Jeri Katherine Howell is an Americana singer-songwriter and rhythm guitarist from Frankfort, Kentucky who commands each performance with her sweet and soulful voice, thought-provoking lyrics, and joyful presence. "From an early age, Jeri Katherine has shown a remarkable sensibility to express a wide range of emotions in the traditional styles of Americana, Appalachian, and Roots music," states Brian Baker - longtime fan and folk music enthusiast. "For many years, there has been no need to add such words as 'new' or 'up and coming' when describing Jeri Katherine, but more appropriate to simply say that she is one of the finest Americana singer/songwriters in the country."
Jeri Katherine has been writing and performing as a solo artist – and collaborating with Kentucky musicians – for over 12 years. In 2007 she won 2nd Place in the Flat Rock Music Festival Songwriters Contest for the title track of her first album Branch to Branch. In 2011 she was voted Frankfort's Best Musical Performer and received the Folk Arts Apprenticeship Grant from the Kentucky Arts Council to study and perform with master songstress Carla Gover. As she developed artistically, Jeri Katherine began performing with world music band Stirfry Musette and was featured on their 2013 release No String Unturned. That same year, Jeri Katherine released her latest album, Collage, featuring 14 original tracks and several of Kentucky's best players. As Jeri Katherine dove into student life at Centre College, she immersed herself in the campus folk music scene as a lead singer and guitarist in the College’s Kentucky Music Ensemble. 2016 brought two tours with the ensemble: one in the Northeastern U.S. and the other in Yamaguchi, Japan as part of “Kentucky Bluegrass Week.” With her fierce interest in cultural exchange and community engagement upon graduation, Jeri Katherine received a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant grant with the U.S. Department of State and performed and lectured throughout San Carlos, Costa Rica with Nat Colten - her partner in music and life - for the 2017 year. Upon return to Kentucky in 2018, Jeri Katherine was selected to participate in the Performing Artists Directory in recognition of artistic excellence, a program of the Kentucky Arts Council, the state arts agency, which is supported by state tax dollars and federal funding from the National Endowment for the Arts.
Currently, Jeri Katherine is writing songs, performing locally, collaborating, and re-rooting in Kentucky soil.
Collage features several of the Kentucky musicians that have provided friendship, mentorship and/or inspiration to Jeri Katherine over the years: Jeff and Jordon Ellis, Daphne Fields, Carla Gover, Don Rogers, Nat Colten, Jesse Wells, Roddy Puckett, and Brandon Bowlds. Collage was recorded and co-produced by Brandon Bowlds in Lexington, Kentucky. (Purchasable at Poor Richard’s Bookstore in Frankfort, KY and online at CDBaby.com, iTunes, and Amazon.)
Jeri Katherine and Nat Colten had the opportunity to be a part of Hands Healing HeArts, an arts-centered pilot program with the Franklin County Drug Court designed to provide creative methods of self exploration for women struggling with drug addiction. As a result of their songwriting workshop, they wrote a song in collaboration with these wonderful women. They wanted the song to help non-addicts understand the ups and downs of recovery. Thank you, Joanna Hay Productions, for the video debut of the song, "Bent But Not Broken."
Jeri Katherine and her former band, Better Together, recorded her original song "Don't Let Go" at Forest Hill Studios in Taylorsville, Kentucky. Featured musicians include the late, beautiful Daphne Fields (bass), Don Rogers (mandolin), Jeff Ellis (guitar) and Bill May (drums).
- "Digging deep into community in Frankfort and abroad: Get to know Fulbright scholar Jeri Katherine Howell." The State Journal, 8 July 2018. By Hannah Brown.
- "Bluegrass Bios - Jeri Katherine Howell (Franklin County Singer-songwriter)." Lexington Community Radio, 2 Feb 2018. By Chuck Clenney.
- "Faculty, Staff and Alumni Bring Centre to Japan for Kentucky Bluegrass Week." Centre College, 14 Dec 2016. By Elizabeth Trollinger.
- "Jeri Howell '16 Awarded Fulbright Grant to Teach English in Costa Rica." Centre College, 13 June 2016. By Elizabeth Trollinger.
- "Centre's Kentucky Ensemble Tour New England." Centre College, 16 March 2016. By Elizabeth Trollinger.
- "Behind the Scenes at Churchill Downs: Jeri Howell '16 Interns with Backside Learning Center." Centre College, 23 June 2014. By Laurie Pierce.
- "Jeri Howell '16 Sings and Strums Her Way into the Spotlight." Centre College, 30 May 2013. By Elizabeth Trollinger.