Karen Fay
Gig Seeker Pro

Karen Fay

Band Pop Singer/Songwriter


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




Nice! I enjoyed the diversity from track to track and each song has a great hook of some sort whether musically or vocally. The project maintains strong lyrical composition and phrasing and the “not too busy” music production is a breath of fresh air. Great job! I got a new CD to add to my Sunday morning on the deck line-up!
- Annette Warner

"Impact Press"

Vocalist and pianist Karen Fay brings us some pop in the likes of Carly Simon. Piano ballads are a good choice for this artist and she seems comfortable with these. She has a good voice and might even remind you of Carole King.

- Mackenzie Pause


She’s got a good voice...Yup, that tough early ‘80s pop/rock with the chick that can really sing.
- Mike Mitchelson

"Rambles Cultural Arts Magazine"

Empiric Lyric is singer-songwriter Karen Fay's first full album. Fay's gentle voice on "Knowing What Love Is" helps demonstrate the simplicity and beauty of an acoustic performance: elegant lyrics, nice vocals and the strum of a guitar.

Throughout the album, Fay provides solid, soulful performances with a surprising amount of versatility in style from song to song. Throughout the album, she jumps from a soft, insightful mood to a harder-edged groove and back again.

She starts off the album strongly with a hard-edged rock-influenced "Don't Know" and "Company Man," then shifts to a softer sound (think Tori Amos) with "Love is Here." She later takes it back -- way back -- to rock in "Drivin'," in which I wonder if I'm hearing Karen Fay or Joan Jett. She immediately shifts back to her softer side with "Love Has Gone," a Tom Petty-esque song.

Her shifting styles aren't limited to the song order; she continues the theme within certain songs. The piano intro on "Time" misleads you into thinking it's an impending soft ballad; it promptly shifts to an upbeat tempo and a punctuated guitar-on-drum beat. The versatility and shifting of musical styles keeps the album fresh and amicably unpredictable.

So, if you are looking for something in the singer-songwriter vein but want to be surprised, you should check out Empiric Lyric by Karen Fay.
- C. Nathan Coyle Rambles

"Collected Sounds"

The cover art had me expecting very quiet "girl-and-guitar" folk. That's not what's inside. What you'll find here are rock songs with full instrumentation and solid lyrics and vocals.

"Don't Know" is a great way to open the CD as it has a very catchy melody.

There are a few folky songs here. Track 4, "He's Leavin'" is a little more in the singer-songwriter vein with pretty guitar parts and softer vocals, but it rocks out a little halfway through. A nice song.

This is a nice recording all around.
- Amy Lotsberg

"The Muse's Muse"

The music is piano-based rock with a singer/songwriter emphasis. It is a seamless collection of pop songs and strong musicianship. Fay’s expressive voice is on top and stays there for each song. There is a nice variation in style ranging from folky ballads to edgy electric guitar-tinged numbers.

Every piano playing woman gets the unavoidable comparisons to every other piano playing woman out there so let me tell you a few things this music is NOT. It's not as purposefully dramatic as Tori Amos but there is a definite passion and edge to the music. It's not as Burt Bacharach as Aimee Mann but there is a strong pop sense here such as in one of my favorites “Love is Here”. And let me add that some of the songs are acoustic guitar based anyway, like “He’s Leaving” and “Knowing What Love Is”.

“Empiric Lyric” is a fine showcase for the songwriting and singing talent of Karen Fay.
- Stacey Board


Karen Fay’s music and words held me spellbound on her new album Empiric Lyric. She gets her hooks in you right from the get go with the lead off track “Don’t Know.” It kicks into high gear with a rollicking rockin’ guitar followed by some wake up call lyrics. I very recently covered a CD and mentioned how the band was singing about how people seem to have such difficulty just being themselves. The answer to this album lies in the title. The lyrics tell the story, the truth, of who we are.

The next song “Company Man” has similar cynical and cold hard truth to it, with an unbeatable rhythm and hooks all over the place. In fact, the entire album is like that.

Fay is a wonderful vocalist that can come across with a hard bite or a soft touch to place emphasis upon her ever-changing emotional lyrics. In short, she wears each tune very well.

