a blues rock style. The song is based around a rhythmic progression and creative structured going from an all in and then breaking it down with Kurt's heartfelt singing and his acoustic guitar and then building right back up. It 's definitely a feel good track about love and fun.

"My Home" This is a somber track about having to leave home and everyone you love. More so, trying to deal with the lonesomeness and the memories that help you and your family get through the time away. This song is very genuine because a lot of people can identify with family members being away right now in our times. You can really sense the emotion and the isolation in the lyrics and Kurt's vocals and finger picked acoustic guitar. In Kurt's lyrics, "The silence steels away, the space where words belong" is so true in so many ways. The emotion piles on with some beautiful blues guitar work, the layers of piano, organ and the bass keeping rhythm to the soft sounds on the drums. This song has a very working class Midwestern feel.

"Before Montana" Kurt turns the fun back on with this up beat feel, starting with the drums playing a shuffle and Kurt's acoustic rhythm progressions. While this song doesn't really kick in at all, it is very laid back and completely structured around rhythm and vocals. It's one of those songs that remind you of having fun on a perfect summer's day. For Kurt, it reminds him of a time of being in love and he reflects on how great and fun it was before having to part ways. I really dig the electric guitar work on this one and beautiful clean tone and almost Caribbean type feel.

"Storms" The mood of the song "Storms" is like that numb feeling or despondent emotion that is triggered in the aftermath of a tragedy. It is slower paced and is structured around Kurt's finger picking rhythmic style. Gradually, the band builds up the sound, playing with more intensity and it is colored by some great blues feel solos and Rhodes keyboard. This is the kind of song that can get stuck in your head on a gloomy rainy day.

"Autumn Leaves" A fun fast paced rhythmic roots tune about kicking back relaxing and getting into the groove. Kurt's acoustic vocals are rhythmically paced with the electric guitar, bass, drums, and congas giving a real up beat positive vibe. This song is probably the least dynamically complex out of the four, but its simplicity is enjoyable!

My first impression upon hearing the "This and That" EP was great! The recording was crisp, the instruments were creatively panned and everything was crystal clear. I was amazed at all the talent that went into this effort and how well it was recorded. Kurt's music is fun, emotional and ground level. It is awesome when you put all these great musicians together and add to what is already some very solid folk rock songs. I also have to give it up to the very talented crew at a Rock Garden Studios in Appleton. They have been doing a great job of producing some class A recordings of many of our area's talented artists and everything I hear keeps getting better and better. The amazing talent that is on "This and That" are the following people: Acoustic Guitar: Kurt Gunn, Vocals: Kurt Gunn, Drums on: Storms, My Home - Neal Gallager, Drums on: Before Montana, Autumn Leaves, What I Need - Eric Johnson, Hand Drums: Troy Haumschiel, Keyboards: Marc Golde, Electric Guitar: Storms, My Home - Paul Hanna, What I need, Autumn Leaves - Jay Lipsky, Before Montana - Ricky Schulz. Bass: Before Montana, Autumn Leaves, What I need - Josh Lanaville, Chris Hanaway - My Home, Storms. I'm sure that maybe a little confusing but it just goes to show you the collaboration and support Kurt Gunn has for his music. You can get "This and That" on Itunes or go onto his reverbnation page for some free mp3 downloads. Be sure to catch Kurt Gunn at Montague's Feb 20th! - greenbaynightlife.com

"Reviving A Tradition"

Which came first, coffee houses or singer/songwriters?

It may seem like a facetious question, but just about everyone knows where to go for an acoustic singer/songwriter fix – the local coffee house.

But not everyone digs coffee houses, and that goes both ways – performers and audience members. Some of us want a different jolt of juice. Coffee just doesn’t do it.

So it’s nice to hear that a singer/songwriter named Kurt Gunn has taken it upon himself to get singer/songwriters and their fans out of coffee houses and back in bars where they belong.

“It seems like it’s more accepted to do that in Milwaukee or Chicago. I thought I’d try to get that spark going here,” said Gunn, who runs the monthly Wisconsin Songwriters Revival at Montague’s in De Pere.

kurtgunnGunn, a 1995 graduate of Green Bay Southwest High School, has been writing songs and playing guitar since his sophomore year.

“Once I learned three chords I started writing songs. I’ve always been an advocate of that,” he said. “I’ve always been a big fan of musicians that make a point to write their own music. People always want to hear covers, but I’d always play some originals and people never resisted.”

