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What's All About Katie All About?
Welcome to All About Katie. This site is an appreciation of Katie Melua - the beautiful and talented singer-songwriter with the caramel eyes and sublime voice, and the finest interpreter of a song I have ever heard.
It is also a repository of information about her music, DVDs, videos, tour dates, images, and anything else of interest to her fans. I have put my heart and soul into this project. Katie has given me so much and this is my way of saying thank-you. I hope Ketefans all over the world will find something interesting here about our favourite artist. Enjoy!
Any opinions expressed here are mine, not Katie's!!
17.01.19 > Track Notes 37: If You Were A Sailboat
If You Were A Sailboat
24 September 2007
UK Singles Chart:
1. If You Were a Sailboat
Katie told 'I Like Music' back in 2007, "What I liked about the song is the fact that a lot of love songs tend to deal with the fluffy nice side of love, but this one deals with how you get very selfish when you fall in love with someone, and you don't want to share them with the world, you just want them all about yourself. What's genius about Mike's lyrics is that instead of saying that directly he uses these crazy strange metaphors, "if you were a piece of wood I'd nail you to the floor" and quite bizarre stuff and I like that. Musically it sounds like a really nice smooth love song, but the message is pretty intense and quite dark."
Mark Radcliffe of BBC Radio 2 was amused by the lyric 'If you were a piece of wood, I'd nail you to the floor', and asked his listeners to send in equally strange lyrics and compose a parody song for her to sing, not expecting her to actually do so. Katie contacted the show and agreed to play the song. The lyrics included 'If you were some tiling, I would grout you.' and 'If you were ten pints of beer, I would drink you down my dear'.
If You Were A Sailboat on YouTube
16.01.19 > Katie Bite: If You Were A Sailboat
15.01.19 > Just woke from a nightmare.... 😱
14.01.19 > 🇬🇪 National Flag Day in Georgia!
14.01.19 > Ask an impertinent question... 🤣
13.01.19 > Lyric card: Ghost Town
12.01.19 > Not a picture of Katie!
This is a photo I stumbled across that stopped me in my tracks. It isn't Katie. But for some reason it made me think of her. If ever I figure it out I'll let you know. Actually, I probably won't. It's a bit like a hidden objects picture only in this case it's hidden reasons. I've thought of four reasons so far though I'm certain there are more. Oh, just ignore me, I think I'm going serenely mad...
11.01.19 > I'm resting In Winter!
WHAT? But there's two months of winter left! I know, I know. But I don't want to wear out the vinyl, or the CD for that matter. Hell, I could even wear out the mp3 I reckon. Don't worry, I have a cunning plan. I'm hammering Ultimate Collection instead. UC, you see, contains seven of the ten songs on IW. One of the three omitted is O Holy Night, a standard Christmas carol that has no business being listened to in February anyway. So you get a healthy mix of wintry charm as well as all the general Katie goodness of her other material. And that precious white vinyl can remain pristine a little longer. That's what I call a win-win idea.
10.01.19 > Katie on Spotify
Now, if you are a proper Ketefan I expect you to own all her albums in physical and digital formats. But I must accept that some people will just listen to her on Spotify, such is the world today. To that end, I've made life a little easier for these streamaphobes by creating a Spotify code for Katie. On your phone, tap the search icon in Spotify and tap the camera icon, then scan one of the images below. The one on the right has been added to the info panel on the right hand side of this page so it will always be handy. You could even print it out and stick it to the wall. Or better still just buy all her music.
09.01.19 > Katie cubes
Why? Why not? The one in the middle was created in PhotoScape. The one on the left is a physical object you can print out and make thanks to my cunning design, as is the In Winter variant on the right.
-> How to make Katie dice
08.01.19 > Twitter smarties take note!
07.01.19 > Katie on BBC Songs Of Praise
A beautiful performance of All Night Vigil by Katie and the Gori Women's Choir on Songs Of Praise was shown yesterday. This was an edited piece from 2017 cut into a new edition of the show, presumably because it was just so good.
06.01.19 > Katie Bite: I Will Be There
05.01.19 > Track Notes 36: Ghost Town
Katie Melua, Mike Batt
Katie dabbling with reggae and nailing it.
