By LaRhonda Boone
Unless you are an American Idol winner or a close second, not too many people will remember your name, and even that isn’t always a guarantee. So what then, are we to make of the young Kat Edmonson who in 2002 at 19 years old made it through to Hollywood on American Idol but left soon after, and yet emerged some 7 years later as a critically acclaimed vocally svelte jazz songstress who purrs standards long reminiscent of years before her time?
Kat Edmonson once told by AI judge Randy Jackson that he personally gave her a “no” vote because he just didn’t see where she could fit in. There was no commercialized box in which to squeeze, no marketable path to follow and yet she has somehow creatively and thankfully forged her own. And we are indeed, the better for it.
With a truly authentic sound that exudes an elegant simplicity, Edmonson released her debut album, Take to the Sky in 2009 which made it to the top 20 of Billboard Jazz charts. With two more releases since then (one started from a Kickstarter campaign), she has honed her songwriting skills and continues to delight audiences around the world while touring and performing at international jazz festivals. Akin to Billie Holiday with the delicacy of her voice and the carefree style of Doris Day, Edmonson adds her own whimsical yet alluring sway making her a true and exciting talent to watch.
Give a listen to “Lucky” at Austin City Limits: