Katie King
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Katie King

Seattle, Washington, United States | INDIE

Seattle, Washington, United States | INDIE
Band Jazz Blues

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"Katie King, “Harry's Fight”"

Katie King serves it up buffet style, offering a menu with tunes from just about every genre: Pop, Show, Jazz, Original, and even a Spiritual. And here they’re all marinated in the same flavor—Jazz. Delicious.

As an appetizer the band opens with the title track, “Harry’s Fight.” It has a dash of Mose Allison (minus the clever lyrics. But this is a eulogy so cleverness has no place here.) and morphs into Carol King territory during the bridge. It is the best of the three originals. A quick synopsis of the others: “Last Night” is a wistful little ditty with a Patsy Cline vibe. “And Now” is a rite-of-passage ballad that seems clichéd, yet somehow simultaneously personal. You’ll know what I mean with this sampling of some key lyrics: “run away… didn’t want to be me… you… courage… throw away pride… now alive again… know who I am… filled with gratitude… because of you… thankful… Blah blah blah.” I’m being harsh. The originals, while not adding much, don’t really detract. There is plenty to savor here. I think her originals illustrate that King is not just a vocalist and that her singing is one part of a bigger package: Musician.

The spice here is all in the Pop tunes. These are the only ones where arrangements are credited as either shared or traded off between King and pianist Anschell. The arrangements are what make this recording something worth devouring. The band pretty much applies the same treatment to these tunes (three from the Beatles bag and one from Paul Simon). “Across The Universe” unfolds like a blossoming flower—the band is tentative, a little moody, and hopeful all at once. Flory’s bass clarinet work adds some brooding in with the beauty. “50 Ways…” is taken at a slower tempo than Simon’s original. It’s laid-back and yet manages to swing. Again, Flory’s soloing, this time on sax, is right on engaging and arty. “Come Together” inches along in similar fashion.
- Slim, Cadence


"Katie King "Harry's Fight""

To paraphrase a line from the film, "Jerry Maguire," vocalist Katie King "had me at (her musical) 'hello' " on this album.

This lady is, without a doubt, the finest singer I've heard in years. She can handle any style, and her unique approach makes each style her own. Her voice is marvelous and her phrasing impeccable, and she hits every note dead-on. There's no "hunting," yet she can "bend" her voice for effect as necessary.

This album includes 13 tunes: covers of three Beatles songs ("Across The Universe," "Come Together," and "Here Comes The Sun"); one each from Nina Simone ("Do I Move You?") and Abbey Lincoln ("Throw It Away"); and three written by King herself ("Harry's Fight," "Last Night," and "And Now").

The traditional "Wayfaring Stranger" is done with only bass accompaniment; you'll also enjoy a marvelous version of Paul Simon's "Fifty Ways To Leave Your Lover" and the most moving rendition of "All or Nothing at All" that I've ever heard.

"Alone Together" isn't far behind, and "The Inchworm" caps things off. She does it all!

If her singing weren't enough, King is backed by as tasty and swinging a quartet as you'll ever hear: Bill Anschell on piano; Jeff Johnson on Bass; Craig Flory on sax, bass clarinet and flute; and D'Vonne Lewis on drums.

Thank goodness for vocalists like King, who are wise enough to surround themselves with such consummate artists.

This isn't King's first album - she has released three others - but it is her first in nearly a decade. (She took time off to raise a family.) Needless to say, I really look forward to her next.
- by Ric Bang, The Davis Enterprise


""Harry's Fight""

