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Katia Cardenas

Born and raised in the Pacific Northwest, Katia grew up in a musical family. Her mother, Janis Kelly, is an accomplished vocalist, who sang with Maurice White and the Emotions, and opened for Rufus & Chaka Khan, Tower of Power and Carole King. Her father, Mark Cardenas, is a professional keyboardist, and a Platinum and Gold recording artist, whose credits include Prince, Morris Day and the Time, Janet Jackson, and The Song Catchers (featuring Charles Neville). From an early age, she was raised on a strict diet of funk, soul, and r&b. She received a Waldorf education, which taught her a deep appreciation for the arts, and a passion for singing. Being so surrounded by music, a musician's life was second nature to her. In junior high, she moved to Sacramento, California, where she sang in select choirs, jazz and show choirs, and developed a passion for musical theater.

At 16, she attended the Visual and Performing Arts Charter School, where she became deeply involved in music, theatre, and dance. At 17, she joined her mother's band, The Groove Ambassadors, as a lead and back up vocalist. In addition to gigging regularly clubs throughout Sacramento, The Groove Ambassadors gained critical acclaim, performing at such distinguished events as Gov. Schwarzenegger's Inauguration, and the City-wide Day of Service honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. She also sang regularly at the Christ Unity Church, as a guest soloist and a member of the house band.

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Primary Instrument

Voice / vocals



Willing to teach

Intermediate to advanced

Ella Fitzgerald
voice / vocals
Anita O'Day
voice / vocals
Eva Cassidy
voice / vocals




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