Playing the piano from when she was eight years old, Kate Nash grew up listening to her parents' collection of folk records before discovering punk rock in her teens. Initially music was just a hobby and she was determined to pursue an acting career, but following a number of negative responses from drama colleges she secured a place as a theatre student at the BRIT School of Performing Arts and Technology in Croydon. A rejection letter from the Old Vic Theatre in Bristol proved to be highly significant because it is reported that after receiving it she ran down her home stairs, fell and broke her ankle, and as something to occupy her time while incapacitated her parents bought her an electric guitar. Teaching herself to play she also started writing songs and having created her own page on MySpace posted some tracks and started performing a few low-key gigs. Spotted and signed by the independent record company Moshi Moshi she teamed-up with Icelandic producer Valgeir Sigurðsson (Björk, Bonnie 'Prince' Billy etc.) to record her double a-side limited edition vinyl only debut 'Caroline's A Victim'/'Birds' in 2007. Later that year the big breakthrough came after she signed a contract with Fiction Records (a subsidiary of Polydor) and released the single 'Foundations' which entered the UK charts at No 2.
A couple of months later her debut Made Of Bricks topped the album charts and despite a few negative reviews it went platinum and reached the top 40 in the USA and several European countries. Touring in promotion of the record Nash played a number of festivals including Glastonbury, while the subsequent hit singles 'Mouthwash' and 'Pumpkin Soup' helped establish her as a new artist to watch. Making her TV debut she appeared on the BBC's Later... with Jools Holland where she first met her boyfriend Ryan Jarman the singer and guitarist with the British indie band The Cribs (although they would split up in 2012). Former Suede guitarist Bernard Butler who had produced tracks on Duffy's hugely successful debut album Rockferry came on board for Nash's second record and the resulting My Best Friend Is You was released in April 2010 with the lead single 'Do-Wah-Doo' debuting at No 12 in the UK. While not as successful as it's predecessor it still reached a highly respectable No 8 and gained Nash excellent reviews from the critics. At the end of the previous year Nash had formed the side project punk band The Receders, singing and playing bass with guitarists Brett Alaimo and Jon Jackson who would both feature on her new album. During 2011 and 2012 Nash toured extensively including playing Brazil for the first time and an exhausting trek throughout Britain on her Faster Pussycat Run Run Tour.
Surprisingly she was dropped by Fiction Records and she set up own Have 10p Records to release both her own and other artists' songs, the first fruits being her third album Girl Talk (2013) on which, finding herself free of corporate control she was able to indulge her lifelong love of punk, Courtney Love's Hole, Bikini Kill and the whole Riot Grrrl canon. This raw D.I.Y. record with echo's of the spirit of anarchic punk of 1977, was funded by fan donations via PledgeMusic and although distributed through Fontana Records it only reached the lower reaches of the charts.
Incredibly busy Nash involved herself with numerous projects and has collaborated with Sam Duckworth of Get Cape, Wear Cape, Fly, Jason Trachtenburg, Londoner Brigitte Aphrodite and the Australian band The Thin Kids. She co-wrote the song 'I Am Me' with Will Smith's daughter Willow, donated her song 'My Chinchilla' to Canadian band The Evaporators and has produced American all-girl indie band SUPERCUTE! Additionally she has been able to return to her first love of acting with roles in Greetings From Tim Buckley (2012), Syrup (2013) and alongside Sheridan Smith and Jaime Winstone (actress daughter of Ray Winstone) in the acclaimed British comedy Powder Room (2013).
Far from being a self-obsessed pop star Nash has involved herself in several charitable and social causes and due to her own experience in being dropped by a record company, is an outspoken critic of the traditional music business and the way new musicians are treated. Over just three albums to date she has established herself as a hugely talented artist whose music defies being pigeonholed, her debut Made Of Bricks was very much a contemporary pop record complete with the obligatory sampling and spoke/sung songs that invited comparisons with Lily Allen, My Best Friend Is You was a more mature highly produced jazzy soul influenced record while Girl Talk found her wearing her punkish teenage influences proudly on her sleeve. Nash's evolution has been remarkable and while superficially the records could have been by three completely different artists the common thread running through all of her songs are her deeply personal lyrics. Often observational but usually written from an outsiders position, her songs speak of rejection, longing, frustration and sometimes anger, all of which mark her out as a major talent.
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