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Bellingham
Tuesday, May 11, 2021

The right note

By Natalie Breymeyer

 

The sound of electric guitars, a ukulele, meows and the occasional noise of an espresso machine filled the Underground Coffeehouse.

Students and concert attendees gathered around the stage in the on-campus coffee shop to listen to the musical stylings of Cat Valley and The Katie Gray, hosted by Associated Students Productions Wednesday, Nov. 16.

Senior Abby Hegge and junior Whitney Flinn make up Cat Valley, the opening act. Their set began with a short song consisting mostly of “meows” while they strummed their electric guitars.

“We have a lot of interest in doing more feminist rock,” Flinn said.

Cat Valley performs in the Underground Coffeehouse Wednesday, Nov. 16. // Photo by Natalie Breymeyer
Cat Valley performs in the Underground Coffeehouse Wednesday, Nov. 16. // Photo by Natalie Breymeyer

Hegge and Flinn wore matching cat-print leotards while performing original songs about consent, sexual pleasure (and lack thereof) and creepy guys at bars.

“Are there any banned words at the Underground?” Hegge said after the two performed a song with a chorus composed almost entirely of expletives.  

There aren’t, in case you were wondering.

The Katie Gray took the stage after Cat Valley. The Katie Gray consists of alumnus Katie Gray, who graduated in 2015 with a music degree.

“I’ve been singing, playing and writing pretty much since I was capable of it,” Gray said.

Gray played both covers and original songs from her new album, “Songs about Stuff.” Her singing was accompanied by ukulele, which she later switched out with guitar.

“It’s almost comedic,” Gray said when describing what her set that night consisted of. “It’s singer-songwriter quirky songs.”

Gray said when she is not performing covers of artists she admires, like P!nk, she is also inspired by her father.

“My dad is a musician, and I feel like I can hear that influence a lot,” Gray said.

Gray also belongs to The Katie Gray Band, made up of bass, guitar, drums and herself. They have performed at venues in downtown Bellingham like The Wild Buffalo and The Shakedown.

The Katie Gray performs in the Underground Coffeehouse Wednesday, Nov. 16. // Photo by Natalie Breymeyer
The Katie Gray performs in the Underground Coffeehouse Wednesday, Nov. 16. // Photo by Natalie Breymeyer

Cat Valley has performed at The Shakedown, as well as Make.Shift and various house shows. The duo also went on tour March 2016 through the Portland area.

Although Cat Valley’s songs consisted exclusively of the electric guitar, both Hegge and Flinn play a plethora of instruments on the side.

Flinn plays the harp and has been playing piano for almost 20 years. She also plays guitar, accordion and banjo, she said.

Hegge has been playing guitar for about 10 years. She also plays bass, mandolin and piano.

The two met when Hegge performed at Flinn’s birthday party a year ago. From there, they became friends and decided to make music together.

Flinn said making music is something they will continue to do for the rest of their lives.

“It’s part of how we express ourselves and also how we are apart of the community,” Flinn said. “It’s a wonderful thing.”

Gray shares a similar sentiment. “I have always said that music is a universal language,” Gray said. “I think that’s really important.”

Sophomore Oceana Dunsire attended the concert with sophomore Xenia Miller.

“I enjoyed [the show] a lot,” Dunsire said.

AS Productions will host more performances winter quarter.

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