The Scottish Music Awards has proved itself to be a launching pad for some of the country’s breakthrough artists during its 22-year history.
And one of this year’s nominees hopes that will prove to be the case for her, too – even if she’ll be watching the show in her pyjamas.
Jazz and soul singer kitti is up for the best breakthrough award, but due to the pandemic the 24-year-old Glaswegian – along with the other nominees – won’t be able to attend the show in person and will instead tune in from home.
She may be small but that voice is POWERFUL. @hiitskitti is making her mark as one to watch, nominated this year for Best Female Breakthrough Award sponsored by @NotionMagazine #ScottishMusicAwards 💥 🙌 pic.twitter.com/wQnszzaDPL
— Nordoff Robbins Music Therapy (@NordoffRobbins1) November 19, 2020
“I’ll be watching the show in my jammies,” smiled kitti, whose real name is Katie Doyle. “I’m in a state of shock to be nominated and it makes me feel things are finally falling into place after eight years of working at it. Even being put up gives me a lot of self-confidence that I can actually do this.
“When you look back on those who have previously won the breakthrough award – Lewis Capaldi, Tom Walker, Joesef – it’s almost a guarantee that something is going to blow up.”
She won best vocalist at the Scottish Jazz Awards last month and says her love of the genre is down to her family: “I come from a musical background – my auntie is a music teacher and my dad plays anything with strings, he’s an amazing mandolin and guitar player.
“My family is half-Italian and my nonna was the biggest swing fan, so I grew up dancing to Louis Prima, Ella Fitzgerald and all the jazz classics, and that developed into a love of soul music.
“All those Sundays sitting around as a family, playing guitar and singing, had an influence and I was never in any doubt I would become a musician.”
Make sure you join us Sat 28 Nov from 7pm via https://t.co/BgFxpspUXn for a night of celebrating the biggest names in Scottish music and raising money for our life-changing music therapy. 🤩 🙌 pic.twitter.com/UzwAeRCQhh
— Nordoff Robbins Music Therapy (@NordoffRobbins1) November 21, 2020
Saturday’s awards, sponsored by Specsavers, will be hosted by DJ and TV presenter Edith Bowman at SWG3 in Glasgow and will feature exclusive performances from not only kitti, but stars such as Amy Macdonald, Dougie MacLean, Gun, Luke La Volpe, Stephanie Cheape, Texas and Wet Wet Wet.
As before, the evening will raise funds for music therapy charity Nordoff Robbins, which provides a lifeline for vulnerable people. It is estimated around 75% of the charity’s fundraising income this year will have been lost due to the pandemic.
“The work the charity does is simply amazing,” kitti continued. “Music can do so much good – it brings people together in the darkest of times. If music didn’t exist, I wouldn’t be sitting here right now. Music has been my saviour in life because I have mental health problems. Music has saved me.”
The singer hopes next year will allow her to build on the exposure of the awards shows – and she’s also looking forward to playing live again.
“I feel I’ve blossomed over the past few months and I’ve really tried to take some positives from the experience we’ve all had,” she added.
“I started a small studio space in my loft and all these new songs came out, so I want to record and release them. But playing live is my release, it’s what makes me feel like a human, so I hope to get out on tour and play at festivals.
“Playing a live show in Glasgow would be the icing on the cake – I used to play every week in Glasgow, so I really miss that. People took the live music scene we had before for granted, but when this all passes live music will be amazing – it’ll just be like party-land.”
Specsavers Scottish Music Awards, Saturday, 7pm.
Watch online at nordoff-robbins.org.uk/smas2020 or on Nordoff Robbins’ Facebook and YouTube channels
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