Kim Kylland has been playing and writing music for most of her life. Little did she know, her songs would be featured on a television show she helped to create.
Kim is a Nashville-based television producer, songwriter and vocalist who started writing music when she was 12.
Growing up in Southern California, there was always music playing in her house, especially country music. Kim got her first guitar around the age of 14 and was inspired by her love for music that came decades before her.
She brought her passion for music overseas to Dublin, Ireland when she was 18. For about a year, Kim busked for a living, playing songs on the street during the day and playing gigs at night.
Kim has been performing and sharing her love for music ever since, releasing music under her surname “Kylland.”
“To me, songwriting is so much about connecting with people,” Kim says. “When I’m writing, I’m always keeping the world in mind — how people can be moved by the music.”
Kim has been writing and performing with her husband Todd Schramke since 2017. The same year, they began traveling to Acapulco, Mexico to film their documentary, The Anarchists.
Originally, Kim was going to be the composer for the project, but she ended up becoming an executive producer and co-creator.
The documentary centers around a group of people who are part of an anarchist movement in Mexico, attempting to live outside of nation-states and central banks.
The project took about six years to finish in its entirety. After pitching it to many television networks, HBO picked up the show and created a six-episode series out of it, directed by Todd with Kim as executive producers. What started as a two-person project is now streaming on HBO for the world to see.
“This project was my introduction to filmmaking,” Kim says. “It’s a really crazy human story with interesting, nuanced ways of looking at life.”
Kim also contributed two of her own songs to the series, titled “Good Luck Kid (Knock on Wood)” and “Turbulence.” The songs are inspired by specific people who appear in the series, and both songs will appear on Kim’s upcoming album, coming out next year.
Since working on “The Anarchists,” Kim has learned the importance of building a strong team of connections and collaborators.
“Some of the biggest opportunities in my life have come from just connecting with people and striking up conversations,” she says.
“As hard as it is to have so many irons in the fire, it’s also really fun. I’m never ever bored — I don’t even know what that word means.”
Kim’s biggest piece of advice is to not be afraid to try something new.
“Wanting to try something new is wonderful and beautiful, and you should always go for that,” Kim says. “I wouldn’t be where I am if I didn’t decide to jump headlong into this new process of filmmaking in my early thirties. You’re never too old to try something new.”
Todd and Kim have their own production company, Bird Murmur, based in Nashville and specializing in documentary series, television commercials, branded content and music. Now, the two are starting to develop another documentary series centering around the history of punk rock.