You know those pristine springs that are fed by glaciers and promise nature’s perfection? That’s the purity of the creative well from which Katie Rose ladles her inspiration. Her songs are crisp vignettes of sparkling sound that glisten with a refreshing, heartfelt beauty. Her immaculate voice is proof positive that she was born to tell stories through song and, in doing so, make the world a brighter place.
Her album, Everything Yesterday, was recorded at Ocean Industries Studios with producers Jeff Leonard and Eric Rickert and released just this past summer to critical acclaim. The lead single is a spectacular opus called “Wonder” that features Rose’s flawless goosebump-inducing vocals and a sweeping string arrangement that was composed and recorded by Jay Clifford (Jump Little Children). The full track listing is “Everything Yesterday,” “Wonder,” “Goodbye Song,” “Castle,” “Take Me Away,” “Feel,” and “Druzie (Along For The Ride).” Besides singing, Katie plays guitar and piano and she is the primary songwriter on each of the tracks.
Like many great projects, the writing of Everything Yesterday was catalyzed by a maelstrom of intense emotions. This album was the result of a breakup. But it’s probably not the kind of breakup you’re imagining.
Previously, Katie was in a duo with another girl who had a similar dream. They called themselves Katina Rose. Bound together by remarkable harmonies and a strong friendship, the pair embarked on a 9-month national tour. When they returned home, however, Rose discovered how cruel life could be. Just when everything seemed to be coming together for the young talent – who had been training to be an artist since she was 5 years old – Katina Rose was no more. And Katie was devastated.
“The duo was a very big part of my life,” Katie told AXS. “It happened during those years when I was supposed to be finding out who I was and who my real friends were. After it ended, I realized that I had missed out on so much of being a teenager and I felt really lost.”
To cope, she started writing everything down. Katie wrote about things that every teenager goes through – those impactful, relatable things. She also wrote down all the silly stuff, too. Everything just came pouring out.
“Sometimes you have to write some angry songs just to get them off of your chest. And that’s what I did – it’s better than actually getting really mad at somebody. That’s the great thing about being a songwriter, I can just write it all out in a song – it’s my therapy.”
It’s important to note that Rose’s experience didn’t produce an album populated by “poor, poor me” songs. She’s a master of her craft. Typically, the artist starts with a lyrical idea that she deftly fashions into an insightful expression of universal appeal, which makes her a creator of poignant and shimmering pop gems. Katie’s music lifts her fans up and makes them feel alive and eager to take on life.
As for where that ability comes from, Katie reasoned it stems from the wide variety of music she listened to growing up. “I was raised on a lot of Sugar Ray, classic rock, and just a whole weird mixture of all different kinds of music. There are times when I remember sitting in the car with my mom and my older sister and she was just belting out the entire soundtrack to Moulin Rouge! But then I also remember listening to The Eagles albums with my dad, so my musical taste is really a broad mix of all kinds of things.”
“My hooks are kind of built off of feelings that I get from watching Disney movies,” she added. “I know, that’s a little weird, right? But I’ve always adored good Disney movies, and you know that feeling you get, that full feeling when you hear a really good hook in a Disney song? That’s what I try to accomplish with my hooks.”
Also, it’s important to note that Everything Yesterday covers a wide range of topics. Katie Rose didn’t write an album of songs that were all focused on getting over her breakup. She moved on. “It took a little while but, I feel so much better. I started making new friends and I reconnected with old ones and I just did the music that I wanted to do.”
The first song that Katie wrote when she was starting to feel positive again was the incredibly potent track called “Take Me Away.” It’s charged with an infectious upbeat energy that makes it impossible not to dance to as you are blissfully singing along. “I just said, ‘I’m tired of all this, I’m writing a happy song,’ and I did,” she laughed.
One of the many hooks sprinkled throughout this phenomenal song is the perfectly placed, exuberant shout. “I got to do that with my bandmates. We all stood in this huge room and we just shouted ‘Hey!’ at each other. It was so much fun to record!”
Another standout song is the curious old-timey track called “Druzie.” It is a stirring proclamation of love that is adorned in poetry, which comes complete with a nostalgic crackle and pop of vinyl at the track’s opening.
“I actually wrote that song for my parents because they are huge supporters of everything I do,” she informed. “And they are so in love! They have this weird couple name called ‘Druzie' because my dad’s name is Drew and my mom’s name is Suzie. They’ve had it forever and it’s kind of weird, but I just took it and I wrote a song based off ‘Winnie the Pooh’ because ‘Winnie the Pooh’ was one of my mom’s favorite things.”
When asked if anything important about her that we needed to know, she replied, “It’s not about me, I’m not the important one, it’s about the songs. When I was writing this album, I just wanted to make sure everybody could relate to at least one of the songs, because that’s why everyone listens to and writes music, so you can have something to relate to. When all else fails, music is there. That’s the biggest thing for me.”
On October 15, Katie Rose will be performing from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Kudu Coffee & Craft Beer located at 4 Vanderhorst Street in Charleston, South Carolina.