Volume 71 #41
Wednesday, October 22, 2003
Some hot Internet connections help city musician make cool tunes
By James O'Connor
A chance online match has sparked the career of a city musician, who
has just returned from London, England with her debut CD in hand.
Kim Hines shows her moody side during a recent photo shoot.
In 2000, Kim Hines was doggedly searching the Internet for just
the right person to collaborate with musically. Hines, a veteran
of Winnipeg's Top-40 live music scene from the early-'90s, wanted
to work with someone with a European musical background to augment
her original compositions.
After clicking her mouse silly for some time, she came across a
contact in Germany who introduced her to a German musician by the
name of Carsten (Cazy) Schmidt and the pair formed the transatlantic
“I had to get out of this small area of Winnipeg and go global,”
says Hines, who is best known locally for her time in the ‘90s fronting
the popular club act, Rumours.
“I sent out a casting call looking for precisely who I wanted to
work with. Cazy’s amazing — he can go places with technology I can’t.
And coming from Germany, he was raised on different music, so he
has that history behind him.”
Hines says she’s fascinated with new technologies and advances
in computer software for musicians. A true Internet musical project,
superNature’s songs had their genesis in mp3 and wave files. Hines
travelled to Cazy’s studio in Cologne, Germany three times for month-long
recording sessions earlier this year.
"Technology is not something to loath; it’s something to learn
to utilize,” says Hines. “The whole music business is changing because
of technology and I feel that I’m on the cutting edge of it, not
because I wanted to be, but because I have to be.
“The once lucrative financial rung of the ladder that unsigned
bar bands once existed on is now gone (as most bars in Winnipeg
now play recorded music). Because I was not signed to a major label
and because there was nowhere to play and earn a living for an independent
band, I had to make a choice – give up playing original music as
a living, or find a new way to survive."
Hines' transcontinental collaboration has resulted in a collection
of music, called Angry Red Planet, that blends precision German
engineering with a bohemian North American vocal style.
It’s dark – at times odd – fascinating and irresistible.
The music has also attracted international interest, charting high
on several online charts in Europe. SuperNature’s music will be
heard in the near future on the overnight American radio show Coast
to Coast, heard locally on CJOB 68.
Angry Red Planet is available at Music Trader on Osborne Street
and Disc Trader on Corydon Avenue, and also through www.cdbaby.com.
The unusual tunes have also caught the ear of some notable music
“SuperNature incorporates some of the best melody driven music
of the past decade, with ear catching production and performances
that have power and grace,” says Los Angeles producer Matt Forger,
who’s quoted on the superNature’s website, www.supernaturemusic.com.
Hines says most of the songs on Angry Red Planet are fantasies
in the form of short stories.
“I think I deliberately stay away from love songs – boymeets- girl
songs,” she says, noting she often explores the darker side of the
“I also write a little cryptic with a smattering of humor thrown
in at times so the listener has to use his or her own imagination.
I can see what I’m singing about. I hope to take the listener there
too, like a good book.”
Although Hines now lives part of the year in London, and calls
sunny St. James home when she’s here, she was raised in the roughedged
North End. She says she was first influenced by her Mother’s eclectic
taste in some of the world’s greatest vocalists, such as Peggy Lee,
Yma Sumac, Billy Holiday and Frank Sinatra.