The Language of Creativity Podcast

2020 Hindsight – Christiane Kinney (Celtic Musician/Entertainment Attorney) Ep.14

December 29, 2020

AB-5 sucks! Covid sucks! Zoom school SUCKS! 2020 pretty much sucked. But you know what doesn’t suck? Being an everyday hero like our guest Christiane Cargill Kinney.


As an entertainment lawyer, Christiane Kinney has represented Platinum-selling and Grammy-winning artists and estates as well as independent artists, Presidential candidates, festivals, music tech start-ups, artists, and avatars (wha!?). A consummate creative, Chris is also an award-winning singer/songwriter, a voting member of the Recording Academy, and has won numerous awards from Billboard, ASCAP, the International Songwriting Competition, and the Global Music Awards, to name a few. 


She’s been recognized as the #1 Music Law Resource to follow on Twitter (by CD Baby), and was named in Glamour Magazine’s Woman of the Year issue for her charity work in bringing music and art programs to at-risk youth in Southern California. A frequent speaker on entertainment law panels, radio talk shows, Chris wrote a regular legal advice column for CD Baby to provide legal guidance to independent artists. Yet somehow on top of all this, she’s also a recording musician, a mom of two and still manages to stay constantly upbeat with a wicked sense of humor!


In this episode, Steve and Chris discuss the pitfalls and joys(?) of the new normal: Zoom work, Zoom school, house concerts, social media meltdowns, and the melee that is parenting during quarantine. And as if the rest of 2020 wasn’t enough, Chris was thrown a curveball along with the rest of us when the entertainment industry shut down in the wake of COVID-19. Undaunted, Chris saw this as an opportunity to found her own entertainment law firm, Kinney Law, P.C. in June of 2020, focusing on ways she could help artists and offset the substantial loss in touring revenue during these unprecedented times.


Christiane discovered her love for the piano when she was only three years old. After seeing the musical production “Annie,” she immediately went home and plinked out all the songs by ear. As Chris recalls,  “...There were moments in those shows where the artists I’m sure were tapping into the soul of their instruments.” Chris and Steve go on to geek out about their love for pianos and explore what it was that got them into music. As Chris says, “I think every musician will tell you, there's not a choice... you just have to do it... it calls to you in a really deep, meaningful way where, that is what you do.”


Will this be the “MOST DEPRESSING PODCAST EVER!”? or will laughter prevail as the best medicine? You be the judge!

Featured Music:

Earnestine by Christiane Cargill Kinney

Isle of Skye by Christiane Cargill Kinney​

Christiane Kinney:


Law Practice: 

Kinney Law



Artist side:

Almost (Album) by Christiane Cargill Kinney
Riddle the Sphinx


Personal: website

Pepperdine Alum Spotlight

Instagram: @musicalredhead

Twitter: @musicalreadhead             


Charitable Foundation:


Episode References:

Sean Kinney:,,

World Record of Jumping Jacks while on Fire

Hollywood Clown (Book by Jason Lassen)

Don’t Call Us Tori (how Steve and Christiane met)
Ruthann Friedman: "Everyone Knows it’s Windy" (made famous by The Association)

David Peters, Oak House Recording Studios

Killarney Star, IG: @killarney_star

Elizabeth (Libbie) Schrader

Gilli Moon
Marina V
Christo Pellani -
Don Teschner and the WaterDawgs

Marvel Jensen


LA Times: "What a year it was: A 2020 Timeline" (California lockdown begins March 14, 2020)
[you can postpone the paywall by launching the above link in a private browsing window]
A look back at LA County hiking trail closures (ModernHiker)

AB-5 (background)

LA TIMES: "The AB5 backlash: Singers, actors, dancers, theaters sound off on freelance law" "America's Rural/Urban Divide: A Special Series"


Blurred Lines lawsuit (can you look for?) 

Pharell & Rick Rubin interview

“Word Crimes” by Weird Al Yankovic
(Which is NOT an example of the point I was making, it is a direct parody of “Blurred Lines”)

Albuquerque, By Weird Al Yankovic, is said to be written in the style of “Dick’s Automotive” by The Rugburns.


Exclaim!*@#: “Vanilla Ice ​Apparently Owns the Rights to 'Under Pressure'”
CD Baby DIY Musician: Understanding music copyrights, Form PA and SR


Power Distance Index, explained (article)
Malcolm Gladwell, Outliers (GoodReads)


Luke Bryan - Rain Is A Good Thing (“Rain makes corn, corn makes whiskey”)
Jeff Richmond (Tina Fey’s husband)
The Firm

Awaken with JP
Ready Player One (film)

Ready Player One (book)



Tags: Freelancing, VR, house concerts, covid, quarantine, losing your job, filter-bubbles, Blurred Lines lawsuit, attorney, Pharrell, Thicke, copyright, binge watching, dinner and a show, Zoom fatigue, Burning Man, avatars, community, meditation, Karens, memes, echo chamber, FAANG, precedent, declaratory judgment, IP litigation, musicologists, samples, audio mixing, copyright infringement, songwriting, streaming, riots, dystopia, Idiocracy, Ready Player One, AB-5, independent contractor, 1099, loan-out corporations, Disney+, Hamilton,making puzzles, Annie, piano, pipe organ, nunnery, St. Joseph’s, performance art, bucket list, professional clowns, Robert De Niro drum circle, Guinness Book of World Records, Roger Corman, Don't Call Us Tori, SXSW, giving back, Children of the Night, #everydayhero, the power of sleep, personal power, boundaries


Language of Creativity’s host Steven Leavitt enjoys discussing the ins and outs of all aspects of creating, creativity, and life with his fellow creators: artists, inventors, designers, producers and more. Along the way he hopes to gain perspective and multiply our understanding of what we share in common while creating, living, and learning.





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