Kate Marie Nash (born 6 July 1987 in Harrow, London) is an English singer-songwriter and actress who rose to prominence in the UK with the sleeper hit "Foundations" (2007). Her debut album, Made of Bricks, peaked at #1 in the UK and #36 in the US. Nash subsequently won the award for Best British Female Artist at the 2008 Brit Awards. Nash's second studio album, My Best Friend Is You, was released in 2010 and reached the top 10 in both the UK and Germany. The album's lead single, "Do-Wah-Doo", peaked at number 15 in the UK, becoming her fourth UK Top 40 single. Nash self-released her third studio album, Girl Talk, on 4 March 2013. The album failed to match the commercial success of her previous albums, though it charted within the top 100 in the UK, Ireland, Germany and Austria. Her fourth studio album, Yesterday Was Forever, was self-released on 30 March 2018, funded by her fans via a Kickstarter campaign. Aside from music, Nash has acted in various films and TV shows. Most notably, she starred in the 2012 film Greetings from Tim Buckley, as well as the 2013 films Powder Room and Syrup. Since 2017, Nash has starred in the Netflix series GLOW as Rhonda "Britannica" Richardson.
Nash performing in June 2013
|Birth name||Kate Marie Nash|
|Born||6 July 1987|
Harrow, London, England
Born to an English father, Steve, and an Irish mother, Marie (née Walsh), who is a nurse in a hospice, Nash underwent cardiac radiofrequency ablation in 2005 in order to eliminate tachycardia. The surgery subsequently inspired the song "Death Proof," featured on her third studio album, Girl Talk.
A graduate of the BRIT School, Nash originally wanted to study acting after graduating. However, she was rejected from several drama colleges and universities, one of them being Bristol Old Vic Theatre School.
2005–06: "Caroline's a Victim"Edit
Nash started her career in 2005. She started recording after falling down the stairs and breaking her foot, leaving her homebound. After several gigs, she uploaded her music to MySpace, found a manager and then producers for her music. Her debut was a single, "Caroline's a Victim"/"Birds", produced and recorded in Iceland by Valgeir Sigurðsson and released through Moshi Moshi Records in February 2007. The release was limited to 2,000 copies and available only on 7" vinyl. Due to demand, another 1,000 copies were made and these also sold out. CD-promo copies were produced for distribution to the press and DJs and are occasionally available for sale. The single is featured on the CD Moshi Moshi Singles Compilation. A video for the song, directed by Kinga Burza, was released and received airplay on MTV2. The single's B-side, "Birds", later featured on her début album Made of Bricks. Both tracks have also been released as MP3 downloads.
2007–09: Made of BricksEdit
In April 2007, Nash was signed to the Polydor offshoot Fiction Records. Her second single "Foundations", which she co-wrote with producer Richard D, was released by Fiction on 18 June 2007 and reached number two in the official UK Singles Chart. Following this success, Fiction announced plans to bring forward the release of Nash's début album Made of Bricks to 6 August 2007. The album, also produced by Paul Epworth, included many of the tracks she had been performing during her two nationwide tours.
Made of Bricks was leaked to filesharing networks a few days before its official commercial release and subsequently received mixed reviews; The Independent described it as being in "pole position for worst album of the year," while a BBC review called it "an album of surprising verve and variety." It proved, however, to be successful and reached number 1 in the UK album charts.
During mid-2007, Nash performed at numerous festivals, including the Wireless Festival, Bestival, Electric Gardens, Glastonbury, Latitude, Reading and Leeds, Oxegen and T in the Park. She made her official TV performance début on Later... with Jools Holland.
Throughout late 2007 and early 2008, Nash released three more singles from Made of Bricks. "Mouthwash" and "Pumpkin Soup" both made the Top 40 in the UK Singles Chart. Although her fifth single "Merry Happy" didn't chart well in the UK, the song enjoyed some success in other countries, including the United States and Canada. The album topped out at number 36 on the United States Billboard 200 chart on 26 January 2008. In 2010, Made of Bricks was certified Gold in Germany.