Live version on YouTube
04.01.19 > Katie's early ambition
I came across this quote from a BBC interview in November 2003:
Fifteen years later I think we can safely say that ambition has been achieved. When she performs songs from Call Off The Search at live shows they get rapturously received to this day, and they also get regular airplay time on radio stations around the world. In another fifteen years I believe In Winter will be seen as a classic album too (for some of us it was after fifteen minutes). To me, the very definition of a Katie Melua fan is someone who appreciates the music for the music.
03.01.19 > Sketch effect
02.01.19 > Katie Bite: Belfast
01.01.19 > Happy New Year!
31.12.18 > Review of 2018
It is hard to get my head around the fact that we are just hours away from the 20th anniversary of the year I spent most of my time finding and fixing Y2K bugs. “Ah yes, Y2K,” I hear you chortle. “What a damp squib that was, fuss about nothing…”. Indeed it was - precisely because folks like me spent the whole of 1999 making sure the world wouldn’t end in 2000. You’re welcome. And I had to do it all without Katie comforting my ears. Not even Mike Batt had heard of her back then…
In 2018 I wasn’t saving the world, just keeping little old ladies’ gardens tidy (don’t make your own jokes). But the vicious winter/spring, the summer drought and then a long illness in autumn made me decide to strike out on a different path, and 2019 will be a very different year for me, personally. But what about Katie? After all, this site is supposed to be all about her, not me. Okay, okay. Well it has been another busy year for her. I have no idea where she gets her energy from but she has clocked up more air miles than an actual plane and visited a different country practically every week.
By the end of January she was wandering around Sherwood Forest. By the end of February she had had a holiday back in Georgia, visited snowy Sweden and done a couple of TV spots in Germany.
March saw her busy with house renovations and there was the first hint of new material being worked on. In April, she was active on Instagram with posts varying from Easter in Sheffield to her granny’s 80th birthday.
May saw the 100th anniversary of Georgian Independence. Glenfiddich honoured the occasion by presenting special bottles of whisky to 20 Georgians who have helped popularise and develop the country. Katie, of course, was one of them. In June, she was visiting Georgia again, and she met the great Georgian composer Gia Kancheli, of whom she said “what his work does to my heart is indescribable”. Which sums up exactly what I think of Katie’s work. She also headed to the recording studio to record Bridge Over Troubled Water with the Georgian Philharmonic Orchestra - a track destined for Ultimate Collection.
Katie was on the road yet again in July with a mini-tour that took in Poland, Iceland, Finland and Spain, as well as an intimate concert in Switzerland. Back in London, she attended an event at the Georgian School where the children performed her songs - this ultimately led to her releasing her Ultimate Collection!
In August we were all eagerly awaiting news of a new album. And it duly arrived, though it wasn’t what we were expecting! Ultimate Collection was announced. It gave the fans something to chew on and bought some more time for Katie to work on her new material, which hopefully will be something for us to get excited about in 2019.
September was as busy as ever for Katie. Her wedding anniversary, then her birthday, which she celebrated by giving a free concert in Tbilisi, before a gig at Borderline, London, as part of the Nordoff Robbins Get Loud 2018 event. Instead of getting the train to London to attend it, I ended up in an ambulance with an illness that would floor me for a couple of months. Them’s the breaks life can deal you…
October was all go as Ultimate Collection launched, meaning the usual round of promotional TV and radio appearances had to be shoe-horned in around the start of the European leg of her In Winter tour, though by this point it had just become known as “UK & European Tour 2018” as the set list was based on Ultimate Collection rather than just a full performance of the In Winter album. That said, A Time To Buy was the only song from IW that was left out.
In November, the tour headed back to the UK and left a trail of blown-away audiences in its wake. By December I was back to full fitness just in time to catch the Nottingham concert. I had a lovely chat with Katie afterwards and was happy to learn she approved of AAK and liked the site. And I can confirm to you all that you could never wish to meet a lovelier lady. The concert was so good that a few days later, finding that a handful of tickets were still available, I drove to York to see another performance. For me it was a case of ending the year on a real high. Now we shall have to wait and see what lies in store in 2019 but there is a good chance of an album of new material. Another big tour may be a bit much to hope for - that may come in 2020 - but whatever happens, keep visiting AAK to stay in touch with all things Katie. I wish you all a wonderful 2019!
30.12.18 > Katie Bite: All Over The World
29.12.18 > Katie: The Remixes
It’s 1am. You’re in a club. You’re completely caramelised. And you’re on the dance floor moving to the thumping beats of Katie Melua. Wait, what? Craggie’s daydreaming again. Well, not necessarily. Not a lot of people know this but there are two albums of remixes available for “A Happy Place” and “The Flood”. You can find them on iTunes and Amazon if you don’t believe me.
If you are a fan of Katie and also a fan of woofer-busting beats then you are in for treats. However, if you only love Katie for “Closest Thing” then you can probably stop reading now. The thing is, I don’t really know if Katie was in a happy place in 2010 - it was the year she was hospitalised following a breakdown, so you have to suspect it was more a case of her searching for that happy place - but it was also the year “The House” was released. This album was produced by William Orbit rather than Mike Batt and that fresh perspective really shows. It divided opinion. Some thought it a masterpiece, others thought “WTF?”. The latter group were probably reacting to songs like “The Flood”, “Tiny Alien” and “Twisted”, which were certainly breaking new ground, but to be fair probably half the songs on the album would have fitted just fine on “Pictures” or “Ketevan”. But it was the Orbit involvement that most likely led to the singles “A Happy Place” and “The Flood” getting that remix treatment.
“The Flood” gets three mixes - by Danny Kirsch, Michael Woods and Jakwob. The Kirsch version is my favourite but all three certainly get you moving (and the ornaments falling off your mantelpiece). Of course, none of them are better than the album version, but that isn’t the job of a remix.
“A Happy Place” gets a more thorough working over with no less than six mixes. Danny Kirsch gets another crack along with Loverush UK, Beatnoids, Product01, Robbie Rivera and, in one of my favourite surreal things of all time, a Sparks vs Katie Melua mix. As a Sparks fan since before Katie was born, clearly that last one was always going to be the winner for me.
All in all, these nine remixes are massive fun and well worth checking out. There was nothing like them before and hasn’t been since. Somehow I doubt that Danny Kirsch is going to be tinkering with “A Time To Buy”.
28.12.18 > Lyric card: Perfect Circle
27.12.18 > Vinyl Heaven
Why would anyone listen to vinyl? After all, there is no shuffle, no playlists and, horror of horrors, you have to get up off your backside every 23 minutes to turn the record over. Yes, my furrow-browed young friends, 'tis an unfathomable relic from the Dark Ages. So why, then, is it making a revival? Why are artists like Katie releasing their pristinely digitally-mastered albums in this archaic analogue format? I can't really answer that fully with words alone. It is something you have to experience for yourself, otherwise you will never get it. And please, do yourself a favour and listen to vinyl on a proper turntable connected to a decent amplifier and good quality speakers. If you don't fancy that kind of investment then find a friend or relative that has such a set up and listen to it on theirs. Whatever you do, don't be tempted by one of those thirty-quid toy boxes masquerading as vinyl players - they sound about as good as an indignant cat wailing angrily outside your back door. You get what you pay for in this life. With a decent hifi system vinyl is magical. The word "lossless" was only invented for the digital age. Nothing gets lost on vinyl. Admittedly, the odd pop and click gets added, but that merely adds to the atmosphere. For listening to vinyl is an experience. There is a mystical ritual to it - removing the record reverently from the sleeve, laying it down on the platter, watching the needle drop with a satisfying thud. And then there is the album cover itself. These are true works of art in this format - no fiddly little paper booklets, just a 12-inch square of cardboard wonder that you can hold in your hands and study with delight. Some are so good you could frame them and hang them on your walls. So if you have never experienced the sheer joy of vinyl do yourself a favour and give it a go. It is way less convenient than your MP3 player, and so much more fun.
Vinyl edition of Ultimate Collection vs CD version.
26.12.18 > Katie Bite: Bridge Over Troubled Water
25.12.18 > Craggie's Christmas Message
Merry Christmas everyone! I hope you all have an amazing day. If you are in a house full of family right now I ask only one thing of you - revel in it! Make some memories. Study those happy faces (and even the sulky ones) and store them away in your mind. Have a Christmas to remember for the rest of your life. Because today is a fleeting moment in time. Some of you will get to witness the joy on children’s faces every single Christmas for the rest of your life through your children, grand-children and even great grand-children. But some of you won’t. There may come a Christmas when you find yourself alone, through any number of reasons. None of us know what life holds in store for us. I hope it never happens to you, but if it does you will be able to take comfort reliving the memories of Christmasses past.
