Steve Katz is a Belgian-Israeli singer, songwriter and guitarist. Now based in New York City, Katz is currently promoting his debut EP entitled “Barricades,” a collection of five songs.
Highly moved by the human condition and the struggle of others, Steve Katz strives to portray that in his music and lyrics. Katz’s diverse style of music is inspired by his extensive world travels. The nomadic musician was raised in Belgium and at the age of 18 relocated to Israel. Katz has also traveled and back-packed through Turkey, India, Nepal, England and China and speaks fluent French, Hebrew and English as well as some Dutch.
From the age of fourteen when he learned his first guitar chord, Katz knew making music was his calling. Growing up he spent countless hours listening to Pink Floyd, Santana, the Eagles and Supertramp—his mother’s favorite band and an influence for which Katz remains eternally grateful. Music stores became his second home and Katz set out on an endless journey of discovering new artists from all genres—a journey that has guided and shaped his own development as a musician today.
"I sense that Steve Katz is on the verge of commercial breakthrough with his music."
Joe Ross, CD Insight
“Barricades is a confident five-song debut EP from newcomer Steve Katz...Barricades should serve as a perfect demo to intrigue any record company interested in this breed of pop.”
Wes Britton, Blog Critics
"I always say that really good music--- the music that is far above the norm--- defies genre. These five songs are defiant as hell."
Frank Gutch, Rockandreprise
c Barricades -EP (5 songs) Physical/Digital
Steve Katz releases EP entitled ‘Barricades’
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I sense that Steve Katz is on the verge of commercial breakthrough with his music. His perseverance ...I sense that Steve Katz is on the verge of commercial breakthrough with his music. His perseverance and dedication to presenting songs with spiritual and emotional meaning should lead to many listeners’ fulfillment. I wish that he would’ve produced a full-length album rather than just an EP because his five songs left me wanting to hear more. However, this sampling is a great way for Katz to further engage and build a large, attentive audience. His material is undeniably catchy, a tad eccentric, and very ready for widespread public consumption.
Blogcritics.org / Music Review: Steve Katz - Barricades
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Barricades is a confident five-song debut EP from newcomer Steve Katz. While born and bred in Br...
Barricades is a confident five-song debut EP from newcomer Steve Katz. While born and bred in Brussels, Belgium, Katz is now living in New York City. Judging from Barricades, it is a more than appropriate home base for him.
I say this as the opening verse of “Thrive,” the EP’s first track, suggests Katz would have been quite at home during the heyday of the Greenwich Village singer-songwriter folk scene. These days, performers like Judy Collins or Phil Ochs who once surrounded their singing and acoustic guitar work with slick, supporting players would more likely be labeled indie pop or adult contemporary than folk rock. Such is the case for Katz.
Whatever umbrella you want to put him under, Katz clearly sees himself as an artist with things to say, both lyrically and musically. “Thrive,” for example, showcases Katz’s strong, masculine voice singing affirming lines about living life to its fullest. Likewise, “Today I Saw Hope,” based on volunteer work in Knoxville, Tennessee, was inspired by two African-American women feeding the hungry. Katz’s liner notes state the title song, “Barricades,” represents what he had to go through to get where he’s at today—that is, to accomplish your goals, you must struggle through the obstacles of life.
Considerable credit should go to several lyricists such as Jane Jacobs for “Fair” and Harry Sauer for “A Modern Tale.” The latter is notable for its interesting imagery, such as “salty pearls running down my face” and “the tattoo of your lips.” “Tale” is about a resolute recovery from a broken relationship, a high note Katz says ends the set with a final positive message.
Sure, comparisons can be drawn to artists in a similar vein: Nora Jones certainly, Gordon Lightfoot perhaps, a bit of Neil Diamond? Whatever genre you want to put him in, or other performers he might remind you of, from start to finish, the uplifting themes of Steve Katz are underlined by sparkling, very polished instrumentation and harmony vocal support. If nothing else, Barricades should serve as a perfect demo to intrigue any record company interested in this breed of pop. Until one of them takes notice, perhaps Barricades is the sort of music you might need for a quick pick-me-up.
Rickyleepotts.com / Artist Interview: 1-on-1 with Steve Katz
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A few weeks ago I got an email from Steve Katz. I wasn’t familiar with the name, but he is a singer/...A few weeks ago I got an email from Steve Katz. I wasn’t familiar with the name, but he is a singer/songwriter trying to get exposure for his work. I went to his website, and was beyond impressed with his work. I love his voice, his songwriting is incredible, and every song I have heard gets better and better. There is SO much passion in his work, and for a guy living and trying to make it in the Big Apple, there is a big future ahead of this guy. If you do a Google search for “Steve Katz” you will find a Wikipedia article for another musician with the same name… but this Steve isn’t 67 years old! Bands don’t usually reach out to me for an interview, but I am glad that Steve did. I dare you to listen to his work and not enjoy what you hear. It’s good. It’s really good. It is my pleasure to introduce you to Steve Katz.
I am usually the one asking for the interview… but you found me. I appreciate you reaching out. Where did you find my blog?
