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ICP 233 A Crowdfunding Fairytale with Musician Shawnee Kilgore


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In this episode you’ll learn:

  • How a famous film director backed a songwriting crowdfunding campaign
  • Why looking after yourself and feeling good is critical to your creativity
  • Shawnee’s best advice for aspiring musicians

Musician Shawnee Kilgore profile picture on the Inspirational Creatives podcast

In 2014, folk singer, musician, songwriter and photographer, Shawnee Kilgore, held up a card that said “I’m learning to ask for help.”

This honesty, creativity, and vulnerability, struck a chord with one particular music fan.

Not just any music fan.

But one of Hollywood’s most prominent film directors,

Joss Whedon.

Creator of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Firefly, The Avengers, and co-writer of Toy Story.

During Shawnee’s Kickstarter campaign, Joss decided he loved Shawnee’s music and voice so much they went on to co-write an EP, Back to Eden, together.

As part of Shawnee’s campaign, she created a personalised song for Joss.

In out chat today, Shawnee shares how this incredible story unfolded.

Plus the inspiration behind their music video and how it was produced using pioneering film technology and featuring an all-star cast.

Hear how Shawnee handled the business aspects of writing music together.

And how the challenges of this once-in-lifetime opportunity affected her humble songwriting, lifestyle and playing.

Items mentioned in this episode (quick access):

Writing music

[00:41] Introducing Shawnee Kilgore.

[02:07] How Shawnee got into playing music.

[03:28] When Shawnee knew music was her calling.

[04:00] The moment when Shawnee wrote her first song.

Singing the truth

[05:47] Shawnee shares what inspired her Kickstarter campaign.

[07:15] What Shawnee needed for her crowdfunding campaign.

[09:30] How Shawnee’s audience grew during her campaign.

[09:50] The best part of the campaign for her.

Big Giant Me

[10:30] Working with film director, Joss Whedon.

[12:15] How Joss got involved in Shawnee’s campaign.

[14:00] Meeting another musician who got backed by Joss, too.

[15:30] Shawnee describes their songwriting process.

[16:25] How Shawnee handled the business aspects of writing music together.

[18:10] Writing the song, Big Giant Me.

Back To Eden

[21:30] Using revolutionary film cameras. Challenges of making a music video.

[24:15] What Shawnee felt during the two day film shoot.

[25:45] Creating a script for the music video.

[27:15] What success looks like for Shawnee.

[29:25] How the experience has changed her personally and professionally.

[31:05] How the experience hasn’t changed her.

Feeling good – be yourself

[32:35] How Shawnee prepares for her ‘A’-game.

[34:30] Being the best you can.

[35:15] Making art when you’re unhappy.

[36:20] Keeping the Muse engaged.

[37:15] Shawnee’s best advice for aspiring musicians.


[40:40] What has inspired Shawnee recently.

[41:31] What Shawnee is grateful for today.

[42:14] Shawnee’s cat and chickens.

[44:00] Where you can connect with Shawnee, her chickens and her music.

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