Wisecrackin’ homofolkie, Kate Reid has done it again. A wizardess of words and a sucker for descriptive detail, she has penned her sophomore album in true Kate Reid fashion with songs that showcase her ability to combine hilarious stories with ass-kicking affirmations. This latest project so neatly defines her ability to be funny, pissed off, in-love and serious all in one album that she is becoming difficult to pin down. Armed with a guitar, a cache of harmonicas, a smoking dose of wit and knack for charming even the straightest of crowds, this chick with a guitar is anything but.
Possessed Ellen DeGeneres’ self-effacing, stream-of-consciousness wit, Ferron’s poignancy, Ani’s politics, and Margaret Cho’s ability to turn a manifesto on empowerment into riveting entertainment, Kate burst onto the West Coast music scene just three years ago with hysterical tunes like “Starving Artist”, "Co-op Girlz" and “I’d Go Straight For Ridley Bent.” Already, she’s become a favourite at local venues, won over media and industry professionals, played the Michigan Women’s Music Festival, earned praise in magazines like the American lesbian glossy, Curve and done shows with one of her songwriting idols, Ferron. This summer, Kate hits the Canadian festival circuit for the first time.
Notwithstanding her penchant for leaving audiences weeping with laughter, Kate is much more than just a novelty act or a musical comedienne. An outstanding songwriter by any measure, her versatility is showcased on her latest album, I’m Just Warming Up, produced by Adam Popowitz of Pacifika and Mollies Revenge. “No More Missing Daughters” is a chilling number inspired by the story of Vancouver’s missing women, which sees Kate’s plaintive yet fierce delivery backed by just the sparest of instrumentation; “Uncharted Territory” is a powerful and sometimes funny response to people who have told Kate she sings about lesbianism too much; “The Cremation of Sam McGee” is an upbeat musical rendition of the Robert Service poem that is so contemporary you would think Service was Reid’s next door neighbour; and “Dirty Girl” is a funky love song with nary a cliché in sight.
Kate also builds on her repertoire of comic brilliance with “Ex- Junkie Boyfriend,” in which a chance encounter at an intersection sets off an uproarious trip down memory lane; “The Only Dyke at the Open Mic,” the story of an open mic night gone hilariously awry; and “Emergency Dyke Project,” a fabulously funny number about being a lesbian in the music business. At one point in the song Kate talks back to Katy Perry of “I Kissed a Girl” fame singing:
“I’ve kissed a girl and I liked it too. In fact I’ve kissed a few in my day, so how come I’m not famous for it yet? / Well, I don’t care if my boyfriend minds. Oops I forgot, I don’t got one to hide behind. See, I’m not just here for some trendy joyride.”
Kate’s charm, courage and unsinkable sense of humour endear her to audiences where ever she plays, and audience members frequently cheer and shout out to her mid song. Says Kate: “People often tell me that my songs move them to tears and laughter and that’s when I know this is exactly what I am supposed to be doing.”