Balsam Lake Melodies
California Musician Discovers Inspiration Is As Near
As The Edge Of His Cottage Dock
By Catherine Whitnall – Lindsay Daily Post
Friday, September 8, 2000
It may have been a while since Kenny Butterill has enjoyed a vacation at the family cottage, but he’s made sure they won’t soon be forgotten by including a song about his memories on his latest CD release.
The only thing he hopes for now, he quipped during a recent interview, is that people won’t flock to Balsam Lake in droves.
While it will be good financially for the area, he added, he’d hate to see the tranquility, beauty and serenity which he has grown to love become a tourist trap.
Balsam Lake is the only song on Butterill’s CD, No One You Know, specifically about the area where he spent many years cottaging with his family.
Although “many of my other songs began on the docks of Balsam Lake,” he explained.
“I’ve been going there (Balsam Lake) since I was a toddler,” Butterill said. “It’s a place of good vibes for me. That’s where I learned to water ski, fish, boat and play the guitar. It was a good environment for me musically; an anchor, a place to come home to. I feel very comfortable there.”
The singer, songwriter and producer explained the connection to the area is so strong personally for him because he experienced so many firsts growing up.
It was in Lindsay that Butterill obtained his driver’s license and even bought his first case of beer, he said, adding a chuckle. His first major experience with an emergency room took place at the Ross Memorial Hospital for a minor injury to his foot.
So it’s no wonder that Butterill, who has travelled extensively across North America, living now in northern California, placed Balsam Lake “at the top of the list” of his favourite places to be. And why Balsam Lake just had to be included on No One You Know.
“The Kawarthas are simply a place of beautiful memories for me, especially in the fall when it’s more peaceful. Most of the tourists are gone and the lake is quiet and still, except for the birds and the sounds of nature. It’s incredibly uplifting and inspiring.”
The song, he said, has been selected for a record sampler which has been put out by an independent recording artist association in the United States, and has already received a great deal of air play.
Other songs on the CD include She Knows How to Love Me, Back to Canada, and Princess Diana. Butterill is enjoying success after first testing releases on E-music’s Internet Web site www.iuma.com where it hit in the top 10.
The first track on the CD, How Far Can We Go, has been released as the first single and Butterill hopes the radio play will remain strong. Generally, the CD itself has received quite a bit of air time, he said, in both the U.S. and Europe, with a number of songs garnering attention.
“I’m very pleased that people are listening to it,” Butterill said. “It really is a great CD for escaping the concrete jungle and getting up to cottage country.”
A self-taught musician who learned to play by ear, Butterill said he never really had a specific style of music growing up. The only interest he has was “playing along with what everyone else was listening to.” He recalled many nights, sitting with friends, playing – and still learning – the guitar and it was a springboard which ultimately led to his own ideas materializing. Before Butterill knew it, he had become a songwriter and he continued to develop his abilities through singing and even producing.
Although Balsam Lake is the only single relating to the area on the CD, Butterill said his memories of his time in the area are still deeply entrenched in his mind…and his heart.
“I have more songs about the area in me,” he said. “I’m sure that, when I get a chance to get back to those docks, when I’m sitting there, I’ll be thinking about another song for the area.”
Eventually, Butterill wants to reside again in Canada – and possibly Balsam Lake.
“I’m green with envy when I look back at everything you (fellow Canadians) have up there on a daily basis,” he said. “I can’t wait to get back.”
Anyone wishing more information on Butterill, or his music, are encouraged to access the Web site www.nobullsongs.com.
Reprinted from the Lindsay Daily Post – Friday, September 8, 2000