With its witty lyrical melodies and jazz-influenced pop songs, Texas native Kat Edmonson brings her love of the past to listeners of the present with her recently released record The Big Picture. In support of the “vintage-pop” album’s release, she will play The Drake Underground in Toronto tonight. To our pleasure, we had the opportunity of calling Kat Edmonson yesterday to discuss musical memories from her childhood, ’70s influences, Bond movies, and important artist tips. Enjoy!
AMBY: Hello Kat, how are you doing?
Kat Edmonson: I’m good, thanks. How are you?
AMBY: I’m great. Thanks for speaking with me today!
Kat Edmonson: Aw, thank you.
AMBY: It’s my pleasure. First off, congratulations from the AMBY team – your album The Big Picture hit #1 on the Billboard Heatseeker’s chart this week.
Kat Edmonson: Thank you. I’m really excited.
AMBY: Have you done anything to celebrate the record’s release and the great response it’s had?
Kat Edmonson: We shared a couple high-fives at breakfast…
AMBY and Kat Edmonson: [laughs]
Kat Edmonson: We had a great show the night that we learned about it in Boston and that was a celebration in itself.
AMBY: You recently asked fans what their favorite songs on The Big Picture are. I’m currently enjoying Rainy Day Woman with the recent video release, but which songs are your personal favourites?
Kat Edmonson: Right now I’m particularly enjoying playing Who’s Counting live and I love the intimacy of All the Way. They’re all my children essentially so I love them all.
AMBY: You took influence from classic artists like Ricky Nelson and Roy Orbison on the album. When it came to creating The Big Picture, who were your biggest musical inspirations?
Kat Edmonson: Henry Mancini, Brian Wilson, Ricky Nelson, Roy Orbison, Paul Simon, Paul McCartney… That’s a lot. I’m sure there are more who have influenced me but those were really strong influences on the album.
AMBY: I know when it came to inspirations, you made an Inspirations Playlist which I listened to. It had everything from Fleetwood Mac to The Beatles which are some of the artists I also grew up with. With that said, I know you grew up listening to the records your mother used to play. What’s one of your more vivid musical memories from when you were a child?
Kat Edmonson: I remember my mom having friends over at the house and she put on Nat Cole on vinyl and that’s when I heard Unforgettable for the first time. I remember being at a party with my mom and her friends and they put Springtime in the Rockies on the TV and it was a videotape… I got all dressed up and put a fruit basket on my head [laughs] and wrapped myself in a red scarf – I was five and the scarf could cover my entire body – and I pretended to be Carmen Miranda. I performed for the whole party.
AMBY: That’s adorable.
Kat Edmonson: Yea [laughs].
AMBY: Aside from music, movies also played a big part of your childhood. If you could have your music featured in any film, which would you like to see it in? It’s so easy to see it in a Bond opening or something.
Kat Edmonson: Actually, that’s what I was thinking about when making Rainy Day Woman! I was thinking about some kind of high-chase movie filled with romance. A Bond movie would be great, but any show or film in general I would love to participate in.
AMBY: You recently spoke about how you had no idea how to get into the music industry so you auditioned for a little television show called American Idol. We have many readers who are indie artists and are trying to learn the ropes of this business. What advice would you give them regarding the music industry?
Kat Edmonson: There are so many things to learn about the music industry and there are so many technical things that you need to know. Don’t underestimate the power of personal contact and being able to reach out to anyone. Everyone in the business – regardless of how high up they are – are people. They’re in the business because they love music and are just like you. They all started at the bottom, so appeal to that, remember that, and relate to that. Once you’ve made the connection, stay in touch with everybody and keep their name and number. It matters.
AMBY: You have no idea how much I love that. I feel the same attitude applies to being a website owner.
Kat Edmonson: Right. A lot of times musicians don’t want to be bothered with such things or they like to delegate that to someone else. I really think that’s giving your power away, because regardless of who’s on your team, sometimes those relationships end. After that happens, you need those contacts. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. That’s really the best advice I have.
AMBY: If you could go back in time to when you first started creating music, is that the same advice you would have given yourself?
Kat Edmonson: No, because I knew that inherently. I’ve always felt pretty comfortable with asking for help. The thing I would have told myself… remain true to your heart.
AMBY: For our last question, what’s something about yourself that most fans don’t know yet?
Kat Edmonson: Good question. I have always had a fantasy to be a vocalist in a punk-rock band. I even have some songs written!
Thank you Kat Edmonson, for giving us your answers!
Interview by Alicia Atout | @AliciaAtout