Cathy Richardson

Written by Big Smile Staff

Posted Nov 27, 2011, by Jonny Havoc! and Big Smile Magazine Official Writer Page.


Featured Artists: Cathy Richardson; Genre: Rock;

Hey Cathy, when did you start becoming a musician/artist?
I've been singing as long as I can remember. There was a lot of music in the house growing up.

Where are you from?
I grew up in a town called Burr Ridge, IL which is a suburb of Chicago.

How did you meet the other band members?
I met Zack Smith from the Macrodots when I was in San Francisco doing a show called “Love, Janis” where I played Janis Joplin. Zack and I wrote all the songs and produced the record and we have had some different line-ups for the live show but one constant has been Jude Gold. When I decided to move to San Francisco, I prayed to the Goddess of Rock to send me the guitar god of the Bay Area and a few days later Jude contacted me on MySpace. I think that may have been the only awesome thing to ever happen because of MySpace. haha

What kind of music most influences the band?
Rock, power pop, Brit rock, classic rock. I think we are borrowing heavily from the great music we grew up worshiping but giving it a modern edge.

What music could you not breathe without?
I would have to say my own music; it's really my driving motivation in life.

What the most embarrassing song you like right now?
I'm not really embarrassed by this but the only answer I can come up with is that I have a three month old daughter and we have been listening to a lot of Elmo lately. (from Sesame Street)

What category would you place your music?
It depends on the project but I consider myself a Rock Artist. My solo work explores Psychedelic Rock, Folk, Americana, Country & Blues. Macrodots, I would call modern classic rock and Jefferson Starship is psychedelic and classic rock with roots in folk.

What other bands where you guys in before Jefferson Starship & your other band The Macrodots?
Well, Jefferson Starship is Paul Kantner's band and is an offshoot of Jefferson Airplane. The guys the current Jefferson Starship come from a lot of famous bands. David Freiberg was in Quicksilver Messenger Service and Jefferson Airplane, the original line-up of Jefferson Starship. Donny Baldwin, the drummer, has played with many great artists including Van Morrison, Elvin Bishop, Eddie Money, Jefferson Starship and Jerry Garcia. He also played on the Macrodots record and plays gigs with us when we can make it work. Slick Aguilar (guitarist) played with David Crosby and KC and the Sunshine Band and Chris Smith, the keyboard player, played with the Supremes for many years. From the Macrodots, Zack Smith was the guitarist in Scandal. Jude played in JGB after Jerry died so Donny knew him from that although that was just a coincidence. I was singing with Big Brother and the Holding Co. at the time and doing Cathy Richardson Band on the side. Anne Harris, our fiddle player, played in my band for years and also now plays with Otis Taylor, who Zack, coincidentally, played with a long time ago. Our Chicago drummer Steven Gillis has played with a million bands but most famously, Filter. Greg Panciera, our bass player, is actually a guitarist and he knew Jude from teaching at Musicians Institute in LA. He moved here to start a recording studio and production business and he had let us rehearse in his space. He was so cool that we asked him if he wanted to play bass with us and he said yes!

If you could meet yourself as a 10 year old, what would you say to her?
What a great question! I would say, no matter what, don't worry, don't freak out because everything is going to turn out cool. Your dreams are going to come true, maybe not exactly like you thought they would but in ways that will go beyond what you can imagine. Never give up.

Anything you would like to say to anyone reading this interview?
Thanks for reading my interview and thanks for your support! If you want to hear more of my music, I have several solo albums and the Macrodots debut record on iTunes and on my online store I have a Facebook page ( and my websites are and

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