Katharine Cole has been singing, writing and performing professionally since the mid-1970’s when she appeared at the Superdome in New Orleans singing her first published original song at a folk music convention. She was a part of the Hollywood music scene beginning in the 80’s, where she performed with punk and rock bands alongside artists like X, Dead Kennedys and The Bus Boys and Hollywood hair bands like Great White, Dio, Poison and Faster Pussycat. During this time she wrote for Music Connection, performed as a regular at Whiskey A Go Go, The Palace and Hollywood legend dives like Rajis and The Dragonfly Lounge and Club Lingerie.
In the 90’s, she moved to San Francisco with a new last name to start a new phase, writing and performing as a solo singer/songwriter and as the lead singer and bassist of Spanking Violets. Holding court at the Paradise Lounge, this band soon became The Katharine Chase Band. It was with “TKCB” that her career took off as one of top drawing bands in San Francisco, opening for Hootie & The Blowfish, Train, Cake, Third Eye Blind, and signing a major record deal in 1996. With “The Truth”, recorded at Fantasy Studios and produced by Jeffrey Wood, Katharine established herself as a mature songwriter with a future beyond the Bay Area.
The 2000’s found her as lead singer and bassist for the rocktronica trio “Kindness”, alongside drummer Dawn Richardson (4 Non Blondes/Tracy Chapman) and guitarists Carrie Baum, then Shelly Doty in 2001. They released two albums “Kindness” and “Welcome to Planet Excellent”. Before disbanding in 2002, Kindness performed at the Michigan Women’s Festival, Hopland Women’s Festival, The Dinah, Fabulosa Fest while selling out local shows in San Francisco.
Katharine was invited to join the touring band for Penelope Houston (Reprise) in Europe and the East Coast on bass and backing vocals. She also was a regular session musician at Fantasy Studios as a vocalist.
It was also during this time that Katharine began performing under the alter ego “Kitty Rose, The Singing Cowgirl from Hopland, California.” Under this moniker, she released her “Greatest Hits!” and “Live at The Ryman” albums (2005 and 2007) which were intended to create a fictional kitchy country star, but wound up garnering attention nationwide. As “Kitty Rose”, Katharine toured nationally appearing at South by Southwest, North by Northwest, from country clubs in Nashville’s famous Bluebird Cafe to Chicago, where she received the OutMusic Award for Best Female Vocalist of the year. She was inducted in the Traditional Music Hall of Fame as Kitty Rose in 2008. An undeniable force in her custom Nudie-style suits and white cowboy hat, “Kitty” was honored to share the stage with Kris Kristofferson, Aaron Tippen and Wanda Jackson.
Just as with many true country stars, Kitty moved into the rockabilly vein in 2016 while living in Atlanta and released vinyl, as well as full-length albums, videos and performed at rockabilly festivals around the State of Georgia and beyond as “Kitty Rose and The Rattlers”. Over the next few years, this incarnation received national airplay including Underground Garage SiriusXM, and was invited to record at Sun Studios, Memphis – truly a lifetime experience.
It was as Katharine Cole, however, in 2017 that she gained national attention as a songwriter again with the release of “Brittle Season”, recorded at Fidelitorium with John Pfiffer and guest production from Mitch Easter (REM). This album was in the first round of nominations for the Grammy Awards and received and still receives airplay around the world in the Americana and Roots categories.
Returning to Northern California in the Fall of 2019, Katharine continued writing, but with the pandemic her live performances, including festivals and large venues, were cancelled. It was not until 2021 that she began performing with the trio “3 Point Hitch” (Yvonne Boyd and Jean-Francois) and this trio has now began performing and recording again.