About Katy Tessman, the Singer-Songwriter
Minnesota musician, Katy Tessman is an optimistic and approachable singer-songwriter with a voice full of the wisdom she’s gained through cancer survival, heartbreak, and motherhood. Her powerful vocals and rhythmic approach to guitar (or mandolin) express a straight-from-the-heart songwriting style that moves passionately over diverse emotional and musical terrain.
Katy Tessman and the Turnbuckles is made up of her son Louis Tessman Stanoch on electric guitar, bandmate from the 90s Tom Leier on bass, and reunited high school friend Kelley Lima on drums. Blending Americana and Folk-Rock, live performances are high energy and engaging with "heart-on-sleeve" big love.
Before becoming a mom in 2003 (and again in 2006) Katy Tessman released two albums including Joe’s Elevator’s Up & