KATIE ELEVITCH is a singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, producer and band leader who fearlessly forges a sound straight from the Source; Her songs and live shows lure you into a sonic devotional journey across sensual landscapes of rock, soul, folk and jazz that carry you into meditations on longing, loss, liberation, the spiritual state of the universe, and the transcendence of love.
Katie thrives on live collaboration, improvisation and composition that challenge musical boundaries. Her sophomore release "Kindling for the Fire", online November 11, 2008, was recorded mostly live in three days with band members - including bassist Jonathan Maron from 2007 Grammy nominated band Groove Collective. The title track was recorded completely live, has no overdubs and was composed entirely in the moment.
In early 2009, Katie will release a DVD/CD of the music as well as an accompanying short documentary style making of the album.
Her debut album, 2005's 'Now Is The Destination', which was produced by Tony Maimone (Pere Ubu, They Might Be Giants), successfully fuses elements of improvisation heavy 70's rock and funk, the flavors of old school r&b, the story telling and poetry of folk, and the big hooks and lushness of pop music.
It has been praised by the Village Voice (Voice Choice 6/04 and 4/05, Chuck Eddy), The Big Takeover (Issue #55) and many artists including visionary NYC-based musicians Chocolate Genius and Carl Hancock Rux.
The daughter of an American born Jewish-Lithuanian WWII veteran, published author - and cousin of Bob Dylan - and a mother who is a descendent of singing Bulgarian Gypsies, Katie was reared as a performer from an early age, acting in musical and dramatic community theater and singing Mozart, Debussy and Vivaldi in choirs.
In 1992 she moved to New York City and studied Jazz Voice and Piano at Mannes College of Music and began rehearsing at Georgio Gomelsky's now infamous music studio in Chelsea which at the time housed Jeff Buckley, Jesse Malin and Ed Pastorini (Beth Orton, Elysian Fields, 101 Crustaceans), and at one time, Sonic Youth. Katie's focus and learning intensified during this period, as she absorbed all that was around her, both in the music scene at large, and literally, coming through the walls of her basement studio where she practiced and taught herself guitar, bass and drums and began composing her own songs.
Eventually she began performing throughout NYC, as well as at venues in San Francisco, Seattle, Toronto and Montreal, Canada, Cologne, Hamburg, Leipzig and Berlin Germany. Recently, she was invited to perform in Russia by Art Critic Art Troitsky who has hosted such artists as Anthony and the Johnsons.
Katie's recording and live collaborators have included: drummer Matt Johnson (Jeff Buckley, Martha/Rufus Wainwright), producer/bassist Tony Maimone (Pere Ubu), producer/guitarist Riley McMahon (Spottiswoode & His Enemies, Preston Clarke, One Left), engineer/mixer Joel Hamilton (Martha Wainwright, Ani DiFranco, Sparklehorse, Player's Club), drummer Marlon Browden (Vernon Reid, John Scofield), Chris Brown (Ani DiFranco), Suphala on tabla (Perry Farrell), drummer Lee Farber, bassist Jonathan Maron and multi-instrumentalist Peter Apfelbaum (Jai Uttal, Harry Belafonte, Heiroglyphics).
Katie has opened for or shared bills with such diverse artists as Grammy winning singer-songwriter Jessie Harris, drum n’ bass soul singer Imani Uzuri, indie rock outfit Tilly and The Wall, Persian rock-folk singer Haale, Pharaoh’s Daughter, hip-hop poet/activist Rha Goddess, Afro-Cuban Soul Group Bryan Vargas & Ya Esta, and many more.
She has played all the major intimate and mid-sized venues in New York City, including Joe’s Pub, The Blue Note, The Mercury Lounge, Southpaw, The Living Room, The Knitting Factory and CBGB's.
For bookings and publicity,
contact KteCreator Arts at:
212-592-0196 or email@example.com.
For the most up-to-date information, news, new song mp3's and shows, go to: www.myspace.com/katieelevitch.
The official website, www.KatieElevitch.com will be re-launched in January 2009.
Katie Elevitch aka Kte - Vox, Electric/Acoustic Guitars
Riley McMahon - Electric Guitar Wizadry & Keyboards
Jonathan Maron - Bass (from Groove Collective)
Matt Johnson - Drums
Adrian Harpham - Drums
Lee Farber - Percussion, Drums
Peter Apfelbaum - Melodica, Saxaphones, Flute
Kindling For The Fire - LP 2008 (Online Nov. 2008), CD/DVD - Forthcoming, 2009.
Now Is The Destination - LP 2005 (CD)
& itunes / Digital
Corner of Love and Fear - Single (MP3), Live at the Mercury Lounge, NYC, July 2004
Becoming - EP 2000 (CD) & www.KatieElevitch.com(MP3)
Lucid Culture: "One of the best shows this year"
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OK, let’s get the joke out of the way: it didn’t appear that drugs were much if any factor in the ...
OK, let’s get the joke out of the way: it didn’t appear that drugs were much if any factor in the lives of anybody in the club. It was the band onstage that was the drug. This had to be one of the two or three best shows of the year so far. The audience didn’t know how to react. A song would finish and people would just sit there stunned before breaking out into applause. It’s not often you get hit by a gale force like flame-haired siren Katie Elevitch and her killer backing band, playing mostly new material from her forthcoming album Kindling for the Fire. Finally, when she sent the band offstage while she did a song solo on acoustic, a lot of nervous chatter broke out, as if to say, where were we before my brain got hijacked?
The obvious comparison is Persian-American rocker Haale. Both artists have a casual, charismatic intensity, a thing for hypnotic grooves and long winding crescendos and sing with an unleashed passion. Elevitch’s powerful contralto reminds of peak-era Siouxsie Sioux, although she sings on key and has vastly more range. Throughout her set, the band would lay down a vamp and she’d sail over it, wailing and belting to the point where she’d go off-mic and still be audible over the guitars. Backed by a rhythm section including Groove Collective pulsemaster Jonathan Maron on bass, effortlessly slamming out big, boomy chords when he wasn’t toying expertly with the melody, and Riley McMahon playing fiery lead guitar (and keys on one song), Elevitch was a force of nature. Soul music may be her original stepping-off point, but this show rocked, hard. “This is my soul,” she warned, “It may not be beautiful.” Ironically, there was a lot of beauty in what she played, albeit tempestuous and frequently pitch-black.
Elevitch opened with a couple of slow, slinky, sinuous numbers and then picked up the pace with a catchy, riff-driven Patti Smith-style powerpop hit. The best song of the night was the gleefully macabre title track to the forthcoming cd, a nightmarish, apocalyptic vision set to a slowly murderous, slide guitar-driven melody evocative of the darkest tracks on Siouxsie’s Join Hands. Another long, hypnotic number swung along over the repetitive phrase “hurting people, hurting people” – this is not music for the faint of heart. McMahon ended the show ostentatiously by leaving the stage and going out into the audience, his guitar cord trailing behind him, mischievously turning the volume up and down as his amp continued to feed back. Yet further proof that the many of the best bands in New York are hidden away in the small clubs, a bright future in front of them. Fans of the darkest and most fearless: PJ Harvey, Randi Russo et. al. will love this stuff.
The Big Takeover: "Fearless, quirky, primal"
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Review of "Kindling for the Fire Between Elevitch's athletic, fearless, wide-ranging, vibrato-hea...Review of "Kindling for the Fire
Between Elevitch's athletic, fearless, wide-ranging, vibrato-heavy
singing, her nearly chanted lyric structure, and the way her songs
build inexorably from time-stands-still suspense to orgasmic peaks
whose release can seem infinite, the seven songs here display an
incantatory quality that seems almost savage in its primal power. It
presumably helps that some of these songs have been honed through
years of onstage performances; one, "Inside Room," is even a new
version of a song on her 2000 debut EP. There are aspects of the
production and arrangements that make this more mainstream than most of what gets reviewed in the Big T, but the sum of the parts is so
quirky and personal that this music can't be stylistically pigeonholed. The intensity of the experience, though, is something Big T readers will easily relate to.
The Village Voice: "Folk plunging toward jam-band funk"
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Hippie-folk plunging toward jam-band funk complete with tablas, percussion, and strings, from a loca...Hippie-folk plunging toward jam-band funk complete with tablas, percussion, and strings, from a local lady whose granola-flavored 'Now Is The Destination' was produced by Tony Maimone.
The Big Takeover: "Don't hesitate to discover this new talent."
