KATE MacCOLL, award-winning songwriter, classically trained pianist
Stories about the human condition set to music in the style of artists such as Carole King and Adele
Kate MacColl has enjoyed a vibrant career working in three very different sectors of the music industry: performance, administration, and teaching.
Back in the ‘90’s, Kate MacColl was part of a thriving circle of performing songwriters who were in regular rotation at Vancouver venues such as The Town Pump, 86 St. Music Hall, and The Railway Club. The ‘90’s were an exciting time for original music and as many of the contemporaries she’d been sharing stages with started touring their way across Canada, Kate decided her career would take a different path.
By that time, Kate had earned a university degree in music and certification to teach in B.C. and she had already worked several administrative contracts with what was then called the Pacific Music Industry Association. As the songwriters she’d played alongside for years started releasing CDs and earning spots on folk festival line-ups, she was doing report cards and writing board reports, all while continuing to perform the music she wrote.
In 2002, Kate was chosen as a finalist for the Kerrville New Folk competition, but she knew that the timing for using this achievement as the springboard to more touring was simply all wrong. And so she continued to teach and work as an arts administrator and perform at high profile songwriter series such as Just Singin’ ‘Round and Bluebird North. Her experience as a teacher earned her the position of Songwriting Instructor at the Sarah McLachlan School of Music from 2009 – 2015, and her work as a choral conductor gave her the chance to work with Ryan Gosling because he needed a backup choir for his band, “Dead Man’s Bones”, for their 2009 show at the Venue in Vancouver. Over the decades she also performed in and music directed many musicals (go to “This Is Now” for more information about her original musical, produced in 2018), she founded, directed and sang with her own vocal jazz group, VERVE Collective, for several years, and she was a proud member of Elektra Women’s Choir for more than a dozen seasons, which led to Elektra’s artistic director commissioning Kate to create arrangements which have since been published and distributed internationally. Current projects include producing her musical’s sequel, “That Was Then” (January 19-21, 2024 at The NEST on Granville Island, Vancouver BC), and reforming her vocal jazz group, now called ReVERVE.
Kate’s songs are short stories about living her life-so-far fully and completely, experiencing the richness of emotions that come with deep relationships between friends, parents and children, lovers. They are profound and poetic observations of the human condition, set to music in the style of artists such as Carole King and Adele. As one reviewer said of an early cassette tape release (she did begin her performing career in the 90’s, after all), listening to Kate MacColl is, “…a nice way to chill…forget about life, then have it thrown back in your face by a golden voice.”
Download the 2020 compilation CD “Somebody Else Take the Wheel”…available for streaming and downloads on all your favourite platforms including YouTube and Apple Music…complete list with links on the Recordings & Videos page.
Scores for Kate’s music are now available for purchase on the Merchandise page.