If you know someone that is spending Christmas alone I urge you to be sensitive in how you handle them. Everyone is different. Some people may long for a little company; others will prefer to be on their own. Make sure you know who you are dealing with. I have had offers to spend Christmas with others. I decline them all. For me, being dragged into someone else’s Christmas is far worse than spending it alone. It is a blatant reminder that you are not with family of your own and you feel like you are intruding into a private life where you have no business to be. If you Skype someone, do it with sensitivity too - how will they feel if they see a bunch of happy people behind you all having a great time? Will it warm their hearts or make them feel even more isolated? By all means give people a choice to share in your Christmas, but don’t put any pressure on them; let it be on their terms. Some would prefer to have a day of quiet reflection and enjoy warm memories of the past rather than having to confront the cold reality of the present.
Personally, I listen to “In Winter” and immediately feel relaxed and grateful for the memories of years gone by. And who knows what lies ahead? Next year may be completely different so don’t assume if you are spending Christmas alone that it will always be that way. Anything is possible in this world. So peace and love to one and all. Now, I have some potatoes waiting that are showing no inclination to roast themselves…
24.12.18 > Wishing You All A Wonderful Christmas
23.12.18 > Katie Bite: River
22.12.18 > Walks In Winter
Winter is a wonderful time for walking. The clean, crisp air, the low sun, barren trees displaying their intricate structure and that general feeling that the land is holding its breath, pausing, resting and hunkering down in preparation for the manic activity that will ensue come the spring. If you are lucky enough to get some snow then it is a magical world to be out in; a bright, sunny morning with clear blue skies after a hard frost is also a stunning environment to wander through. But even a grey, drizzly day can have a beauty of its own; you just have to choose to see it. If you're struggling with that, try going a walk with In Winter playing in your earbuds. If that doesn't do it for you then I'm not sure if anything will. The other thing about a winter walk is that it is lovely to get home - to settle down in front of the fire with a glass of mulled wine or hot chocolate and drift off into a cosy nap. Every season is special in its own way but for me winter is my favourite time of year.
21.12.18 > Katie on YouTube
If you could watch Katie for hours then YouTube is the place for you. Katie has her own channel where you can find her official videos and interviews. As I write this there are 100,999 subscribers so one of you could be the 101,000th! Okay, no prize for that but it might ease my OCD tendencies. Here is the link > Katie Melua on YouTube
Also note that there is a ton of unofficial videos to explore on YouTube as well that fans have uploaded, including entire concerts. You can even find her first TV appearance if you poke around a bit :-) (and it is worth it!) If you are reluctant to tear yourself away from this wonderful site then I've generously compiled a nice selection for you here on All About Katie - just click the YouTube item on the menu panel to the left. I won't be adding much more to that page because it slows down the page loading but there's plenty enough to get you started.
20.12.18 > Katie Bite: O Holy Night
19.12.18 > Somewhere Under The Same Cherry Hotel
I've mentioned this anomaly before. And I'm mentioning it again because I'm still as baffled as a bat in a Tardis. Pictures on iTunes still boasts a bonus track. It is listed as "Under the Cherry Moon", a Prince song. Play it. What you hear is "Somewhere In The Same Hotel". I don't mean the two songs sound similar; they don't. What I mean is the actual song you get is track 17 from The Katie Melua Collection, i.e. "Somewhere In The Same Hotel". I'm not complaining - it is a much better song than "Under the Cherry Moon" - I'd just like to know what the hell is going on. Surely I'm not the only one to have listened to Pictures on iTunes, got to track 13 and said, after just a few seconds, "hang on....". I guess at the end of the day I must be the only person on the planet to give a flying Womble about things like this. But I shall never stop. One day I will meet someone who cares. And I'll buy them a machiatto and a cup cake to celebrate.
And while I'm on about Pictures on iTunes, you can buy it for two different prices. No, one isn't a deluxe version (sadly). They are the same. So, if you fancy a bargain then buy the £5.99 version. Or if you'd like to treat Katie (or Apple) to an extra posh coffee then go for the £8.99 one.
