Kate Stewart was born and raised in Maida Vale in West London. She grew up in an artistic family: her father an entertainer, her mother a dancer, and a brother who is a globally recognized and respected music producer and songwriter. It’s no surprise she followed in their footsteps. Kate grew up doing musical theater and went to stage school in Chiswick, which was where she discovered her passion for the stage. The ultimate discovery was that as well as realizing the magnitude of her vocalist capabilities and strength, she was deeply in love with singing and moved forward with working as a recording artist.

Growing up she loved the timeless female icons; Whitney Houston, Beyoncé, Mariah Carey. They heavily inspired her earlier music and were the catalysts for her later love for music.

Hate You” gives a hypnotic and steady release of emotions, taking us through the journey from the end of a relationship to finding empowerment within ourselves. It is the musical alignment to that feeling of being “calm and collected” when reaching a place of truth and conviction, elated realization, and self-love. Kate Stewart gives the gift of those classic, soothing vocals intertwined with a flavor that feels like it’s made for today’s music explorers and lovers. Kate Stewart is the vocalist we have all been waiting for. Her 2022 debut single serves as the first part to an entire collection of music catharsis and ignites that intricate flame inside you when the music hits just right.

“I wanted to put a song out that a lot of people can relate to when you are in a relationship with someone and slowly start to realize that you don’t like this person at all and how they’ve made you into someone you don’t even like during the course of the relationship. ” – Kate Stewart


Can you tell us a little bit about you and where you’re from? Where did your fascination with music, and more specifically R&B and alt-pop influence, come from?

I’m a born and bred West London girl. I grew up in a very musical family. My dad is an impressionist and comedian, he also happens to have the most incredible voice. He does a lot of work on stage, in plays and musicals. My mum was a dancer, and now goes on tour with big artists doing their VIP hospitality and my brother is an unbelievable producer and songwriter. I went to a stage school from the age of 11, so I have always been in that world. My love for R&B started when I discovered Christina Aguilera. I was always too nervous to sing in front of anyone, so I used to shut my bedroom door and play her music really loud and sing along to it. I honestly think Christina taught me how to sing and riff. 

Who did you listen to growing up?

Christina Aguilera, Whitney Houston, Mariah Carey, J Lo, Beyoncé, Destiny’s Child, all the SANGERS!

How would you best describe your sound, your style?  How important do you think it is to find that piece of yourself in your music and sound that sets you apart from everyone else and why?

I would describe my sound to be bad bitch R&B. My old music was always R&B, but it was a lot softer and calmer. This new music has a lot more edge to it, it’s a little bit more aggressive in the melodies and the production, I’m also exploring different ranges of my voice on this project. I think it’s extremely important to try different things, I always want to make sure that the music sounds like me, but I don’t think it’s essential to stick to one very specific genre, I like switching it up.

Tell us a little bit about this new EP and track, “Hate You”, how did it come about, and what’s the inspiration behind it?

Hate you came about when I was in New York working in the studio with Swagg R’Celious. Every song I’ve ever released I’ve either written on my own, or with co-writers, I think it’s really important for me to always be involved in the writing process, however Swagg was playing me some music that he had been making recently and ‘Hate You’ was one of them, and no one was using it, so I asked if I could have a go and recording it, and thank god I did it justice because it slowly became mine and my managers favourite song and I was able to release it. All the other songs on the EP, I have written with some incredible co-writers, it’s a really exciting project, it’s got a track on there for every mood. 

The production on the new track is amazing and says big things about the EP if it follows this new track’s energy, very much stays true to a creatively minimalistic vibe that is your signature; a raw, soulful sound. How do you prepare when your writing a new album, what kind of influences and inspirations do you surround yourself with and how do you navigate where the writing and music takes you to make one cohesive album, especially in today’s atmosphere of dropping singles and a move away from whole EP’s of full lengths?

Thank you! This project definitely follows the same energy as “Hate You”. In a lot of my other music I have tried to really show off my voice and my skills, but this EP is a lot cooler and less in your face. I actually don’t think it’s necessary to always be showing off what I can do in every song. I never really plan to write a project, because I feel like that’s a lot of pressure, I get into the swing of things and just start writing loads, and then start picking my favourite tracks, that’s how this EP got done, there was never any intention for a full EP, it just kind of happened. I’m always surrounded by so much incredible content, somehow me and my friends have very dramatic lives and for me that’s great when I’m writing. 

