SONGBIRDS takes flight…

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Folkstock Records are proud to be recording and releasing SONGBIRDS, Kate Dimbleby’s unique album of eleven original songs written and performed almost exclusively by her voice alone.

With just the lightest sprinkling of keys and tamborine in a couple of tracks, these gems are recorded with no other musicians. Kate layers her voice, with techniques inspired by learning with vocal virtuoso Bobby McFerrin.

Kate’s “soul” songs have an improvised feel that soar above the hubbub by breaking away from conventional instrumentation and song structure, elevating the listener into a world where anything might happen.

Kate says, “I wanted to go in with just my voice and without instruments so that you don’t get any of the associations that usually spring up, ‘Oh, it’s that kind of thing’. It allows for an element of surprise and fun – room for people to interact by stepping into the space where the instruments would normally be – even joining in.”

And what she has created, with producer Lauren Deakin Davies, might surprise you.
Encouraged by Helen Meissner’s Folkstock Records, a small independent label which has a reputation for celebrating the female voice, Kate has been able to distill her personal journey into an unconventional recording and accompanying show, unbound by traditional genre classifications.

Incorporating blues, jazz and reggae undertones, picked up during Kate’s career, these songs are unlike anything currently being released in the contemporary music scene.

Kate’s wit and charisma, gained through 25 years of live performance, comes through strongly in these grounded self-penned tracks which seep into your subconscious and tell the tale of someone searching for their own story and inviting you to share the journey.

Coming from a family of broadcasters with a mother who sang opera over breakfast, Kate says, “I wanted to embrace that heritage but find my own voice, and most importantly, encourage others to step out of their received stories and find theirs”

For the SONGBIRDS live tour, Kate has teamed up with director Katy Carmichael and Bristol’s Theatre Damfino to create a warm and vibrant one-woman show. Choosing an eclectic range of venues such as churches, art galleries and a spiegeltent, Kate tells her story of finding her voice, singing a capella with only a vocal looper to help her interact directly with her audience. The result is a unique and engaging audience experience, different at each performance.

“Songbirds is about the voices we keep locked up inside. About the need for connection – right here, right now. And if it goes ‘wrong’, so what? I’ve realised that the place where things go wrong is where we find the magic.”

The album SONGBIRDS, will be released on Folkstock Records on 23rd February with a launch at at  NOW gallery, on Greenwich Peninsula on 23rd February and live shows touring from the end of February through to the end of May.

“NOW gallery is the perfect venue to launch this project – about finding your voice outside the box, breaking down the barrier between audience and singer and finding release from the everyday through song.”

Originally classically trained, Kate has released five solo albums and toured the world with her one-woman shows about other female singers, selling out the Festival Hall and Ronnie Scotts and working with some of the best musicians in the country. But it has taken 20 years since her first album for the critically acclaimed performer to find, and subsequently share what she is really about.

After a move to Bristol with her family 5 years ago, she studied with Bobby McFerrin in New York and taught herself how to use a looper to recreate the instrumental lines on her previously released original material. This proved so rewarding that she wrote songs specifically to be performed entirely by voice alone, a capella, and let herself go. Songbirds is the result.