When I finally speak to Loren Kate she’s on the road. The first interview got re-scheduled as the kids were asleep and it gave Loren and her partner a chance to get some miles on the clock with sleeping babies as opposed to screaming ones. Loren Kate has just embarked on a tour that doesn’t really set down until Woodford. When I speak to her she’s heading to Maldon Folk Festival – with her 5-year-old daughter and her 6-month-old son coming along for the ride.
So how does she manage a busy musical career with a family? Truth is it’s tough.
‘It’s a bit of a blur,’ she laughs.
‘I definitely think I am pushing a lot with the kids, a lot of people in this industry see you have children and skim past you, it can eat you alive this industry! I want to work with people who do understand me and I want to build a team around me who see what I do and respect it. I want them to see I have a family and realise that maybe one day they’ll want that too! When you have kids you just don’t have that extra time to be marketing yourself or even to be doing as much writing.
‘My little boy doesn’t like to be put down, so I wrap him around me, at home I have a stand up desk… my eyes are falling off my face, luckily my partner is a performer too, he is in a children’s show: The Amazing Drumming Monkeys.’
Loren and her partner are currently on the road promoting her new EP, ’Til Night Meets the Sun.
A heavily pregnant Loren Kate picked up a Telstra Road to Discovery Win last year and with that she scored $15,000 to use towards her career.
‘I thought I should record something as I won’t be able to for a while. I hand-picked what songs I had and took five for an EP that all have a similar vibe and story that weaves through them.’
When it comes to songwriting, it’s an intense process for Loren, who admits ‘They seem to just vomit out! I don’t have little bits of things hanging around, it all sort of comes out in one piece!
‘I will start strumming something on the guitar – I can all of a sudden be half way through a song and I’ll go wow, I need to deal with this, it’s like therapy!’
Her new single off the EP is When You Leave, telling the story of losing an ex-partner to a rare disease two years ago.
‘I have lost quite a few people in my life, I feel like I tend to write about it and it helps me deal with it, and to see it for what it is – all the songs on the EP have this dark touch on my upbringing – I grew up on the central coast of NSW, I look back now and think I had such a good time but there was all this shit going on that I was unaware of until I was older.’
Loren lives just outside Adelaide now, but Byron played an instrumental part in her musical development. ‘I went to schoolies week in Byron and didn’t come home. I stayed at the Arts Factory for four months, I knew a couple of chords and I busked on the streets. Byron was a different place back then.’
Well, ironically when Loren Kate returns to Byron it will be schoolies week – but this time she won’t be making beds or selling hemp necklaces on the streets. She will be in Mullumbimby at the Mullum Music Festival playing to a festival audience. Her husband (who she met years back busking at the Darwin markets) will also be there with his Amazing Drumming Monkeys!
And if that’s not enough, this busy young mum will also be mentoring Squeak Lemaire, one of the Youth Mentorship winners!
‘For me playing live is the best. I’m not a mum anymore. I’m just lost in the moment.’
Lose yourself with Loren Kate.
Mullum Music Festival – 19–22 November
Program and ticketing information on mullummusicfestival.com.