Gig Seeker Pro


New York City, New York, United States | AFTRA

New York City, New York, United States | AFTRA
Band Alternative Pop


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"My Experience: KaiserCartel @ Murphy's 7-21-07"

Sunday, July 22, 2007

My Experience: KaiserCartel @ Murphy's 7-21-07

Brooklynites Courtney Kaiser and Benjamin Cartel, of KaiserCartel, invite you to warm up by the fire and share an intimate hour of music. I have to say, at one moment in the evening I imagined curling up with my favorite blanket next to an amber fire in a bar. It was pretty great.

Their minimal-phenom pop is beautifully crafted and any band that play interchanging toy xylophones is awesome in my book.

Speaking of phenom, Murphy's clientele demographic changes at the stroke of 10pm. Due to the early show the inebriated 'regulars'(who were not there for the independent pop musings) requested James Taylor and Eric Clapton. Despite the heckling and shouting "hey I want one of those whiskey things" the kind duo sealed their concentration with smiles.

The small turnout had a lot to due with the Reverend Al Green's performance at the Botanical Gardens, Harlan T. Bobo's CD release and of course, Crunkfest.

When KaiserCartel learned of the happenings around town Kaiser (an entrepreneuse) suggested they go perform outside Al Green's show. They then shifted gears, Kaiser on drums and Cartel on guitar. Benjamin fooled the audience and introduced the following song as an Al Green cover. He sang, "pack up your bag and leave your home behind." It could have been an Al Green song.

Both then played guitar on "Okay" and amazingly created a pure synth pop sound and sang, "it's okay if you fool everyone."

Other highlights included "Seasons Song" with one of the best whistle introductions next to Andrew Bird. "Dog Stars" and a song about their favorite old movie, White Dove. Kartel said, "one of the most beautiful movies we've ever seen. Hands down."

Their last song was a blissful serenade to the audience. Courtney and Ben walked down the stage and into the crowd of eight and sang to each of us. Courtney has the bluest crystal eyes I think I've ever looked into. It was a miraculous hit in the gut.

After the performance I had the opportunity to ask a couple of questions:

Scenestars: Ben what goes through your mind when someone in the audience shouts, "hey, I want one of those whiskey things?" Do you find it distracting?
Ben: It makes me laugh. If people are not into it, well alright. It is kinda funny. Kinda out of place. What we do is quiet. We have to be really focused -- before you know it you're all over the place. I learned a trick from our friends in Low (Minneapolis band). They suggested if you want to get the audience's attention you play quieter.

Scenestars: Courtney, your style is unique and looks so effortless. Did you learn to play with your middle finger and thumb?
Courtney: Actually, I learned to play formally and when I would write and play it never sounded right. I was turned on to T-Rex and discovered I could play the entire record in that tuning. It is amazing what you can do with your middle finger and thumb.

If you would like to be sung to and feel wonderfully blissful inside and out catch KaiserCartel in your town or a town near you. When was the last time someone sang to you?

Labels: KaiserCartel, Show Review
Memphis, TN
posted by Lauren McGeorge @ 7/22/2007 09:30:00 AM - Lauren McGeorge

"Live on "Women Folk""

Today Courtney Kaiser of acoustic indie band KaiserCartel called in to talk
with us about their show at the Varsity Theater this Friday and their
various musical projects in the works. If you missed it, you can listen to
the archived version at www.kfai.org/node/123! -efs - Ellen Stanley

"A Review of ‘Secret Transit’"

When I’m truly moved by something special and wonderful, whether it be a passage read, a scene viewed, or a song heard, I am often brought to tears. This is something built deep inside my heart that makes me feel rescued by the beauty that I have witnessed. The honesty and beauty behind the music of Kaiser Cartel has had this effect on me since first hearing their music over a year ago.

Their newest release, Secret Transit is no different and helps to amplify their pure talent and brilliance. Courtney Kaiser and Benjamin Cartel have again documented a collection of thoughtfully honest songs, which stand as a gift for any ear that craves beautiful vocals, songwriting, and soul in every played note. Personally, Courtney and Benjamin have left an indelible mark in my musical life. They are a breath of fresh air, which reminds the spirit that real music still exists in the world today.

We begin with the beautiful “Riverboat Dream” which drifts in quietly and mysteriously. Courtney and Benjamin’s vocal float ghostly atop a moody but epic arrangement which depth pulls you in quickly. It may provoke a tear if you allow its spirit to touch your heart. After the heartstrings are thoughtfully plucked, they abruptly change gears with the foot-stomping “Carroll Street Station”. The exchange between the two vocalists is wonderful making the song infectious and destined for repeated listens. “Falling” has a darker tone, but like the previous track, keeps the energetic spirit up while maintaining the darkness in its essence.

Slowing to an angelic waltz, Courtney gives a heavenly vocal performance in “Brave Enough” as her well-paced voice soars to the clouds while the soft music gives just enough air to guide and balance her gracefully. “Worn Out Nervous Condition” brings us back to the nineties for a few minutes where we hear some power pop influences that are reminiscent of Liz Phair, Veruca Salt, and Juliana Hatfield. Again, here is an example of versatility and how a talented set of performers can pull off multiple styles and remain on track. The next track “Stella” is an incredibly touching, warm song that puts tears in my eyes each time I hear Courtney sing “And you know, I’m gonna leave the light on just in case you come back late.” A song written from her simple observations friend’s children takes you to
that house of warmth and love as you listen. “Around You” takes a melancholy pop upswing with its infectious beat and chorus. The well-placed organ sounds float through making this a sixties spirited

“Minefield” features Benjamin Cartel in this dark western flavored tune. Another gear-switcher, it is nice to see the lead vocals can be flipped but quality remains. “Whenever You Go” and “Already
Gone” are both quiet, beautifully written and performed songs that pull their overall sound back to spacious and epic. They find a new key to the heart with every note they create. “Ready To Go” is another hooky, memorable pop tune featuring the nice blend of both vocalists vocally and musically. It keeps you interested and sticks in your head immediately. The charmingly beautiful and sad “Memphis” again features the great sensitivity of Benjamin Cartel’s vocal and emotional backing of Kaiser setting the stage for the final track, “The Wait”, which is an instant classic in every sense of the word. A perfect punctuation for a statement of true artistry, the final song tugs on the heartstrings like no other as Courtney repeats the line, “It’s you that I need, so I’ll wait.” With the songs end drifting off into a lonely sea of reverberation, a solo Kaiser repeats desperately in the distance, “It all comes down to the wait. I’ll try to hold on one more day.”

Truly, my favorite release this year, Kaiser Cartel should be prepared for greatest in the eyes of the
world. In my heart they have already arrived. - By Bryon Turcott

"KaiserCartel do it their way with new album Secret Transit"

The duo receives fan funding and gives back with a stellar sophomore release
Published: May 28th, 2010 | 11:00am

It takes guts for a band to put out a record on their own, especially in this economy. But Courtney Kaiser and Ben Cartel of the indie rock duo KaiserCartel have always been tenacious. They’ve survived a romantic break-up, the folding of their label, and the decision to leave steady jobs during the height of the current recession—and yet they are still going strong. Following in the footsteps of Amanda Palmer and the Damnwells, KaiserCartel received help from their fans through the fund-raising site PledgeMusic.com and raised enough money to be able to release their second album, Secret Transit, on June 8 while also embarking on a tour that will last through the end of July.

“We offered different incentives that we thought people would find interesting," explains Kaiser of the band's decision to solicit funds from fans. "Rather than people just giving us $10, they’re actually getting something in return. Everyone who pledged money will get the new album as well as an EP called Philanthropy, which is B-sides from March Forth (Bluhammock) and also this record.

“At first we were worried that we might not reach [our goal amount]—but at the same time, from a business aspect, well, then we'd really know how people felt about our music,” says Kaiser, laughing. “Do we just think the music is great and it’s awful? It’s good to test your ground and know where your people are.”

Luckily, the band had nothing to worry about. “Within the first couple of days we were almost at 60%—and the cool thing about this method is that it allows us to speak to our fans, interact with them, and give them a different way to support us,” says Cartel.

Apart from being a new way to fund their careers, KaiserCartel see a site like PledgeMusic.com as a way to even the playing field in the arts. Kaiser, who was trained on classic music from a young age, has long been frustrated by the divide between classical music and the rest of the music world. While she was at the prestigious Interlochen Arts Academy, Kaiser notes that her teacher would send home letters saying, “She has to choose between classical music and rock. She can’t sing both!”

“I thought that was crazy,” says Kaiser. “Miriam Makeba is an amazing singer and I don’t see anything wrong with what she’s doing.” It's no surprise then that the young singer would create a World Vocal major for herself at Indiana University so she could study different cultures of music. “I found people within the school that could train me to sing Hindustani, and I did another study of South African folk singing. I also love Bulgarian styles of singing… really just doing different things.” In Kaiser’s book, music is music, and it all deserves study and respect, which she feels is accomplished through initiatives like self-producing albums.

“I feel like this new platform brings indie rock, rock music, and anything outside the classical realm together, to become as important as a chamber quartet. In the classical world, chamber musicians get their instruments paid for, they get support, and they get fed. That feeling or embracing of the arts, no matter what the genre, should be more present in music—and it’s just sort of absent. I hope that something comes along to fill that void and that more and more sites similar to PledgeMusic.com start appearing. In return, hopefully people will see or understand the idea and want to contribute and be part of that process, just like fans do with classical music.”

But KaiserCartel isn’t just thinking about themselves with this Secret Transit. Fifteen percent of what they make will be donated to Art of Conservation in Rwanda. “We’ve written a couple of songs for the organization to use for fundraising, and we’ve translated some of our own music into Kirwanda,” explains Kaiser. “The community is really excited. We’ve been Skyping back and forth to get our translations correct. Because they’ve been so supportive of us, it’s really nice to be able to give back to them in this way.”

- By Maureen Fleming

"Courtney Kaiser"

"I'm a lonely little petunia in an onion patch. And all I do is cry all day. Boo Hoo Boo Hoo." At the age of two, Courtney Kaiser sang her first solo. While her outfits have changed, her area of residence has evolved, and her voice has deepened to the comforting tone we hear today, the spirit within Courtney Kaiser remains intent on sharing itself through music. Citing artist Auguste Rodin: "The artist must create a spark before he can make a fire and before art is born, the artist must be ready to be consumed by the fire of his own creation."

In our hour together, Courtney began her revelations by telling me of the new life she began upon relocation to New York City from her home town of Bloomington, IN nearly 2 years ago. Upon reflection, the rootsy Kaiser stated that she felt more "Indiana" after moving to the city than she did during her upbringing in the Hoosier state. Coming from nearly identical upbringing, we spoke of how the city makes values of our upbringing and character stand out in comparison to that of people raised in the city or other geographic areas. Ultimately, spending time in other areas provides a great source of diversity and experience that lends itself to amazing creations with the voice and guitar. Brooklyn, her current home, is a borough of extremes, possessing a greater display of diversity than the other 49 states. Kaiser's recent cd release In the Garden contains compositions that encompass moments in her life before, during and after this adjustment. I find it to be a wonderful collection of songs pleasing to the ear, and comfortable in nature. More importantly to me as a listener, it stands very true to her roots in a city and time where artists completely change their paths and image according to industry trends (we won't mention any names Jewel... Sheryl...).

