Beth Kille had no idea that a Kickstarter campaign would result in a musical collaboration. The fundraising site brought Elizabeth Petty to her doorstep, and before long, the two had created the new album Authenticity.
The record represents Petty's re-entry into the musical world. After leaving music behind to study science and medicine, she felt herself losing sight of what meant most to her.
"Others encouraged me to follow [other paths], and that seemed easy and natural for me," she says.
Petty met Kille in 2012 for a songwriting mentoring session, a reward she received for donating to the Kickstarter campaign. Her natural talent for lyric writing blew Kille away.
"I was really impressed with her writing, so I inquired as to how long she'd been a lyricist," Kille remembers. "She replied, 'I just wrote these when we set up the meeting. I never wrote songs before, but always wanted to.'"
From there, the musicians' relationship grew. As February Album Writing Month drew to a close, Kille asked Petty to join her for a record. Before recording began, the album had a different lineup of artists. Multiple musicians were slated to perform Petty's lyrics. But Petty insisted that Kille sing each song. Before long, Authenticity was born.
Petty says the title track comes from her belief that people need to be authentic with each other and with themselves.
"The little games and artificial facades that I think most of us have experienced at one time or another get in the way of creating meaningful connections with others and even in knowing our true selves," she explains.
Though Petty is new to Madison's music scene, many local music fans are familiar with Kille's talents. Her folk-country voice lends itself well to every piece on Authenticity from sweet tracks like 'New Chapters" to rock songs like "Black Ice." "Scrapes and Bruises" takes a slight stylistic detour with a jazzy swing sound featuring precise offbeats from drummer Jim Smith and a soft piano overlay from Shawndell Marks.
One of the most compelling songs is the soft ballad "Moments." Petty's lyrics tug at the heartstrings, along with moving violin work by Rin Q. Ribble.
Kille says the addition of an orchestral instrument "totally defines this track.'
Petty's lyrics, about missing her son as he gets older and spends more time away from the home, make the song complete.
"I realized how precious our time was together, knowing it would only be a few more years before he'd be ready to move on," she says. As a mother, I am not ready for that time to come."
MadTracks highlights and provides MP3s of songs performed by local musicians. All tracks here are provided with permission of the artist. If you are a musician based in the Madison metro area and are interested in sharing your work as a MadTrack, please send a message.