You website was recommended by another blogger.
You are currently living in New York City, but you aren’t from the United States. Where are you originally from?
I’m from Brussels, Belgium and moved to the United States almost three years ago.
You are a singer/songwriter. Do you prefer one to the other?
It goes together. I enjoy the composition of the music and I enjoy performing. I’m lucky to have a voice that people like.
What was the first song you ever wrote and recorded?
The first song dates back to the first two chords I played. I was a toddler who just learned how to walk or a kid who just learned how to read. I was so excited. I recorded it on a 4-track. I would record a song almost every day. I couldn’t wait to be back home from school. I’d rush to my room and jump on my guitar. Of course the song sucked but I had to start somewhere.
Cover bands are really popular over here. Do you ever play cover songs?
I think that cover bands are popular everywhere. Many venues will rather have a cover band on Friday and Saturday nights than a band that performs original material. I don’t blame them, they run a business and they can’t take unnecessary risks. As a result, many artists will sing covers to make ends meet but without necessarily feeling fulfilled. I usually include one cover in my set: A Whiter Shade Of Pale.
You are on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. How does social media help spread the word about what you are doing?
Yes, today musicians have to be experts in social media. It’s a great way to spread the word about new songs, shows, articles and interviews I’ve been featured in. On the one hand social media enables artists to generate great exposure for themselves. However, there are thousands of other musicians trying to do the same and get their music heard. You just have to be persistent with your postings. Social media lets people find me easily online and connect with me.
Do you have a job outside of music?
I have written several songs, but have no musical talent. How does a guy that writes songs get them in the hands of someone that can play guitar and… sing?
In a city like New York it’s easy. With hundreds of daily shows and countless open mics, all you have to do is get out there and talk to the artists you like and ask them if they would like to collaborate. If they are not self-absorbed there’s no reason they wouldn’t agree to give it a shot.
In more remote locations, platforms for musicians, such as ReverbNation, can help people narrow their searches for specific music genres and contact singers and bands. Groups on LinkedIn are also an option to find new collaborations. First of all, copyright your lyrics!
What is the best concert you have ever been to?
Pink Floyd, in Belgium.
Beer. Wine. Spirits. What’s your poison?
Beers, of course.
Why did you decide to move over here?
I sing in English, my music sounds American, and Obama said, “Yes we can.”
There are a lot of great bands out there… but who are some of your favorite bands?
The artist who really got my attention lately is Eddie Vedder in his solo career.
I could totally sit in a coffee shop and listen to you sing while sipping on a latte. Do you ever play coffee shops?
Yes, I play coffee shops. There are great coffee shops here in NYC .
Do you ever play outside of New York?
I play at The Boston Green Festival on August 17.
You are a world traveler. Where is the coolest place you have ever been?
I love India. I travelled there twice. I fell immediately in love. The people, the rich and various cultures, the food, the breathtaking landscapes of Kashmir and Laddak in the north, the tea plantations, the backwaters and shores in the south, the 30 hour long train trips, the smells, the closeness to nature.
Tell me about “Barricades”.
“Barricades” is my first EP that includes five songs of five different styles that represent me well. I released it in May 2012.
About the songs: Thrive is a modern pop/rock song, Today I Saw Hope is folky, Barricades is adult contemporary, Fair is a soft rocker and A Modern Tale is a singer/songwriter ballad.
About the title: As I wrote on the CD cover. “Barricades can scare, challenge and stop us from achieving goals. They are everywhere and often invisible. I’ve gone through many barricades in my time-physical and emotional ones that stood between me and my goals. Had I failed to go through any of them, this cd would never have been made.”
Jonathan Klein wrote the lyrics to song Thrive. Jeannie Reed wrote the lyrics to Today I Saw Hope. When someone else writes lyrics for a song you record, do you work with them to produce the best lyric to fit your talents?
Sometimes the music comes first and sometimes the lyrics. My lyricists know me well. They won’t just send me random lyrics. When the music comes first, we always sit together, I play it, we discuss it and agree on a subject then the lyricist takes it from there. They will send me the first verse and chorus . If it matches the music and I feel a connection we’ll go further .
There are a lot of great venues in NYC. Do you have a favorite?
It’s hard to choose a favorite but I’ll always love The Bitter End where artists like Bob Dylan started their career.
You have been featured on PensEyeView.com, in Beatweek Magazine, and on suite101.com. When you are featured like this, are you looking for the coverage or does it just find you?
It works both ways. Sitting back and simply hoping something good happens usually doesn’t produce good results. To succeed, especially in this business, it requires knocking on a lot of doors. So sure, I seek out coverage in outlets that seem appropriate. Yet, there have been several instances when writers have contacted me, which is especially exciting because it means I’m slowly being picked up on people’s musical radar. It feels good to be noticed.
Belgium is known for beer. What is your favorite beer?
I love Duvel.
Why did you decide to record an EP rather than a full-length album?
An EP felt like the right thing to do to introduce my music. I’m a new artist, people don’t know my music yet. It’s like a first date. You introduce yourself but you don’t show everything you have to offer. Five songs definitely give an idea of who I am and the rest will follow.
They are also known for chocolate… is it possible to live in Belgium and not drink beer or eat chocolate?
It is. If you are allergic to gluten and chocolate gives you pimples!
Do you play any other instruments?
A little bit of piano.
I know you have the EP, but do you have any merchandise? I would love a Steve Katz shirt!
(Laughs.) Not yet, but hopefully soon. Small, medium or large? In the meantime, there’s a famous Steve Katz from the Blues Project and Blood Sweat and Tears… maybe he has some shirts left. (He’s from the sixties so it might be moth-eaten though.)
Why is it always “exit stage left”? Do they ever exit the stage on the right side? By the way, that’s my favorite song.
Thank you, I appreciate that. Jane Jacobs wrote the lyrics of Fair and she’s Brittish. As you know, the Brits always do things differently than the rest of the world. Even though thy think that the rest of the world is the one that acts differently.
What would you be doing if you were not singing and writing tunes?
Probably working odd jobs and travelling to distant lands.
When you are not listening to your own work ,what do you like to listen to?
The only time I have to listen to music is when I’m outside in the street. I love TuneIn and Pandora Internet Radio. I choose in general adult contemporary stations. There’s so much good music out there. There are so many great bands I’ve never heard of.
According to Klout, you are influential about cats. Is that because your last name is Katz?
Believe me, I saw that too and I have no idea how I turned out to be influential about cats.
Where do you get inspiration for new material?
No rules. You never know when inspiration comes to say hello. But when it comes, don’t let it go. Take the time to listen to what it has to say.
What’s next for Steve Katz?
I’d love to buy a car and tour across the U.S.
Steve, thank you so much for doing this. In all of the interviews I do, I always give the artist the last word. Go.
Thank you for giving me this opportunity, I really appreciate it. I invite your readers to check out my music and to come to my shows. I’ll let you know when the shirts are ready!
HigherPlaneMusic / Steve Katz – “Barricades” Review
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Steve Katz is someone we featured a while back last year and Steve has returned with his first EP “B...Steve Katz is someone we featured a while back last year and Steve has returned with his first EP “Barricades” and it showcases his guitar/vocal workings to excellent effect.
Opener “Thrive” is a real road trip track. It’s elating chorus of muted power chords and euphoric vocals over a rock ballad beat works really well. I can hear this on a summer’s day with the top down on the car. Steve’s vocals shine here. “Today I Saw Hope” is an acoustic guitar and vocal track minimal female backing vocals. It wistfully takes it time to meander around from chord to chord almost verging onto a country edge but staying just clear enough from it to classify it in that genre. “Barricades”, the title track then actually pushes the country edges further and goes into easy listening territory with some excellent guitar work and some soft keyboard synths spacing out the soft drums. It’s not a genre I delve into much but it reminds me of a cross between some of the slower Stone Temple Pilots tracks and Sarah McLachlan.
“Fair” is the song that undergoes the most transformation in the four minutes it’s with you. Starting off as a two chord acoustic piece it builds into an impressive pop rock piece with some strong guitar embellishments. The way how the whole EP is mixed means that everything is very softly melted together so even when the guitars are punching out the chords, it’s still soft and doesn’t power over anything else. This could be viewed positively or negatively. The closer “A Modern Tale” to me harks back to the artists Belgian roots and feels distinctively European with its sway to its melodic guitar arpeggios. Steve’s vocals hold the piece with its hushed distillation.
“Barricades” is a great introduction to Steve Katz. The songs aren’t immediately catchy upon first listen but they do stay with you and whilst I can’t quite decide on the soft production on the rockier tracks, for the quieter ones they certainly hold an impressive space.
Northern Sky Magazine / EP Review: Steve Katz - Barricades (Self Release)
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With five well-produced original songs from this debut EP by Brussels-born but now New York-based si...With five well-produced original songs from this debut EP by Brussels-born but now New York-based singer-songwriter Steve Katz, we get an instant feel for what Steve's songs are all about. With a style reminiscent of such artists as Damien Rice, Jose Gonzalez and occasionally Brad Roberts (Crash Test Dummies), Katz (not to be mistaken for the former Blood, Sweat and Tears guitarist/producer) maintains a highly listenable approach throughout with highly melodic and thoughtful songs, despite the material ranging in style from the optimistically self-probing Thrive, the tender break-up ballad Fair to the soulful title song Barricades.
With a plain black and white portrait gracing the cover, an idea that has done the careers of Bjork and Patti Smith no harm whatsoever, BARRICADES heralds another potential success story in the making.
Beatweek Magazine / Singer songwriter Steve Katz is knocking down “Barricades”
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Steve Katz’s album cover “Barricades” has a personalized inscription that reads: “Barricades can sca...Steve Katz’s album cover “Barricades” has a personalized inscription that reads: “Barricades can scare, challenge and stop us from achieving goals. They are everywhere and often invisible.” Explaining that many musicians with the goal of becoming established in a career such as this, have each faced their own share of such obstacles, Katz adds, “We’ve all experienced struggles. We’re told ‘no’ nearly every day. Sometimes I’m told no ten times a day.” Adding that there are a plethora of barriers, or barricades as he refers to them that are beyond his control, he says, “The biggest barricade that I faced before devoting my career to making music was fear.”
With fear holding him back from pursuing the one thing that he wanted most, he says, “My family, while supportive of my music, was afraid I’d starve if I quit my well paying job to pursue a career in music.” Katz did quit that job four years ago, leaving all behind, and moved to New York with the goal of turning his dreams into reality. With no regrets, he has been performing throughout the city and he’s just finished his first CD “Barricades.”
So, the many struggles in which he has faced, instead of stopping him, made him work even harder to get his music career started. Of this, he has also written on his CD cover, “Had I failed to go through any of them, this CD would never have been made.” It was through not only hard work, but facing and overcoming these fears that Katz was able to clear the pathway and embark on this journey. “Even greater than the fear of the unknown,” he says, “was the fear of having to look back ten years from now without having followed my heart.”
His smooth voice and musical versatility are showcased in his songs. Believing that as long as a musician doesn’t try to imitate someone else, they will immediately be seen as unique, he expresses himself through a variety of musical styles. “The five songs on this CD are each a different style.” He explains that the song “Thrive” is a modern pop rock song; “Today I Saw Hope” is folk; “Barricades” is more on the adult contemporary side with a hint of jazz; “Fair” is softer rock and “A Modern Tale” is a low tempo ballad.
“I believe that when we try our hardest and stay determined that life will eventually reward us.” Admitting that most musicians at one point in time or other have most likely fantasized about playing in sold-out arenas, he is quick to add, “I have come to believe that every success, however big or small, should be celebrated.” Further explaining that whether he’s playing a small venue for twenty people or he receives a positive comment from a listener on YouTube, to Katz everything matters. “It’s those little successes along the way that keep me driven. Life is about the journey, not the destination.”
Rock and Reprise / STEVE KATZ , NEW EP, BARRICADES
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Steve Katz sent me an email with a link to his music and asked if I would listen. I did, but it was ...Steve Katz sent me an email with a link to his music and asked if I would listen. I did, but it was just a cursory listen and while I planned to get back to it, I have a lot on my plate and told him so while inviting him to send reminders now and again. He did. Last week, he sent a new link, one to his brand spanking new EP, Barricades, and I decided maybe it was time. I always give musicians credit for persistence (partially because I am always telling musicians that in this new musical age, persistence is what counts). So I listened. And I listened. And I'm still listening. And you can guess where this is going from here, I'll bet.
Truth is, Katz blindsided me. I'm so overworked that I have little time to listen, but he was such a nice guy and was so patient, I had to. The guilt wore me down. Thank God for guilt.
Steve Katz, it turns out, has put out a five-sided brass ring of an EP. It is indicative of what I search for all the time. No, I don't have the time, but when I hear stuff like this, I make the time. Barricades could easily have slipped past me like a ship in the night. I can only believe that I heard this for a reason. That being to pass it along.
What he does is not so much groundbreaking or original as it is good. He's a singer/songwriter, yes, but you will toss that aside after hearing this few times. I always say that really good music--- the music that is far above the norm--- defies genre. These five songs are defiant as hell. True, Today I Saw Hope has a bit of a folk edge, but listen closely to the lyrics and the sentiment and you quickly forget that. If it is folk, it is among the better folk being performed today and, to my ears, in the past. Fair would be just another soft-rocker but for the performance and the production and the sidemen. It made me want to grab hold of the CD jacket to see who was playing that guitar, who was singing background, who was plucking that bass. Things like that mean something to me--- mean a lot, actually. Too often I've heard, “I really like this song” or “I'm reading this really good book” only to be met with a blank stare when asked who sang it or who wrote it. On Fair (and to be fair--- sometimes I slay myself), the people involved earn the right to be known. On every track. Are you paying attention to the italics? I'm trying to make a point here.
I shouldn't have to. Head to Steve's Soundcloud page and click on Thrive or Barricades and let them convince you. They are exceptional. Guys, if you want to make a few brownie points with your ladies, pick this up and have a romantic night at home. Ladies, if you want to know if he's really worth a shit or just a card-carrying pheremone, put this on late at night when you're winding down. If he doesn't get it, dump his ass.
I'm going to do something I seldom do right now. I'm going to post this without editing. I don't want to edit it. I want it to be posted just as it was written, quickly and with emphasis.
The guy's name is Steve Katz, folks. Write it down or not, it is a name you will be hearing a lot of from now on. And Steve? You can bet I will be giving any future emails immediate attention. See those italics? Well done! And thank you!
Suite 101/ Interview with Steve Katz: "Barricades"
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Suite101 interview with indie pop singer-songwriter Steve Katz where he talks about his latest EP "B...Suite101 interview with indie pop singer-songwriter Steve Katz where he talks about his latest EP "Barricades," which features "Thrive" and "A Modern Tale."