18.12.18 > Katie Bite: A Time To Buy
This might very well be accurate this week...
17.12.18 > Pan-baked Megruli Khachapuri
Three of the greatest things Georgia has given the world are Katie, wine and khachapuri. I don't know how to make wine. I don't know how to make a Katie. But I can make an edible attempt at khachapuri, albeit with an English twist (since Georgian cheese ain't easy to find here). Click the pic if you'd like to find out more...
16.12.18 > O Holy Night!
Here's another Christmassy Katie fix for you. Now, everyone has covered this carol. No, really - I'm pretty sure I heard my neighbour's cat having a crack at it during the night. But here is the definitive version...
15.12.18 > A random thought on collaboration
Now that the 2018 Tour is done and dusted and Ultimate Collection is padding out stockings around the country, I can sit back with the mulled wine and drift into dreamland pondering possible future directions Katie might wander off in. And given the success of her collaboration with the Gori Women's Choir and the influence of traditional Georgian folk music, I wondered if traditional English folk music would prove an interesting pasture for Katie to stop and graze for a while (that's a metaphor, not me calling her a cow). Now, there has long been a stigma attached to English folk music; it tends to conjure images of people in dubious hats singing lustily, with a finger stuck in one ear, about buxom barmaids, while said buxom barmaids pour pints of scrumpy cider for the permanently inebriated gathering of devotees. Fortunately, that image is starting to fade thanks to some truly talented artists such as Kate Rusby who have given the kiss of life to traditional English folk music. But I don't quite see Kate and Katie fitting together. Rather, it is the haunting sound of the little-known Northumbrian pipes that intrigue me. Far less attacking on the ear than bagpipes, Northumbrian pipes are closer to Ireland's uilleann pipes in tone and give a similar distinctive feel to the music. The greatest champion of this wonderful instrument is Kathryn Tickell. I saw her live many years ago and she was wonderful; it was a night that made me realise that English traditional music was actually a thing. Kathryn composes new music as well, and - here's the thing - collaborates with other artists, most notably Sting. She has performed live with him and played on six of his albums. So I can't help but wonder what Katie would be inspired to produce adding her vocals and guitar to Kathryn's distinctive pipes. Guitar does work with pipes - check out Mark Knopfler's beautiful soundtrack "Music from the film 'Cal'" to see that. As for Kathryn, there's plenty of her work available on iTunes and Amazon. "The Best of Kathryn Tickell" is probably a good place to start, while "Strange But True" has an element of jazz to it which might be an easier slide-in for fans of Katie's early work. For now I'll just add this little fantasy to my growing wish list of things I'd like to see Katie do. I did try showing the list to Santa; he just laughed, then handed me a satsuma and told me to dream on. Which is exactly what I do...
15.12.18 > Katie Bite: A Time To Buy
14.12.18 > Gallery update > York 2018
There are now some photos from Katie's gig at the Barbican, York on December 12th in the Gallery section > York 2018
14.12.18 > Thank you, Katie! გმადლობთ, ქეთი
Let's give a massive thank you to Katie, the band, and of course, the sublime Gori Women's Choir. You gave thousands of fans an experience they will never forget; an evening to escape the troubles of the world and float into an ethereal dreamland where everyone is wrapped in a magical cloak of love and peace. It was music to uplift our souls and give us renewed energy to cope with our turbulent times. I hope you can now take a well-earned break and revel in the remainder of the festive season and I know you will be bringing even more joy to the world in 2019.
Image via @katiemeluaofficial on Instagram
13.12.18 > Thank you, Keeva!
A shout out to the lovely Keeva, who has supported Katie on this tour and been very warmly received. Her website is a little light on content for now, https://www.keeva-music.com/, but you can find her on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/keevamusic , Twitter (@KeevaMusic), and Instagram (keevamusic).
She looks a bit like Katie with glasses. Tad taller though. Here's a nugget for you > the proper Irish spelling for Keeva is Caoimhe . Yeah, I know. In Georgian, if you learn to pronounce the alphabet you can pronounce any written word; good luck with that in Irish. That's why Eithne became Enya and her sister eventually relented and swapped Máire Brennan for Moya Brennan (she was actually born Máire Ní Bhraonáin - make sure your dentures are well glued before attempting that). ქეთევან მელუა may look more terrifying but if you have learnt that alphabet then "Ketevan Melua" will roll off your tongue perfectly!
