Katey Brooks
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Katey Brooks

Bristol, England, United Kingdom | SELF

Bristol, England, United Kingdom | SELF
Band Folk Americana


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"Manchester Evening News on Katey"

“She is a little like John Martyn – the same hypnotic, lamenting tones...”

- Manchester Evening News

"Choice Magazine on Katey"

“Katey’s rich, sonorous voice is strongly reminiscent of the great June Tabor, and her material is similarly wide ranging...yes, it’s that good...Definitely a name to watch.”

- Choice Magazine

"Katey's cover of 'What a Friend We Have' for tribute album 'Beautiful Star: Songs of Odetta'"

"...impressive and showstopping."

Jude Clarke - musicOMH

"Review of debut album 'Proof Of Life'"

FOR her steadfast, growing army of admirers, this debut album has been a long time coming but I’m delighted to report it’s well worth the wait.

Proof Of Life is a living memory book brimming with her tender, bruised soul, her world-weary but uplifting folk and her heart-on-the-sleeve confessionals.

It’s a wise old head she lays on your shoulder with songs like No-One But My Best and I Don’t Want No Other, layered with heartache beyond her years. Reference points put her in good company – Tracy Chapman, John Martyn, Kristin Hersh, Joan Armatrading and even (believe it or not) prime-time Paul Rodgers on Hunger.

As she says herself on the beautifully lilting True Speaker, this girl’s got a lot of heart for you.

Jay Williams - South Wales Argus

"Review of debut album 'Proof Of Life'"

Brooks is a rising star of British acoustic music with a voice as rich and deep as a Kuwati well. Proof of Life is a sly old fox of a record that ebbs and flows with charm and grace. Brooks’ sad-eyed modern spirituals has won her supports with Newton Faulkner, Lou Rhodes, Joe Purdy and... folk hero Martin Simpson, among others. Emotionally wrought lyrics, enrapturing vocals and understated tunes make this a special record.
- Shropshire Star

"Grammy Nominee Nick Van Eede from Cutting Crew on Katey"

"Katey owns the 3 crucial S's...Sensuality, Sensitivity, and Songs you will sing tomorrow morning and wonder what the hell it is....Adore!" - n/a

"Review of Katey's headline performance at Bordeaux River Festival 2007"

"Katey had the crowd enraptured with her nimble guitar playing, powerful voice and cathartic, emotionally wrought lyrics..." - Bristol Evening Post

"Venue Magazine's Mike White on Katey Live"

"She has a voice to melt glaciers, and a flickering, powerful confidence all of her own..." - Venue Magazine

"Live at Orange Ashton Court Festival"

"Plain Brilliant"

"Utterly captivating and hugely popular." - Venue Magazine

"Review of debut album 'Proof Of Life'"

"Already on my shortlist for album of the year"

Tony Porter - Shakenstir Magazine

"Review of debut album 'Proof Of Life'"

“Unique” is an overused term. You rarely come across a unique voice. Katey Brooks truly is one. From the opening strains of Proof Of Life you’re left reaching for comparisons - such is the creamy depth of the voice emanating from the speakers. Usual smoky voiced references - Tracies Thorn or Chapman, Heather Small -seem inadequate. Perhaps Joan Armatrading comes closest in timbre. Brooks displays similar depth but with a precise, part swallowed enunciation that gives an intriguing tonality of her own. On ‘You Will Be Free’ the voice is set about with delicate guitar and lush strings which combine to lend a haunting air to the contemplative lyrics. But it’s not all dour, singer-songwriter musings. ‘True Speaker’ lifts the mood with a Paul Simon feel and subtle African-influenced rhythm.

Most of Proof Of Life follows an acoustic template, showcasing Brooks individual style with simple, sympathetic arrangements. However, two tracks deserve highlighting. ‘Hunger’, all brooding electric guitar and sampled bass should jar but instead forms an emotional centrepiece to the album, the contrasting style heightening its emotional intensity. ‘Michael Row The Boat Ashore’ closes proceedings with the singers voice naked and honest, offering to gather the listener home. Simply sublime.

Trevor Raggatt
- R2 Rock 'n' Reel Magazine

"Review of debut album 'Proof Of Life'"

"It's lie-down-in-a-darkened-room-to-drink-it-all-in good." - Venue Magazine

"Bristol Community Festival"

''There was much excitement leading up to the set from Katey Brooks, and it was not hard to see why.With a deep, full voice like Tracy Chapman, she allowed the guitar to be as prominent as her vocals at times. Her differing approach will gather her many fans'.' - Bristol Evening Post

"Transpersonals Live Review"

"It's Katey Brooks lead turn that stands out. Coming on like Grace Slick vocal coached by Sparks, the controlled and deliberately fussy, close-to-hysterical phrasing is - when set against the Nuggetty coarseness that surrounds it - a polished gem in itself." - Venue Magazine

"Bristol Folk House Acoustic Music Festival"

"Katey Brook's offerings, with musings on moths and flames speaks of the combustible inevitability of it all. But the force with which she projects these laments into the hall using all the powerful, deep resonance of her voice and her clear, strident picking style makes us sit up and feel she is singing about us as much as for us. We are deep in the heart of folk/soft-rock crossover with echoes of Grace Slick, Maria McKee and, in the lilting phrasing of 'True Speaker' in particular, Joni Mitchell." - Venue Magazine


'(You've Got To) Live NOW' EP 2012
Debut Album 'Proof Of Life' 2010



"Already on my shortlist for album of the year." Shakenstir Magazine

"It's lie-down-in-a-darkened-room-to-drink-it-all-in good." Venue Magazine

“Katey’s rich, sonorous voice is strongly reminiscent of the great June Tabor, and her material is similarly wide
ranging...yes, it’s that good...Definitely a name to watch.” Choice Magazine

Born and raised in a commune setting between Bristol, London and Arizona, to hippy music-loving parents, Katey’s unique sound and style epitomizes the culturally diverse environment in which she grew up. Drawing influences from artists like Johnny Cash and Kate Bush, her voice is often compared to the likes of Joan Armatrading, and Annie Lennox, and has best been described as a voice “…to melt glaciers” (Venue Magazine 2012).

Katey released her debut album ‘Proof Of Life’ on her label True Speaker Records in March 2010, the album reaching No1 in the Amazon Folk Chart soon after and has had radio plays on BBC Radio 1 and 6.

Since then Katey has gone on to play at the London Paralympics, Glastonbury, WOMAD, a BBC Introducing Stage headliner at Wychwood, and support a host of credible artists such as Newton Faulkner, Mercury nominee Lou Rhodes, Mike and The Mechanics, Grammy nominees Cutting Crew, and BBC Radio 2 Folk Award winner Chris Wood.

Besides her own works, Brooks’s “John Martyn-esque” (Manchester Evening News 2011) lamenting tones have earned her features on BBC Radio 2 Children in Need album ‘Bandaged Together’, recorded at Abbey Road with artists such as Bill Wyman, Nick Mason, and Paloma Faith, as well as compilations with Ane Brun and Anais Mitchell.

Most recently, Brooks was added to the Starbucks playlist worldwide, and signed an endorsement deal with America guitar makers Alvarez, joining the ranks of Grammy Award winner Ani Difranco, and Joe Bonamassa. She is currently in the studio recording a brand new single due for release on April 30th, with plans set for an album release later on in the year. With the summer festival circuit and a string of exciting dates coming up, 2013 is set to be an exciting year!