When asked of her most cherished compositions, Kaiser stated that the good ones, and the same are her personal favorites. "those two were a lot different than anything I had written before and they were also the first two... ...songs I wrote when I moved here." They were different in a sense of being "More obvious. more emotional..I had always written pop songs that I thought didnt really mean much. Now that I listen to them, they seem really dark lyrically. The music is really up but the lyrics are kind of down. And you might not notice unless you really paid attention. I didn't know what I was writing about until after they were recorded... and listened to them at 4:30am on a tour bus in the middle of nowhere." An artist getting lost in her music. The good ones entails a classic situation experienced by someone living in a place that they are not entirely familiar with; a story of doubt, revolving around things we encounter in life that appear too good to be true, too fast, too soon: a reflection upon the "honeymoon stage" present at the beginning of most relationships. It is said that removing oneself from their daily zones of comfort and habit breeds creativity; Courtney Kaiser provides her testimony to that statement through these two songs.

Each musician owns their own style for songwriting. Most have their own unique process, special setting, and muses. With Kaiser, all songs have a muse springing from reality and an actual event in her life. There are no dreamscapes composed of imaginary beings; rather, real things and events that the imagination translates meaning from. She stated that most of her composing takes place after a traumatic event in her life, or with her preferred creative companion, Rusden Grenache. The pen, the paper, and the glass of red wine provide the outlet for Courtney to relieve her personal pains or enjoy her personal pleaures at times when the city of millions provides no companion. We all have those moments in our lives when our partner or companion are not present, and that five minutes alone feels like an eternity. For Kaiser and many others who later hear the composition, that five minutes of pain, translates into five minutes of pleasure. In an attempt to understand her move to New York, I explored a few thoughts. Without moments of pain and suffering, followed by moments of pleaure and escape, very little can be expressed musically or artistically. I can recall making several spontaneous trips to San Francisco during my time of residence in Southern California, simply to see pain and life going on in normalcy. Music legend Donna Summer once stated, "Sometimes I get bored riding down the beautiful streets of L.A. I know it sounds crazy, but I just want to go to New York and see people suffer." Is suffering and pain truly required by artists and musicians in order to compose? If so, situated in Brooklyn, paying bills, experiencing life, and living a normal working life in addition to musicianship, Courtney Kaiser is in a position to perceive, and create several wonderful pieces of music in the future.

Courtney will be joined at the South Park Music Festival by her life and music partner Benjamin Cartel. Kaiser will be playing guitar, recorder, and xylophone, while Cartel will be playing floor tom, snare, guitar, and xyplohone throughout the act. Their act promises to be an intimate show where content and meaning take priority over volume. Many new songs that have been composed since the recording of In the Garden are set to be performed. Enjoy the performance.
- Frontrange Music

"An indie pop rock Siren"

An indie pop rock siren

While in the studio, Dylan called upon the talents of a familiar Indiana musician, Courtney Kaiser. Kaiser is known in Bloomington as well Indianapolis as an indie pop rock siren. In addition to playing in some legitimately great bands such as the Prom and The Academy, Kaiser also is currently working on her own recording project, Eeqwa, as well as being a back up singer with John Mellencamp for the past 2 years. The Dylan and Kaiser collaboration was spawned during a small tour the Wallflowers did with Mellencamp.

"We were doing some recordings on the road," recalls Dylan. "She sang on some of our demos out there and her voice happened to work really well with mine. So when we were making the record we flew her out." According to Dylan, Kaiser"s "An amazing talent."

According to Kaiser, Dylan"s, "a genius songwriter." Kaiser"s gorgeously lush voice can be heard harmonizing with Dylan on "See When You Get There," one of the strongest songs on the record.

