Kevin Miso
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Kevin Miso


Band Folk Singer/Songwriter


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This band has not uploaded any videos



"Kevin Miso Makes Us "Smile""

The Quiksilver shop was crammed with tan, beautiful people; I was meekly hiding behind a rack of clothes, listening to the music. It was precisely what I expected to hear so close to the ocean. There were sweet lyrics, warm, sunny tones, and a laid back vibe that simply makes you feel good. However, it wasn’t long until I heard something that truly surprised me.

“So, what cover can you do that’s, like… thefurthest away from your genre?”

An odd request to be sure, but singer-songwriter Kevin Miso seemed completely unfazed; he strummed his guitar after only a moment’s hesitation, treating the employees and patrons to a fun (and surprisingly good) acoustic cover of Lil Wayne’s “Mrs. Officer.”

This humble performance (before a rack of men’s swim trunks) was part of Laguna Beach’s First Thursday Art Walk, and Miso’s music drew crowds of all ages as he played tracks from his latest EP, Smile. A native of Long Beach (and of Hawaiian ancestry), Kevin grew up surrounded by musicians– his older sister Maile was even a founding member of Eden’s Crush, of the WB’s Popstars fame. Though he didn’t begin pursuing music in earnest until the college years, citing his time spent studying in Spain as the time he spent “honing [his] sound,” Miso’s Southern California upbringing clearly influences his musical style– something he affectionately names “Hawaii meets Cali.”

“My first [EP] is more well-rounded,” he told me on a break between sets, “But [“Smile’’] is like a summertime party.”

The five-track EP does unfold like a love letter to the SoCal summers we’ve all come to love so dearly. “We’re living where roads run to the ocean/We’re living where new life can be found,” Miso sings on the opening track, “Home.” The song is a relaxing guitar-driven track matched with an incredible harmonica solo: perfect for driving down PCH with the windows down.

Other tracks, such as “Smile” and “All I Want” are sweet love songs reminiscent of Jason Mraz. His optimistic lyrics about “worries fad[ing] away” and heart-melting harmonies are certain to win over any California girl.

Miso channels fellow LBC boys Sublime on his reggae-ish track “Rise Up” (my personal favorite). By focusing on minor chords and faster, rhythmic verses, he creates a sound that is still beachy and relaxed, with just a touch of edge.

Finally, the album rounds out with Miso’s cover of The Main Ingredient’s single “Everybody Plays The Fool,” and he brings his own remarkable style to the 1972 R&B hit.

You can hear Kevin Miso’s single “Smile,” as well as his eponymousEP, on iTunes, and you can see him perform at Hermosa Beach’s Saint Rocke on October 28th. - OC Music Magazine

"Kevin Miso: A Spontaneous Interview"

Kevin who? We didn’t know either; not until we went to see another band perform!

By the time Kevin’s set was over we not only knew who he was but also owned his two EPs - $5 each at the door made it a no brainer. Before I get into deets about Miso let me start here…

- The Show

If you like live music and have spent any significant amount of time in So Cal we’re sure you’ve been to Saint Rocke and know the set up. Kevin was solo on stage for his entire set – drumming a bass line using the body of his guitar then looping it while he laid down some keys and rhythm guitar – showing his true talent, and it didn’t end there as his songs progressed so did his skill. Impressive guitar riffs, seamless transitions into classic west coast hip hop tracks then back to his original stuff. All the while bobbing and smiling away as he just had fun on stage, looking as if he was completely and perfectly content just being there in that current moment, and he was.

At one point he took out his iPhone and began using it as a slide, it was clear this guy enjoys himself on stage – he was in his element. Not that we didn’t enjoy Sashamon, but Kevin Miso definitely stole the show, in our opinion.

- The Artist

Hawaiian roots, but Long Beach is home to this 29-year-old musician. He’s the type of guy that deserves all the good he gets and then some having such a wise outlook on his music and respect for life, “[music is] less of an evolution and more of a journey [for me]…it’s all about what you want to get from it, which usually translates to what you put in.”
- That definitely resonates with us here at ‘All Indie Magazine’ – very true words, Ke

Kevin was musically influenced at a young age, “I remember seeing my Dad’s acoustic guitar leaning against the couch…thinking ‘I wanna learn how to play that’. That was seriously it.” His musical start actually came on the drums at age 7, and at age 9 on the piano, not finding the guitar till middle school. But it wasn’t until he started traveling during college when the guitar “became [his] faithful travel companion” being so easy to pack along. “Some people have journals, I had my guitar. Plus it brought people together so easily!” he added, another reflection of Kevin’s positive personality, and thirst to entertain.