How has being an independent artist changed your vision or how you see the industry and would you encourage more artists to take the leap into that territory?

Being an independent artist is incredible. It’s very rare that an artist these days can have full creative control of what they’re doing. I was signed to a major label a few years ago, and it definitely didn’t work for me. I am a massive control freak, especially when it comes to my work, and not being able to have a say was really really hard. I would encourage every new artist to stay independent for as long as possible, it’s so important to find your sound and your style before handing it over to anyone else to mess around with. It took me a really long time to find mine, and I think if I was independent I would’ve been able to explore a lot more freely. I’m very happy now that I get to express my vision, my way. 

What was it like going through the last two years in London during COVID?

The first few months were really really hard, I had absolutely no motivation, no inspiration, and everything felt really scary. But as soon as we were able to go out a little bit more and live a little bit more normal, I actually started to enjoy the freedom. There was no pressure, because everyone was going through the same thing, and I actually had a very fun year. I had a lot of laughs with my friends, and the time off work was quite nice. When I started to get my inspiration back, I actually wrote a few tracks from the EP during that time, I think because I hadn’t written for so long, I just had so much to talk about, and the creativity was pouring out of me. 

What would you say one of your biggest challenges in life has been and one of your biggest successes and why?

I think my biggest challenge was fighting over creative freedom. I don’t like to be controlled or being told what to do. I have always had quite a clear vision of what I wanted to do, and the artist that I wanted to be. At one point I was stripped away from that. It was a really hard time, because I felt very controlled, and that is my biggest anxiety. One of my biggest successes would probably be recently when something clicked in my brain and I finally found a sound that feels totally authentic and genuine to me. It was a long time coming, and even though it’s not out into the world yet, finding my sound, for me, felt like a massive achievement. 

What are you inspired by?  Who would you say is your favorite artist and your favorite musician dead or alive?

I’m inspired by my friends. A lot of the music I write is about them, or some of the things that they’ve been through. As I said before, for some reason our lives are very chaotic and very dramatic, and there is always so much content, whether it be a phrase or a story, I’ve always got something to write about. My favourite artist in the whole world is Whitney Houston. Personally I think she has the best voice that I have ever heard. She is so classy with her choices, and the music she made was just on another level. Nothing will ever compare to her power ballads. 

What’s one thing you can’t live without and why?

Honestly, my phone. I’m on it 24/7. I write all my lyrics on my phone, I’m always on Instagram, and I’m always on the phone, speaking or texting with my team or my friends or my mum. I couldn’t live without it 

What do you think of the state of music these days and the new artists coming out?

I think there is some incredible music coming out at the moment. And the majority of the amazing stuff is R&B, which is sick to see, because I think it’s a genre that in recent years, hasn’t been given enough love. It bodes very well for me that the world is loving it right now, because I’m about to drop a project with predominantly that genre. 

Who would your dream collaborator be?

I have so many, producer wise, I would love to work with Pharrell, James Blake, Labrinth, Max Martin, Mark Ronson, Dr Dre, the list goes on! And artist wise, I’m obsessed with Doja Cat, SZA, I would love to do an R&B girl link up, like a modern day Brandy and Monica “The Boy Is Mine”. 

Can you talk to us about some of the themes that run through the EP?

That isn’t necessarily a theme that runs throughout the EP, the songs are all very cohesive, but I’ve also tried to switch it up, so there are definitely a lot of different moods. One thing that most of the songs have in common is the concepts. I’m not really talking about love in any of them, a lot of them are just talking about life and being an independent woman and staying on top of your game. 

Do you plan to release any videos in conjunction with the new EP?  Can you tell us anything about them or who you plan to work with on them?

I am releasing a video for “Hate You”. It was directed by an incredible director called Jack Bowden, and I have Betsy Johnson in creative direction. It was incredible to work with both of them, it was so amazing to see my vision come to life, and I’ll definitely be working with them on my other visuals later on this year. 

