Kate is joined by Sam Zucchini (drums) and James Gascoyne (bass) in her new configuration. She still performs solo, as well.

Recorded Interview with Kate by Vivian Nesbitt on The Art of the Song

Listen to an interview with Kate about her songwriting, her unique guitar style, and how to ask for what you want in a hardware store! The Art of the Song by Vivian Nesbitt (Photo by JJ Tiziou)


2021 top 20 album--BALLAD OF A BAD GIRL

Hey all!

It's been a  busy year so far, despite the, you know what. Been writing new songs like crazy, doing a few concerts here and there, virtual and in person, and I'm hoping to add more gigs in the near future. If you (or a friend with a large space) wants to host me in their home in a house concert, please let me know. If you've never done that before, I can help with that.

Wanted  also to tell you that the results of the Folk DJs Album of the Year. Ballad of a Bad Girl was the #16 most played album in the country for the entire year of 2021. NOT BAD for having been out of the biz for 15 years. I am super proud of it, and super excited to let you know that I'll be recording a new album within the year. Stay tuned for more.


August 2021

Whew! Haven't posted in a while! So happy to announce that Ballad of a Bad Girl charted at #6 in May and #5 in June on the Folk DJ charts. And it continues to receive very respectable airplay (in the top 20) ever since. This is very exciting!

Also, the reviews of Ballad of a Bad Girl are rolling in. Here's a recent one from Marilyn Rea Beyer:

In Kate McDonnell's songs you will find characters and witness scenes you'd have missed, or maybe just caught out of the corner of your eye. McDonnell zooms in to make you see and feel things you didn't even know were there - all with exceedingly fine guitar work and a mossy, alluring voice. I just love this record. Marilyn Rea Beyer, host - WFMT's The Midnight Special (Chicago)


You can still order Ballad of a Bad Girl singles or full album in the "Recordings/Store" page or hit "Order" below.


New Release for 2021! Ballad of a Bad Girl

Kate's 5th album offers more of the same deft songwriting and musicianship as her previous recordings. She is joined by well-known musicians Tony Levin and Jerry Marotta, and shares songwriting credits with Anne Lindley on most of the songs. Listeners are also treated to a couple of surprise cover tunes. You can order an old-school CD and digital downloads here!

a little about kate


Kate McDonnell, singer-songwriter, plays her guitar upside down and backward and sings with her whole being. She has performed solo at the Newport Folk Festival, on the Mountain Stage radio show, on WXPN’s World Café, and at the Kennedy Center.  Her award-winning songwriting has been singled out for praise  by the Village Voice, Sing Out!, the Boston Globe and Dirty Linen. Kate has two CDs on Waterbug Records, and one each on Appleseed Recordings and Brambus Records. Kate took a break in 2006 to earn her master’s degree at Smith College in child therapy and worked as a school therapist for children in special education programs. But since the muse never stops haunting the artist, Kate decided to go back into the studio to record her fifth CD, Ballad of a Bad Girl which was released in early 2021. Kate teams up again with her songwriting partner Anne Lindley to present a fresh batch of soulful, fierce, and engaging new songs.

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