“I definitely look inward for that as opposed to outward; and so quite naturally I start writing feel-good, surf vibey sort of stuff. But man, I’m passionate and inspired by tons of artists.”

Kevin gets specific with just what traits from certain artists influence him - such as; Paul Simon’s songwriting and arrangements, Kris Kristofferson’s imagery, Jack Johnson simplicity, Derek Trucks’ guitar playing, Jay-Z’s delivery, and Tupac’s conviction are just the tip of the iceberg. Noting that Bob Marley is an “enormous influence” on him from a musician and lyrical perspective.

Aside from music, we asked Kevin what takes up his spare time and his answer was simple, “surfing and traveling.” Once being a world traveler, now married staying closer to home supplementing world travels with trips up the coast with his wife, which Kevin describes as being “almost equally as epic.” He also digs “bro trips” as he calls them, sailing and spear fishing with his buddies, or cycling and camping up the coast. “I get weird too. I’ll Yoga every now and then.”
- That’s not weird at all, dude. We Yoga too, we’re cool with it.

It seems as those these bro trips will have to be put on hold for the time being though as Kevin is planning on releasing a new full length album this year – currently with 2 EPs on the market (available on iTunes “Kevin Miso”, and “Smile”). Be sure to check his website for album release dates and live shows.

So there you have it. Kevin Miso. I guess the one knock we have is that his social networking skills are “weak sauce” (he said it, not us). So do us a favor, “like” his facebook page (enter fb page) and follow him on twitter (enter twitter handle) - While Kevin is still living in the 90’s claiming “word of mouth is still king” (which is totally cool, man) tweets may be sparse but that just makes them all the more special when they appear.

Lastly, if you have the chance to see KM live, do so. We’re sure you’ll enjoy yourself and if you do, go let him know as he’ll most likely be mingling, bevy in hand, after the show – Thanks for your time Kev. Good luck with everything and we’re looking forward to the new album.
- All Indie Magazine

"Live review: Donavon Frankenreiter brings breezy sounds to extended Coach House standing room only set"

Summer may not officially arrive for a few more days, but don’t tell that to the 500 or so family members, friends and fans of singer-songwriter Donavon Frankenreiter who packed into the Coach House Friday night.
Given his mix here of surf grooves, folk and ’70s rock via a fast-paced, 90-minute set of mostly original material, it was easy to imagine Frankenreiter and his sharp five-man band playing the same set at Doheny or Huntington Beach on a perfect day under a summer sun.

The longtime O.C.-based artist, who now primarily lives in Hawaii, has increasingly been able to craft shows in tune with his audience. He set things in motion with laid-back soft-rock like the inviting ukulele-anchored “Free,” a song that captures the noted surfer’s free-spirited musical blend and positive lyrical themes. Subsequent offerings such as “Glow,” “West Coast Fool” and “Shine” also reflected that casual style without forfeiting tight melodies or polished songcraft.

Opening was singer-songwriter Kevin Miso, who shares a similar love of the Jack Johnson-esque surf/folk/rock sound. His impressive ability to play a variety of instruments, often during the same song, came in the service of potent originals such as “Home” and “Smile.” The highlight was “Finally,” an R&B ballad featuring wonderful vocals and piano play. - The Orange County Register

"Kevin Miso, Gearing Up For His Upcoming Full Album and Tour"

The first time I saw Kevin Miso, I was hiding behind a rack of board shorts in a Quicksilver shop. Thankfully, this boy’s pretty smart, and he soon figured out that the awkward stalker girl was actually a shy writer girl. A lovely conversation followed, and I went home singing his praises along with his sophomore EP, Smile. Almost a year has passed since that night, so when Kevin arrived for our interview I was excited to hear about the sweet SoCal sounds he’d been conjuring up.