Fay may look like the wholesome girl next door on the cover of this CD, but looks can be deceiving. She is a queen bee with a deadly sting, and she proves it from start to finish on her outstanding new recording. Let’s rock ‘n’ roll!
- Keith "MuzikMan" Hannaleck

"Get Out Magazine"

The dual piano ballads, “Love Is Here” and “Love Has Gone” and the pretty, fingerpicked acoustic ballad “Knowing What Love Is” work best here, allowing Fay to become the expressive singer her confessional lyrics require to connect with the listener.
- Chris Hansen Orf

"Press Release"

Today’s music scene puts so much emphasis on digital manipulation, studio gimmicks, and sexy visuals, that it sometimes seems like the music itself is almost an afterthought. Slogging through the scores of dancers-turned-vocalists that dominate the charts, one might even think that the singer-songwriter is dead. But good music is indeed out there, as one listen to Karen Fay’s “Empiric Lyric” will prove. Fay’s latest CD is an excellent, no-frills blend of soulful vocals, catchy melodies, and simple arrangements that let the music take center stage.

Hailing from the West Coast, Karen Fay has cut her musical teeth singing backup for bands in Arizona, California, and beyond. She has also honed her songwriting chops, transforming universal experiences like heartache, yearning, desire, and surviving into heartfelt, uplifting songs that cut straight to the soul. These ten songs are simple, unadulterated samples of what one songwriter can do with solid material, uncluttered arrangements, and a voice that demands to be heard.

Songs like "He's Leavin" rock along at a mid-tempo shuffle, earning comparisons to a young Carly Simon or Bonnie Raitt, while "Knowing What Love Is"--a soft, acoustic ballad with an optimistic sound--shows off Fay’s singer-songwriter credentials. It takes an honest, confident musician to just put herself out there with nothing more than her lyrics and an acoustic guitar, but this elegant, simple song allows Fay to do just that.

Fay shows off her influences all over the disc, and the Stones-like swagger of "Drivin" is classic, barroom rock that showcases a dirty, steady rhythm guitar, and Fay’s gritty rock snarl. "Love Has Gone," a piano based ballad that has echoes of Gram Parsons’ country-rock, bounces along while Fay sings about a relationship that has run its course.

"Time," another piano number, is reminiscent of the warm sounds of Carole King and Van Morrison. The disc ends with the slow-building piano ballad "Lonely," a warm song for a gray, rainy day. The mournful piano line will stay with you long after the music has ended.

People will likely draw comparisons to other strong singer-songwriters like Carly Simon, Linda Ronstadt, or Bonnie Raitt, but in all honesty, Karen Fay is an artist all her own. Certainly, those influences show up throughout the record, but the more one listens to “Empiric Lyric,” the more one realizes that this is the work of a talented, original voice for a new generation. Great things await Ms. Fay, and this CD is just one joyous step towards tomorrow.
- Neal Alpert

"Foley Entertainment, Inc."

Karen Fay's well written lyrics are delivered with passionate vocals and strong melodies. She is a rare singer/songwriter who is capable of exploring her diverse influences, including rock, folk and jazz, without ever losing sight of her acoustic roots. Karen is clearly a talented writer and artist on the rise. - Eugene Foley


Empiric Lyric, Released April 2004, 10-Song CD
"Don't Know", "Love Is Here" and "He's Leavin" are being played on several internet radio stations, college radio stations and independent radio stations.

But Anyway..., Released August 2004, 5-Song EP

Best Buy: www.bestbuy.com
CDBaby: www.cdbaby.com


Feeling a bit camera shy


Karen Fay has been songwriting for many years, collaborating with and singing backup vocals for bands in Arizona, California and beyond the borders of the United States. Her music easily crosses over into many genres, with lyrics that are thought-provoking and introspective.

With friends repeatedly urging her to make a cd of her own, Karen recorded the five-song EP “But Anyway...” in May 2003. During these sessions, she met Jim Woodling (Phunk Junkeez) and Ken Mary (Alice Cooper, House of Lords) who invited Karen to work with them in the future. In February 2004, she joined them in the studio to record "Empiric Lyric”.

Music has always been an important part of Karen's life. “When I was younger, my dad was always listening to music...The Beatles, Burt Bacharach, Herb Alpert. My mom played steel guitar in a band when she was a teenager, and she has always played piano and sang at church. She listened to a lot of country, gospel and bluegrass music.” Karen fondly remembers riding around in the backseat listening to the radio and singing along with her brother and sister, soaking up everything she heard. “There was always music playing in our house and in the car. We may not have liked every song, but we were exposed to loads of great music.”

Although Karen's strong vocals have been compared to artists such as Sheryl Crow, Faith Hill, Patty Smyth, and Linda Ronstadt, she offers an impressive sound all her own. Her solid vocals, fused with clever lyrics and an energetic, simple sound, make for a refreshing aural experience.

While Karen is continuing to collaborate and record with other artists and bands, her primary focus is media opportunities and songwriting for established artists. She is currently recording (March-April 2007) new material with Jim Woodling and Scott Johnson (Gin Blossoms).