Obviously, in this day and age, being an artist has, for better or worse, become about more than just the music, it’s about the visual representation, fashion and artistic aesthetic, especially when reaching new fans.  We love the look you have for this album, what’s that process like creatively, finding a visual interpretation of what you created musically for an album? 

That was something that took me a really long time to figure out. Growing up and even now I play around with a lot of different looks, one day I’ll be in a tracksuit with no makeup, the other totally glammed up, and I love them both the same. I’ve always massively been into fashion and as an artist I think it’s really important to present yourself in a way that you want people to see you, it’s something I feel really passionate about, and with the help of my stylist Betsy Johnson, with this video especially we’ve come up with quite an iconic look, and I hope to keep that vision for the rest of my visuals and live performances and everything in between moving forward. 

Who are some designers and brands you’re fucking with at the moment?

I’m loving what Prada is doing at the moment. I think recently their stuff has gone to new levels of amazing, it’s so classy and clean. I was very here for the Balenciaga/Gucci collab and Alexandre Vauthier just did an incredible show for spring 22, some amazing suits and jackets, which is my new favourite look for this year. 

What’s it like when you perform live, take us through your ritual before the show.

I love performing live, it’s my absolute favourite part of my job. I really think if I could never perform live again I would pick another profession, nothing compares the adrenalin and rush it gives me. Before a show, I really like to be on my own, I hate people fussing over me, and there being loads of people in the room. I like silence and space and lots of mint tea! 

What’s the best gig you’ve ever played?

I recently did a show in London called Brasshouse. Two good friends of mine, George Davies and Louis Savage have started it recently. They get different artists to come and perform their songs with an incredible 8 piece brass band. I was completely blown away by these musicians and the arrangements they made of my songs. It was honestly an honour to work with such incredible players, the songs sounded amazing. We did the show at The Electric Cinema in Portobello, and it was such a special night. It was filmed, and will be out later this month. I’m very excited for people to hear it. 

You’ve been around for a while, but your new stuff is fire and you continue to blow up, with coverage from all over.  Have you noticed any changes in your life since the changing of your name years ago and since?

Thank you! I think the main change for me has just been my writing process. Now, because I have found a sound that really works for me, going into sessions and writing is a lot easier, I only work with a handful of people, and those are people who really get what I’m trying to do, so now going into the studio, always feels like such an exciting time, because majority of the time I come out the a song that I really love. 

Working with the likes of Swagg R’Celious, Jeff “Gitty” Gitelman and Ronny FLIP Colson, those are some big names that have crushed it with some huge artists.  What’s it like to work with so many badass people on this EP who have either won a Grammy or been nominated?  

It’s amazing! I have worked with a lot of people in my life, so to be able to work with these incredible producers on such a special, debut project feels like a blessing. I’m really happy that they see the vision, and write me as an artist enough to work with me and want to make music with me, that’s an incredible feeling.

How do you think being in London vs. anywhere else has shaped your aesthetic and creative vision/drive?  How has that environment molded you?  

I think London is a really creative place as a whole. There’s never a dull moment. I’m not sure it massively influences my music or my style, but I definitely never get bored here, there’s always something to inspire you. Even though I love LA, and I love New York, London will always have my heart 

What’s your spirit animal and why?

A cat. I’ve always thought that, because I’m very independent, very tactile, and I’m cautious about people, sometimes it takes me a minute to warm up, but once I trust you, I’m extremely loyal and will always stick by you. I actually once got my palm read in LA, and the lady told me I was a cat in my past life, so now I really believe it. 

What’s Spring/Summer 2022 have up next for you after this release?

I am releasing 3 more singles from this EP, and then the project will be released late September of this year. Hopefully I can start doing live shows, I would love to go on tour and support someone, and then eventually do a ‘You Had To Be There’ tour of my own. 

If you love this music artist then show them some love, this is just a glimpse of the amazing stuff they create musically – head over to their links below to check out more from this badass music artist and support their creativity and your daily inspiration by following them!

Check out more of Kate Stewart and their music here:  INSTAGRAM / SOUNDCLOUD / YOUTUBE

Images by Daniel Mutton

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