Kathie Touin is a musician, songwriter and recording artist whose contemporary and classical music has attracted worldwide airplay.
Originally from Southern California, Kathie began playing the piano at age seven. Beginning with classical music, as a teenager she moved into jazz and rock, playing in several bands throughout high school. She wrote her first song at age 14.
Kathie started playing early, with help from big sister Laurie - and soon showed promise
After graduating, she spent two years at the prestigious Berklee College of Music, Boston, where she studied performance, arranging, music production and synthesis.
Returning to California, Kathie played in a variety of bands and worked further on her songwriting. In the early 90s she took the plunge and went solo, and quickly landed a recording contract with instrumental label Sundown Records.
In 1994 she released her first CD, Soliloquy, a collection of her favourite classical piano pieces that sold out its first run. The album contained an original composition, Silver Song, that received international airplay, including use on a television programme in China.
Kathie went to work for Sundown Records and helped to organise the first re-issue of The Christmas Album by legendary keyboardist Keith Emerson (The Nice; Emerson, Lake & Palmer). Keith had always been a huge influence on Kathie's playing so she was delighted when the two of them became friends. They kept in regular contact until his death in 2016.
When the label folded, Kathie moved to the Pacific Northwest and the beautiful secluded beaches and forest of the Kitsap Pensinsula in Washington State. While there she released an album simply titled Christmas with guitarist Gilbert Yslas.
She then concentrated on writing her first original album, but her life took an unexpected turn when she met her future husband in 2002. After a whirlwind romance and a proposal during a trip to Paris, she packed up her lyrics, scribbled notes and demo tapes and headed across the Atlantic for a new life in London.
She quickly settled in and created a studio, which resulted in the 2005 release of the Butterfly Bones CD. The album is described as "a deeply personal, occasionally silly, sometimes sweet, sometimes edgy" retrospective of the events of the previous few years in her life.
In 2007 Kathie had her first CD, Soliloquy, remastered and released as Soliloquy Deluxe, with new artwork and additional tracks.
Between writing and recording Kathie took part in various musical events in London, including singing with the Southbank Centre's Voicelab choir at the re-opening of the Royal Festival Hall. On one memorable occasion, Kathie performed with the choir, conducted by Marin Alsop, for Her Majesty The Queen.
The covers of Kathie's albums Soliloquy Deluxe and Dark Moons & Nightingales
October 2009 saw the release of Kathie's second collection of original songs, Dark Moons & Nightingales. An album about letting go, finding love, the wonder of the wild and the puzzle of places, it attracted airplay on Radio Caroline, BBC Radio Scotland, BBC Radio nan Gaìdheal, BBC Radio Ulster, Frome FM, Ireland's 8Radio.com, Biggles FM and elsewhere.
Rock n Reel Magazine – which featured a track on its January/February 2010 covermount CD – said: "Passionate, poetic songs underpinned by exquisite piano and rich, full arrangements... the whole album has an elemental quality, romantic in all its ragged beauty."
In April 2010 Kathie and her husband – and the studio – moved to the beautiful Orkney Islands off the northeast coast of Scotland. Since arriving Kathie has performed with local artists Jo Philby, Frank Keenan and Fiona Driver.
Kathie has played at the Orkney Folk Festival three times and in various venues around the islands, from St Magnus Cathedral, Kirkwall to the petite but lovely Gable End Theatre on the island of Hoy. In January of 2013 she performed at Glasgow's famous Celtic Connections Festival along with music students from the University of the Highlands and Islands.
Kathie's studio expanded over the years so in 2014 she opened it to the public and Starling Recording Studios was born.
Kathie has recorded everyone from voice-over artists to storytellers to talented young emerging talent like guitarist Griogair Morrison and singer Nyree Gunn. The studio has also attracted musicians from further afield, with artist Simon Allum aka Ancient Colours coming up from Bedfordshire and a more recent client from Cambridge. There is more information about the studio on this website or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The follow-up album to Dark Moons & Nightingales is well under way. In the meantime, Kathie's music is available to purchase from this site and CD Baby, or as downloads from iTunes, Amazon, CD Baby and many more. You can also stream Kathie's music on Spotify.