So who is The Great Kat?
Katherine Thomas was born in Swindon, England at a US Air Force Military Hospital, and then moved to the US when she was 3. Surrounded by the musical masters of classical music like Beethoven & Bach, she began first the classical piano, and then the classical violin at the tender ages of 7 and 9 respectively. At the age of 15, The Great Kat was accepted at New York's prestigious Julliard school and would later on graduate to perform in Mexico, America and Europe, whilst also winning the exclusive Artists International Competition.
I remember seeing The Great Kat donning the cover of many music press magazines in the late 80's and early 90's, and perhaps it was just that I was merely a teen then, that amongst the hair-bands of men dressed up like drag queens and transvestites was a ferocious looking female snarling and holding what appeared to be a violin, or a guitar, and stating quite categorically that she was '...the re-incarnation of Beethoven...', it was enough to have young lad running to a safer woman, like Jet from Gladiators, Janet Jackson or any number of the Baywatch babes! The Great Kat was as famous for her over the top outbursts at journalists, photographers and presenters, as she was her quite breathtaking music, which of course was fast-paced classical, revamped, chewed, spat out and laced with spit from the devil himself.
An example of Ms Kat is there for all to see in her debut album, lovingly entitled, 'Worship Me Or Die' in 1987 on Roadrunner Records, which didn't quite have as much impact as the follow up 'Beethoven On Speed' in 1990. In an industry where men were boasting about sinking females '...with their pink torpedoes...' The Great Kat was a joy see and hear, albeit at a far distance. She was renowned for her outbursts and in a special moment of history, refused to even be in the same room as Kerrang! Journalist Chris Watts because he had not listened to 'Beethoven...', and from behind her hotel door was heard words straight from the vocabulary of a Tourette's Syndrome sufferer, which included suggestion that he was uneducated and overly familiar with his mother.
So what is she doing today?
Well The Great Kat is still spreading the gospel of classical music and has just released her most recent CD entitled 'Wagner's War', and a DVD 'Extreme Guitar Shred'. Check out her fabulous website www.greatkat.com, and also take a gander at the interview I did with her at an extremely safe distance, to see that years may have passed but The Great Kat has by no means mellowed!
A few quotes from The Great Kat:
"...If my breasts flopping out are going to make people listen to my music, then fine. I am a musical genius and if you can't see that then you're an idiot!"
"...Who wants to be depressed with slow, lethargic, inferior blues, when Cyberspeed Classic/Metal is here to rip open your brain and have you soaring into the next millennium..."
"...The Great Kat practises violin and guitar all day, until my fingers are bleeding, my bones are breaking, and I'm on the floor screaming in pain...!"
The Great Kat was a legend back then, and will still remain a legend to me now. All hail THE GREAT KAT!
So who is The Great Kat?