13.12.18 > York Barbican, 12.12.18
Two hundred miles of driving on a cold winters’ evening. The little devil on my shoulder was taunting me, questioning whether Katie was worth going to see again less than ten days after I saw her in Nottingham. I lowered the car window and with a well-timed flick sent the little crittur flying out in to the chilly night. The angel on my other shoulder sniggered. She knew the truth - of course Katie was worth it! I would drive 500 miles. And I would drive 500 more. Just to be the one that drove a 1000 miles to… hang on, there could be a song in this. Anyway, I talked to some people around me who proclaimed to love Katie yet hadn’t even heard of “In Winter”. I told them to prepare to be blown away. They all were. Several times during the evening I turned and looked at the audience. Every time I saw the same thing; they were spellbound. The guy next to me kept looking at me and shaking his head in disbelief at what he was hearing. The verdict was unanimous. Katie was better than they had expected and the Gori Women’s Choir were simply a revelation. During the encore there was a slightly premature standing ovation, which Katie observed with bemused patience before calmly delivering the final line of the song. (To be fair, a heavily pregnant pause in live music is always a risk with eager applauders around.)
This was show 36 of 37. You would expect everyone to be flagging a little and going through the motions. There was no sign of that. The quality of performance was identical to the Nottingham show nine days earlier. True professionalism. And on to Edinburgh tomorrow to conclude a triumphant tour that will long stay in the memory of everyone involved with it. The audiences will never forget it. Apparently, the previous big event at York Barbican had been a snooker competition. I’d much rather watch Katie sing than a bunch of men poking their balls with a stick. Each to their own.
If You Are So Beautiful
(The eagle-eyed among you may be thinking "Maybe I Dreamt It" - where's that from? Indeed. I suggest you keep watching this space. Well, not that space specifically, I mean this blog in general.)
(Love that dress - matches my site theme perfectly!)
12.12.18 > Track Notes 35: Perfect Circle
11.12.18 > New tour dates: Summer 2019 in Europe
Katie will be performing in Austria, Hungary, Estonia and Germany during July and August of 2019. Tickets are on sale now! Dates and venues here.
11.12.18 > The Steve Wright Show
On his afternoon show last Wednesday, broadcasting legend Steve Wright tried to tell Katie how incredible her voice was. She wasn’t really having any of it. I can understand why. Of course she is aware she has something special. Mike Batt heard it instantly. Terry Wogan heard it instantly. The millions who bought Call Off The Search heard it instantly. None of them were wrong. She has sung for Nelson Mandela. She has sung for the Queen. She has even sung with Queen. These things do not happen by accident.
But believing your own hype is a dangerous escalator to ride on. Katie knows this; she got whisked a long way up and had to make her own way down. It was a scary wake-up call for her and it is little wonder she chooses to remain firmly grounded these days. Not everyone finds a way off that relentless escalator. Karen Carpenter died at just 32 after the pressures of her career led to her battle with anorexia nervosa - a condition that wasn’t understood in the 70’s and by the time she sought treatment it proved too little too late. So it is a wise course of action for Katie to shield herself from the fawning adulation of fans and interviewees alike. She is not immune from bad reviews and Twitter trolls either. In the words of Kipling, “If you can meet with triumph and disaster, and treat those two imposters just the same...” - Katie does just that. Which is why I can write the next paragraph safe in the knowledge it will slip off her shoulders like water off a duck’s back, though I hope it will get filed away in some distant corner of her mind to be recalled in later life with quiet satisfaction.
Steve Wright was right. Katie, your voice is unique. You can interpret a song like no other. You stand shoulder to shoulder with Eva Cassidy and Karen Carpenter. They would have embraced you as their equal and been as much in awe of your talent as you are of theirs. The hard work and dedication you have applied to your craft since childhood has earned you the right to be mentioned in the same breath as anyone. (Okay, you can take your fingers out of your ears and stop saying”la la la la la” now).
10.12.18 > 2018 Tour Almost Done!