- Nuvo Newsweekly

"Courtney Kaiser @ MMS"

Courtney Kaiser

Stylish yet understated, fantastically feminine, but with true grit as a singer/songwriter, Courtney Kaiser is a gem. Her song “Blue Sky” in particular is one that is immediately reminiscent of Sheryl Crow circa the Globe Sessions. Kaiser’s voice is an enduring personal favorite, as her wrap sheet includes stints with the Prom, United States Three, and The Academy. Her versatility as a vocalist is complimented by the diversity of her writing. The aforementioned “Blue Sky” is something of an alt-country type of song whereas her record In the Garden is also ripe with full-bodied pop songs with indelible melodies.
- Indy Ink

"'Kaiser Cartel' London, Betsy Trotwood (Live review)"

'Kaiser Cartel'
'London, Betsy Trotwood, Farringdon - June 15 2007'

- Genre: 'Indie'

Our Rating:
Ladies and gentlemen, in the words of the truly magnificent KAISER CARTEL, come, join us and warm up by the fire…

Playing in the tomb-like confines of the Betsy Trotwood in Farringdon, London, this Brooklyn-based duo introduced us into their wonderful world of DIY cool music.

Courtney Kaiser and Benjamin Cartel function as an inside-out White Stripes - lady on the guitar and lead vocals, man on the drums - with less emphasis on the 'RnB'. They opened with a slow, Verucca Salt tinged acoustic pop number that was proof positive that ‘less is more’, with the power and beauty of the song shining through the sparse arrangement.

Ms Kaiser’s vocals were sweet with a hard edge. When singing the epic “Dog Star”, she mixed the purity of Emmylou Harris with the magical gothic of Tanya Donnely. But perhaps the most striking comparison would be Harriet Wheeler of The Sundays. It’s hard to say though, there was a genuine honesty behind Kaiser’s vocals, they were really beautiful.

To say there were so few instruments being played – guitar, drum, xylophone, and tight harmony vocals – they managed to encompass a nice basket of styles, from the sounds of the West coast, Alt.Country, Steeleye Span-esque heavy folk rock (who'd've thunk it?!), to cherry-flavoured indie pop. And there was a fair amount of instrument swapping, not to mention Benjamin Cartel taking centre stage for some of the numbers. In all, the set was utterly captivating.

But without a doubt, the highlight of the evening was their final song, where they stepped away from the stage and sang a haunting duo, as they walked through and serenaded the audience.

We were snuggled in one of the alcoves next to the stage (prime seating area!) and amazingly both Kaiser and Cartel popped their heads around the corner, and in a moment of true sincerity they sang to us for what seemed like the entire chorus. Apart from the fact that the acoustics sounded great, it was a very personal warm, glowing feeling. Honestly, we couldn't wipe the grins off our faces for ages afterwards.

In breaking down the barriers between themselves and the crowd they gave everyone a really moving experience. We were nearly in tears and I felt compelled to give Courtney Kaiser a massive hug afterwards. It’s easy to imagine that most people in the room felt the same way.

This mini-tour was Kaiser Cartel's first time round in London, but us at W&H truly hope to see them at this side of the pond again very soon. Fabulous stuff.
- Whisperin' & Hollerin'

"Unusual duo draws comparisons to other historic units"

The music, approach and sound of the Brooklyn duo KaiserCartel, who play the Basement tonight, is so unusual and different from a lot of rock, pop or even singer/songwriter material that they’ve been compared to everyone from Gram Parsons and Emmylou Harris to the White Stripes. Courtney Kaiser, one-half of the versatile and unusual two-member unit, finds these comparisons flattering, but cautions fans not to take them too seriously.

“It’s almost like I’ve found myself being linked to whatever’s hot at the moment since I got started singing as a teenager in Indiana,” Kaiser laughed. “At various times people have said that my voice reminds them of Sheryl Crow or Natalie Merchant. Last night we heard people talking about the White Stripes again. Certainly the Parsons/Harris thing gets your attention because they are such fantastic artists, but what we’re doing really isn’t so much folk or pop, nor necessarily what people expect with singer/songwriter tunes. There’s more of punk-rock thing coming from Benjamin’s [Cartel] influences, plus some of the more unorthodox things that I can of bring into my songs.”

