Nervous but Excited? No, Kate is actually calm, cool, and collected. But the musical group she toured with for 8 years was “Nervous but Excited.” The group is currently on indefinite hiatus and Kate is now playing her music around the Ann Arbor area.
Kate’s main instrument is the guitar, but she also plays the ukulele, mandolin, piano, and bass, and she is a vocalist as well. In discussing the “bucket list” idea, Kate says she kind of made her version of one about 10 years ago when she was thinking about what she wanted to do with music. Number One, she wanted to headline The Ark – which she has now done several times. Number Two, she wanted to perform with her childhood idol, singer, song writer, poet and feminist icon, Ani DiFranco. Kate has opened for Ms. DiFranco both at the Michigan Theater here, and at the State Theatre in Kalamazoo. Number Three, she wanted to perform at the Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival, which she has done more than once. So… at the ripe old age of just 37, Kate may be thinking about a new bucket list. She says she feels like she’s entering a kind of transition phase in her life, looking ahead to a new era.
Kate grew up in White Lake, located in the northern suburbs of Detroit. She said if she had musical talent as a kid, she didn’t know it. It was not until Kate was 16 that she took up the guitar. Kate lived in Lansing for 4 or 5 years, earned a degree from MSU in Telecommunications, then moved down to Ann Arbor to be closer to her musician friends. In addition to performing, Kate is a free-lance web and graphic designer. She says “I realized, after graduating from college, that I’m not a nine to fiver.” She’s recently taken up wood-working as a kind of hobby. She’s able to use the shop and tools of a friend for larger projects, and is now in the process of building a desk. Kate’s parents both play pickle ball and Kate and her dad recently were partners in a tournament. Kate has an older sister who lives in Tampa and a younger brother, living in Denver. She describes her family as very close, and amazing. She says “I’m pretty blessed.”
The attraction of pickle ball for Kate is “mainly the people,” but the exercise is a big thing. She says playing the game has been a “transformative experience” for her. She thinks the most difficult part of the game is learning to be patient, staying relaxed, and taking deep breaths.” Kate says, “What I would love to see is that we all evolve and advance together.” Kate believes the ultimate goal for players who really want to improve should be focusing on getting up to the net, and to learn the 3rd shot drop. She says, “unless you learn those things, you will never really improve.” Kate practices the 3rd shot drop “relentlessly.” She notes, though, that our group as a whole is advancing, “so we must be doing something right.” She noted that the drills we have done on Fridays can really be helpful. Kate has teamed up with another of our MLM players, Casey Thompson, to play in tournaments. Kate has been playing the game seriously for just 3 years. She’s also a softball player.
“I think what I’d like to say is that I love how pickle ball has made it possible for me to know hundreds of people, people that I would never have known otherwise. It’s like an extended family.” – Kate Peterson.