No resistance is the same as signs of encouragement to a singer/songwriter.

In 1997 Gunn and his pal Brad Bordini started a band called Commonplace. As is commonplace for bands, Gunn and Bordini were the only constants.

“We had a lot of people who came through Commonplace,” Gunn said. “When that disbanded, I changed gears and started doing my solo stuff, more of a singer/songwriter acoustic. That’s pretty much what I’m doing.”

Gunn started an acoustic Thursday at Pi Nightclub in Green Bay last June, but in October moved the event to Montague’s.

“Montague’s is a little more intimate. It’s also closer to my house and I like going there,” he said. “It’s started to catch on. I see a lot of regular faces. I’ve talked with Jeremy Brown, the owner, to make sure he’s happy. and the numbers are good so far and getting better.”

The format has Gunn and Bordini performing a set, along with two invited singer/songwriters such as the exciting younger writer/performer Robbie Schiller of the Blueheels and the multi-talented melaniejane.

“That was an awesome night with Robbie and melaniejane,” he said. “Jeremiah Nelson was another great night.”

Gunn wasn’t sure the concept would work because he’s working on a shoestring budget.

“What I get paid for the night, I give to the two other performers,” he said. “It’s not a lot of money, so I was kind of worried, but I’ve found that people are willing to put the money aside to showcase their act. They’re proud of being a songwriter and have something to show. They’re all about it. - SCENE (March 2010)

""This & That" Kurt Gunn"

Flying under the radar for far too long, Kurt Gunn’s long awaited EP, This & That has finally started to gain the recognition it deserves.

With a mix of upbeat songs that turn the winter blues away, to songs that when listened to carefully give you a glimpse of a day in the life of Gunn. My Home and Storms are two of the more heartfelt gems on this EP. Both songs show off Gunn’s lyrical talent, as well as some of the other musicians who gave a hand in this album. What I Need, Before Montana, and Autumn Leaves will undoubtedly get your head bobbing and perhaps even get you out of your seat to enjoy the positive vibe these songs bring. Gunn brings a plethora of talent to the table on this album and in his live shows. He has a stack of songs that the world has yet to hear and maybe some he has yet to finish, but no matter which one it is, you can put money on the fact
that they are all original and they all have their own story waiting to be heard.

The title of the EP is even more descriptive than leads on. “This” refers to Gunn’s newer tunes he did solo, My Home and Storms. “That” refers to his older tunes Autumn Leaves, What I Need, and Before Montana, which he played with his original band, Commonplace. New or old, solo or full band, Kurt Gunn is bound to grab your attention and get you to listen to him and what he has to say.

Check him out on Facebook’s musician pages as well as checking out Wisconsin Songwriters Revival- a movement of sorts founded by Gunn in hopes of getting local musicians heard by the masses. Personally, I think it’s working. You can find his album, This & That - EP available on iTunes, as well as a special “Brown Bag Edition” numbered and sold only at live shows. - SCENE (March 2010)


"This & That" EP 2008 (Independently Released)

"Underneath" EP 2014 (Independently Released)



WITRR Network, Indie Castle Radio, WSPR Night Owl Radio,
INDIE104 iRadioLA, WMIR 100.9FM, In-d Sounds Radio,
Independent104.com, Audio Independents Radio,
WBJZ B104.7...



"New or old, solo or full band, Kurt Gunn is bound to grab your attention and get you to listen to him and what he has to say." - Scene Magazine

"Kurt's music is fun, emotional and ground level." - greenbaynightlife.com

"Kurt Gunn is doing his part to help area songwriters get their due with the Wisconsin Songwriters Revival he founded a year ago..." - Green Bay Press Gazette

"Liked "Autumn Leaves" a lot. It's a folksy, raw sound...the singer/songwriter thing that makes the ladies swoon."
- Otis Day , 101.1 WIXX

"The man has a vocal gift that warms the entire room."
- Stumpjack Coffee Co.



Wielding his acoustic guitar, voice, and songs, Kurt Gunn is quietly etching a name for himself in the Midwest by playing live shows anywhere there is a stage and people to enjoy him.

With a grassroots approach to winning over fans, and an unending appetite for crafting new music, Kurt is showing why you don't have to live in Nashville to be in this business, all you have to do is write some good songs!

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