Kathryn Dean’s old soul can be heard through the lyrics of her songs. When talking about her music, she makes it clear it’s all about storytelling. It’s important to her that the story is told in the truest way, whether it’s from personal experience or inspiration drawn from somewhere else. Kathryn delivers her musical poetry with passion — making a lasting bond between her and her fans. Her strong voice and meaningful words are what makes her music unique.
We spoke to Kathryn about her love of writing, volunteering, and how the Queen of Rock and Roll — the incomparable Stevie Nicks — has influenced her style.
How would you describe your sound?
I guess I would say alternative pop, but I’m trying to find my own unique sound. I have a lot of influences in rock, pop, and sometimes folk music. So, it’s all those influences with my own twist.
Do you feel like there are certain expectations for young female musicians?
Sometimes – it depends. When you go on stage people sometimes expect a certain thing from you especially because I am so young. I have an amazing team with some very incredible women on it and they’ve always told me “it doesn’t matter what they think when you walk in a room, it’s what they think when you leave.” It’s also expected that young women dress in less than enough clothing, but I dress to feel empowered.
You started writing at 16?
I haven’t been able to stop since, it’s like therapy for me. My songs are about my experiences and those of the people around me. I feel like when you break it down we all go through the same emotions. So, I try to write from that place.
Why is Stevie Nicks one of your musical influences? I’ve also heard Lindsey Buckingham is your dream collaborator.They’re quite the duo.
Yes! I just love the story telling behind all of their music. And of course, Stevie’s “Leather and Lace” style –which is what I like in my wardrobe and my style in general. I’m a fan of how poetic the songs are — they’re romantic and sweet but they’re also “I’m not gonna let you mess with me and get away with it.” Being an alto when many of the females are sopranos — I was a little unsure of my tone. Stevie proved that it’s OK.
Speaking of musical legends, you just finished up a tour with John Waite.
Yeah, that was a lot of fun! I loved being on tour and John was just awesome. I think every time I get to tour with great artists like John it inspires me to keep getting better. You really never stop improving –the day you fail is the day you stop trying to improve yourself.
Could you tell me about your song ‘City of Angels’?
It’s about drug addiction. I’ve never dealt with it myself, I understand feeling trapped by something. Music is like therapy and my goal with my music is to do that for others. After one of my shows, a woman came up to me and told me she had just taken her brother to rehab — she said the moment I started singing the song she knew exactly what it was about. It gave her a sense of hope and relief. That’s the ultimate goal.
‘Be My Sin’ hit the top 40 charts and has over 800,00 views, that must be exciting.
Yeah, it’s been crazy! Just knowing that a song I wrote has reached that many people is very humbling and exciting.
You’ve said volunteering is a big part of your life, what about volunteering do you love?
I love volunteering for animals and children. Whenever I feel like my life is crazy or I’m overwhelmed, I like to help others. You see people going through so much and still being so resilient. With dogs, no matter what happens to them, they always look at you like you’re the greatest. I like helping empower, whether it’s through my music or through volunteering.
What’s the future look like for you?
I’m working with a new producer and it’s been a lot of fun writing new stuff. I’ll be doing a lot of touring over the summer — which I’m really excited for. I feel like the stage is where I belong.
Follow Kathryn Dean on social media to keep up to date on what she’s up to and catch her out on the road this summer!
For upcoming tour dates visit kathryndeanofficial.com