Steve Katz is an upcoming Belgian Singer-Songwriter who is currently living and working in New York. At Song Revelation after we heard about his artistic journey and his latest songs we were really keen to interview him so that we could share everything with you. Read on to find out about how Steve became interested in music, what he’s currently working and what music he enjoys listening to when not performing himself.
Q: If you could use a tagline of less than 20 words to describe your music and who you are what would it be?
Belgian Singer-songwriter and guitarist living in New York. My songs are contemporary pop .
Q: What is your musical background?
A friend of mine showed me a D chord when I was 14 years old and I knew right then that making music was my calling. I bought a 4 track and immediately tried to compose songs.. I must have hundreds of cassettes that I keep as souvenirs . None of this is part of my repertoire today but I had to start somewhere. The seeds were planted! Those 4tracks definitely contributed to shaping the artist I am today.
Q: How have the last 12 months been for you?
Hectic!!! But I don’t complain. I enjoy every moment. I have been recording and working on my EP that I will release very soon , playing a lot in NYC, promoting myself online and of course eating and sleeping (a little bit)….:)
Q: Who inspires you musically?
I started playing guitar and listening to music approximately at the same time. I first listened a lot to Pink Floyd, Santana, the Eagles and Supertramp—my mother’s favorite band, and an influence for which I remain eternally grateful to her. Then I had a progressive rock period followed by a fusion and jazz one. But Cat Stevens and Genesis (with Peter Gabriel) have been all along in the background until today.
Q: Which modern day artists do you look up to?
It’s hard for me to answer this question but Eddie Vedder’s solo career in the past few years has really grabbed my attention.
Q: Is there anyone you would like to collaborate or gig with?
Let’s fantasize a little bit. In terms of collaboration, if I had a chance to work with a famous artist, I would go for Cat Stevens Peter Gabriel or Paul McCartney or someone of their caliber. These guys are music prophets , they brought something new to the world that will last forever.
Q: What songs are on your iPod at the moment?
The truth is that I like to be surprised, I have these online radio stations like Pandora , Tunein Radio ,etc. where you pick an artist or a genre and similar songs get played . It’s the best way to hear fresh music and discover new artists. I choose in general the “Adult Contemporary” option.
Q: What is your creative process for creating a track?
I collaborate with lyricists for most of my songs. Often I have a musical idea, sometimes they have a lyrical idea. We turn those ideas into songs.
Q: What’s more important, melody or lyrics?
Wow! That’s a tough question! it definitely depends on the genre. Pop vs. Country. I would say that a catchy hook is the most important thing in a song. I grew up in Belgium, not speaking a word of English, however, we would mostly listen to American and British music and hum or sing hooks without understanding their meanings .Funny, no? J I think that a song could work and even be a hit with average lyrics and great hooks but I don’t think the opposite is true.
Q: Where are you based?
Manhattan, New York.
Q: What are you currently working on?
I’m about to release an EP with 5 songs very soon!!! I’m so excited. Once it’s released I’ll tour the North East Coast and hopefully go to California sometime this summer. Yeah!!
Q: What are you hoping to achieve in over the next 12 months?
Releasing my EP, go on tour, increase my fan base , play in bigger venues and eventually find serious management and get signed . It’s all about persevering.
Q: Do you have any gigs or shows that you’d like to tell us about?
I’ll play on April 29th at the notorious Bitter End in New York at 8pm!!!!
Q: What do you do to relax?
I read, run, swim, do yoga, meet friends ,watch movies, play guitar…
Q: Where would your favourite holiday (vacation) be and why?
I traveled a lot, mostly in India and Nepal where I backpacked twice for several months each time. I really have an ongoing love affair with this part of the world. The simplicity of life, the cultural and ethnical diversities, the breathtaking sceneries of Northern India, the magic of Kashmir, the warmth ,the beaches and the smells of the South, the 30 hour-long train trips with its food and its so special atmosphere…the colors, the religious rituals along the Ganges , the holy cities etc etc. I just love it.
Q: If you could give a little piece of advice for new or aspiring musicians what would it be?
Meet people, collaborate, expose yourself, go to open mics, use tools such as YouTube and soundcloud to get your music out there. Don’t get discouraged when you play to an empty room or frustrated when the room is packed but no one is listening to you. It’s part of the game. Ego and pride won’t help you in this career. It’s all about persevering and not giving up.
Q: Is there anything else you’d like to let our readers know about?
I would like to thank for reading. This was a little bit about myself. The rest is in my music
Editor’s Note: Steve Katz is an accomplished acoustic performer and singer-songwriter. Make sure if you’re in New York you check out his acoustic set for a great evening out!
If you’d like to get in touch or contact Steve Katz just follow the links below: