It’s the coldest weekend of the winter, and Brooklyn girl Catey Shaw is closing out her east coast tour at The Knitting Factory. Wandering in with a smuggled red bull and a knack for people-watching, I had a feeling that this wouldn’t be the average Catey Shaw show.

You see, over the past few years, Shaw’s public image has maximized after releasing a widely mixed-reviewed music video of her single, “Brooklyn Girls.” After stating in several press releases by Shaw herself that she really just drew inspiration for the piece based on being moved by the empowerment that lies in female artists in Brooklyn – but failed in critics eyes by only lending to the Bushwick and Williamsburg area in the footage – Shaw didn’t hesitate to let it effect her. In a recent interview with Popular TV, she states, “I’m not really in the space where I’m bothered by it anymore.”

And so: she reflected on it, refused to be defined by it, and then burrowed deeper into a more textualized, mellow sound, with a new single called, “The Ransom,” – a purely honest and moving piece oozing a need for independence and peace-making amongst an assumedly possessive lover.

Winning a crowd over at Knitting Factory on one of the coldest days of the year isn’t an easy task. However, after Catey and her touring band had grown comfortably familiar and confident in their set after rehearsing and touring the east coast in the previous week and a half. Shaw wasn’t concerned with winning anyone over. But she didn’t have to. They were completely hooked. Another noteworthy element of Catey’s performance at The Knitting Factory was the abundance in resonance in her vocals. Touring isn’t easy, as any musician knows – but Shaw sang with pure confidence, reverberation, and dynamic. Not to mention – a seriously sassy and appropriately damed ensemble of silk pants and fur coat. Intertwining new and old tunes – including Brooklyn Girls and other crowd favorites like Outer Space and Human Contact – Shaw swayed from side to side as if she’d been born on stage. And contrary to the cold, the crowd exuded a true warmth, shouting and singing their loving her just the same as they would on a summer’s night.

Fame may not be the easiest, especially when not anticipated. But after seeing Shaw’s rise to the blogosphere in recent years, with her mixed reviews in tows – on top of countless shows – Shaw became a true veteran of solo artist ways more quickly than the average comrade. (This might be on account of the fact that she is in true control of every factor of her career – having also previously landed her talents to visual artistic expression of painting).

Catey Shaw is one of the hardest working individuals in pop music. And she will continue to be. Her air – almost forgiving but sweet – driven, but extremely authentic. Sometimes, though rarely, you come across a true classic artist – and Shaw is just that. And even if Catey has recently relocated to LA and has switched out whiskey for water for her touring set, she will always be a Brooklyn Girl in Pancakes eyes. Because either way – no matter the city of residence – we know she’ll be kicking ass.



Article: Hillary Barleaux


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