For this artist, songwriting and performing has always been about communicating raw emotion; for the audience to feel something meaningful through the music. Songwriter/pianist/vocalist Karen Novy describes her songs as “intimate and personal” and the listener will find them relatable to their own experiences. Audience members often remark how her music has resonated with them in a personal way.
At the age of five, she began playing piano. At the age of six, she composed her first piece, which she entitled “Clouds.” Her father taught Karen to play piano, and she recalls her father as “larger than life . . . very charismatic.” He passed away when Karen was eleven years old, a loss that had a deep impact upon her. At seventeen, she began writing songs to heal and discovered the transformative power of music to convey her emotional experiences.
Karen studied classical piano but she enjoyed pop music, listening mostly to singer/songwriters. In college, at Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University, she pursued her degree in music education. There, she studied jazz piano with Kenny Barron.
After receiving her bachelor's degree in music education, she recognized that she also wanted to perform and to tour, and headed to New Orleans.
After spending some time in New Orleans, Karen returned to the northeast. There she met her husband, bassist Tom Spagnardi. Together they lived in the West Village of New York City. She put a band together for NY shows and began touring as a solo artist from Massachusetts through North Carolina, playing bookstores and the coffeehouse circuit.
In NYC, she recorded her first full-length album entitled "Living True". Several years later, Karen began co-writing with film composer Andrew Hollander and together they recorded an ep of songs called “halfway there” to showcase their collaboration. One of their songs appeared in the Independent film, Wrestling with Alligators.
Karen is also a member of the band mollybond, based in Raleigh NC, and she loves the special connection they have - four distinct songwriters who each sing lead on their own songs. The voices of mollybond create beautifully layered harmonies.
Karen has finished working on her first solo project in ten years. The album Always is a collection of songs that she wrote and recorded to inspire us to “live the life you love and to do what you dream.”