At 15, Kat Mclevey performed her first original piece as a songwriter. Years later, she came to realize how much energy she’d been putting into her songwriting, allowing herself to identify as a songwriter.

Following the release of her debut full-length album this year, Kat received two Music NL Awards for Evergrown, is shortlisted for the Borealis Music Prize, has played a long list of incredible performances, and was accepted into the Berklee College of Music in Boston.

And this month, readers of The Overcast have voted Kat as the top solo artist in St. John’s. I spoke with her over the phone from her place at Berklee. “Boston is phenomenal. It’s a dream. Honestly, I’m enjoying it all so much.”

But McLevey isn’t studying voice or guitar at Berklee. She’s studying bass. And on top of her course-required ensembles, and backing up other students on their end-of-term recitals, Kat jams with an all-girl Toto cover band.

“We jam every week. And that’s extra-curricular, we’re just doing that for fun.” Despite her school commitments, Kat has still (somehow) managed to submit to this year’s Arts & Letters Awards.

And her creative juices aren’t only feeding her songwriting. She’s spending a lot of time learning about various computer software programs. “Being a songwriter is something that is growing all of the time for me. It isn’t something set in stone. I still identify with being a singer-songwriter, but I know that in my career as a musician I want to go beyond that and be more versatile.”

Lucky for us, Kat will be home in St. John’s this Christmas playing a handful of shows as the singer-songwriter we love oh so much!