Bio

Kate Weekes - Singer-Songwriter, Guitar, Vocals

 

Kate Weekes is originally from Smiths Falls, the former Chocolate Capital of Ontario.  As the child of folk musicians, she was raised with rehearsals in her living room, Blue Skies Music Festival as her stomping grounds and her father's 'Sunday Night with the Folk' radio show as her sound track.  Weekes attended the Arts Canterbury program in highschool and began to study guitar.  Having written poetry from a young age, Weekes was encouraged to pursue songwriting.  After highschool, Weekes followed in the foot steps of the beat poets and hitch-hiked her way across Canada.    A long-standing love affair with the north drew her to Whitehorse in the Yukon Territory where she spent more than a decade living in a little orange cabin on Squatter's row, writing songs, paddling rivers and mushing sled dogs.  

Weekes’ debut self-titled album was released in 2007 and is a reflection of her cross-country travels and made her the recipient of the Beth Ferguson Award as well as the Mac Beattie award for songs dubbed 'quintessentially Canadian'.  Collaborative projects followed in 2010 with 'Beneath the Yukon Moon' (a folk and swing album with stride pianist Grant Simpson) and 'Home Sweet Home' (a northern fiddle album with Keitha Clark and Boyd Benjamin).  Weekes has toured twice to perform at the Nanjing Jazz and World Music Festival in Nanjing, China.  She has performed throughout Canada, reveling the connections made in house concerts and small halls.

In 2014 Weekes released her 2nd solo album ‘Frost on Black Fur’, featuring contemporary original folk songs that take the listener from the Peel Watershed in the northern Yukon to the remote village of Shaxi in the Himalayas.  The album was reviewed in Canada's premier folk magazine, Penguin Eggs: “…Weekes’ songs add an exotic allure to notions of life in the North with their evocative imagery of frost, snow, darkness, spring thaw and mountain landscapes.”  (Roger Levesque, Penguin Eggs Magazine)    The 2014 album highlights Weekes' drive to explore Canada's wilderness by dog sled and canoe.  Since its release, Weekes has performed at unique venues such as the Canadian Canoe Museum, the Toronto Canoe Symposium and the Vermont Wilderness Paddlers Gathering.  She has performed for audiences of wilderness enthusiasts and captivated her listeners with her colourful stories from the north.  

In January of 2016 Weekes participated in a musician's winter residency at the Banff Centre for the Arts alongside musicians from around the world.  Weekes deepened her writing practice while collaborating with fellow residents and receiving mentorship from acclaimed songwriter, Stephen Fearing.  

Kate Weekes continues to perform in a variety of musical combinations, ever evolving as a songwriter and pushing her own musical capabilities.  She can be seen playing in a swing combo, fiddle group, at an Irish session or fronting her own band.  With much anticipation and excitement, Weekes is heading to Norway to work as a dog mushing guide this winter.  A long, dark winter with sled dogs is familiar turf for Weekes and bound to inspire a new body of musical work.

“Kate Weekes has the ability to capture the Canadian state of being with deftly placed imagery like a painter covers the canvass in extraordinary colour. Kate can use a few well-placed words to describe the most complex of ideas in the most transparent way. Totally an engaging human being, she is one of the new generations of young artists that have shaken the older generation of songwriters and music fans with clarity of purpose.”
-Mitch Podolak
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