Quarantining at her LA home, musician Kimber Kristy couldn’t help but think of the folks who help others and risk their safety, like first responders, nurses and doctors.
“I could tell how much they were really struggling,” she said. “I could tell they were exhausted physically and emotionally.”
Kristy paid tribute to them with the song “Hard Times” and its corresponding video, which features health care workers from LA and Glendale, Arizona.
“I recorded it in April 2020,” she said. “I started asking my friends who were first responders or in the health care industry for photos of themselves and anyone they knew who they thought should be recognized as well.
“The response to the video has been so touching and overwhelming. I never expected the pandemic would have lasted this long. The video and song are still relevant today.”
Kristy, who moved from Connecticut to DTLA in 2018, rereleased the song in light of the recent COVID-19 surge and the struggles that have been reignited.
“It’s worse now than it ever was,” said Kristy, who runs public programs at the Grammy Museum. “That’s what inspired me to start circulating the song again. I’ve gotten so many comments and messages from people who were so touched. I’m glad I could help in some small way.
“The people I know who are health care workers, it means a lot to them. They play it after a hard day at work. It’s very touching.”
Kristy has wanted to be a musician since she was young. Her first concert was seeing Jackson Browne with her parents.
“They loved listening to music,” Kristy said. “The two of them really love Bruce Springsteen. Most of the time, they went to Bruce Springsteen shows. I’m surprised that wasn’t my first concert.”
Christy started playing cello in high school and, upon graduation, attended the Berklee College of Music. She moved to LA because she wanted to be surrounded by people who loved music as much as she did.
“I love the environment here,” she said. “I love being at shows. With the Grammy Museum, we were seeing live performances all the time. It’s difficult now. It’s very, very difficult not having those parts of our lives. It’ll make it exciting when we go back.”
Kristy has spent her quarantine making music. Last December, she released “A Different Kind of Christmas,” about the experience many had about the holidays. It was played on her hometown station in Connecticut.
“It was really nice — especially because I wasn’t able to go home for Christmas this year,” she said. “It was nice that, in place of it, my parents could hear my song on the radio.”