Hailing from the Cape Cod region of Massachusetts, Chad Kinnear grew up in small New England towns with unique names like Falmouth and Mashpee. Kinnear suffered numerous life- threatening injuries while he was growing up. Friends nicknamed him “Black Magic” because he continuously cheated death, over and over again. He’s survived everything from severe burns and electrocution, to poisoning and accidental overdose. Magic has been knocked down, time and time again, but he always finds a way to bounce back.
Young and uncertain of his interests, Magic started gravitating toward music when he was 12 years old. Having survived serious injuries, harsh life circumstances, and sporadic mental instability, music became a therapy, carrying Magic through the toughest times of his life. Realizing what his songs had done for him, Magic was determined to share it with others, recognizing how his healing words could guide listeners through their own personal tragedy. Identifying with misfortune, he adopted the fitting stage-name, Tragically Magic, and began using music to draw audiences through the darkness, into the light on the other side of trauma.
Tragically Magic pulls from a vast vocabulary, laying clever lyrics down in experimental rhyme schemes, delving deep into subjects which explore the complexities of the human psyche. His spoken word style weaves through an engaging backdrop of rhythm. His voice lifts audiences up, pulling them out of sorrow. With an original hip-hop sound, Tragically Magic integrates 90’s- style beats into his captivating raps. His early influences came from the music his parents listened to when he was a child. If Magic was with his dad, it was always classic rock legends, like AC/DC, but from his mother, he absorbed the smooth R&B styles of Usher and Ne-Yo.
Building his own music tastes as an adult, Magic notes, Dax and J. Cole, as two more artists impacting his approach to his own methodology. His work has evolved over time, expanding in length and depth, as Magic continues to develop as an artist, perfecting his craft along the way.
With over 100 songs written to date, Tragically Magic isn’t slowing down any time soon. Streaming across all major digital platforms, his momentum continues, and Tragically Magic is always working on something new. He is blazing forward with firey energy. His boxing mentality carries into all aspects of Magic’s life, giving him the strength to succeed against all odds. Sending this message to his fans, Tragically Magic offers compassion to anyone going through difficulty. “You are not alone,” Magic reminds his followers. “You do not have to fight alone, I’m here.” He makes himself personally available to all his fans through his social media outreach, giving support to anyone who needs it. Tragically Magic’s music is about getting beaten down again and again, finding the tenacity to push through, and building up the strength to keep fighting. Writing from the pain of physical injury, Tragically Magic pulls deep from the darkness of his soul, finds a guiding light, and holds it up for others. With a revolutionary approach to the current music culture, Tragically Magic blazes forward, bringing audiences out of low places, inspiring hope, and encouraging resilience.
Lisa: Your friends nicknamed you “Black Magic” when you were kid because you continuously cheated death. Could you tell us one of your death encountering stories?
Tragically Magic: Picking one story harder than surviving them. Back then I was a curious kid, always wanted to see how things worked and if they didn’t why not. Found this old car attachment with the copper wires just hanging out the back. A light up skull with ruby-like eyes that lights up when the car starts. I didn’t even realize I had my thumb on the wires when I gave it some power. Had the wires start melting into my skin right on my thumb. Felt my body heating up and I was basically shaking and in full panic mode. Probably was only like that for 5 minutes but it felt like forever trying to peel the wire out of my thumb like that.
Lisa: What was the moment when you’ve transitioned in fitting stage-name, Tragically Magic, and why?
Tragically Magic: I knew I needed something that stood out, something that would stand for who I am. I wasn’t ready to let go of the nickname, since the ‘Black’ from ‘Black Magic’ fell off over the years, ‘Magic’ grew on me. But it needed something more, something that described who I am. Telling a story from growing up, someone said “How Tragic” and that was it right there. Best fit word to describe my story til today, let ‘Magic’ be what describes my future left to be written.
Lisa: How did you feel after releasing debut track, “Best of It”?
Tragically Magic: To be completely honest, I was proud of Best of It but the impact fell so short at first my pride fell away. I wasn’t going to give up that easily though and every day thank myself that I didn’t. It was my first song, first time trying to send a message that meant something to me. I knew right there it wouldn’t be my last.
Lisa: I loved your song “Left Behind,” what was the inspiration for it?
Tragically Magic: Left Behind was a song really made from anger. When I crushed my feet back in 2016, I got my wakeup call for who really was there for me. People I talked to daily, never heard from again, my girlfriend at the time, left. My dreams and ambition and the ones I confided in and trusted, all gone before I could even say goodbye. That much pain, is what led to Left Behind as that is exactly how I felt and the song was my way of saying I didn’t anyone that had left.
Lisa: When you create music, what is your personal purpose or goal?
Tragically Magic: I create music, not just to share my own story, but to be an inspiration for perseverance. I write and create how I do to encourage people to keep moving forward and never quit, to show them life does get better if you keep trying.
Lisa: What is your favorite song you’ve written so far, and why?
Tragically Magic: I’ve honestly written far more than I’ve released and a lot of my favorites haven’t seen the microphone yet. From the Ashes is definitely my favorite writing, recording, rewinding it back to play again for the ones out. It has my favorite old school kind of beat that feels the most natural to me with the clearest message I feel anyone can relate to. With the passing of 2020 as well, it’s beyond fitting.
Lisa: How do you go about writing a song? Do you have a melody in your head and then write the other music for it?
Tragically Magic: When I go to write a song, I typically need some form of music or rhythmic noise playing in the background just to have some kind of pace in mind. The lyrics all come from the heart and things I’ve lived through personally. All it takes is one word, one phrase, one image, and its history from there.
Lisa: Where was your current project recorded, and tell me more about your process of recording, any collabs?
Tragically Magic: My last album, Inside, was written, produced, and recorded with my friend Burlee right here in Cape Cod, MA. We went from the idea or the feeling of the lyrics, translated that into the beats that were custom made for each track, to the hours we spent recording each one making every word felt. Coming up I have plans for a few collaborations this year but the details I’m keeping as a surprise for everyone.
Lisa: How do you nourish your creative side when you’re not working? And how do you avoid burnout?
Tragically Magic: Even when I’m not writing, I always have music playing. My Spotify wrapped had me for 90k+ minutes listening and thats not counting other DSPs. I practice different vocal styles and accents, different lyrical schemes or just how different I can take a song everyone knows, same words and same beat, and change the sound while keeping it heartfelt. I never let the music leave me so the creative side never leaves. As for burnout, I’ll admit I’ve come close a couple times writing 7-10 songs same week, doing it again the next week. I slowed myself down, write one, maybe two, then spend time with family or talking to my closest friends. I’ll take the time thinking of a visual for the song rather than trying to write the next one, just so I don’t reach the point I feel like I’m running out of words.
Lisa: What does your curiosity look like? How do you explore things?
Tragically Magic: I was a boxer first, and always will be a fighter. I walk in a room and analyze how can things move and what would it take to make things work. Nature and Space I gravitate to so much more because I can’t just look and in a moment know. They grow, they move, they change, but never in ways we can always see and predict and thats what makes them interesting.
Lisa: What are you currently working on, and what’s next for you?
Tragically Magic: Right now, I’m working on the next track, next album. Planning how big and life changing I can make it, knowing all too well I’ll be topping it with the next one. most artists make an album to be a roller coaster for the listeners. I plan to make every album, an amusement park. Have every song be a ride that connects to different people in different ways. Inside was a 20 track album, focused on the mentality of doubt and perseverance, of being broken but not defeated. The next one will make that seem like nothing in comparison.