Charlottesville, VA, native Kathy Compton studied with renowned jazz trumpeter John D'earth, but her music gravitates toward pop -- combining forward thinking beats and production with the dusky vocals of her jazz heroines and the sensibilities of radio-friendly acts like Sheryl Crow and Sting.
Compton was introduced to music by her father, and grew up listening to his banjo and accordion playing, as well as the local bluegrass station. But in high school, Compton staked her claim as a different kind of outcast, gravitating towards jazz and sexy vocalists like Billie Holiday, Sarah Vaughan, and Ella Fitzgerald.
Compton began to write her own songs and play gigs armed only with her guitar. But it was at musician Ross Hoffman's prompting that she moved to New York City to try her music on the audiences in small clubs and at open mic nights. She played both solo, and with members of Suzanne Vega's band, including bassist Michael Visceglia, keyboardist Stephen Gaboury, guitarist Marc Shulman, and drummer Frank Vilardi.
Upon her return to Virginia, Compton went into the studio to record her debut. With Hoffman on guitar, producer Kevin McNoldy on bass and keyboards, drummer Roderick Coles, backing vocalist Andy Waldeck, and Craig Harmon on Hammond B3, Compton had a complete band. Recovering Humans, released on Frosty Orange Records in 2002, sounds like a fully conceived, though eclectic, first album. With styles varying from American rock à la Sheryl Crow to Suzanne Vega polish, U2 moodiness, and Ani DiFranco and Alanis Morissette introspection, Compton proves that she is a musician to watch. ~ Charles Spano, Rovi