“What else do you want? / What else do you need?/ What else do you want?/ Thought I gave you my all.” These words from the chorus of “My Goodbyes,” Pascal’s first single, pierce your heart as you feel his cry of pain and desperation through a passionate voice on a song that is so well produced and whose vocal performance is impressive.
Pascal Kerong’A is a Congolese singer-songwriter and a natural stage star based in Austin/Texas. He has performed at many iconic venues in Austin, The Live Music Capital of the World, including “The Far Out Lounge and Stage,” where he opened for the legendary Bill Callahan.
Born and raised in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Pascal came to the United States to complete his higher education in Economics when his life took an unexpected turn. A musician, that’s all that’s left of him. On the night of December, at an event organized by the International Office of The University of Texas at Austin, where he was enrolled, Pascal went on the stage to perform a song he had written a week earlier just for fun. That night summed up what you would call an aha moment as Pascal saw his life transform in front of him in a matter of minutes as he left the stage with an uproar of applause he didn’t expect. “It was like a dream,” Pascal says. “I was like, what’s going on here? Is this kid from Congo dreaming, or what?” he says as he laughs.
The next day, Pascal enrolled in an online voice lesson. The same week, he walked up to a pawn shop near his apartment and bought a keyboard and a guitar. The following semester, Pascal recruited a few of his classmates from 5 continents to form an International Music Group that he called “The International Student Music Group at UT Austin” in the wake of the Paris terrorist attack that left many people dead in November of 2015. The idea behind the project was to bring understanding amongst people from different backgrounds and beliefs and to celebrate our diversity. Together they wrote and performed a song titled “You And I For Peace.” The song features six languages. The International Office at The University of Texas sponsored the song’s recording and performance.
On February 22, 2022, the autodidact musician released “My Goodbyes,” his first song. He wrote the song during the Covid lockdown when the city, well the country, was left empty and everybody went home to their families, but he couldn’t go since his family is more than 8,000 miles away. He calls it “My Goodbyes” as a reference to the ravage and scars Covid left on many families who had to say goodbyes to their loved ones unexpectedly. After finding the song on Spotify, Bill Callahan asked Pascal to be the opening act for his Austin annual show on October 29, 2022.
On December 22 of the same year, Pascal released his second single, “Unknown To You,” a song originally recorded by the British singer-songwriter Jacob Banks.
The music Video for “Unknown To You” is set to be released in March 2023.
Pascal is currently preparing to embark on a tour with Bill Callahan through March 2023.
He is also finishing up the release of his first EP set to be released in the Summer of 2023. https://pascalkeronga.hearnow.com/unknown-to-you