On Monday, May 28, 2012, Suite101 spoke with indie pop singer-songwriter Steve Katz. A native of Belgium, Steve opens up about his newest five-track EP Barricades and his musical endeavors.
Steve Talks Influences
“I used to listen to a lot of progressive rock when I was a kid,” Steve says.“I love Cat Stevens!” he exclaims. “There is certainly a resemblance in my music and his, and we both have similar names.”
Steve Talks About “Barricades” EP
According to Steve, “The name of the CD is derived from physical and emotional ‘barricades.’ Every day I am overcoming a new barricade, which is the life of an artist. I thought that would be a good title for my first CD.”
“I had enough material for a full-length CD, but as an EP I wanted to have five different styles of music and see the public’s reactions to them. I tried to promote it online and on the radio,” he shares.
Steve Talks About “Thrive”
It opens with “Thrive,” which he co-wrote with Jonathan Klein. Steve dubs this track as the “most commercial” song on the album. “I am working on two new songs like ‘Thrive’ and hopefully in six to seven months, I’ll be able to have a CD with songs of the same atmosphere,” the singer-songwriter says.
Steve Discusses “A Modern Tale”
His album's fifth and final song is “A Modern Tale.” “This song is about a break-up where two people can no longer be together,” he says. “The best solution is for them to go their separate ways. I thought it would be a good way to end the EP on a positive note.”
Steve Talks About his Future Plans
“I would like to tour in the Northeastern Coast,” he reveals. “ I am playing a festival on August 17, 2012 in Boston, Massachusetts. Hopefully, my goal is to get my music out there and to find an agent and a record deal. I’m no different than any other songwriter.”
In addition, he is playing at the American Folk Art Museum on Friday, July 27, 2012.
Steve lists Tori Amos and Norah Jones as his dream duet choices. “Tori Amos has a beautiful voice!Norah has a great voice too and my style is close to hers,” he admits.
Song Revelation / Artist Interview – Steve Katz
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Steve Katz is an upcoming Belgian Singer-Songwriter who is currently living and working in New York....Steve Katz is an upcoming Belgian Singer-Songwriter who is currently living and working in New York. At Song Revelation after we heard about his artistic journey and his latest songs we were really keen to interview him so that we could share everything with you. Read on to find out about how Steve became interested in music, what he’s currently working and what music he enjoys listening to when not performing himself.
Q: If you could use a tagline of less than 20 words to describe your music and who you are what would it be?
Belgian Singer-songwriter and guitarist living in New York. My songs are contemporary pop .
Q: What is your musical background?
A friend of mine showed me a D chord when I was 14 years old and I knew right then that making music was my calling. I bought a 4 track and immediately tried to compose songs.. I must have hundreds of cassettes that I keep as souvenirs . None of this is part of my repertoire today but I had to start somewhere. The seeds were planted! Those 4tracks definitely contributed to shaping the artist I am today.
Q: How have the last 12 months been for you?
Hectic!!! But I don’t complain. I enjoy every moment. I have been recording and working on my EP that I will release very soon , playing a lot in NYC, promoting myself online and of course eating and sleeping (a little bit)….:)
Q: Who inspires you musically?
I started playing guitar and listening to music approximately at the same time. I first listened a lot to Pink Floyd, Santana, the Eagles and Supertramp—my mother’s favorite band, and an influence for which I remain eternally grateful to her. Then I had a progressive rock period followed by a fusion and jazz one. But Cat Stevens and Genesis (with Peter Gabriel) have been all along in the background until today.
Q: Which modern day artists do you look up to?
It’s hard for me to answer this question but Eddie Vedder’s solo career in the past few years has really grabbed my attention.
Q: Is there anyone you would like to collaborate or gig with?
Let’s fantasize a little bit. In terms of collaboration, if I had a chance to work with a famous artist, I would go for Cat Stevens Peter Gabriel or Paul McCartney or someone of their caliber. These guys are music prophets , they brought something new to the world that will last forever.
Q: What songs are on your iPod at the moment?
The truth is that I like to be surprised, I have these online radio stations like Pandora , Tunein Radio ,etc. where you pick an artist or a genre and similar songs get played . It’s the best way to hear fresh music and discover new artists. I choose in general the “Adult Contemporary” option.
Q: What is your creative process for creating a track?
I collaborate with lyricists for most of my songs. Often I have a musical idea, sometimes they have a lyrical idea. We turn those ideas into songs.
Q: What’s more important, melody or lyrics?
Wow! That’s a tough question! it definitely depends on the genre. Pop vs. Country. I would say that a catchy hook is the most important thing in a song. I grew up in Belgium, not speaking a word of English, however, we would mostly listen to American and British music and hum or sing hooks without understanding their meanings .Funny, no? J I think that a song could work and even be a hit with average lyrics and great hooks but I don’t think the opposite is true.
Spot On Long Island / Steve Katz Thrives
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Steve Katz Thrives by Author Alysia Stern Hey Steve, A friend of mine asked me to check out...
Steve Katz Thrives
by Author Alysia Stern
A friend of mine asked me to check out your song Thrive. It really helped me in my situation. I am in the Army, but being treated in Landsthul, Germany for heart and kidney failure. I was stationed in Kandahar, Afghanistan and on Jan 3, I woke up unable to breath. I was taken to the hospital where I was told I was experiencing congestive heart failure. My heart is severely damaged with only a 15% pumping ability. Then I was given the wrong medicine and that caused my kidneys to shut down. I really just wanted to die! I still need assistance with walking, dressing and taking a bath. I get depressed facing an uncertain future. I heard your song yesterday and it touched my heart. I have adopted as my motivation song for getting better. I am determined to get as strong as possible and Thrive!
Thanks for sharing your gift with others!
The heart warming and engaging message above is only one of hundreds of comments Steve Katz has received from fans about his admirable music. This is the most encouraging, inspiring and endearing letter that has touched Steve’s heart to the greatest degree. If you are wondering who Steve Katz is, please keep reading.
Steve Katz is a sensational singer, song writer and a grand musician. He is a well-traveled, well balanced man originally from Brussels, Belgium.
Alysia: Did you know you would end up with a musical career as a musician?
Steve: “Since that first day when I played my first two cords on a guitar, around the age of fourteen, I knew I wanted to be a musician. I was at a friend’s house, my friend Benny’s house. Ironically, he is now living two blocks away from me in Manhattan. He taught me a D chord. Somehow I knew that would be my destiny. I knew from that very first chord I learned that making music was my calling. I was a music junkie and would listen to Floyd, Santana, and The Eagles. My mother would listen to those bands and it definitely inspired me. I catered on the weekends. It was a tough job. I saved enough money to buy a Tascam 4 Track and I started to record my first song. I have hundreds of cassettes…it’s always fun going back and listening to them. The 4 Track allowed me to create and experiment endlessly. All I thought about every day after school was creating music (after my home work was done of course.)”
Alysia: Tell me about your service in the army.
Steve: “I went to Israel when I was nineteen years old. Serving was my way of closing the cycle to the things that happened in my family decades ago. It was my moral duty, a pure contribution. You just can’t live for yourself. I had to sacrifice the things I loved for something I believed was a noble cause. The fact that I can breathe today is not taken for granted. I am alive today thanks to the people who survived such atrocious events in history. My great grandmother and grandfather have been liberated by the United States Army. You just told me about your grandfather Alysia, who participated as a veteran in the liberation of Auschwitz. Well this is very touching; maybe they met each other, who knows. I live in Manhattan and have never missed a Veterans Day Parade. I salute the soldiers who have taken part in World War Two and I am there to say thank you.”
Alysia: Did you go to College?
Steve: “Yes. My father wanted me to study because he didn’t have a very privileged life when he was a child, although he was very successful in his life. I studied and then I served my time. I then worked in the import export business as a salesman for a while. It was a 9-5 job and I quit. I could not take it anymore. I could not mix my music and dealing with this job, they just didn’t fit together anymore. Wearing a suit and being clean shaven is just the opposite of what I am. I felt like I was wearing a costume every day. It felt so weird. It was a very unhappy time for me. I soon quit. I started to teach guitar and teach French and perform many odd jobs. I felt like I was literally born again. I knew I made the right decision.”
Alysia: When did you come to NY?
Steve: “I came to New York about 2 two years ago. Before that I traveled a lot. I spent time in India. I went two times for a few months each time. It had a very big impact on my life. You won’t find oriental sounds or Indian instruments in my music, not at all. It was more something that happened inside. When I traveled, I liked to get immersed in the remote places and get with the people. It helps get rid of stereo types and generalizations. It cleans your body. It cleans your soul. Om Shanti J”
Alysia: Did you have support from your family to relocate to an entire new country?
Steve: “My family was never really very supportive of me. My father was a business man. It wasn’t serious enough to be a musician. It took me a very long time until I could rid myself of that. But I came to New York. I have met some really great people. When people travel, all this contributes to your personality and inspires you and you discover new things about yourself. I met a great Australian guy in my travels. We still keep in touch. He just came to NY to pay me a visit.”
Alysia: Why did you come to America and move to New York, and not move to California or Vegas?
Steve: “I am not sure. I just felt New York was appropriate to my genre of music. Everyone wants to be in the most famous city of the world. And as Leonard Cohen sings, “First we take Manhattan.” I love the city. I love the music, the art scene and its cultural diversity. One thing I find so different from Europe is that in New York City, people accept you for who you are, not for what you appear to be.”
Alysia : Who writes your music?
Steve: “I have a few lyricists that I like to work with. Sometimes I play the music, and then the lyrics come, or sometimes I just get the lyrics and I make the music that way. The lyricists I work with know me very well. I really enjoy the process of building a song. It is so exciting and unpredictable. You never know what you are going to be inspired by. There are no rules…sometimes I grab my guitar and then great ideas come to me. I also wrote a couple of lyrics. Barricades is a song where the music and lyrics both created by myself.”
Steve has an alluring voice that is as simply raw as it is sensuous. His words are exquisitely deep, complex yet meaningful; his voice presents the emotions that combine the lyrics to the music. None of his songs are at all similar and none of them are lyrically predictable. For the majority of his fans, it seems impossible to listen to his music without longing for that spell bounding voice that makes his music seem like wondrous poetry.
His diverse style of music is an extension of his extensive world travels. “Beautiful and rich melodies along with his own distinctive style of guitar work compliment Katz’s soulful voice.” Steve resides in Manhattan and performs weekly at local venues. His physical CD is being prepared to be released. Steve’s new EP entitled “Barricades” is due out shortly.
“Barricades can scare us, challenge us and stop us from achieving goals. They are everywhere and are often invisible. I’ve gone through many barricades in my time—physical and emotional ones that stood between me and my goals. Had I failed to go through one of these many barricades, this CD would never have been made.”
L.A Music Blog / Interview With Steve Katz,NYC-based artist talks about his world journey
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I’m always inspired by artists who take great measures to pursue their art, and Steve Katz is one of...I’m always inspired by artists who take great measures to pursue their art, and Steve Katz is one of those artists. Originally from Belgium, he moved to New York a few years ago with a guitar in his hand and songs in his heart. Now he’s performing his heartfelt melodies all over the city and picking up a lot of attention online. He’s already released four singles and is in the process of working on an EP, entitled Barricades, which I am eagerly anticipating. His versatility as a songwriter and guitarist truly sets him apart.
While we wait for his debut EP, here is your opportunity to get to know Steve up close and personal through my interview with him. =)
When did you come to America?
I decided to move here a long time ago, but it took a long time to have the courage to do it. Finally, two years ago I said it was either now or never, and it was like the movies. I took my guitar and went to New York. Although I do miss my friends and family, I talk to my loved ones back home almost every day. Having a clear goal really helped me transition into my life here.
And how do you like New York?
I love it here. There’s always something to do. The music scene is huge, and there are so many great people to collaborate with.
Have you traveled to other places?
Yes. I lived a couple of years in Israel, and I’ve traveled to India and Nepal. It was through my travel experiences actually that I found that my goal in life is to make music. Traveling to India especially changed me. I learned a lot about other cultures and discovered a lot about myself. People are happy even with the little they have. You definitely see the world differently.
What do you like to do outside of making music?
I read a lot. Right now I’m reading a book by Amélie Nothomb. I just finished reading Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts. I love anything about India.
Any shows in Los Angeles lined up?
Hopefully soon I’ll come to LA and perform. I’m working on putting a tour together as we speak.
We look forward to your journey to Los Angeles, Steve! Check out his song, “Fair,” my personal pick of the week, below!
Darlene Kiloglu Lamusicblog
Radio interview with Steve katz on RTBF radio (in French)
JP's Music Blog / Steve Katz's songwriting comes alive on digital releases
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New York singer/songwriter Steve Katz currently has five singles available through major outlets Ama...New York singer/songwriter Steve Katz currently has five singles available through major outlets Amazon, iTunes and CDbaby. His sound ranges from the Cat Stevens-sounding, acoustic folk of “Crazy” to the jazzy ballad “Barricades.” Katz is at his best when it is just him and an acoustic guitar as in “For The First Time” and “Where Do I Belong” as you can almost feel the tone in his voice as he lays his heart into his words. Katz seems to have more fun with the addition of a band as in “Kathmandu” and “Thrive” as his songs seem to grow into a life of their own.
To find out more about Steve Katz and to hear samples of his songs, please check out his website, http://www.stevekatzmusic.com
JP's Music Blog is brought to you by the Record-Journal Newspaper Publishing Company. JP's Music Blog is a place where you will find CD Reviews, Concert Reviews and even some happenings in the music community-both local and long-distance. Please feel free to leave comments or ask any
Examiner.com/ Steve Katz
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Steve Katz has just arrived in New York and he hopes to take this city by storm. His musical influen...Steve Katz has just arrived in New York and he hopes to take this city by storm. His musical influences are Genesis, King Crimson, Jethro Tull, and Cat Stevens. He also listens to a lot of Jazz music. "Yes I always knew I wanted to be in music, from the first chord I played on the guitar," Steve says....
The Jewish Times / The Journey of Steve Katz
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If you want something bad enough, you have to go after it. Period. Anyone who has been successful ha...If you want something bad enough, you have to go after it. Period. Anyone who has been successful has been told by others it will never happen but despite that, the real believers still chased their dreams. The story of Belgium born Steve Katz, is a perfect example of what happens when see your dreams through. Since Katz was fourteen, he knew he always wanted to be a musician. And like others before him that have tried to enter the cloudy jungle of the music business, he struggled. However, Katz, didn’t let that stop him, he did what he needed to make it work; he went to school, had a full time job- you know, did what your “supposed” to do as an adult (yeah right!). Still it wasn’t what he wanted to do. His dream - at times – may have seemed far off to others but Katz didn’t listen, he kept moving forward.
