Live from the Boom Room is a new video series featuring live performances recorded in the Blip Blap Video HQ bunker in St. Louis, Mo. Learn more about Blip Blap Video at blipblapvideo.com, or follow them on Instagram and YouTube.
This week’s episode features Katarra performing “Finale.”
About this week’s artist:
From serenading ballads at jazz lounges to championing beat sets, Katarra Parson, singer-songwriter, pianist, and producer, has performed in venues locally and across the nation. Bringing a variety of talents and styles to the table, this STL native pulls audiences into her impassioned performances with vocals and keys that blend Soul, R&B, Jazz, Hip-Hop, and Classical influences.
Katarra began performing at a local open mic, where she overcame years of debilitating anxiety and blossomed, making a name for herself as a multifaceted performer and artist. Her soulful runs and revival of the jazz scat style introduced a musical revolution all wrapped up in one woman. From an 18-month Jazz residency with the Kranzberg Arts Foundation (2019), to performing The Black National Anthem at Tishaura Jones’ Mayoral Inauguration (2021), to performances for Cori Bush’s second run for Congress (2022), to opening a sold out concert for four-time Grammy-winning group Boyz II Men (2023), Katarra has become a staple in the live music scene, one stage at a time, representing a creative force of ‘Black Girl Magic.’
What is the song about? What inspired it?
The song, ‘Finale,’ is pure romantic passion. It was me manifesting a love of a lifetime during my love addict days. A fantasy of what life would be like with someone I felt deep love for: that pure agape love. The rush of dopamine released by just one touch, the desire to kiss them multiple times, and how every interaction feels like a grand finale every single time. It captures the magic of infatuation and admiration for a lover.
What led you to creating music in the first place?
I grew up surrounded by and was raised by soul, gospel, and R&B music. It wasn’t before long until I found the piano as a kid and taught myself to play. I became obsessed with creating music. Mainly, I was writing love songs about secret crushes. [laughs] I would be 11 years old, literally bawling my eyes out, writing Whitney Houston and Mariah Carey ballads about boys who had no idea I existed. As I grew older, I began composing more and making beats, writing more in-depth songs about my life experiences—but have always been a hopeless romantic.
What makes your music unique?
My music is unique because it literally is “soul” music. It comes purely from my soul and is how I express various intense emotions. I’m able to sonically express the many highs and lows of human emotion and have found that these sounds not only heal me, but heal all who listen. On the style side, it is an amalgamation of so many genres that have influenced me: A marriage between Soul and R&B, Jazz, Hip-Hop and Classical.
What’s next for you?
Beyond performing at shows nationally, I’m focusing on recording the hundreds of demos and songs I have waiting to be released to the world. I’ve experienced so much in the past several years and feel that these songs are the antidote to a world that really needs love and truth right now.
Who else in STL is inspiring you right now?
There are too many to name! Any artist who is independent, grinding, performing, and promoting themselves on their own are who inspire me. I’ve always been pro-underdog, so I love the many hidden gems in this city. The ones who are crazy brilliant and gifted and putting themselves out there and taking risks. Also, the ones who are bringing national to international attention to St. Louis and what we have to offer as a very musically rich city. Tristano, Tonina, Monkh, Kong, TreG, the Domino Effect, NandoStl, StringzEmb, Mvstermind, We Are Root Mod, the ENTIRE Jazz and Producer scene (Brady Lewis, Antonio Foster, Carlos Brown, Tim aka MadMan, Dhoruba, James Biko, Noewan, Owen Ragland, Madkeyz, Ryan Marquez are some of my favs). Some hidden gems are Che Sanchez, Nic@Nite, Jizoo, Syna So Pro, BBP, and Tense.Era. I could go on!
This season of Live from the Boom Room has been partially funded by a generous grant from the Regional Arts Commission. Help keep Live from the Boom Room an absolutely free service for musical artists by supporting the project with your donation here: https://paypal.me/blipblap