Turning tragedy into an uplifting musical tribute
Rocklin, Calif.- A year ago, Katie Fry lost her childhood home to a wildfire that also claimed hundreds of homes in her rural neighborhood. Amid the devastation and pain, Katie picked up her guitar and channeled that grief into a reflection back onto the joys of childhood and what it meant growing up in Northern California.
The result is a heartfelt homage, as well as a reminder that difficult times give rise to newfound opportunities and optimism. We recently took the opportunity for a casual chat with Katie about music.
Q & A with Katie Fry
Q: When did your musical journey begin and what inspired you to pursue the next level?
A: I started out playing the flute in middle school and continued through high school playing in the marching band. My senior year I became the Drum Majorette, conducting and leading the band in parades and half time shows for the football games.
Q: How has music influenced your life?
A: Music is always with me, during joyful moments like playing at weddings and also at times like providing music for memorial services. I work as a Certified Music Practitioner bringing live one-on-one music to the bedside of hospice and memory care patients. I play a 34 string harp, it’s been a very fulfilling experience. Music can be uplifting or relaxing, it’s amazing to see the impact of therapeutic music in action.
Q: What’s your most memorable concert experience and why?
A: The concert I’ll never forget was the American Legend show I participated in it for the Folsom Americana Festival. It was a Johnny Cash Tribute and I was a guest vocalist in a group called, The Wildwood Roses’ a tribute to The Carter Family Music. The line up of musicians was incredible and I enjoyed the energy that comes with a full band.
Q: Who are your biggest musical influences?
A: I listen to pretty much everything, I love 1950s pop and classic rock, and music from every decade. I’m a radio listener, so I’m always searching for my next favorite song to listen to.
…and how have they influenced you?
A: I think listening to such a variety of music influences my melody choices and chord progressions when I write. Some people hear bits and pieces of Jazz others hear Country in my music. Definitely my recordings pull pop.
Q: What’s your biggest musical motivator?
A: For me, music is my therapy, it’s time to myself and almost a meditative experience when I write. Then when I go out and play shows it’s my way of connecting with others. The people who I meet through music might be my favorite part about being a musician.
Q: Do you have a favorite concert venue?
A: This year I chose to play mostly outdoor venues, to be cautious of COVID. I played at multiple Farmers Markets all around the greater Sacramento area and I loved it. I felt like more of a street performer and I enjoyed interacting with people of all ages. My favorite spot this year I have to say is a place called Ruhstaller Farm in Dixon. It’s a brewery with a beautiful venue right in the middle of the farm, surrounded by all of the hops that they grow to make the beer. There is a beautiful stage with a festival like atmosphere.
Q: What would you like to see improved or added to the local music scene?
A: I think our community does a good job of promoting local musicians. Especially after the covid shutdown, the first thing people wanted to do was go out to eat and experience live music. Small businesses really understand the draw that music can bring to their restaurant or cafe.
Q: Where do you imagine your musical self over the next few years?
A: I plan on writing and recording more music and next spring and summer get out there and play live music once again. My main goal is to keep it fun and casual.