And has this man been busy! Miso has had quite the year, dividing his time between many different things: working on his first full album, a West Coast tour, two television appearances (a live gig on Good Day LA and a song placement on Necessary Roughness), a writing trip in Bodega Bay, and caring for his new son, little Kai. Yet with all the madness in his life, Kevin’s devotion to his music is still strong as ever.

“There’s a lot of material that I’ve been cataloging for the past year,” he said. “Like, 20 songs I’ve demo-ed.”

The songs vary in genre, a testament to Miso’s musical versatility. There’s the reggae track, “Let You Go,” the romantic “Little Things” (dedicated to Kevin’s wife) and “Sweet Love,” a song that Kevin explained with a sly little smile:

“It’s my first full sex song,” he said. “It’s about wanting to, you know, make sweet love.”

Miso also called “Sweet Love” his first “balls-out party song,” a foray into rock produced under the watchful eye of Black Crowes’ guitarist Marc Ford.

“I thought [‘Sweet Love’] sounded like a Black Crowes song, like ‘Hard to Handle.’” Kevin spoke reverently of working with Marc, as well as producer Warren Huart, who worked on both of Kevin’s prior EPs. It was clear as he spoke that this album is something he’s excited about, something he’s been looking forward to for quite some time.

“I’m 100% independent,” Kevin said discussing the distribution of his album. He’s looking to book a national tour soon, as well as shopping around for a label to represent him.

“I have the songs… I can cut them in two weeks,” he explained, “I want to do a real PR campaign.”

Kevin’s sunny California sound is one that strikes a chord here at home, and is sought after in other, less sunny states, so I can only imagine that Kevin’s star will continue to rise as he continues to tour. In the meantime, you can pick up Kevin’s music on iTunes, or catch him performing live at various beachside venues this summer. - Music in Press

"Kevin Miso Takes a Clear-Headed Approach to Island Soul"

Though we stumble across plenty of summery singer/songwriters during festival season, most of them seem pretty forgettable by the time winter rolls around. When Kevin Miso came onstage and owned his set during the Doheny Surf Festival in August, his smooth, soulful, acoustic tunes carried bright notes that made it impossible to stand still. Given the glut of rasta-ish acoustic acts in OC, finding one that actually leaves you feeling high from the songs alone is rare. Probably because unlike a lot of his influences, the songs from this Long Beach family man steer clear of the weed-toking, partying lifestyle of some of his musical influences. The results successfully avoid the stoner clichés ascribed to whiteboy reggae.

Golden boy
Location Info
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The Coach House
33157 Camino Capistrano, Ste. C
San Juan Capistrano, CA 92675 Category: Music Venues Region: San Juan Capistrano
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Kevin Miso performs with Donavon Frankenreiter at the Coach House, 33157 Camino Capistrano, San Juan Capistrano, (949) 496-8930; Wed., 8:30 p.m. $25-$30. All ages.

For more information, visit

Hey, Orange County/Long Beach musicians and bands! Mail your music, contact info, high-res photos and impending show dates for possible review to: Locals Only, OC Weekly, 2975 Red Hill Ave., Ste 150, Costa Mesa, CA 92626. Or e-mail your link to:
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More About
Kevin MisoLong Beach (New York)SevilleBob MarleyLed Zeppelin
Instead, Miso's drug of choice has always been travel. Every time he strums his guitar, he has hot, exotic excursions on his mind. "When I started writing music, it was mainly based on surf trips," Miso says. "Then I moved to Seville, Spain, for six months, and that's when I really started writing music. When I hit the road, I get most of my material."

Living in a foreign country proved to be difficult for Miso until he found a way to break communication barriers with the locals. "There was a park across the street from where I was living, and I remember a group of people just hanging out there, so I grabbed my guitar and walked over," recalls Miso. "I could speak Spanish, but not very well at this point, and they couldn't speak English well at all, so I was having a lot of communication breakdowns. But we all ended up hanging out, and I played for them on this random day in the middle of the week. It was a really cool connection."

It was after this pivotal moment that Miso realized his music was his creative outlet—diary entries for the thoughts fed by a happy, humble attitude with a surfer twist.

