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June 05, 2023

Every Artist, Everywhere, All At Once

By Keyshaun Childs

2023 is the year of stories at Hamilton East Public Library. Every month on our blog, we’re featuring a guest writer from our community to share in their own words what the library means to them. We hope these stories will demonstrate that there’s something for everyone at the library, and you belong here. 

Our June library story speaks about the library as an outlet for creative expression and a refuge for a passionate artist.

Expectedly Unexpected

“It was probably one the coldest days during fall of 2022, when, out of nowhere, a sudden wave of depression hit me. It was like a car trying to speed past an oncoming train. I had not recorded music in almost a year at this point. As an artist, I feel as if I am utterly useless if I am not creating something, and, of course, music is my ultimate something. Luckily for me, I am subject to a lifesaving phenomenon. No matter where I go, how far I travel, or where I end up, I have had free access to a recording studio of some sort. This time around, it just so happened to be the Ignite Studio at Hamilton East Public Library. My name is Keyshaun Childs, and this is the story of how a library saved my life.

Change is Coming

Calvin is the name of the foster parent that I was staying with after I ventured forth from living with my mother in Detroit. Calvin lived in Fishers, Indiana, a place that will be burned in the center of my mind for as long as I walk this earth. He introduced me to a library that so happened to be a five-minute walk away from his house. It took me a while to give it a try… because I was afraid. 20 years old…and I was afraid. At the time, my mental health was in terrible condition. My mother had just passed, I wasn’t motivated, and all of my friends were jealous of me. I felt like an outcast. How could I show my face to anyone while in that condition?

Change is Almost Here

One day, as I sat there contemplating my life and driving myself crazy wondering what I will do, it dawned upon me that everything I needed was right in front of me. I got up and walked in the freezing cold to the Hamilton East Public Library that was only 5-10 minutes away, hoping to relieve my depression, hoping to find a sense of belonging. Upon meeting the staff, I realized not all people are bad people. I felt as if I was just adopted into a new family, even though I had barely known them for an hour. At this very moment, I knew change was coming, and it was coming fast! But, of course, it still wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows.

Change is Here

So, a couple months fly by like clockwork, and I am absolutely flying through tracks! I’m talking about sessions almost every day in the Ignite AV Studio, ranging from 4-7 hours each! Now, when they first introduced me to the Ignite Studio, they mentioned a limit of 6 hours per week when it came to using the recording studio. I guess they just disregarded that after they saw how much joy and life it brought me. I was going so much that there had started to be no question what I was coming there for. They knew what I wanted, and they were absolutely delighted to provide me with that. However, at that time, I wasn’t making the most appropriate music, and this is part of the reason why I am glad the Ignite staff didn’t ask to listen to it right away. While in the AV Studio, I used the software known as Studio One. As if by some bizarre luck, I had already had an incredible amount of knowledge and experience with using this software. There’s also a plethora of different microphones, but I tend to stick with the basic recording microphone. I’m also a frequent user of the Ignite Fab Lab heat press and sublimation station when it comes to making t-shirts for my merch.

During the Change

I used to go by a much more rebellious name: KLOWDYKATOA. Ignite Studio was the outlet for this persona, a young artist with aspirations of taking the world by storm. Little did I realize, the music I was making at the time was destroying me in a way that I was oblivious to. I knew I needed to do something different. Luckily, I met a young woman who would soon become my wife, and that changed my entire perspective on life. This brought about a new stage name, better music, and a secular-free approach to my tracks. I evolved into an artist that ascends beyond the stereotype of what an artist is. I have evolved into Keyshaun Angelvoice. None of this would have been possible without Hamilton East Public Library as a whole.

Change is Good

Within a year, I went from a dark and unmotivated wannabe artist to an amazing pioneer of the next generation of artists to come. It’s all thanks to staff members, like Kris Hurst and the rest of the Ignite staff, for believing in me as an artist. After recently hearing my music for the first time after a year of coming to the Ignite Studio, they gave me the opportunity to be a part of this amazing blog series they have on their official library website and participate in a Maker Spotlight blog on the Ignite website. I could not imagine their reactions to my music if I had not changed my overall approach to making tracks. This phenomenal library will forever be one of the most important chapters in the story of the greatest artist who has ever lived.”

About Keyshaun Childs:

Keyshaun Childs, who goes by the artist name {Keyshaun Angelvoice}, released his most recent album on major streaming platforms, including Spotify and Apple Music, in March 2023. He has been producing music for several years.

“I know for a fact that music is the path for me. I will be the one to change it for the better.”

Listen to the latest music by Angelvoice here.

Have your own library story to share? Tell us about it here, and we’ll pick a few to be featured on our blog! You can also find storytelling resources and tips here

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