So, what did Katz do? Well, three years, he quit his job, packed his stuff and headed for the road to see where his music would take him. That road, lead him around the world, finding home in places like Nepal, Israel and India. Along the way, Katz learned more about himself and his travels only enhanced his abilities to constantly create music, “My diverse background has helped shape me both as a person and as a musician by opening my mind to different cultures, ways of life and forms of art.”
Katz eventually made his way to the U.S. where he spent endless hours hustling around the New York City music scene. And although the New York music scene is tough, Katz was welcomed, thanks to his unique folk rock sound and his devotion to his performances. “My goal in my shows is help people forget their daily routines and stresses for an hour or two, to help fuel up their souls, and to put a smile on their faces,” he adds, “Once I start playing I am at ease.”
When Katz isn’t busy playing around the country, he is putting the finishing touches on his debut album (Katz offers songs on his MySpace page www.myspace.com/katzsteve). If there’s one lesson that can learned from Steve Katz it’s that ambition and dreams can really drive to some incredible places, if you are willing to ride it out. “I see my music as an expression of my feelings and my voice, which is obviously different from those of other artists. I truly believe that every person is unique and has their own qualities, voice, and sound.”
Posted by Richie Frieman
PensEyeView / Steve Katz
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Steve Katz is a PEV kind of artist, I like to think – he grabbed a degree, rocked the 9-5 – did ever...Steve Katz is a PEV kind of artist, I like to think – he grabbed a degree, rocked the 9-5 – did everything that most folks do. But that wasn’t what HE was supposed to. He ditched the comfort about three years ago, quitting his job to write songs, eventually traveling from his home in Belgium to farther points east to the hustling and bustling streets of New York City. It’s a bit different from past spots his taken up residence in such as Nepal, Israel and India, but Katz is pushing forward just fine.
He’s working on developing his first collection, so we asked the NYC new guy about his sound. Steve says “I'd say my sound is folk rock. I see my music as an expression of my feelings and my voice, which is obviously different from those of other artists. I truly believe that every person is unique and has their own qualities, voice, and sound.”
We’re looking forward to the first Steve Katz record, and if you swing by his MySpace page, you’ll be just as interested. He says he’s “focusing on touring and playing while I make progress putting together my debut album” so keep a ready ear out for the progress. There’s more to learn below, so keep reading for the answers to the XXQ’s
XXQs: Steve Katz
PEV: What made you decide to jump into the world of music? Was this something you always planned?
Steve Katz (SK:): Yes. Since the first chord I played on my guitar when I was 14, I have wanted to make and play music. I have never wanted to do anything else, even though I got a degree in political science and worked in business for several years. I always felt torn between my career and between music until about three years ago when I decided to completely commit myself to my music. I quit my job, concentrated on writing and recording songs, traveled to the Far East, and finally came to New York where I figured that, because I sing in English, my music would be a better fit than in French-speaking Belgium, which is where I come from.
PEV: How would you describe your sound and what do you feel makes you stand out over the others in your genre?
SK: I'd say my sound is folk rock. I see my music as an expression of my feelings and my voice, which is obviously different from those of other artists. I truly believe that every person is unique and has their own qualities, voice, and sound.
PEV: You come from a very diverse background – now living in NYC, you are originally from Belgium you have lived and traveled in places like Nepal, Israel and India. How do you feel this helps shape who you are as a musician?
SK: My diverse background has helped shape me both as a person and as a musician by opening my mind to different cultures, ways of life, and forms of art.
PEV: Having played all over in so many different countries, what is it like to play
overseas versus here in the US?
SK: I love the fact that there are so many different venues and opportunities in New York where new artists can play their music.
PEV: With that, what can fans expect from a live Steve Katz show?
SK: My goal in my shows is help people forget their daily routines and stresses for an hour or two, to help fuel up their souls, and to put a smile on their faces.
PEV: What is the first thing that comes to mind when you step on stage?
SK: Actually...when I'm on stage getting ready to perform, I'm always busy thinking about the last-minute logistics: tuning my guitar one last time, doing sound checks, making sure I have a bottle of water. It's only once I start playing that I am at ease and can start focusing on the audience and on my music.
PEV: What was the underlining inspiration for your music? Where do get your best ideas for songs?
SK: My inspiration comes from my life experiences and from meaningful interactions with the people in my life and with my surroundings.
PEV: What’s one thing we’d be surprised to hear about you?
SK: I'm a morning person. I'm up at 6am every day.
PEV: What one word best describes you?
PEV: What can we find you doing in your spare time, aside from playing/writing music?
SK: I like reading, running, and swimming.
PEV: Name one present and past artist or group that would be your dream collaboration? Why?
SK: I'm a fan of Genesis, so Peter Gabriel would be great. I'm also a big fan of Cat Stevens too. They are both geniuses, so obviously collaborating and learning from them would be an amazing experience.
PEV: So, what is next for you?
SK: I'm focusing on touring and playing while I make progress putting together my debut album. You can stay updated by checking out my
|Apr 23, 2013 Tuesday||7:00 PM||Zirzamin Subterraean Music Parlour||Manhattan, NY, US|
|Apr 9, 2013 Tuesday||6:00 PM||Rockwood Music Hall||New York, NY, US|