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Brooklyn artist Katie Elevitch's first full-length album fulfills her early promise and then some. T...Brooklyn artist Katie Elevitch's first full-length album fulfills her early promise and then some. The fuller production here has transformed her music, tightening her songs even while expanding her sound with such wonderful touches as the affirmative harmony vocals on "Don't Be Scared," the eerie strings on "Oxbow Legacy," and the jagged funk that powers several tracks. Elevitch and co-producers Tony Maimone (Pere Ubu) and Riley McMahon
(Big Black Nun, One Left -- and Amy Rigby's brother) have wisely left space in some of the arrangements, notably on "Tiny Bonfires," recalling Jeff Buckley in its sparely instrumented emotionality, Indian influence, vibrant vocals, and extravagant imagery. Yes, lyrically Elevitch holds nothing back. Sometimes that means Liz Phair-like frank sensuality, but tastefully done, not merely shocking; the overall sense is of sex as transcendental experience (as on the title track's poetic description of a woman-to-woman kiss). But there's an undercurrent of danger typified by the line "knowing is the stain that awaits/awakes"-- dead-on whichever way she's singing it; if she's singing both, even better. Don't hesitate to discover this new talent.
"The kick-ass side of f*#% yeah!"
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Katie Elevitch pointedly enunciates a post-perfunctory groove that wrestles your ear to the ground a...Katie Elevitch pointedly enunciates a post-perfunctory groove that wrestles your ear to the ground and commands your attention. Her voice, both comforting and insurgent, wafts over strutting drum beats, sharp guitar licks and assorted distortions of sound from the five corners of the earth, all of them-- jutting out like exclamations completing unfinished sentences. Obviously she has sat in rooms and had council with the likes of Janis, Nina-and I'm sure the Doors, the Who, Led Zepplin, Zappa, Zap Mama, Stevie - but listening to her songs is its own experience; Like making love in a desert sandstorm-until you're no longer sure of the difference between flesh and earth. 'Now Is The Destination' is on the kick ass side of fuck yeah!"
"Undeniably potent and strikingly mature"
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Alternating between sultry come-ons and soul-baring confessionals on her latest album, Now is the De...Alternating between sultry come-ons and soul-baring confessionals on her latest album, Now is the Destination, Katie Elevitch deftly combines the raw honesty of the blues, the storytelling techniques of folk music, and the sexually-charged urgency of R&B. This undeniably potent and strikingly mature collection of songs puts this NYC-based singer/songwriter eons ahead of her MTV contemporaries who are content to moan on about life at the shallow end. If now is the destination, then Katie Elevitch has arrived.
"Positively riveting talent"
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This three-song EP is the debut of a talented young New York multi-instrumentalist (though here she ...This three-song EP is the debut of a talented young New York multi-instrumentalist (though here she only plays guitars) whose wailing, vibrato-heavy vocal style recalls that of Kristin Hersh on the first Throwing Muses LP a little. Her music, while equally quirky, is more groove-oriented; her lyrics are raw and bluntly confessional. "Another Love Song" and "Becoming" ponder the connections among a trio of addictions (substances, sex, suffering), and "The Inside Room" is a compellingly moody dissection of attraction. The positively riveting talent has some other fine songs too, as various concert appearances have revealed; here's hoping she makes a sophomore recording sometime soon."
"Imagine Patti Smith cuttin' the rug with Ani Difranco at a backyard BBQ"
Imagine Patti Smith cuttin' the rug with Ani Difranco at a backyard BBQ. -Nevin Martell
40-50 minutes. Solo Acoustic or Electric/Experimental, traditional Duo, Trio and Full 4-5 Band formats.
Katie can perform her songs with equal success as either a solo acoustic performer, sometimes using her feet and hands for additional percussive effect, with a guitarist or percussionist in a soulful/funky intimate duo format, with a more raw trio rock-folk format or with the full fleshed out four to five piece band that explores elements of improvisation, jamming and lush arrangements of original songs.
7-9 songs, all originals, with an occasional re-arranged cover.
At our Blue Note show we did a funky blues-folk-soul arrangement of the traditional "Motherless Child" with stand up acoustic bass. Other covers have included Nick Drake's "Know".
A typical set list starts off with something funky, like "Can't Stop This Heart" or harder rocking like "Corner of Love and Fear" to get the crowd's attention and then we move onto more poppy numbers like "Ready When You Are", into some more moody, soulful acoustic songs like "Now Is The Destination". We usually end on a jam-band pop-rock tune like "Tiny Bonfires" which allows for a lot of fun improv and letting loose at the end of the set, sometimes with guest percussionists and horn players. Currently, we've been re-working the funky jam song "Oxbow Legacy" from the debut album as well as the new "Kindling for the Fire" from the forthcoming EP, into more jazz infused performances which rely more upon band improvisation and interaction with the audience.
Depending upon the venue and show, I will sometimes switch things up with a more acoustic song / arrangement either solo or with the band mid-set.
I also sometimes set out to make the set work as a whole piece, finding creative ways to have the songs seamlessly move from one to the other.
There are no upcoming dates at this time.