"I'm at that point in my career where I have a base of really supportive people," says Miso. "That has been the push I needed to go, 'Okay, I'm going to trust my instincts 200 percent,' as opposed to guessing and hoping what I do works."

Miso draws from such typical inspirations as Bob Marley, Led Zeppelin and Sublime. However, life-changing events such as becoming a father coupled with his traveling itch and humanitarian tendencies give his music a down-to-earth feeling. Onstage, he breathes life into simplistic reggae jams by building beats and compositions on the spot with a loop pedal that creates a striking piecemeal sound that builds slowly. After releasing two EPs—Smile and a self-titled one—he is now gearing up for his first full-length album, due out in spring 2013.

"Recently, I [got] married, and we just had a baby, so a lot of change has happened with that," says Miso. "My son, Kai, has been a huge inspiration and influence the past eight months."

As Kai turns the corner to toddlerhood, Miso often finds himself chasing around the cute, newly mobile mini-grom. "It's a trip to have a career in which you can share your experiences through a certain medium," says Miso. "I write not just about me, but also about a lot of things I connect with friends or strangers over."

Miso's full-length album draws from his jamming-style roots, but has more structure, truncating his 30-minute jams into two- or three-minute tracks. His recent jam partner, Black Crows lead guitarist Marc Ford, collaborated on the album and served as a solid foundation, as well.

"We're basically splashing paint in the studio," said Miso. "We're going to take these strong song formats and really capture the idea, the kind of 'now is the time,' not worrying about later or before, just right now." - OC Weekly


Kevin Miso EP - Released February 2011
Produced by Warren Huart
All Songs written by Kevin Miso
Drums - Victor Indrizzo, Nik Hughes
Bass - Jon Flaugher, Mike Bucher
Guitars - Tim Pierce
Keys - Steve Aguilar
Guitars, Piano, Vox - Kevin Miso

Smile EP - Released July 2011
Produced by Warren Huart
All Songs written by Kevin Miso
Drums - Nik Hughes
Bass - Mike Bucher
Guitars, Uke, Piano, Harmonica - Kevin Miso



Kevin Miso is a Southern California singer/songwriter. Born and raised in Long Beach, California, Miso’s music is very much a product of his background and upbringing. His father is of Hawaiian descent and his mother is full-blooded Irish. When describing his music, Kevin explains, “There’s a duality to my songs for sure. There’s definitely that laid-back surf feel to a lot of the tunes; but there’s also this contrasting, more folk-influenced element that comes out one way or another.”

The youngest of four children, Miso is a natural entertainer and picked up on music right away. “As a kid, I remember the upright piano in the dining room, and guitars would always be on the couch,” he recalls, “And at any family function, you HAD to perform something!” After teaching himself guitar, Kevin started to focus on his own music while attending college at UCSB in Santa Barbara.

Since then, Miso has taken to music full-time. As an independent musician he has averaged over 170 shows per year, sharing the stages with artists as varied as Augustana, Sublime with Rome, The English Beat, and John Cruz. Equipped with a loop pedal and an array of toys, Miso showcases as a multi-instrumentalist – playing guitars, bongos, djembe, keyboards, and an occasional harmonica.

Recently, Miso collaborated with producer Warren Huart (The Fray, Matisyahu, Colbie Caillat) to record his eponymous debut EP. Along with 3 studio singles, Kevin chose to feature live, filmed, in-studio takes on the EP as well. Miso explains, “I wanted to capture the feeling of my live shows… so I figured we’d just do the tracks live.”

Influenced by 70s-era songwriters such as James Taylor and Paul Simon, as well as current artists like Ray Lamontagne and Jack Johnson, Kevin Miso’s authenticity comes in his diversity. “It’s Pop music… period. But I play with the format a bit,” he admits, “You won’t get the same sound over and over, cause that’s just not who I am. These songs are about my life, and are in the context of my lifestyle; but there’s a universal message in there that I think relates to everyone. I guess to really get it, you’ll just have to listen.”

Kevin’s debut EP was released on Feb 8th, 2011. His follow-up Summer EP “Smile” was released July 22nd, 2011.

Miso is working on a full-length album to be released this coming Summer 2013