McAlister Kemp is the bringing together of two talented artists in their own right - Drew McAlister and Troy Kemp. Both born and bred country boys, Drew hailing from Narrabri via Moree, and Troy from Kempsey.
After trips to the US and Canada respectively which saw Drew collaborate with many different songwriters in Nashville, and Troy being invited to represent Tourism Australia at an event held in Canada called G'Day Toronto, they both found their way back to Australia where they met when both were cast to perform in ‘Aussies Walk The Line’ show, a tribute to Johnny Cash. The pair found that not only did they gel as songwriters, but their voices blended effortlessly as a duo. The duo that is McAlister Kemp was formed.
A support spot with Adam Brand in October 2008 caught the eye of Brand, which resulted in them being signed to his Crossroads Touring Co. and multi-award winning Brand producing their first single, ‘Blue Collar Night’.
In September 2009 the duo signed a record deal with ABC Music and they proceeded to record their debut album with producer Matt Fell (Sara Storer, Butterfly 9, Damien Leith). The album was released in January 2010 and debuted at #8 on the ARIA Country Sales Chart. The album's title, ‘All Kinds Of Tough’, in many ways sums up what McAlister Kemp are all about. Their songs touch on the core issues faced on a daily basis by everyday Australians, while maintaining that knockabout humour that so uniquely defines this nation and its people. The album's title track touches on the "tough" challenges we all face during the different stages of our lives: “We sat down with the idea that "tough" doesn't mean the same thing as it did when we were teenagers. The older you get the more "tough" evolves into something else - it becomes more about the bigger picture in life. It's about the average man going through life with all its challenges", says McAlister Kemp. 'All Kinds Of Tough' reached #1 on the National Country Airplay Chart and the Country Music Channel's Top 3, and has been followed up by the lyrically stunning, 'It Don’t Buy You Love', which also peaked in the CMC Top 10 and gained more radio attention for the group.
McAlister Kemp’s journey has only just begun, and with songs and voices as good as these, their names are bound to be around for a long time to come.
McAlister Kemp Gain Freedom On Stage With Wireless Monitors And Guitar Systems
Since releasing their album All Kinds of Tough last year, the duo of McAlister Kemp have gone from strength to strength. The combination of a great debut album full of top notch songs and a strong live act, has positioned them as the break out act in Australian Country Music over the past twelve months.
The album's title, ‘All Kinds Of Tough’, in many ways sums up what McAlister Kemp are all about. Their songs touch on the core issues faced on a daily basis by everyday Australians, while maintaining that knockabout humour that so uniquely defines this nation and its people.
This first single from the album reached #1 on the National Country Airplay Chart and the Country Music Channel's Top 3. It was followed-up by the lyrically stunning, 'It Don’t Buy You Love', which also peaked in the CMC Top 10 and gained more radio attention for the group.
The album’s third single, ‘Hell Yeah’, exploded on to the country music airplay and video charts holding at #1 for most of January 2011. It was during this month that the duo picked up the award for Best New Australian Artist at the CMAA Golden Guitar Awards in Tamworth. This was closely followed by being awarded CMC’s Best New Oz Artist in March 2011.
In March, when Miranda Lambert fell ill, they got the opportunity to open for Alan Jackson at five sold out arena shows. In June they head to Nashville in the US to represent Australian Country music at the prestigious CMA Global Artist Party.
“In July we record our new album and then after that we will tour solidly until the end of the year on trains, buses and planes,” said Troy Kemp. “Whatever we have to do to get our band all over Australia – it never stops! So we’re really stoked that Jands are helping us out with our audio gear, in fact we couldn’t be happier.”
The duo was delighted to receive Shure ULX wireless guitar systems which have allowed them much more freedom onstage - something that is a huge benefit for such dynamic and active performers.
“The freedom to move onstage is amazing as you’re not stuck with a 20ft guitar lead,” commented Troy. “We jump around quite a bit and I spin around every now and then so if I had a guitar lead I’m sure it would trip me up. So not only does the ULXP wireless guitar system save me embarrassment onstage it also sounds good and you’re not losing any quality by using a wireless pack. We love them! I think dynamically it makes the band look great as we can really move about.”
The boys have also acquired Shure Beta 58 microphones which again give them freedom onstage and Troy states that they sound amazing.
Shure PSM900 personal wireless monitor systems with SE535 sound isolating earphones have also added to McAlister Kemp’s performance.
“To have an in-ear monitor system is really cool,” remarked Troy. “It definitely helps with your pitching. In a live situation you can have foldback monitors on the stage that are loud in your face but when you have crowd noise happening too and the mix onstage isn’t too good, it can be really hard to hear yourself sing. With the PSM900 you can hear right in your ear meaning you can hear yourself clearly when you’re singing.”
The duo has just finished touring with Lee Kernaghan where they gave their PSM a good run through.
“It’s great that you can control the volume on the pack and I think they’ll stop us from ending up deaf! It’s a really good sound quality, it sounds like you’ve got a studio sound in your ears – it’s incredible!”
What McAlister Kemp uses
What McAlister Kemp uses
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