Indeed, KaiserCartel tunes can be adventurous or straightforward, fun/novelty things or more serious and provocative, depending on the mood and directions of Kaiser and Cartel. Both veterans of other bands before they joined forces 18 months ago, Kaiser not only sings but also plays guitar, recorder and xylophone. Meanwhile Cartel plays guitar, floor tom and snare drum, and xylophone. The two continually alternate instruments and roles in their material, creating a sound that can be loose or tight, with a montage of textures, melodies and rhythms that come together thanks to the hearty harmonizing and consistently clever and catchy songwriting.

They’re currently dividing their time between touring, with tonight’s concert among a series of 11 shows that’s taken them from their Brooklyn residence to the Midwest and then through the South before returning home to continue work on their forthcoming new release. Kaiser adds that the vast amount of time they’ve logged on the road since the duo’s formation has proven creatively profitable, if at times quite strenuous.

“Last summer we did 25 shows in 30 days with a whole bunch of 14-hour drives in between,” Kaiser remembered. “You really start to notice under those conditions when someone’s getting tired or when things aren’t working as well. There were all kinds of adventures with things flying out of windows, animals popping up in the road, and other things happening that generated quite a few discussions. A lot of those things sometimes ended up in pretty good songs, and we also got a real good feel for knowing that our decision to join forces and make our own band rather than staying with our previous groups was a good one.” - Ron Wynn, Nashville City Paper

""Double Standard" UK Review"

Courtney Kaiser and Benjamin Cartel originate from Brooklyn. They got together in 2004 to lay down the foundations for this intriguingly laid back musical union that was to become KaiserCartel. They are a surprisingly low-key sounding duo that keep things really simple - modest rather than lo-fi but with mouth-watering results that sound liberated and down-home honest.

KaiserCartel do the minimalist nu-folk/country/rock thing with massive sensitivity. Instrumentally challenged (seemingly no more than acoustic guitar, snare drum, cymbal, two voices and the occasional percussive 'jingling'), KaiserCartel bring a whole new feel to contemporary music. Relying heavily on their impressive songwriting and massively effective and very tasty vocal attributes (individual and combined), the intrepid twosome take the listener on a gentle voyage through their delicate but wholesome musical world of new-age acoustic wonderment.

Although 'Double Standard' is an EP, there's actually seven great tracks to sit back and enjoy. And, 'Double Standard' does make you want to just sit and listen - it draws you in, slowly and very gently it works its way into you and leaves you feeling suitably chilled and positively refreshed. 'Double Standard' comes complete with a small pack of crayons - so as you relax you can colour in the charming line drawing on its cover - more originality, more simplicity, more under-statement!

I really like 'Double Standard' by KaiserCartel - they're doing something a bit different and doing it extremely well! The two work superbly well together vocally. Their songs are nicely proportioned, well crafted and sensitively handled. At a time when much of the music we hear tends to be very cluttered and complex, Kaiser Cartel have brought things back down to ground, almost to basics, and deigned to bring the world the gift of 'Double Standard' - and what fine gift it is too. 'Double Standard' is musical simplicity, homeopathic stimulation and aural splendour. - Toxic Pete

"The Madison Onion Preview"

A duo from Brooklyn, Courtney Kaiser and Benjamin Cartel take a purely organic approach to bittersweet, melodic indie-folk. KaiserCartel's album Double Standard contains not much more than an acoustic guitar, brushes on a snare drum, and two voices intermingling in splendorous harmony. This simple approach serves them well, and it should appeal to fans of the quieter sides of Yo La Tengo and Mary Lou Lord. - The Onion, Madison

"NYC duo brings music, coloring contest to Carrboro"

Courtney Kaiser and Benjamin Cartel, otherwise known as the Brooklyn-based duo KaiserCartel, will be in Carrboro at the Open Eye Cafe Saturday. Attendees should bring not only their ears but their best artistic abilities.

KaiserCartel has a seven-song ep in hand - "Double Standard" - and it's a noteworthy debut project. Both Kaiser and Cartel are skilled, imaginative musicians and proficient songwriters. Kaiser has an arresting vocal quality that, not accidentally, is an ideal complement to the appealing minimalism of the KaiserCartel musical vibe.

