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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!!
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25.05.18 > Lyric card: Shy Boy
24.05.18 > Katie Bite: A Happy Place
23.05.18 > No News Is Good News!
Katie has gone very quiet lately. Her Facebook fans are getting restless, wondering what she is up to. She hasn't Tweeted at all in 2018, and it is almost a couple of weeks since her last Instagram post. I choose to see this as a good sign. I think it means she is seriously stuck into making new music and is avoiding the distractions of social media. We can't have our cake and eat it. Personally, I'm fine with it if she goes off grid for a while if it means a new album is on the way. I'd rather hear Katie singing new songs than see another picture of her looking vaguely uncomfortable at some social event. The sound of new Katie songs will more than make up for the current silence. Have faith, people!
22.05.18 > Katie Bite: Better Than A Dream
21.05.18 > Track notes 13: Shy Boy
20.05.18 > Lyric card: Lilac Wine
19.05.18 > Katie Bite: Perfect Circle
18.05.18 > Sketch effect
17.05.18 > Katie Bite: Call Off The Search
16.05.18 > What IS she doing?
Scratching an itch? Exercising? 2Taken from a promo shoot for Ketevan.
15.05.18 > Katie Bite: Better Than A Dream
14.05.18 > Track Notes 12: Lilac Wine
13.05.18 > Lyric card: Faraway Voice
12.05.18 > Katie Bite: Anniversary Song
11.05.18 > Guess who?
I spy with my little eye... something beginning with K... and J...
No, don't worry, I haven't resorted to stalking Katie. This photo was posted by Emoniava on Instagram.
10.05.18 > Katie Bite: All Over The World
09.05.18 > Track Notes 11: Faraway Voice
08.05.18 > Katie on Instagram
I love how James is stood watching while Katie does the work!
07.05.18 > Fidgeting during interview...
06.05.18 > Lyric card: Tiger In The Night
05.05.18 > Katie Bite: A Happy Place
04.05.18 > London Georgian Film Festival
The 5th London Georgian Film Festival is underway at the moment. Katie attended yesterday with her brother Zurab.
03.05.18 > Katie Bite: If The Lights Go Out
02.05.18 > Thoughts on What I Miss About You
I love this song so much, it is probably my favourite of all Katie Melua songs. Katie co-wrote it with Andrea McEwen and since Katie tends to lean more towards the music than the lyrics in collaborations it is likely Andrea wrote the lyrics, though Katie may well have had some input.
The first half of the song sets the scene for a standard love story which, though skilfully painted with observations we can all relate to, hardly sets the world on fire. Sweetly performed, as ever, by Katie, it could have been just another nice little love song and nothing more. Instead, halfway through it turns dark. Suddenly, the relationship has ended, and not well. In some of the most brutally painful lyrics I have ever heard we get to witness an all-too-real glimpse of love gone sour and I am unable to get to the end of the song without holding back a tear every time. It is three lines in the last verse that get me:
The way I only doubted myself when I was with you,
Like I was wrong for expecting something from life too.
Your skill of putting me down in front of everyone we knew...
Those lines could have been spoken by countless women, and among them my mother. They make me feel ashamed to be a man. And Katie performs them so flawlessly you believe she is singing from personal experience (which I sincerely hope she isn't).
Interestingly, if you search for the lyrics of this song the line near the end is always given as "Like I was a fool for expecting something..." - yet I have never heard Katie sing that. She always sings "Like I was wrong for expecting...". In my opinion, the latter is better, and I wonder if that is something Katie came up with in the recording studio that got left in. Even on Katie's website it says "fool". Curious.
01.05.18 > Katie Bite: Toy Collection
30.04.18 > Track Notes 10: Tiger In The Night
29.04.18 > Lyric card: Mockingbird Song
28.04.18 > Katie Bite: A Happy Place
27.04.18 > Track Notes 9: Mockingbird Song
Track Notes: Mockingbird Song
Based on a traditional lullaby, 'Hush, Little Baby'
26.04.18 > Katie Bite: Faraway Voice
25.04.18 > Lyric card: I Think It's Going To Rain Today
24.04.18 > Katie Bite: Blame It On The Moon
23.04.18 > Track Notes 8: I Think It's Going To Rain Today
22.04.18 > Lyric Card: Belfast (Penguins and Cats)
21.04.18 > What's in a Voice?
Katie doesn't think she has the greatest voice. I don't often disagree with her, but on this she is simply wrong. So it made me think - what is it about a voice that moves us. What defines a voice as being great?
We are all different, so maybe there is no one definitive answer but I can tell you why, for me, Katie is so special.
It seems to me there are multiple qualities that define a good voice - range, power, timing and emotion being four of them. We'll assume that the ability to sing in tune is a given!
Range is how many octaves you can cover from low to high. It is more relevant to opera singers, less so for popular artists. I don't see how it makes you a greater singer just because you have a wider range. Though that blue alien woman in 'The Fifth Element' was impressive!
Power seems to be high on most people's list of what makes a good singer. The trouble is, power without control is just noise. Too many singers nowadays belt out songs at full volume with no subtlety and it all gets a bit shouty. Take Adele for example. A massive star these days, and talked about in revered tones, yet to me she reminds me of that wailing kid in the supermarket being ignored by its mother while the rest of the shoppers find it impossible to ignore. Being able to sing loudly does not mean you are a great singer.