Come on Katie, four nights in a row now to end the tour! That's got to be brutal, but by Friday you'll be able to kick back and join the rest of us in festive frolics. And you'll be able to snuggle up with James in front of the fire and reflect on what a stunning tour it has been. Across Europe and the UK people have been blown away by you, the band and the astonishing Gori Women's Choir and left with the memory of a magical night they'll never forget.
By the way, there are just a handful of tickets left for York on Wednesday. They are all "obscured view" - at forty-odd quid you might think they cost an arm and a leg considering that's probably all you'll see of Katie but I promise you she'll sound amazing from anywhere in the room.
UPDATE: As of 6pm there are just 4 tickets left. Five minutes ago it was 5. Okay, I know, sometimes I'm a little impulsive. Hey Siri, how do I get to York Barbican?
10.12.18 > Katie Bite: Perfect World
10.12.18 > Review of Westminster concert, 08.12.18
A nice review by Liz Thomson at The Arts Desk of Katie's London concert on Saturday >>> Georgia on her mind
09.12.18 > This Year's Love
One of the dances on Saturday's Strictly Come Dancing was performed to the David Gray song "This Year's Love". If you want to know how it should really sound then listen to Katie's version on "B-Sides: The Tracks That Got Away". Thankfully, this album is available on iTunes even though it wasn't released on CD (actually, I think it was in Japan. God knows what the thinking was here. If I'd been running Dramatico nothing Katie recorded would have got away. She could sing Donald Trump's tax return and have me in bits).
"B-Sides" is the worst named of all of Katie's albums. Clever Batt-esque wordplay, yes, but it implies second-rate material when in fact it is stuffed full of treasures. If "Market Day In Guernica" doesn't move you to tears it is a good indication that you are probably an assassin. Check it out at iTunes (click the image) or on Amazon.
09.12.18 > Baby, It's Cold Outside
This version will never be beaten. Sorry Zooey, Katie stole your cigar...
08.12.18 > Lyric card: Scary Films
07.12.18 > Katie Bite: Dreams On Fire
07.12.18 > Thoughts on Ultimate Collection
I now have Katie’s latest offering on vinyl, CD and digital. It is probably time I said a few words about it. This isn’t a review as such, since the songs are not new to me, even Diamonds Are Forever, which I saw her perform for a BBC James Bond special a few years ago (an evening which may well have led to her collaboration with Don Black on Dreams On Fire).
My initial reaction to the announcement of UC was, “oh, I already have all this material, I probably don’t need to buy it”; of course, that was never going to be an option. There shall be no holes in my KM collection! But there will be fans thinking along similar lines and wondering whether they need to buy this album. Well, for one thing there is that stunning version of Diamonds Are Forever, which is worth the price alone in my opinion, and also a sumptuous new recording of Bridge Over Troubled Water with the Georgian Philharmonic Orchestra. You also get the studio recordings of Wonderful Life and Fields Of Gold, which were previously only available as live tracks on the Special Edition of In Winter.
In this digital age we can all make our own playlist of our favourite tracks. But what is interesting is that if you’d asked every fan to pick their top thirty tracks no two lists would be the same. This album represents Katie’s list; none of us would have chosen the exact same songs. The fact that it is her personal choice adds an extra layer of interest. I’m sure most of us will be thinking “how could she leave such-and-such out”. I don’t imagine it was easy to pick just thirty - I wouldn’t want that job. If it had been left to me UC would have been a 7-CD set. I find it fascinating trying to analyse her choices. I have a handle on many of them but there were still a few surprises. And I was so relieved to find What I Miss About You in there, one of my favourite KM tracks.
Of course, I have been looking at it from a real Ketefan’s perspective so far. But this kind of compilation is generally targeted at the more occasional fan, and it does serve as a perfect introduction to Katie’s work for that audience. I can imagine it nestling under many a Christmas tree in the days ahead and it is a gift that is not likely to disappoint anyone. Hopefully it will lead to an upward spike in Katie’s back catalogue in the New Year as people realise what they have been missing.
If I have one issue with Ultimate Collection it is the title. It is a generic title commonly used these days, along with “The Essential…” and the problem is it doesn’t really work with an active artist. Katie is already working on a new album and the moment that sees the light of day Ultimate Collection becomes an erroneous title. It reminds me of the book “Mostly Harmless” by Douglas Adams, which had written on the cover “the fifth book in the increasingly inaccurately named Hitchhikers trilogy”.