They've incorporated an art contest into their current tour. The cover art of "Double Standard" is a line drawing of them done by Cartel. Teh contest is actually a coloring contest.

"When someone buys our CD we give them three crayons and a copy of the cover art Ben did for the album," Kaiser said. "Whoever does the best job will be the winner. We'll use their entry for the new CD artwork and put their name on the cover. We'll do a limited reissue of the CD with a new cover and two new songs. The new songs are actually songs that are on the original CD that we've recorded with strings."

The two got together in New York City. Kaiser was born and raised in Indianapolis, while Cartel is from Westchester, N.Y. She's a graduate of the excellent School of Music at the University of Indiana, and Cartel survived the rigors of Parsons School of Design in New York City.

They met at a gig at The Knitting Factory in New York when their bands were sharing a bill with a third act.

"The whole idea of this show was to do it like bands in Indiana do it, where the whole thing is very cooperative," Kaiser said during a phone interview. "Nobody's name is bigger than the others, no real headliner, all three bands pay for the fliers. Well we couldn't get up with the third band - Benjamin's band - and I didn't know them, so I was like, oh, those guys, they must think they're better than us, they're not gonna put money in on the fliers. Let's not see them play."

Kaiser followed through on her studied-indifference-is-the-best-revenge strategy and sat in her car instead of in The Knitting Factory when Cartel's band played. After the show, however, she discovered her evening was jus beginning.

"Ben came out ot my car and said, 'I missed your set but I heard you were really great. Would you like to trade tapes?' That was his pickup line," she laughed. "It was pretty good, too. It worked. I invited him over and we played each other's four-track tapes."

They liked what they heard and they liked what they saw. They were a dating item after that.

"We decided that we really wanted to go on the road, but there was no way our two bands could go on tour," Kaiser said. "We didn't even have a van. So Ben and I went on tour. That was in the summer of 2004. We did a small Midwest tour. We'd play each other's music and back up each other and sell our individual CDs. While we were on the road, everyone was asking us when we were going to make a CD together. We decided to start writing new material together and call ourselves KaiserCartel."

The duo has continued playing on the weekends, regionally, but the big tours happen during the summer, she said. Last summer the duo performed 24 shows in 30 days, touring all over the country "in my three-door Saturn," she said.

Kaiser and Cartel are teachers, which explains their somewhat restricted touring opportunities. Kaiser teaches music at a Montessori school (chorus, piano, and songwriting). Cartel teaches art at an early childhood program in Manhattan.

She added that when KaiserCartel is playing in the New York City area, they've been performing with a cellist and a violinist. The violinist is Margaret White, well known in the Chapel Hill scene for her association with Regina Hexaphone and Portastatic.

Excellent tunes Saturday night at Open Eye Cafe. Crayons courtesy of KaiserCartel. - Philip Van Vleck, The Herald-Sun


Double Standard EP (self released) 2006
Breakaway Radio EP (self released) 2007
Okay...and other things we feel EP [bluhammock 2008 (US)]
March Forth [bluhammock 2008 (US)/CRS 2009 (Europe)]
Daytrotter EP (to be released in 9/09)

March Forth charted on the CMJ charts and various tracks can be heard on radio across the country



Courtney began writing her own music at the age of 16. She is classically trained in opera but has delved into Indian classical music as well as other influences beyond the western world. Courtney has played in bands such as United States Three, The Prom, John Mellencamp band. Courtney has also helped other musicians (such as the Wallflowers and Sean Lennon) with their music by adding her drawingly powerful voice. Benjamin Cartel started out his musical career with the drums. He rings it in with the feel of Steve Jordan and the power of Stuart Copland. He played in bands such as The Heartdrops and the Benjamin Cartel. The two have combined their forces of sultry but meaningful songwriting and put it into an eclectic and heartwrenching form they call KaiserCartel. They have opened for and performed with Martha Wainwright, Joe Pernice, Bettie Serveert, The Go Betweens, and The Shore.