ASCAP Expo 2017: Kate Thomas
Essentially I am an ‘Enfant de la Balle’, a great French expression that I heard once. Basically, I was born into a family of Singers and Musicians, therefore it is something that comes very naturally to me. I’ve also had quite the eclectic journey getting to where I am now. Originally I hail from Essex and my first ever singing job was singing Italian Opera there, on a chair, in a restaurant, in Bas Vegas, to be exact. I was quite the celebrity back in Basildon, I would get asked for my autograph in C&A, good times. I also went to East 15 Acting school. They have this brilliant motto there:
”To be human is enough!”
It’s pretty hippy and out there but its so true. So I bring my humanity onto the stage and put it into my songwriting. So I was an actor for some years, in a nutshell: The Stage newspaper called me a ‘working class terror’, I played the passionate Russian Kleopatra Maximovna in ‘Dying for it’ at the Battersea Arts Centre (entrance through a window and exit by being thrown through a door), then I was cast in the 50’s edgy musical ‘Recipe for a Perfect Wife’ at The Charing Cross Theatre as a singer, then I kept getting cast as singers, so I thought, I’ll just BE a singer.
So my journey as a Singer began again: I worked on the Cabaret circuit for some time, I was a guest singer for a couple of years in an Acoustic-Gypsy-Folk band called ‘The Portraits’. Originally I answered an advert that said:
‘Looking to take a choir to perform with us at Glastonbury Festival’
They just took me in the end. Top, Middle AND bottom. Eventually I found myself leading their Spanish song ‘Cien Secretos’ while we were on the road. We performed in France, at Ronnie Scott’s, on BBC radio to name but few. I then joined a collective called ‘The Cavendish Set’ for some years. I was their lead singer performing original, soulful, 60’s tinged songs and we recorded an album together. I also studied Jazz singing and worked on the Jazz circuit performing regularly with pianists and Jazz bands. This then swiftly takes me on to my next step, going solo and becoming the singer-songwriter you hear today. See, eclectic.
So with my eclectic Jazzy, Soulful, Gypsy, Spanish sound I have been busy. I was a finalist in The Battle of the Bands competition at the Boisdale back in 2014, I played at the first ever ‘Live from the Lawn’ in Bristol, supporting Ade Edmondson’s band ‘The Bad Shepherds’. I played at ‘The Brentwood Festival’ on the bill with UB40. My song ‘Ginger Beer’ was featured on TV on London Live, I am a regular on the London circuit performing at venues such as Ronnie Scott’s, The Half Moon Putney, Arch 1 and The Bedford. In the summer I was invited to play at the RARE Jazz Festival on the bill with Saxophonist and BBC Radio 2 broadcaster Leo Green and was also invited to play at The City Showcase in London. I am currently recording my debut EP with Jazz and World fusion musicians so expect this debut to be an eclectic one. The EP will be released in May this year.