Hot Show Alert: Kat Edmonson at City Winery Boston tonight (Interview in Post!)
Kat Edmonson went about four years between albums but with her new record, “Old Fashioned Gal”, only dropping a little over a week ago, she is jumping right into things! She’s a few shows into her first tour for the record which includes a visit to Boston this evening at City Winery, the newest music venue in Boston for a fully seated, intimate performance.
I spoke with Edmonson a few days ago about the new record, her hopes and goals, as well as what you can expect from her live show if you haven’t seen her play before! Be prepared for a full band show and it will be over before you know it as the show is sure to be hypnotizing!
Doors at 5, show at 7 with opener Matt Munisteri then Kat Edmonson around 8!
Tickets are still available starting at $20 and can be found here !
You’re currently playing your first tour since the new record, “Old Fashioned Gal”, came out. How have these shows been going over?
It’s been all consuming. All of my attention has been paid to it. I went back to “Old Fashioned Gal” and playing this music live, everything has been recorded, but the music continues to evolve with every show that we play. And we alter the arrangements each night according to how things are sounding with the instrumentation we have on stage and within the music we’re playing. So it’s really fun to watch this music live and breathe and grow.
And are these the first shows that you’ve been playing those songs, or were some of them songs that you had road-tested in the past?
I did a sneak preview where I debuted some of this material in New York in February. And then last week or two weeks ago, we went to Nevada and played some shows, but to me, these are essentially the first shows for premiering this material so it’s still quite new. It’s been really fun.
Yeah, people are taking to the new songs. You know sometimes audiences can be irritable because they want to hear the songs that they know but we’re not finding that in this situation. People are quite open to this music.
Then for you, it had been a few years in between albums. You did say that you kind of started working on this in 2016. Were all the songs for “Old Fashioned Gal” written fresh for the record or were some of them kind of older ones that you maybe looked back on from the past?
All of them were fresh for this record.
And was there something new that you explored in this recording process and maybe something that is going to scream Kat Edmonson to fans from the past?
Everyone keeps saying that this is my most personal record to date and I would have to agree. With no hesitation, it’s kind of my coming out record really. I let my hair down and I decided that in the process of making this, I just didn’t want to care what anyone else might think when I made it. Every impulse that I had, I followed it. Any question of whether or not people would like it, it just went out the window. I felt like this is my time to just indulge in who I am right here in this period of time and it was pretty thrilling to just be myself, no holds barred. I think people are responding to that now.
No that sounds incredible and when it comes to these sets that you’ve been playing, is it for the majority “Old Fashioned Gal”? Are you pulling from the older records? How have you been planning these sets?
Oh yeah we’ve definitely been playing material from the other records as well. It’s a bouquet of songs but almost all of the songs from “Old Fashioned Gal” we’re playing in the new show.
Excellent, and if it’s something where maybe fans haven’t seen you play a show before, what can they expect? Are you on your own playing these songs, do you have a band with you, is it kind of a mix of both? Just for fans that haven’t come to a show yet or haven’t seen you play.
Yeah it’s five of us including myself so there’s piano, guitar, bass and drums and we’re a really close knit band. We kind of move like one entity and now we have arrangements for each song. We always bear it in mind that as we’re playing them, there’s the notion that it could change any moment, and we’re polishing these songs on stage. Keeping things alive and fresh. We’ll play around with things. We’ll change solos within songs.
A lot of times people will go to a concert and the format is that the show gets spectacular at some point and the pinnacle of the show is the most fast and sensational song and our show is quite opposite. What people will find is that we just continue to get more and more into it. The time goes by really fast because myself, the band and the audience, we all get really caught up in this very intimate space. Like as if you ran into an old friend and got into a deep conversation and suddenly you realize that you’ve been talking for a few hours. That’s what typically happens.
That’s incredible! And you’ve been doing this for quite a long time now, several records in. When did you first realize that you wanted to pursue music or that moment where you realized that this could be a career or this was a career for you?
You know it’s funny, I realized that really early on. And then I just plain forgot about it. I mean early on when I was a little kid, I was dressing up in sequined dresses and feather boas and practicing to go on stage. And then there was talk of college and career planning and marriage and I started getting really distracted with all those types of plans and was on that sort of path. And at around 21, almost 22, I realized wait a minute, I forgot… I want to be a singer. I want to pursue the arts. I don’t know how to do that so I just started taking baby steps and I never stopped. I never took a pause after that, I just took one step after the other. Singing in front of bands, often going to an open mic, anyone that would hear me sing and make a comment about it and I would take their number and call them the next week. And they had their own shows, I would call them and maybe they would invite me to come sing with them and every person at that next show, I would take their number and call them. The majority of the recording lifestyle is recording and dropping off my CD’s to anyone I had worked with. But once I started making stock, it’s just who I am.
Then we’re still really early in 2018, the album did just come out. You’re on this tour right now. Maybe some focuses or goals for these next few months for Kat Edmonson, or something that’s coming up for you after this run?
There are various projects of mine that I want to pursue musically. I want to record with a big band at some point in the future. I have some very singer/songwriter tunes that sound more of like the seventies era ilk that I would like to pursue. I have written a screenplay, or an outline for a screenplay, for “Old Fashioned Gal”. An entire story that goes around all of the songs and I would love to develop that. I have aspirations to write all the music to accompany a film. I would love for someone to ask me to do that, so just putting that out there! And then I’ve, in the last two years, been in acting school in New York. Because I was in a couple of movies and I had such an amazing experience with the films and that reminded me that I’ve always loved acting. So I’ve been immersed in studying what’s called the Meisner technique and I hope to do a lot of acting.
So that was something you started doing over the last few years, that’s not something that was a life long thing for you?
Yeah I mean I acted in school plays but then I never pursued it. I recorded “Old Fashioned Gal” over a period of weeks in the summer of 2016 then again in the fall and after those initial weeks in the summer time, like two days later, I finished a recording project while in school. It did seem a little difficult balancing the two but I just finished school last Sunday.
Then jumped right into tour.
Yeah but you know, if I didn’t squeeze it in now, it probably wouldn’t happened. Because I’m going to be touring most of this year and next. I’m so grateful that I had the time and was going to school while I was recording so I had a bit of a time crunch to do it.
And you talked about the screenplay that you’re writing for “Old Fashioned Gal”. You mentioned how people have been saying this is your most personal record or really personal for you. Is it something where while you were recording this idea just kind of sparked up or is this something you’ve always kind of wanted to do in your career?
It’s something I’ve always wanted to do. You know when you walk around and you have an inkling for things where you’re like I can knit really well or I’m really good at hair or something like that. And I’ve just always found that writing is something that I can do and it’s not confined to songwriting. With especially the last two records, I keep finding that the music that I make, I have images that accompany it. I think I’m writing these stories and what’s the difference between me writing it and have some one else write the actual screenplay. And eventually I just felt compelled to sit down and outline the whole story and was like yeah, okay, this is the story. Then I started reading books about mock writing and screenplays. That’s a career in itself. I don’t know what degree I’ll tackle it too but I wouldn’t be surprised if I decided to put it out at some point too.