“If you want to make something that’s like nothing you’ve made before, then you have to shake yourself up, go beyond what’s comfortable and known and let yourself feel disoriented, overwhelmed, even intimidated. Those moments, when you lose your bearings, when you’re forced to sink or swim, are the moments when you have an opportunity to rise to the occasion, to surprise yourself, to do the things you didn’t know you could do. That’s what making this album was for me, I’m so proud of the process, and I’m so proud of the result.”
The result is ‘We Are The Reckoning’, a striking new collection of 11 original songs from JUNO-nominated singer-songwriter and recently crowned Best Male Vocalist in the popular NOW Magazine Best-Of-Toronto 2014 reader’s poll (readership of ½ million) Peter Katz. After 3 successful national and international tours in support of his 2012 release ‘Still Mind Still’, Peter spent the better part of the past 2 years writing well-over 50 new songs while collaborating on some of them with an impressive list of co-writers in Los Angeles, London, and at home in Toronto (a new approach for Peter who had always typically written alone). He managed the mental intensity of the writing and recording sessions by taking up a robust regimen of running (which also put him in the best shape of his life). “It was the only thing I could do to feel like I had control over something. Every morning in LA I would wake up early and run up the Hollywood Hills. I was the only guy actually running all the way to the top. It was incredibly challenging, but it gave me this little secret confidence to draw on when I needed it.” His hard work paid off when he attracted the attention of co-producers Royal Wood (multiple Juno-Award Nominee) and Bill Lefler (Ingrid Michaelson, Cary Brothers), who signed on to help him turn those songs into Peter’s most sonically-rich album to date.
The 3 of them holed up in studio with Juno-award winning engineer Tim Abraham of The Hive, and, taking turns on different instruments, built up the musical-landscape that would become ‘We Are The Reckoning’. He also attracted an impressive list of guests to join him on the album, including rising Scottish star Rachel Sermanni, legendary lapsteel player Ben Peeler (Fleet Foxes, Jimmy Cliff, Wallflowers) and Felicity Williams (Bahamas) to name a few.
Over the past decade, Peter has seen his albums debut at #1 on the iTunes singer-songwriter charts; he’s shared the stage and studio with the likes of Academy Award Winner Glen Hansard (Once, The Swell Season), Juno Award-Winners The Good Lovelies, Polaris-Prize nominated Melissa McCelland (Whitehorse) and the Legendary Garth Hudson from The Band. He’s toured all over the world, regularly playing to capacity crowds, and has managed to build an impressive fan-base of loyal listeners, selling over 25,000 copies of his discs mostly from the stage, one show at a time. Never content to sit still for long, Peter Katz has his eyes firmly set on the future. “I’m in a different place than I was when I started 10 years ago. I didn’t really know what I was getting myself into and I maybe didn’t always put my focus in the right place. Now I know what this thing is, I know the relentlessness that’s required, I know it’s not a race, and I know that the music has to come first. I feel like I finally did that with this record. I took my time. I shook myself up, threw myself into unfamiliar territory and took some big risks. Now that I’m on the other side of it, I can see why it was the right thing to do, and I’m more excited than ever to share what we made.”
‘We Are The Reckoning’ is slated for release in 2015 through Maple Music/Fontana North with worldwide touring to follow. Many of the tour dates will be full-band, another new step in Peter Katz’s career.
Peter Katz will perform at Brown’s Inlet on Saturday September 21st as part of the Chef’s Table Series. Dinner at 6PM, show at 8PM.