Up-And-Coming Musicians Perform And Inspire At Student Concert

Music graced the LaHaye Event Space  March 9 at the Student Activities concert with sophomore artist KMO preforming smooth originals alongside sophomore headliner Nolen Durham playing some of his own songs and covers. 

The crowd enthusiastically embraced their performances, often starting chains of rhythmic clapping and supportive cheers. Despite distanced seating, the energy of a community of students united through music was prevalent. 

Beginning the concert was KMO, who draws inspiration from popular artist John Bellion. He performed original songs from his upcoming album along with the unreleased title track called “The Garden.” 

“It’s fun to play in front of a lot of people I respect and value,” KMO said. “To be able to put on a good show for them, hopefully, is exciting. It can really make the difference between whether or not they have a good day.”

KMO has released music on popular streaming services like Spotify and Apple Music since 2019 but has been on platforms like Instagram for much longer. 

“I see how much of an impact music can have on people and how much of an emotional helper it is,” KMO said.

Following KMO was Nolen Durham, the main act of the night. He played some of his  originals, also taking time to contextualize his songs and offer insight to the crowd. 

Durham’s journey with music started early, with drums as his first instrument, and later moving to the guitar and vocals. He played all of these instruments during his performance.

“From a young age, I was always really into music, and so that’s kind of just always been my dream. My identity is being a musician,” Durham said. 

Durham draws inspiration from the band The 1975, playing a cover of their song “If You’re Too Shy (Let Me Know).”

Durham gave advice for people interested in entering the music industry.  

“Listen to podcasts,” Durham said. “Don’t ever settle, and always look for people better than you and try to learn from them.”

KMO shared similar advice to aspiring artists.

“Put out a lot of music, and expose people to what you’re trying to do,” KMO said. 

To all students, musicians or not, Durham gave an encouragement.

“Try to find contentment where you’re at, and realize that you’re in the process of learning,” Durham said.

Rhett Walker featuring Madison Laine Coker will perform at the next concert in the LaHaye Event Space April 9 at 7:30 p.m.

Anela Picotte is a Feature Reporter.

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