Katie Pearlman

2021 Receiver of Claire Bartels Award in Music Education at Aaron Copland School of Music

Annual scholarship granted to ACSM students showing greatest promise at the end of freshman year.



New Jersey native, Katie Pearlman, began playing drums at age 10, and it wasn’t long before she was playing in a band and recording on her first album. At 16, Katie moved into an apartment with her Mom and that's when her focus moved to guitar and songwriting, since drumming was not the most neighborly thing to do.

At age 18, Katie enrolled at William Paterson University and was required to play percussion in the orchestra for two semesters. She then began to explore hand drumming and percussion. This venture led to a turning point in Katie’s life. She was actively recruited by a band not far from her home in northern New Jersey called Vibe Theory which became a stepping stone to the band that followed, One-Eyed Jack. It was in this band, that Katie was introduced to improvisational music or jam band music. It was during this time that she started to sing in a live performance setting as a background vocalist and occasionally singing lead on a song or two.  This can be heard on the One-Eyed Jack album, "Sunlight Blue Madness".  During her three years with the band, she played with rock legends Mickey Hart (Grateful Dead), Merl Saunders, Buddy Cage, and more. 

In 2004, Katie returned to playing drum kit and started singing more.  Her first recorded lead vocal is on the Moodras album, "Had No Choice".  In 2006, she started focusing on songwriting again and in 2008, after a seasoned career as a sidewoman, Katie released her first solo album, Dreaming Again.  The album received rave reviews from industry professionals all over the U.S. and aired on radio stations internationally, scoring in the top ten in the CMJ charts.

Since then, Katie released her second album, "We Make This", and took her music on the road, performing over 85 shows a year across the US - from New York City to the mountains of Park City, UT.  Everyone responded that her sophomore release was a step up in her songwriting and if you ask Katie, that's exactly what she aimed to do. 

In January 2012, Katie released her third solo album, Girls Like Us, a concept album of songs about women. The stories came from the book Note to Self, 30 Women 30 Short Stories, by Andrea Buchanan.   

Katie enjoys collaborating with other singer/songwriters and musicians. She has recorded drums, vocals, and guitar with many singer/songwriters in the Northeast area.  Katie also teaches private drum lessons on Long Island and drums for dance classes at Adelphi University. 

Katie's Discography:

Alison's Disease, 1994
One Eyed Jack ‘Sunlight Blue Madness’, 2001
Moodras ‘Had No Choice’, 2005
Moodras ‘What You Don’t Know’, 2007
Katie Pearlman ‘Dreaming Again’, 2008 
Katie Pearlman 'We Make This', 2009
Bruce Benson Tsur Israel "The Rock Service" 2009
Rupert Wates 'Joe's Cafe' 2010
Varied Artists, 'Kinks Unkovered' 2010 
Ronnie Penque, 'Only Road Home' 2010
Katie Pearlman 'Girls Like Us' 2012
Katie Pearlman "Nothing Better" 2013
Katie Pearlman "Take Me Out Tonight" 2013
Delights of Nothing 2014
Katie Pearlman "The Girl She Used To Be" 2014
Rorie Kelly "Rising Rising Rising" 2016
Katie Pearlman "You Were Meant to Be" 2016
Sullyman the Third " Supergroup Solo Satire - EP"
Katie Pearlman 'You Don't Miss Me" 2019
Ronnie Penque, "FAMILY BUSINESS" 2019
Sean Virag "Written in Your Scars" 2020