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St. Charles couple to take listeners on musical journey

St. Charles couple Al and Susan Schubert promise to take concert-goers on a musical journey from 1962 through 2013 when they perform March 16 at Kiss The Sky record store in Batavia.

Those who attend the show will be treated to a smorgasbord of musical styles, including rock, country, blues and everything in between. The show starts at 8 p.m., and admission is $5. Kiss The Sky is located at 180 First St. in downtown Batavia.

Al Schubert plays guitar and keyboards and sings lead vocals. His wife will accompany him on percussion and background harmonies.

Kane County Chronicle reporter Eric Schelkopf had the chance to talk to the couple about their music.

Eric Schelkopf: I understand that you will be performing songs that reflect your different musical interests over the years, Al.

Al Schubert: That’s right.

Susan Schubert: But I think that most of the songs are timeless, like The Beatles. You can listen to The Beatles now, and you just love them as much as you did back then.

It’s feel-good music, and it’s kind of timeless. It brings back fond memories of other music they’ve listened to.

AS: As I’m writing a song, I’ll find different influences that just come out of the listening that I’ve done and the types of music I’ve played before.

SS: I think that Al has a style that is his own, but it’s not just a singular thing, so all his songs don’t sound the same.

ES: You’ve written more than 500 songs, Al. Is it going to be hard to choose which ones you will perform at the Kiss The Sky show?

AS: It will be. But the criteria that we set ourselves is that we are going to sing harmony on everything but one song. All but one song Sue and I are singing harmony on.

So, that gives us a smaller pool from which to draw songs from. And the one that I’m going to sing that Susan doesn’t sing on, it’s an a cappella song. I sing it all by myself without any musical accompaniment whatsoever.

ES: You’ve been performing together since 1973. What do you get out of still performing?

SS: The excitement, and it just feels so good, even just practicing. It is just a really feel good vibe that you pick up.

AS: It’s all I ever wanted to do, period. I was 7 years old, and I used to do an air guitar version of “Hound Dog,” imitating Elvis.

It’s the music. Everything else is inconsequential next to that feeling of putting an idea across to an audience, and especially if it’s your idea, if you’re the one who crafted it, and then you put it across to the audience. It’s nirvana.

ES: So, what’s next in your musical careers?

SS: This is like a new beginning for us. We’re really going to try to get performances, and trying to get people to listen to Al’s music.

We’re sending out information to people like Robert Plant and Alison Krauss. He wants to sell one of his songs to somebody, and that is what we will be pushing for.

AS: And a contract. I want a contract with Disney. You get a contract with Disney, and Disney does everything. You get on “Good Morning America.”

They put the package together, they add all the nuances that you can’t really do in a recording studio in your house, and then they put it out there. So, I’m looking for a contract with Disney.

SS: I guess you’re never too old.

ES: So, you are shopping your songs around?

AS: It’s a maze trying to get to the right people, trying to get your stuff heard and presented to them. And most of them are so busy that they don’t have the time to sit and listen to something someone else has done.

I’m also trying to hook up with Willie Nelson. I think Willie, at his age, he’s got the patience and the understanding to listen to something.

SS: That’s where they get their music from, is from people like Al. Their new music isn’t always something they’ve written.

AS: There’s no time like the present.

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