Kate McGarry
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Kate McGarry

New York City, New York, United States | INDIE

New York City, New York, United States | INDIE
Band Jazz Singer/Songwriter


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"Press Quotes"

Critical Praise for THE TARGET

A milestone of maturity. No matter how many liberties she takes with meter and interpretation, she exercises a fidelity to the meaning of the song. McGarry has the pure untrammeled voice of an ingénue who finds wonder in the simplest of things **** 4 Stars ~ Kirk Silsbee, DOWNBEAT MAGAZINE

Kate McGarry is called a jazz vocalist, but she's hard to pin down. She draws on the music of her youth to inspire her—from the Irish tunes of her family's roots to musical theater to pop songs.

Kate McGarry is the best of a new breed of jazz vocalists whose pop sensibilities are integrated into their music. ~David R. Adler PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER

When McGarry sings, you hear not only a distinctively sweet, flexible, and textured voice, but a generous spirit, open heart, and searching intelligence. The Target is a very special CD from an artist who grows with every new project: Kate McGarry's talent is unique and powerful, and it's blossoming.
~Judith Schlesinger, ALL ABOUT JAZZ

"The pristine and lightly quavering sound of Kate McGarry’s voice doesn’t send up any flares identifying her as a jazz singer. But she certainly deserves the designation, as she confirmed with a well-rounded performance at the Jazz Standard on Thursday night." ~ NEW YORK TIMES

"The Target is delightful; simply delightful. Sometimes You've just got to get straight to the point."

A singer who's also a favorite among singers, McGarry's airy voice is used to fine advantage on The Target, delivering smart originals and sophisticated standards." ~ TIME OUT, NEW YORK

Kate McGarry has got it going on. She different than any other jazz singer I’ve known and the only one I find remotely in her league is Cassandra Wilson. They are not similar in vocal timbre but there is a sensibility about them that reveals great depth and daring and with that comes an astute ability to sing with wings.. ~ Beth Peerless, MONTEREY HERALD

McGarry embraces jazz’s freedom yet points the genre toward a future that’s as fresh and thrilling as it’s past. ~Michael McCall, NASHVILLE SCENE

(Kate McGarry) is a jazz singer with one of those effortless voices: She has articulation and intonation as clear as the spoken word without sacrificing an ounce of emotion, flips between registers as naturally as she blinks her eyes, can slide into collaborations with Chick Corea and Bobby McFerrin without breaking a sweat… ~Chris Magyar, SANTA CRUZ REVIEW

Hyannis-raised McGarry’s folk-friendly pipes represent a delightful lift from predictable jazz singer fare. Organic and earthy yet also fluid and flexible, McGarry’s gift for expression makes this mixed set of originals and respectfully rendered classics soar. Add in her able quartet, including hubby Keith Ganz on guitar, and you’ve got a recipe for addiction. RATED A ~ BOSTON HERALD

"McGarry's ever fascinating musical choices take another intriguing turn... reaching from several compelling originals to her unique renderings of standards." ~ LOS ANGELES TIMES

- various


If Less Is More, Nothing Is Everything* Palmetto Records
The Target 2007 Palmetto Records
Mercy Streets 2005 Palmetto Records
Show Me 2003 Palmetto Records

all cds charted top ten on CMJ (jazz) and JazzWeek charts and had extensive national airplay
* Received Grammy Nomination Best Jazz Vocal



Kate McGarry Bio

“I’ve always been drawn to the space of silence between the notes. It’s in the silence that the secrets of songs reveal themselves.” – Kate McGarry

Born into a large, musical family in Hyannis, Massachusetts, Kate McGarry caught the performing bug at an early age. “Music as a child was as important to me as anything in my life. I never considered any other career than singing. To my family, music was one of the healing arts. It was just as good as being a doctor.” After becoming enamored of the sounds of Keith Jarrett and Bill Evans, Kate studied with Archie Shepp and earned a degree in African American music from the University of Massachusetts.
Kate was signed as the first and only vocalist on lauded Palmetto label in 2003, and success soon followed. Mercy Streets (2005) was hailed as a record that “seamlessly combines music from many disparate sources into a cohesive, emotional experience (and) bridges the sonic chasm between folk-pop and jazz,” and the release of 2007’s The Target brought a sense that Kate had truly arrived. An NPR All Things Considered profile and New York Times review brought the magic of Kate McGarry to a whole new – and very receptive – audience. The record reached #1 on the national jazz charts and was named one of the best vocal jazz CDs of the year by both Downbeat and the New York Times.
Now regarded as one of the most diverse talents in modern jazz, Kate has performed or recorded with such artists as Fred Hersch, Kurt Elling, Hank Jones, Clark Terry, Victor Lewis, Maria Schneider, Chick Corea, Bobby McFerrin, and Luciana Souza; collaborated with Hersch and Elling on the Leaves of Grass project; recently completed writing and recording 63 children’s songs with Keith Ganz for the Heinle Picture Dictionary; and in 2008 released a record with vocal supergroup MOSS on Sunnyside. Kate can also be found on the faculty of Manhattan School of Music, molding and inspiring a whole new generation of jazz voices.
Her 2008 Palmetto release If Less Is More…Nothing Is Everything finds Kate in a joyful, albeit introspective mood, covering everything from Jobim to The Cars, with a few originals (including a tender e.e. cummings poem set to music) rounding out the project. “My experiences in life, my love of music and my spiritual pursuits are all converging, and the boundaries are fading away. Everything is coming together, and I am feeling very free.”