HER MUSIC CLUB: Why You Should Know A&R Kate Loesch
Her Music Club’s main goal is to elevate women in music and celebrate the strength within our community. Each month we are featuring an industry lady to watch - someone who is paving the way for women in music. For our first month’s feature, we get to know one of our favorite industry women, Kate Loesch.
Kate started off as an intern at Universal Music Group in 2013 and soon made waves at Epic Records where she assisted the head of A&R under LA Reid. Loesch worked with artists such as Future, Kat Dahlia, Yo Gotti & more. In 2018, Loesch is one of the newest additions to Warner Music Group and from what we learned, has big things on the way.
We had the chance to talk to Kate about her inspiration, how she got started in music, and how she views women in the industry. Make sure to check out the video we shot with her below!
Where are you from?
I’m originally from Westchester, NY about 40 minutes north of Manhattan.
How did you first get started in music?
In 2013, I started interning at UMG in brand partnerships.
At what moment did you know you wanted to be in music?
There were a couple of moments. One of them I would have to say is when I was in college, I didn’t really know what I was going to do.
"I sort of thought about going into criminal justice, but Curren$y had come out with a new project..."
I was riding around with my friends listening to Curren$y and I thought, why not make my passion my career? I was always showing people new music and so I dove head first into it.
What song changed your life?
There were two but one of them, I was four years old and it was my first concert. My mom took me to see Jonny Lang and B.B. King. I was front row and they sang ‘Good Morning Little School Girl’ to me. Of course I didn’t really know what that song meant at that age but I was like, “I’m a school girl!” I thought it was the coolest thing ever and I was in love with music from that point on. And then probably ‘Jamming’ by Bob Marley because no matter how mad, sad, depressed or excited I was, it always soothed me.
What do you do on a day to day basis?
I’m heavily focused on Kevin Gates’ album right now. Just trying to get a lot of beats and doing sessions all the time. We have really good top-liners & producers come in and we put them in our studios, have them cook up, and hopefully try to place a first or second single.
What artist are you excited about this year?
I’m really excited for Kodie Shane. I think this is going to be her breakout year. I love her. Jorja Smith also - I think she’s incredible. I’m really excited about Brent Faiyaz as well. I think they all have quality music and something really different and special to bring to the table.
Who inspired you to work in music?
My mom inspired me to work in music. She was a Grateful Dead stan. She went to over 200 Grateful Dead shows. She took me to see The Allman Brothers, Aerosmith, B.B. King, Buddy Guy…going to see a legend in concert was more important than turning in my paper for school on time. She always reminded me to live and music was just medicine to us.
Who do you look up to in the industry?
I would not be here without Chris Anokute. He’s just an A&R legend, an incredible person, and really my family. He’s helped me every step of the way. He believe in me when no one else did. He allowed me to be the little rebellious, spunky girl I was and praised me for it.
I also remember meeting Ashley Calhoun at Epic and thinking who is this bad ass girl who is like young and taking names? I want to be like her! Next thing you know a year down the line, she’s one of my best friends and inspires and motivates me.
What is your biggest motivation in your career?
Probably my family. Just taking care of my mom and dad, first and foremost. I grew up watching them work days, nights, and holidays in the food industry. It’s sort of similar to the music industry demand wise. All they wanted was to provide for me and show me the world.I think my biggest motivation is to make sure that they’re ok and then make history afterwards.
What does being a woman in the industry mean to you and how has it affected your life?
Being a woman in the industry means really setting the pace. For so long, in any industry, women are sort of put second. We're thought of second & asked our opinions second. In music when I look around the room, I look at the women in the room. Who's nodding their head? Who's feeling the beat?
"Women have this intuition and this sense of camaraderie that most people don’t have and when you build us up, we’re a weapon you don’t want to mess with."
I think being a woman in this industry is not only an honor, but it’s a duty to bring other women together and make really dope shit happen.
Do you think there should be more women in the industry?
Definitely. I think there should be more women in every industry but especially music. We are the tastemakers and we’re really the ones setting the tone & the pace. You look at everything going on across the board, but especially in entertainment. This is our time to rise and to build each other up.
Do you ever feel pressure being a woman or being your age in this industry?
I’ve always felt pressure being my age. I’ve always been the young one - people used to call me Baby Kate.
"I didn’t really realize the pressures of being a woman until you walk into the studio or you walk to the big corporate table and they ask you to move one seat down for a man."
And you’re like wait a second…so 1. I guess chivalry is dead and 2. I have the same qualifications as him!
As a woman, I think we have to work ten times harder and I think most of us I do. I think in our minds we need to know that we’re the bosses and conduct ourselves and each other as that instead of looking at everything as a competition with other women. When that happens - it’s a takeover.
What’s next for you in music?
VERY BIG PLANS!