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Kitchen Dwellers Releases "Stand At Ease" to Help Raise Mental Health Awareness


Kitchen Dwellers Releases "Stand At Ease" to Help Raise Mental Health Awareness

Kitchen Dwellers shared their new song “Stand At Ease” in collaboration with Backline, and in time for World Mental Health Day on October 10. No matter how silent the struggle with mental health may seem, its effects loom as loudly as an earthquake throughout the music industry. Without prejudice, even heroes sometimes succumb to its throes. 

Kitchen Dwellers decided not to stay silent on their 2021 single “Stand At Ease.” Following the tragic suicides of a personal hero and close collaborator, the Bozeman, MT quartet—Shawn Swain [Mandolin], Torrin Daniels [banjo], Joe Funk [upright bass], and Max Davies [acoustic guitar]—composed the tune in an effort to not only heal, but remind anyone struggling, “You’re not alone.” 

“The main thing we want to do is raise awareness and create engagement with people who are struggling, but also encourage those who aren’t struggling to support the community,” says Funk. “It’s a big issue in the music industry. Road life escalates any mental health issue present in someone’s life, so we’re trying to talk about it.”

“Stand At Ease” took shape over the next year, and the guys recorded it during the 2021 sessions for their third full-length album, in Minneapolis with producer Cory Wong of Vulfpeck. It addresses suicide head-on with the hook, “I can’t stand to see what you’ve done to be free,” as banjo and piano entwine in a somber serenade.

“Initially, I wanted to write it from the perspective of kids who lost their parents to suicide,” he elaborates. “It’s a reminder there are people who love you and you probably have no idea. The song portrays you’re not alone. You can reach out. Personally, it’s the song I’m most proud of. I really want it to do good in the world.”

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By partnering with Backline, it will invariably do just that.

“Whether you’re struggling with depression, anxiety, or substance abuse, maybe the song can trigger a happy thought or urge you to reach out to a friend, organization, or even lift yourself up,” he leaves off. “Maybe we can uplift even one person with this.”

In the near decade they’ve been together, the Montana-based four-piece has performed for thousands at Red Rocks, shared bills with the likes of Railroad Earth, The Infamous String Dusters, and Twiddle, graced festival stages from Northwest String Summit to WinterWonderGrass, and transcended traditional genre boundaries, blending virtuosic bluegrass wizardry with ecstatic rock and roll energy and adventurous psychedelia. The group has come fully into their own, seamlessly blending the past, present, and future of string band music. 


Kitchen Dwellers on Tour:

Oct 14 @ The Charleston Pour House | Charleston, SC

Oct 15 @ Smith’s Olde Bar | Atlanta, GA

Oct 16 @ The High Watt | Nashville, TN

Oct 21 @ Salvage Station | Asheville, NC 

Oct 22 @ The Music Yard at SouthBound | Charlotte, NC

Oct 23 @ Pour House | Raleigh, NC

Oct 26 @ 8x10 | Baltimore, MD

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Oct 27 @ World Cafe | Philadelphia, PA

Oct 28 @ Brooklyn Bowl | Brooklyn, NY 

Oct 29 @ The Hollow Bar + Kitchen | Albany, NY

Oct 30 @ Electric Haze | Worcester, MA 

Oct 31 @ Brooklyn Bowl Las Vegas | Las Vegas, NV

11/3 @ The Press Room | Portsmouth, NH

11/4 @ Higher Ground | South Burlington, VT

11/5 @ Brighton Music Hall | Boston, MA

11/6 @ Portland House of Music and Events | Portland, ME 

11/7 @ Bank of NH Stage | Concord, NH 

12/10 @ Knotty Pine | Victor, ID 

12/11 @ The Depot | Salt Lake City, UT 

12/30 @ Elm | Bozeman, MT

12/31 @ Elm | Bozeman, MT


Backline is a 501(c)(3) non-profit that connects music industry professionals and their families with mental health and wellness resources. We want to build a safer and more supportive music industry by helping our community access quality mental health care providers that understand this line of work.

Photo by DeWook Photography

originally published: 10/12/2021

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