They might be captivating audiences at NYC's famous Bitter End or playing to fans at L.A.'s Genghis Khan. Across the country, I-80 is driving in the fast-lane. "We once played a gig for a group of New Yorkers on a Halloween cruise past the Statue of Liberty. The boat was literally rocking back and forth and it was all we could do to keep our balance. It was crazy," says Kat.
Meet Bo and Kat, two emotive singer-songwriter-sisters. Haunting melodies with soaring choruses and soulful harmonies that move into rock tones, create I-80’s sound. Kat plays guitar (electric and acoustic), and Bo plays percussion and drums. Their tight harmonies and groove quickly made the duo sought-after performers in venues like Arlene Grocery, CBGB's, and the Stone Pony. Their magnetic stage presence, wide vocal ranges, and tight harmonies grab the crowd from the first note sung, and leave them wanting more. Their blend results only from siblings who have sung together their entire lives, creating an undeniable chemistry.
I-80 cites a range of musical influences from Tori Amos and Jewel to the Everly Brothers and the Beatles. They have collaborated with songwriters Rick Nowells, the Eagles' Timothy B. Schmidt, Grammy winner Craig Wiseman, Andrew Fromm, and Mark Bacino. Platinum producers Brad Young and Dow Brain of Underground Productions are co-producing tracks from I-80’s debut CD “iamnowhere,” to be released late Summer 2006. The CD will feature songs with themes such as going back to childhood; an unwelcome comeback of a ex-boyfriend; to tough decision-making that leads to immobility.
I-80's story is as intriguing as their music. Raised in Nebraska, Bo and Kat are also a part of the 4-sister group Mulberry Lane, which was signed to MCA Records. Mulberry Lane debuted on R&R's CHR chart in 1999 with their self-penned song "Harmless" which went to #25 in the U.S. and #6 in Japan, produced by Doug Trantow (Sugar Ray, Widespread Panic) and Don Gehman (John Mellencamp, R.E.M., Tracy Chapman, Hootie and the Blowfish). Mulberry Lane has sold over 500,000 records nationally and internationally. Another single, "Just One Breath," was featured on Kevin Costner's "For Love of the Game" soundtrack. They appeared on numerous national and international television and radio shows, including Good Morning America, Regis, CBS This Morning, CNN Worldbeat, Donny and Marie, Fox Family Network, ESPN, Rick Dees Weekly Countdown, and Casey Kasem Weekly Countdown. They have performed in eight different countries, including the German TV show Geld Oder Liebe and the Japanese show Yo Miro Hit Parade. The sisters have opened for many top performers, including Smashmouth, Edwin McCain, Fastball, and Nick Lachey. They have also performed at many outdoor festivals and fairs, including Summerfest, and have opened for classic performers such as the Doobie Brothers, Cyndi Lauper, Grand Funk Railroad, Hootie and the Blowfish, the Spin Doctors and Three Dog Night.
A pre-release of I-80's single, Fire, has won critical acclaim and radio play from Minneapolis to Boston. Recently, I-80 was featured in Guitar One magazine, and Music Connection declared I-80 as Artists to Watch. AllAccess.com pegged a pre-release of their single Fire as Cool New Music. Duluth, Minnesota's WWAX reported they had received more requests for I-80 than any other independent artist. Undoubtedly, their upcoming CD is certain to put I-80 on the map as more than just a highway.
Bo: vocals, percussion, drums, harmonica
Kat: vocals, acoustic guitar, electric guitar
The duo sometimes play with a bass player, depending on the venue.
"Fire" CD single (includes two songs: "Fire" and "Door # 1 or 2)
"Fire" is currently getting airplay in several markets
"IAMNOWHERE" full-length CD due late-summer, 2006
Guitar One Magazine, Aug. 2004
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KAT HOMETOWN: Omaha, Nebraska GEAR: Fender Acoustic with Martin strings, Fender Stratocaster with ...KAT
HOMETOWN: Omaha, Nebraska
GEAR: Fender Acoustic with Martin strings, Fender Stratocaster with Ernie Ball strings, Fender Roc Pro, Line 6 POD, Digitech Turbo Flange and Main Squeeze, Boss Blues Driver
"Kat's life as a guitarist and singer is hardly typical, at least by the standards of the average basement shredder with a day job and dreams of hit singles, tour dates, and recording chances. She's one-quarter of the sister pop group Mulberry Lane, which to date has sold more that 500,000 records worldwide and in 1999 scored a hit single called "Harmless." And along with sister Bo (percussion), Kat's also one-half of I-80, a pop-rock duo with a true name for the road - specifically, the transcontinental interstate that cuts through her family's Nebraska homeland.
