February 16, 2020
We can still feel the heat from Keith Cullen's latest release "Fire and Fever". This track brings us soft, clean guitars over Cullen's deep, raw lyrics. This is a song that can be related to in many ways, however, there is a deeper meaning for him.
Keith Cullen is a gay man who grew up in Ireland, a conservative country where he was often forced to hide who he truly was. Despite running a successful company, he felt run down. He walked away from it to pursue a career in music. "Being a singer-songwriter is like public journaling," says Cullen, "through the years of undoing locked-up layers of unhealthy, automated mental programs, I found myself." During this time, he was diagnosed with stage 3 bladder cancer and sought immediate surgery and treatment. This was at the height of his album charting in the Billboards, and he had to put everything on hold to face everything head-on. This included his working and health patterns, as well as his sexuality.
In January, Cullen released a video for "Fire and Fever." It shows him alone, isolated and raw. One could say he made himself vulnerable and exposed to the world he is proud of who he is to show others who struggle to freely express their identity out of fear of what could come next. "Facing reality with self-kindness is the only real way to live; it's certainly how I've learned to survive and love myself and others." He hopes to share his story with others facing their own reality.
Keith Cullen teamed up with Cleveland artist Mooke Da God to remix the track for the accompanying video. Of collaborating with him, Cullen says they share a mutual experience, "being gay in a society where it is unacceptable to be who you truly are"
"Fire and Fever" is available now, we truly wish Keith Cullen the very best in his journey of continual growth and passion to help others!
Listen to "Fire and Fever" here.
This single shows a vulnerable and raw display of you for everyone to see. What has it been like to watch this single become what it is today?
To see growth in one's self I think is one of the most beautiful yet challenging things we face as human beings! I think being honest and raw as a songwriter/Creator takes courage and that's what I feel 2020 is about for everyone. really stepping into who they truly are. Your video features you with simple yet powerful effects as if the audience is seeing you completely exposed, displaying yourself for all to see. When did you begin to plan out this video, what was most important for the video to translate to viewers?
I got to work with 2 amazing people on this shoot, Santiago Valencia who directed and Antonio Barbosa who produced it so planning it out was made easy as they were so awesome to work with. It was my first time taking a role as a creative director and because of that I really wanted to be myself and find that vulnerability on screen. We worked for 16 hours to get the shots where you get to feel the emotion.
How have you found the reception to your music among Irish fans, particularly hometown fans who may have never known that you would be as musically gifted as you are? I am actually returning to Ireland for the first time properly in 5 years this spring to show them some love and plan some long overdue shows. while I am there I always feel called to write new material so I really looking forward to that.
You mentioned that you'd love the opportunity to work with those who struggle like you. What is your message to those who struggle with identity? Take steps every day as hard as it may be to show yourself the kindness and love that you deserve! If I had of accepted myself the way others did it would have been a much smoother path for me mentally.