The artistic roots of singer-songwriter Katey Laurel are both deep and diverse. Born to free-spirited, nature-loving parents in the early 1980s, she spent the first years of her life traveling coast-to-coast in a Volkswagen bus. When her family eventually made a lifestyle change from the freewheeling hippie life to settling on a ranch in rural Colorado, the more isolated environment left Katey’s young imagination craving input. She turned to creative pursuits to fill the void. A lover of horses from an early age, she began drawing and painting her equine muses, and also began studying piano.
She draws inspiration from many musical styles—from the bluegrass and Appalachian roots records of her family’s early “hippie years” to the classic rock of Stevie Nicks and The Who; from 80s dance-pop cassettes including Debbie Gibson and Paula Abdul to the alternative rock of the 1990s; and from the classical roots of her musical training to the piano-rock of Ben Folds Five. (Throw in a bit of Natalie Merchant, Sarah McLachlan, Over The Rhine and Dixie Chicks for good measure.)
As a teenager, Katey found herself choosing music over art as her true passion and never looked back. In college, while majoring in French horn performance, she added guitar to her instrumental arsenal and began developing her craft as a singer-songwriter. Rather than courting a record label at the outset, Katey took the DIY approach to her music career from the start, writing and recording her first record with an Mbox in her bedroom (“Nothing to write home about,” she quips), and learning the different aspects of the music business as she went.
Since those early beginnings, Katey has built a solid fan base with her blend of folk and pop, winning or placing in numerous songwriting competitions, garnering radio airplay both in her hometown of Denver and on Triple A stations around the country, landing song placements in film and television, and sharing the stage with the likes of Howie Day, Katie Herzig, Bill Mallonee, Matt Morris, Trevor Hall and others.
Katey is now on the threshold of releasing her most poignant and accessible work to date with her upcoming album “Periscope”. Produced by industry veteran Warren Huart (Aerosmith, The Fray, James Blunt), the record is themed around the dichotomy and tension between struggle and hope in which life is lived. Never is this more apparent than in lead single “Hurricane,” which deals with finding the eye of the storm within the struggles of relationships, presented with a solid, radio-friendly hook guaranteed to stay in the listener’s mind long after the song is over.
Beyond crafting solid melodies and hooks as a songwriter, over the past several years Katey Laurel has earned her loyal following by writing songs that are honest, meaningful and relatable—“Music that speaks,” as she puts it. With “Periscope,” she is poised to reach a much wider audience in the days ahead.