Culture and Cadence: Field Medic: the medic that heals all.


Credit: @_fieldmedic on Instagram

Sam Kuramoto

Kevin Patrick Sullivan, known by his stage moniker Field Medic, has revived the instrumentation of music past with the themes of today in an incredibly beautiful way. Labeled an indie folk artist, Field Medic utilizes the sounds of rustic guitar, tasteful banjo and crackly production to provide a vehicle for his vocal poetics. Upon first listen, you might even think some of his songs were recorded in his bedroom with minimal equipment, and you would be correct. A vintage sound with polished and relatable topics is truly a gem in today’s musical culture, and I promise you don’t want to miss out on it.

Field Medic holds a special place in my heart. Personally, I found him when I needed him the most, roughly over a year ago in the swing of the pandemic. The first thing I noticed about him and his songwriting was the sheer amount of vulnerability that permeated through the entirety of his albums, namely his 2020 release of Floral Prince. Each song was very much like a page of a journal, almost as if you were to use the most intrapersonal entries of your diary in a song. Like in an actual diary, each individual song is produced in a certain way to convey the overall emotion that Sullivan is trying to communicate. The production on “It’s So Lonely Being Sober” is gritty and raw, using a single condenser mic for the guitar and a suitcase as a bass drum, whereas “Better Way” is crisp and clean. The majority of his music is done in one take, usually with minimal equipment and only an idea for lyrics. In an interview with Atwood Magazine in October of 2020, he explains his respect for rappers like Future and the Migos as they both claim to freestyle every track in the studio.

“I’m not trying to say that I freestyle everything, but I just like that mentality of sort of letting your subconscious dictate the song a little bit. It’s along the same lines as first thought, best thought.”

Field Medic represents a vulnerable part of us that we have a hard time coming to terms with. Putting it all out there is a lot easier said than done, and I have a lot of respect for the difficult themes that permeate the majority of Sullivan’s projects. Upon my continued interests in his music, I noticed how in tune he is with his fans. Like most people, I have a hard time involving myself and my interests in music that I can’t connect to, and Field Medic places a lot of his emphasis on connection with his fans. Not only does he so poetically express struggles that we as people have a hard time expressing, his relationship with his fan base is particularly respectable. I have personally interacted with him multiple times on Twitter and Tik Tok, which makes me feel even more so connected and appreciated.

Field Medic is opening for Adam Melchor on the Full Band Tour this Saturday on November 6th at Union Stage. Check out his most recent album Floral Prince and keep up with his social media @_fieldmedic on all platforms. You’re sure to find something that piques your interest and pulls at your heartstrings.