2009–11: My Best Friend Is YouEdit
In late March 2009, Nash revealed that she was in the early stages of recording her second album. She was introduced by her boyfriend Ryan Jarman to Bernard Butler, the producer of Duffy's debut album Rockferry and a former guitarist for Suede. He began working with Nash, working in the studio with her over a period of months and producing her second album. In August 2009, the pair worked on eight songs at RAK Studios for the album.
On 14 January 2010, Nash revealed that the second album was complete. On 11 February, a song from the album, "I Just Love You More", was available to download free from her official website.
On 11 March 2010, Nash announced her nine-date North American tour that began on 26 April with the all-female travelling festival Lilith Fair to promote her new album My Best Friend Is You. Her opening act was Supercute!, a psychedelic pop teen girl trio from New York City. She was also scheduled to take part in the 2010 V Festival.
The first single from the album was called "Do-Wah-Doo", and was released on 12 April 2010. The album was released on 20 April. The sound was described as completely different from her debut album and having a "girl group" sound, taking influence from Motown stars such as Diana Ross and The Supremes. Nash explained that maturity is the reason for the change in musical style. The album has been described as having a wide variety of sounds from Wall of Sound, Motown to No wave and Riot grrrl. As of 11 May, the album was number 6 in Germany and number 16 in Europe. As of 27 May, the album was at number 62 in the United States. In August Nash toured the album to Australia, performing at the Corner Hotel, Melbourne, on 4 August, and the Metro Theatre, Sydney, on 5 August.
On 24 February 2011, her concerts in Circo Voador, Rio de Janeiro and in HSBC Hall, São Paulo were the first contact with her Brazilian fans. It was so intense that Nash has said on stage "Here (Rio de Janeiro) was the happiest place I have ever been. You are beautiful, incredible" and promised a return soon. On her Twitter, she finally declared "Rio, you're just too good to be true. I must be dreaming. Thanks for giving me the best concert of my life".
2012–2015: Girl TalkEdit
On 2 May 2012, Nash announced the "Faster Pussycat Run Run Tour", in which she played 12 shows across the UK throughout June 2012. Nash contributed the song "My Chinchilla" to the Narduwar and The Evaporators album Busy Doing Nothing. On 15 June 2012, Nash released a music video for a new song, "Under-Estimate The Girl", which was available for free on her website. Nash released her EP Death Proof in November 2012; the first single from it was the title track, a song inspired by the eponymous Quentin Tarantino film. She had a small role in Greetings from Tim Buckley, a film about Tim and Jeff Buckley, which premiered at the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival. Nash released the first single from her third album Girl Talk (released 4 March 2013) titled "3AM" which was released on 18 February. It was debuted on Radio 6Music by Steve Lamacq. Nash played a headline show as part of the NME Awards Shows 2013, at the Sebright Arms in London on 13 February.
2016–present: Agenda EP and Yesterday Was ForeverEdit
In April 2017, Nash launched a Kickstarter to finance a fourth studio album. On 21 April 2017, Nash released an EP, Agenda.
Nash's fourth studio album, Yesterday Was Forever, was released on 30 March 2018. The record was preceded by the singles "Drink About You" and "Life in Pink" and received generally positive reviews from critics. To promote the album, Nash toured the United States and Canada and is due to perform at several festivals including Reading and Leeds Festival.
Other music career activitiesEdit
Nash co-wrote a song titled "Almost Isn't (Good Enough) Is It?" with Trachtenburg Family Slideshow Players member Jason Trachtenburg for his 2009 album File Under Pop Male Vocal. She featured on the Lethal Bizzle track 'Look What You Done' from his album 'Back in Bizzness'.
As a side project in late 2009, she joined a punk band called The Receeders where she plays bass, with Jon Jackson and Brett Alaimo. On 17 December 2009, the band played a live gig on the stage of 93 Feet East. Nash likes to refer to the band as her "side project" as she says for 2010 she would be mainly focusing on her solo material. Her music was used as part of an exhibition at the British Library tracing the history of Cockney English. The exhibition, which ran from 12 November 2010 to 11 April 2011, uses Nash's music to demonstrate today's younger urban mode of Cockney English.
On 23 March 2010 Nash, a founding director of the Featured Artists Coalition, a musicians' lobbying group, launched the Kate Nash's Rock n Roll for Girls After-School Music Club as a platform to inspire teenage girls to get into songwriting and making their own music, due to the shortage of female artists in the UK- something that shocked and motivated Nash the previous year. On her UK tour of 2011, Nash visited schools such as City of Portsmouth Girls' School, Woodchurch High School, Avonbourne High School and John Madejski Academy.
In April 2011, Nash announced the launch of her own record label, 'Have 10p Records', saying she had some extra money and wanted to give something back to the arts. Nash has worked with the teen indie pop band, SUPERCUTE!, helping to produce their first album. Nash also appeared in the band's music video for their first single, "Dumb-Dumbs". However, Supercute! split up before the album could be released. Nash has also worked with indie act Brigitte Aphrodite (who has toured with Kate on many occasions) on Nash's label releasing Aphrodite's début single 'I Dream Myself Awake' in 2011 with Aphrodite being the first artist signed to the label. Kate has also collaborated with Brisbane-based band The Thin Kids and released an EP called 'The Thin Kids Theme/Warrior in Woolworths' in April 2012 on her label.
In 2018, Kate Nash: Underestimate The Girl, a documentary film by Amy Goldstein, premiered at the Los Angeles Film Festival (worldwide) and IDFA (international). The film also screened at the Pérez Art Museum in Miami. The documentary follows Kate as she writes her fourth album and learns how to survive as a punk renegade, TV wrestling queen, and DIY leader of an all-female band. The film features Tom Biller, Jarrad Kritzstein, Kate Craig, Alicia Warrington, Linda Buratto, Emma Hughes, John Kennedy, Marie Nash, Brett Lomas, Frederik Thaae, Jeff Ellis, and Stella.
On 2 September 2009, Nash began using her MySpace and Facebook pages to help spread the word of a young girl called Tilly who lost her hands due to meningococcal disease. She used an auction on eBay to help donate money to the five-year-old girl's parents so that she can afford a pair of prosthetic hands.
During the 2011 England riots, Nash volunteered to collect donations for those made homeless by riots in Tottenham, setting up her own public donation stand and delivering donations to Tottenham Leisure Centre in her car.
Nash has supported the Russian feminist band Pussy Riot during their trial, by encouraging her fans to make posters and raise awareness of their situation and she, amongst other musicians, has signed a letter to the Russian president Vladimir Putin, demanding the release of the band. Nash has also spoken on BBC Radio 5 and BBC World Service against the imprisonment of the band and about the value of freedom of speech in music.
In June 2017, Nash endorsed Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn in the 2017 UK general election. In a video posted to Corbyn's official Twitter account she said: "I'm voting for Labour because I really care about the NHS" She added" "I care about workers' rights and education, humanitarian rights and the planet. I love the manifesto and I love Jeremy's promises and pledges." She continued: "To me it's about looking at something and seeing if that is gonna take care of the most vulnerable people in the country, then it gives everybody the best shot."
Music industry criticismEdit
In an interview with artistxite, Nash criticised the music industry's early failure to adapt to the digital market and nurture new talent:
There is no nurturing of talent. No one wants artists to grow and develop. Everyone is afraid of being fired and they didn't move with the digital age. The music industry had the power to move with the digital age, but they didn't do it and it was the biggest mistake they ever made. It fucked them really bad. And they waste so much money! It's ridiculous, they don't use it wisely. .... There are a lot of uncreative people in a creative industry. Most of them want to keep their jobs and don‘t know how to be innovative.
In a series of Tweets on 29 August 2016, Kate Nash criticised a music store for selling vinyl records featuring female artists in a “females of all description” category. She went on to state her views citing there would “never be a ‘males of all description’ section because the rest of the shop and all other music genres are considered male".
Relationships and sexualityEdit
Regarding her sexuality, Nash has explained:
I would never say ‘I’m straight, I’m bisexual, I’m gay.’ I feel like I will fall in love with a human being for who they are. I’m not afraid to say I’ve been attracted to a woman before and I’ve kissed girls before and been in love with them before. I’ve never really had a girlfriend or anything and I would never say I’m anything, really. I don’t have an identity in that way.
She has railed against the "anaemic" model figure, noting in an interview with the Daily Telegraph that she herself is a "curvy size 12". In a 2010 op-ed for The Independent, Nash wrote, "I spend so much time ... trying to get the world to judge me on anything other than my breasts and body shape." ... I am liberated by many things ... a world where I can be free sexually, I can wear revealing clothing if I want to, I can buy condoms, go on the pill, get the coil, talk about sex, write about it if I wish."
Nash started dating Ryan Jarman, front man of the English indie rock band The Cribs, after meeting while taping an episode of the music television programme Later... with Jools Holland in May 2007. On 19 March 2012, Jarman announced that the pair had broken up, in part owing to his ongoing struggle with anorexia and other psychological issues.
Nash is a natural redhead, but as of 2013 she had dyed black and blond hair. She originally dyed her hair black for her film role as Carol in Greetings from Tim Buckley, and has maintained this look to promote Girl Talk because it makes her "feel a bit stronger." In April 2014, she dyed her hair pink for her performance at Coachella Festival. As of 2016, she has returned to her natural red hair for the role of Rhonda ‘Britannica’ Richardson in the Netflix series, GLOW and for her new album, Yesterday was Forever, which was released in 2018. She wears punk jewelry, such as safety pin and razor blade earrings.
Nash's biggest musical influences include grunge band Hole, citing their 1994 record Live Through This as her favourite album; and riot grrrl group Bikini Kill, crediting front woman Kathleen Hanna as her idol. Nash is also a fan of fellow English artists Arctic Monkeys, having performed a cover of their song Fluorescent Adolescent in 2007. Nash also appears alongside the band in the documentary Evidently... John Cooper Clarke where she discusses the influence of John Cooper Clarke's poetry upon her lyrics, singling out the song Foundations in particular. She is also known to retain her British accent when she sings and makes no attempt to sing in an American accent.
|2012||Greetings from Tim Buckley||Carol|
|2014||The Distortion of Sound||Herself|
|2015||The Devil You Know||Bridget Bishop||Pilot|
|2017–present||GLOW||Rhonda "Britannica" Richardson|
|2018||Drop the Mic||Herself|
|2019||Horrible Histories: The Movie – Rotten Romans||Boudicca|
Awards and nominationsEdit
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- My Best Friend is You Allmusic Review
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- "Do you like candy and hula-hoops? « Rebel Grrrl Italiana". Lachristagreco.com. Archived from the original on 19 August 2011. Retrieved 21 June 2011.
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- Tom. "Ten Films to watch at LA Film Festival 2018! – EnClave.LA". Retrieved 2019-03-10.
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- "Video: Buffy The Vampire Slayer – Once More With Feeling Was Performed Live Last Night". BleedingCool.com. 1 November 2012. Retrieved 1 November 2012.
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- "Jarvis Cocker, Johnny Marr, Alex Kapranos and Kate Nash call on Putin to release Pussy Riot". NME. 2 August 2012.
- Connick, Tom (2 June 2017). "Kate Nash on why she's voting Jeremy Corbyn: "I love the manifesto"". NME. Retrieved 14 June 2017.
- "Interview with Kate Nash: Patti Smith looks like she had a fucking epic life!" (Interview). artistxite. 25 September 2013. Retrieved 25 September 2013.
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