Timing is a fairly important ability. The band members all keep strict time with the music so you need to make sure your words are sung in the right places, but this doesn't necessarily mean being bang on the beat. There is a brief window between the last note and the next one so you can get in slightly ahead or behind if you want to. Frank Sinatra was the master of this. He always seemed to sing the words when it suited him and it often felt like he was a mile off the beat and never going to get the words in. He always did. He did it his way, and it was what made him so great.
Then there is emotion. This doesn't mean just crying as you sing, it is far more subtle than that. It is the ability to convey emotion, not just through the lyrics themselves but in how you deliver them. This is where Katie is the queen. Just like her idol, Eva Cassidy, Katie has that rare talent of being able to connect to you so directly that you feel she is beside you singing to you alone. It doesn't matter what the song is about - rage, love, fear, insecurity - whatever, Katie will make you believe it. She is so good at it that she can even make you see old songs in a new light. Classics like 'Blowin In The Wind' and 'Bridge Over Troubled Water' - songs covered a thousand times - sound fresh when Katie works her magic on them. Normally, when people sing 'Bridge Over Troubled Water' you are sort of in autopilot mode, just waiting for the 'money' note near the end. That's all it is - building up the anticipation ready for the grand finale. Katie dispenses with all of that. Instead she really gets the lyrics across to you. You find yourself listening carefully, drawn in to those beautiful words. The whole song becomes a gorgeous experience. It is a magical thing. Katie is an enchantress, weaving her spell on you with her words. That, for me, is why she is the greatest singer around.
20.04.18 > Katie Bite > Tiger In The Night
You are the one who keeps me strong in this world...
Tiger In The Night
19.04.18 > Katie on Instagram
18.04.18 > Lyric card: Blame It On The Moon
17.04.18 > Track Notes 7: Belfast (Penguins and Cats)
Track Notes: Belfast (Penguins and Cats)
Written by Katie about her time growing up as a child in Belfast. Penguins and Cats refers to the Protestants and Catholics.
Digital sheet music for Kindle is available at Belfast (Penguins and Cats)
16.04.18 > Katie on Instagram
15.04.18 > Katie's Mini Tour Dates - July 2018
Here is the schedule for Katie's European gig dates in July
|Sat. 7th July||Mlyn Jazz Festival, Poland|
|Tue. 10th July||Eldborg, Reykjavik, Iceland|
|Fri. 13th July||Festival Jardines Pedralbes, Barcelona, Spain|
|Sat. 21st July||Pori Jazz Festival, Finland|
14.04.18 > Katie on Instagram
13.04.18 > Sketch effect
12.04.18 > Track Notes 6: Blame It On The Moon
11.04.18 > Is he called Jonny?
Katie posted an Instagram story which was a little video panning around a garden of grape hyacinths before revealing - a peacock! Wasn't expecting that!
10.04.18 > 2001: A Space Odyssey
My favourite film of all time turns 50 this year. 2001: A Space Odyssey is a masterpiece, a true work of cinematic art. It divides opinion, for sure. Many people dislike it because they don’t understand what it’s about. But it isn’t meant to be understood. Stanley Kubrick and Arthur C. Clarke said that if anyone understood what it was all about they had failed. The whole point of it was to make you think. Think about time and space and the meaning of life and the Universe. It’s about as cerebral as film-making gets. Why are we here? Who else is out there? It’s an amazing Universe with so many unanswered questions and yet most people go about their business day by day and spend their water-cooler moments discussing last night’s soap episode. I fear that in this modern era of super-heroes and light sabres something like 2001, with its minimalist action and dialogue, will simply pass the current generation by. And that is such a shame. For it is art that inspires you to think that changes your life.
But, this site is all about Katie - is there a link to Katie in all of this? A tenuous one, but yes. Part of the atmospheric soundtrack music of the film is the gorgeous Gayane Ballet Suite, composed by Aram Khachaturian — who, like Katie, was born in Georgia. And on a personal note, two of the most influential things in my life have been 2001: A Space Odyssey and, of course, Katie Melua!
09.04.18 > Lyric card: Learnin' The Blues
08.04.18 > Twitter
We're well into April now and there still hasn't been a single tweet from Katie this year. Not even one from her team. I don't know if this is because she wants no distractions as she works on the album or whether it is that she is a bit fed up with the platform. Maybe a bit of both. When I look at her timeline it is clear she isn't missing out on much. Most of the tweets she receives are either about the inaccuracy of 'Nine Million Bicycles' or some other inane comment, such as 'watch this video of me covering your song!" - why the hell would she want to do that? Beggars my belief! The only social media she is using regularly at the moment is Instagram, and that's only about once a week. And even then she is increasingly posting 'stories' - curious things that you can't leave comments on and that disappear forever after 24 hours. If you miss 'em, they're gone! (Except, I capture them and post them here ;-) So, when the new album is done and dusted perhaps we may start seeing a few new tweets but until such time I have removed Katie's twitter feed widget from this page. It was slowing down the page loading times and contributing nothing new to the site. But rest assured, if Katie starts tweeting again you'll be the first to know.
07.04.18 > Katie on Instagram
06.04.18 > Lyric card: My Aphrodisiac Is You
05.04.18 > Track Notes 5: Learnin' The Blues
04.04.18 > Katie on Instagram
03.04.18 > I Never Fall...
02.04.18 > Track Notes 4: My Aphrodisiac Is You
01.04.18 > Katie on Instagram
Katie is in Sheffield again on a cold and damp Easter Sunday with James and a ton of other bikers for the Children's Hospital easter egg run. Sure the kids will have a blast no matter what the weather!