UC in numbers
There are 28 tracks from Katie’s seven studio albums, broken down as follows:
Piece By Piece
Call Off The Search
Make of that what you will, though it is difficult not to suspect Secret Symphony could be Katie’s least favourite album ;-) There's nothing at all from B-Sides, the (bafflingly) download-only gem which included the beautiful Market Day In Guernica and ridiculously catchy Straight To DVD. Interesting too that seven out of the ten songs on In Winter have been included. It is her masterpiece in my opinion so I have no arguments with the decision, but commercially it could be considered risky for those back catalogue sales. It’s further proof that Katie is all about the music and not the money. And talking of the music, Mike Batt wrote/co-wrote 9 of the tracks whereas Katie wrote/co-wrote 12. She still doesn’t get enough credit for her song-writing. (Except from me, naturally!)
06.12.18 > "Fields of Gold" live at Nottingham, 3.12.18
06.12.18 > Ketevan
Katie has released seven studio albums. I wondered if I could write a poem to celebrate them. Here is my attempt.
Are you Katie or Ketevan? Can anything be better than Kartvelebi or English rose? The best of both I suppose Tie a ribbon for a wish A sweet national dish Georgian or British Someone to cherish With looks that ravish And songs that astonish Time to Call Off The Search My heart once was broken But words you have spoken Put the pieces back together And fixed me forever That thing that you do It's like emotional glue I haven't a clue But your heart is so true I feel fresh and new That's all down to you Restoring me Piece By Piece Your beauty is beyond compare With flowing locks of raven hair Cascading down around your face A wild frame for your timeless grace And those caramel eyes That can't tell lies But mesmerize And induce my sighs Like a hidden prize Or a sweet surprise Revealed in Pictures Some days I ponder on my own Wondering why I have a phone That sits in silence day on end Not a word from my imaginary friend But I see your face in a vision Every detail with clear precision Then I make my big decision I don't need that television Overcome my sad condition Entirely of my own volition I will leave The House A voice so pure it makes you cry Yet feel so happy you could die And takes you places far away Then whispers things you long to say Captured by a heartfelt phrase Sold in many subtle ways That delight and amaze And lift you for days Like a sudden craze Or repeated plays Of a Secret Symphony Your passion always rings true Every time I hear you You may be far away Yet you're with me every day Perhaps I don't exist But you're top of my list How could I resist? For all that I have missed My heart is in a twist And my soul has been kissed By Ketevan In the dark depths of winter When hope starts to splinter Your songs are like a warm caress The cold? The rain? Could I care less? Music like a soft embrace Smiles returning to my face Joy in every place At one with time and space Dreary thoughts that you replace Gone without a trace I'm content In Winter Craig Warhurst, 2017
05.12.18 > All About Katie is Secure!!!
Just so you're not up all night worrying, I can confirm that All About Katie is now a secure site! Not that it was a major issue since you'll never be asked for personal details here, but really I just wanted to see a little padlock in the address bar. If you don't see the padlock you need to make sure you are at https://www.allaboutkatie.co.uk/default.htm (Note it is https and not http)
05.12.18 > Gallery update > Nottingham 2018
There are now some photos from Katie's gig at the Theatre Royal, Nottingham on December 3rd in the Gallery section > Nottingham 2018
04.12.18 > Nottingham 2018
Thank you Katie for your kind words about my little fan site! It means the world to me and was completely unexpected. It is so lovely how you make starstruck fans feel at ease in a way that only those with the purest of hearts are able to do.
The concert was spellbinding and though I was expecting to be mesmerised by you, which I was, I was blown over, almost literally, by the power of the Gori Women's Choir. Recordings do not do them justice. They can be as subtle as a feather floating to the ground, but in full tonsil wobble you need to hold on to your toupee or someone in row Z will get a false beard. They have an elemental quality that both soothes and rouses the soul. Uh-may-zing!
Also, a shout out for Zurab; such sweet playing and then standing still as a ninja meerkat when not needed. Slight change of pace from Toseland....
01.12.18 > Talking of vinyl...
We are officially In Winter once again, so this gorgeous package takes centre stage for the next three months :-)