Kate Walsh re-releases her second album ‘Tim’s House’ this week. Having proved a massive buzz on its digital release earlier this year when it took the number one spot in the iTunes UK Hot 100 chart, top ten iTunes across Europe and number 1 on the US iTunes Folk chart, Walsh looks set to do the same with the CD release. With a nationwide support slot for the great Richard Hawley – where she won over a legion of rockabilly fans – just behind her the acoustic singer/songwriter will tour the record on a solo tour this October and certainly has the talent and balls to take the nation’s hearts. Glasswerk caught up with the songstress at one of her many festival appearances this summer.
To watch the video for Kate Walsh's brilliant new single from 'Tim's House' – 'Your Song' – follow this YouTube link: link
Kate Walsh stumbled out into the sunshine, dark glasses covering last night’s excess. Dazed and confused the delicate singer songwriter sat watching Hafdis Huld – an Icelandic singer in the strange vein of Bjork – at the equally odd Secret Garden party. Kate fitted perfectly in to the alternative vibe; a daisy crown and flowing white angel dress – a wisp of a girl and whisper of voice.
How are you enjoying the Secret Garden party? Is it your first year of craziness?
This is the best festival I’ve been to. It’s just a lovely little venue. It’s my first year, I’ll be more awake for tomorrow’s show!
Having just found out that Kate Nash had cancelled her show for the following day because “her PR think she is too big for the Secret Garden” you get the feeling Kate Walsh is the anti-Nash; while she didn’t say as much you got the feeling the sell out goes against all Walsh stands for as a musician.
What do you think of Kate Nash’s withdrawal? You were supposed to be playing straight before her in the Living Room tent; is it going to affect your show?
To be honest I’m not too bothered she isn’t here. If the crowd had all come just to see Kate Nash play after me it would be really disheartening.
Your sound has been compared to Joni Mitchell among others…where do you draw inspiration from and who do you listen to?
I am into Americana. I love Modest Mouse and Midlake most at the moment. What about the Decemberists? I’m actually not into them. I don’t like his voice. It’s the same with Dylan; there are some voices I just can’t grow to like. When I started song writing I was trying to emulate my heroes but now I have my own little sound.
Things have taken off pretty big for you on iTunes and with the physical release, Hawley support slot and solo tour to come. You’re only 24, how have you reached this point so quickly?
It’s been hard work. I started playing gigs five years ago. I would play about twenty gigs a year in London and around before I moved down to Brighton. The scene there is fantastic and I played more shows and things grew with each one. It proved from there that it would sell. I am now getting 1,800 plays a day on Myspace and Mercury have signed me to a three album contract.
Commercial success isn’t what Kate Walsh is about though. Her passion and love of real music is there for all to see. The support of Radio 2 has created much of her success and it means everything to her and earlier that same day Kate had played a show broadcast live on Radio 2 from another of Cambridge’s festivals – the famous Folk Festival.
Playing live on Radio 2 was really emotional. They love there music there. It’s a bit too traditional for me…no one is getting fucked!
This angelic girl can take you by surprise like that. She had earlier told me the story of her first festival experience at the Chelmsford V Fest. Moshing to the Stereophonics I passed out and had to be handed over the barriers. It was a great weekend though!
And so the girl with an acoustic guitar who can break a heart with her voice and words floated back to her trailer to recover from last night’s excess. The following day the Living Room was packed out to see this Kate. With people sitting in armchairs, on the floor and hundreds crammed in the back, Kate Walsh produced one of the shows of the festival. As professional and perfect as any, the music means most to her and she never missed a note. People listened in silence as she strummed and picked her acoustic guitar and sweetly sung her understated, stunning songs, filling the stage completely – as she did at the larger Richard Hawley shows. Ending with ‘Your Song’ Kate moved an entire tent with a tune that might just leapfrog Radio 2 and make her a star on Radio 1; not that that is what she should aspire to. If it is big success she is after then Kate Nash would tell her it only takes one song on the horrible station. Those two deserve each other but Kate Walsh merits higher regard.
Kate Walsh is touring the UK throughout October. The full listings are below:
1 Oct 2007 20:00 – Auntie Annie’s Belfast
2 Oct 2007 20:00 – The Stables Milton Keynes
3 Oct 2007 20:00 – Jehrico Tavern Oxford
4 Oct 2007 20:00 – Komedia Brighton
6 Oct 2007 20:00 – The Cellars Portsmouth
7 Oct 2007 20:00 – Phoenix Exeter
9 Oct 2007 20:00 – Acorn Theatre Penzance
11 Oct 2007 20:00 – Trinity Centre Bristol
12 Oct 2007 20:00 – RNCM Manchester
14 Oct 2007 20:00 – The Point Cardiff
16 Oct 2007 20:00 – Union Chapel London
17 Oct 2007 20:00 – Glee Club Birmingham
19 Oct 2007 20:00 – Herbert Gallery Coventry
21 Oct 2007 20:00 – Sugarmill Stoke
22 Oct 2007 20:00 – The Cluny Newcastle
24 Oct 2007 20:00 – The Maze Nottingham
25 Oct 2007 20:00 – ABC2 Glasgow
26 Oct 2007 20:00 – Sheffield University Fusion Sheffield
29 Oct 2007 20:00 – Olympia Dublin
30 Oct 2007 20:00 – Vicar Street Dublin
Click here to buy tickets: link