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Cool Hand Christian Christian Kane brings his fresh perspective to country music BY STEPHANIE STEWART


he night before I wrote this, Christian Kane and his band Kane gave a scorching performance at 12th and Porter— not a showcase, Kane reminds me, just a “cool-down” for the band before they hit the road again at 6 the next morning. It’s an understatement to call the band hard-hitting, as the live sound is a bit like what might happen if the original Skynyrd cross pollinated with Metallica. (Okay, he wants me to tell you that the album is a little mellower ... it has a country/Southern rock feel to it, and it’s geared for radio play. But the live show, I can attest, as Christian Kane says “will rock your @#%&*$ socks off.”) Even in Nashville, most readers probably know Kane from his acting career, including multiple seasons of the WB mega-hit vampire fantasia that was Angel and the current TNT lawyer drama Leverage. But Christian Kane moved to L.A. from his native Oklahoma to try his hand as a musician, and his first acting role came as a result of his musical talents—a stint on the shortlived Fame L.A. These days, he’s a part-time Nashville resident, dividing his time between here, L.A., Portland (where Leverage tapes) and Oklahoma (home). “I still live out of a suitcase,” he muses. “But you’ll never hear me badmouthing the road. I was the 10year-old kid praying for this life.” Kane and his band have been together 10 years now, and they’re a solid entity. This isn’t a group of session musicians backing up an actor who’s decided to play at music. Kane’s deadly serious, and the power of the work his eponymously named band, Kane,


has done together shows in their performance. “We spent five years playing places like the Viper Room in L.A.,” says Kane. “We’ve got one heartbeat; we’ve been through the blood, mud, sweat and beer together.” These days, after time with EMI and Columbia, they’ve signed with Bigger Picture Group, working with iconic music producer Bob Ezrin and well-known Nashville producer Jimmie Lee Sloas. The move excites Kane, who loves the commitment and style with which Bigger Picture does business. “I feel like I have a home here,” he says. He admires artists like Randy Houser and Jamey Johnson. “Man, they threw out the rule book. Those are the footsteps I want to follow in,” raves Kane. “I really just want to play music forever. I don’t want to be one of those guys who shoots up in the sky, then burns out early. If I never get to be freakin’ Toby Keith, that’s fine, as long as people keep listening and coming to my shows. I promise you, I will never be just [expletive deleted] phoning it in.” With real musical street cred, Kane hates that in the music world, his background can make some look at him as a dilettante actor-singer, the sort that play at putting out music to cash in on their screen success. “Look, don’t prejudge me because I’m an actor. It pays the bills. Once I figured out that the music business isn’t in love with actors, doesn’t always welcome them with open arms, well, I’ve made my peace with that—and I’m willing to kick the

frickin’ door down if I need to. “But let me tell you, I make my living in L.A. as a professional liar, that’s acting. With music, that’s all me. I can’t lie to people. This is important ... I put something real out, I am not playing a part. Real guy, no walls.” Kane has a hand in writing about 90 percent of his music. “I write about my life,” he says. “You won’t hear me singing about marriage or kids or driving my tractor. That’s not who the hell I am. Now I’ve got no problem singing someone else’s song, as long as I’m not lying, but I’m going to sing about what I am and what I know. You’ll hear me sing about women, drinking and fighting a lot.” With a new single and a new album (tentatively titled House Rules) hitting early next year, Kane is poised for success. If you’re in need of a wild, rockin’ and devilish sound with an edge, give them a listen. You won’t be sorry. Kick back with a cold one and relish the music. For even more details on Christian Kane, visit to

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Nashville Lifestyles Dec/Jan 2010  

Nashville's Lifestyle Magazine Featuring Music, Events, Food, Celebrities, Fashion, Travel, Art, Homes & More

Nashville Lifestyles Dec/Jan 2010  

Nashville's Lifestyle Magazine Featuring Music, Events, Food, Celebrities, Fashion, Travel, Art, Homes & More