“My intentions are to relate to others and to share my stories. I want to make people move and feel and dance.”
Card Catalog labels their sound as classic American, ranging from blues to alt-country to rock, and I would have to agree, with maybe a hint of “rockabilly” added in the mix. The Colorado trio consists of Jenn Tatro (vocals/lyrics/guitar), Dalton Clayton (lead guitar) and Rob Spears (bass/backup vocals). Tatro’s strong voice packs a Pat Benatar punch, ridden with subtle rich tones and emotionally charged melodies reminiscent of a classic Patsy Cline. Accompanied by Clayton’s aggressive guitar licks and Spears’ strong dance-oriented bass lines, the trio create a distinctive sound of their own, with an energy resemblant of JD McPherson. In short, Card Catalog makes you want to dance as they showcase their originals, along with covers from Johnny Cash, Queens of the Stone Age, and Prince.
The band name Card Catalog came from Tatro, who believes it reflects their music: “I want to be able to do a broad spectrum of things with our music, and not get stuck in one sound. I feel like the possibilities are endless when searching through an actual card catalog."
With this group, it’s apparent that friendship and collaborative creation are at the nucleus of their sound. Clayton and Tatro had been a duo for several years prior to the addition of Spears, who they met when he jumped onstage uninvited during one of the duo’s open mic sets a few months ago. After Clayton and Tatro let Spears sing a Prince cover, he was officially in. Reflecting on the creative process and accompanying sense of accomplishment of the band now that their momentum as a trio has begun, Clayton said, “those moments only happen because we support each other and help drive each other”.
When I first sat down to do a little research on Card Catalog, I was surprised at how little I could find of their actual music. “We have been hesitant to put too much recorded material onto social media sites until the quality is where we'd like it,” explained Spears. But after getting a sneak peek at two songs from their upcoming EP, I was impressed and set out to do my best to describe this local band’s unique flare. As a songwriter myself, I couldn’t help but pay close attention to Tatro’s lyrics, and the emotion that translates through her vocal melodies in the tracks on the band’s upcoming EP, Can I Be.
“The story behind Can I Be comes from my desire to have someone in my life that lets me be exactly who I am. At the time I wrote that song, I had just come out of a relationship that didn't go the way I was expecting. I just kept coming back to the feeling of wanting to be the gas for someone's fire, and to have something where we lifted each other up.” Tatro said.
In talking with Card Catalog about their recent entrance into the local scene, Clayton added, “People around here really love and support live music. I feel lucky I get to play for these folks.” As a native Coloradoan, I could not agree more. So there you have it- great music and great people with something to say.