"'I've been playing guitar for about eight years now,' Kat says, 'and I think I've always had a natural affinity for it. I always thought it was cool to be a girl guitar player.'
"Kat and Bo are currently crafting tunes for their debut, which they hope to release in August. The I-80 songs, Kat says, will have more of a rock edge - a departure from the dulcet ditties of Mulberry Lane. And, of course, tour dates will follow.
"'The best part about being on the road with my sister,' Kat explains, 'is that when we show up to a gig, the sound guy always asks where the band is. We love to tell him that we are the band.'"
All Access, 2004
I-80's song "Fire" chosen as "Cool New Music" at www.allaccess.com
Review of Minneapolis Concert at the Fineline
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The Union of Two Sisters From the moment you see them onstage; you see their unity and chemis...The Union of Two Sisters
From the moment you see them onstage; you see their unity and chemistry. Their playing is tight and their songs are original, imaginative and rock to a good beat. Stage gear is basic with Kat on electric or acoustic guitar and Bo on drums with a little harmonica and tambourine thrown in also. One thing to always catch a listener is their harmony. Bo and Kat have a tremendous vocal range and wonderful harmony which is prominent in the song, "I Wish".
I-80's soon to be released single "Fire" talks of love and how opposites attract. Another song to keep an ear out for is the B-Side to the single, "Door #1 or 2". This is another instance where I-80's talents in harmonies and style come into play. Also, the tempo and arrangement changes a bit when you see them live, which is a must do! Check out I-80's website at www.i80music.com and sign up for their newsletter of upcoming appearances and listen for when the gorgeous sisters of I-80 say, "I've got my sticks!" and "I've got my pics! Let's have some fun!!" Sit back, enjoy and I think you'll agree that these sisters rock!!
Music Connection, 2003
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Artists to Watch "In college, the above-pictured girls, Bo and Kat, cut an indie CD as four-sister ...Artists to Watch
"In college, the above-pictured girls, Bo and Kat, cut an indie CD as four-sister group Mulberry Lane. The CD sold 10.000 copies, and the girls signed with Refuge/MCA and released a single, "Harmless," that climbed to No. 25 on R&R's CHR chart and went top 10 in Japan. They haven't slowed down since; and, while the foursome Mulberry Lane continues to perform, I-80 marks the group's spin-off."
The Tin Ear News, Jan. - Feb. 2005
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I-80: Fire (CD single). I-80 is made up of the younger half of Mulberry Lane – whose credentials as...I-80: Fire (CD single). I-80 is made up of the younger half of Mulberry Lane – whose credentials as singers and songwriters are well established. The sound they've chosen for this spinoff group is definitely alternative, with a great deal of rhythmic drive and more "edge" than Mulberry Lane's sound. The vocal work is excellent – no surprise there – and the writing is solid, especially in the crafting of the lyrics.
Kat plays guitar (acoustic and electric), and Bo plays drums, percussion, and harmonica. (Option: I-80 also adds additional players for bigger concerts.)
Their magnetic and captivating stage presence, wide vocal ranges, and tight harmonies (that together slide from intimate to ecstatic tones) grab the crowd from the first note sung and leave them wanting more.
I-80's set list is always changing. They mix originals (including "Fire" and "I Wish" which are both getting airplay), with audience participation, and originally arranged popular covers. Covers have included “That’s What I Like About You,” Tom Petty’s “American Girl,” “Iko Iko," "Should I Stay or Should I Go,” “Bye Bye Love,” “Love Me Do,” "I Want You to Want Me," "Boys of Summer," among others.
Sets can be up to 75 min, or three 45 minute sets.
Originals may include:
Door #1 or 2
Let’s Turn it On Again
Gonna Come Down to Us
You Get Me
Remember I Love You
Don’t Tell Me
Baby I Love You
Hopelessly in Love
Direction the Wind Blows
Just One Breath
Everybody’s Got Somebody
Beat is Strong
There are no upcoming dates at this time.