Bold and radiating hipster cool, jazz singer Katie King could only come from Seattle. Although the Emerald City is best known for its hard-rock revolutionaries, the music scene has long been recognized for the proudly independent stance of many of its artists, regardless of genre. True to her regional roots, King doesn't play by the rules. On Harry's Fight, her first record in a decade, she covers three Beatles gems - "Across the Universe," "Come Together," and "Here Comes the Sun"—and makes them her own, allowing her pianist Bill Anschell to rearrange the first two and tackling the last one by herself. And instead of providing paint-by-numbers vocal performances of her covers, she injects each one with spunk and a bohemian spirit.
On the title track, which she wrote herself, King sets the tone with a sassy and almost spoken-word delivery. As Craig Flory's saxophone rips through the mix, King really starts to sing, and there is strength and self-confidence busting through from her initially subdued personality. King's version of "Across the Universe" is even dreamier than the original, her breathy vocals gliding above Anschell's silky piano. The dimly lit corridors of "All Or Nothing At All" brighten when Anschell's piano picks up momentum, but King's voice retains its dark, hypnotic allure. King's snappy rendition of Paul Simon's "50 Ways to Leave Your Lover" is fine but is obscured by the shadows of the other superior material on the CD.
King's romantic side is revealed on Nina Simone's "Do I Move You?" Her sultry singing takes center stage as Flory's randy sax answers her call of yearning. There is passion, too, in "Last Night" and "And Now," both written by King. "Come Together" is stripped off its ragged guitars and given a smooth jazz makeover; however, it loses none of its punch because of the swagger in King's voice. It's no surprise that this lady King from Seattle really rocks.
- Robert M. Sutton


""Driving Home to You""

Extremely talented vocalist, Katie King, and her sensational album, “Driving Home to You,” really hit the grade with a set of fantastic songs of Adult Contemporary music. Kings music is splendidly textured with sweet arrangements to the stylish flair of Jazz, Blues, and Retro Pop. She takes her warm velvety voice and breathes life into these beautiful original melodies. A nice smooth Jazz groove on the song, “Finders Keepers,” flows with sweet energy as King sings with invigorating style. Another engaging song, “And So It Is,” has nice soft percussion as Kings silky voice sings with expressive elegance. The title track, “Driving Home to You,” has a nice soulful and Bluesy persuasion as the vocals are strong and emotive. The irresistible songs on the magnificent CD, “Driving Home to You,” are sheer entertaining and you will thoroughly enjoy them especially if you’re a fan of Carole King or Joni Mitchell. - Diane at Radioindy.com


Discography

"Driving Home to You" KK006 2010 featuring Eric Verlinde, Frank Seeberger, Chris Symer, Reade Whitwell, Jeff Busch
“Harry’s Fight” OA2 Records 2008 featuring Bill Anschell, Jeff Johnson, D’Vonne Lewis and Craig Flory
“One for My Baby” 1998 release on MNOP records with Floyd Standifer, Billy Wallace, Doug Miller, Brian Kirk
“Mostly Ballads” 1994 release featuring Jay Thomas, Bob Nixon, Jeff Johnson and Steven Bentley
“Jazz Figures” 1993 with Jay Thomas, Bob Nixon, Jeff Johnson and Steven Bentley

Photos

Bio

“I think of myself as a vocal interpreter and storyteller…beauty and honesty lie deep in the soul.” Katie King

What would this world be without music? To me, music is everywhere, whether it is the birds singing, tires screeching, or waves crashing upon a shore. The songs are everywhere and the beat is constant - this is how I live. The first concert I ever saw was Elvis Presley - what a trip and what an influence. I have still to this day not experienced people gasping for air when somebody walks on the stage.

"Driving Home to You" is my latest CD (October 2010) and first totally original project. It is really about life, peace, and love. The music rolls between blues, jazz, and soft rock. I guess you could call it a Jazz Crossover project. The band is on fire and we have a great time playing. There is energy and interplay that rocks between all of us as players. I hope that you enjoy the music. Peace always, Katie.

Katie Grew up in Eugene, Oregon, where she began listening to jazz records at the age of 11. “I was in a record store downtown when I first heard Billie Holiday; I just had to buy the album.” From then on she was hooked; she earned money working in her parent's restaurant to buy more jazz records. Soon she was listening and learning from the great vocal styles of Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughn, and Carmen McRae. “I feel like they were my teachers,” says King. “I learned from listening to the great stylist… they taught me, not necessarily how to sing, but how to stylize and be able to take a song and interpret in my own way.”
Since landing in Seattle, Katie has become a bright light in Seattle's already glowing cadre of jazz performers, building her reputation as one of the area's best and most versatile jazz singers. Katie has been featured at Seattle's Bumbershoot Festival, as well as at a number of Seattle's major venues, including : KPLU boat cruise, Dimitrious's Jazz Alley, Tula's, Wild Ginger, Serafina, The River Rock, Jazzbones, Seattle Sheraton, Four Seasons Olympic, The Fairmont Olympic, and El Gaucho's -The Pampas Room and
the list goes on.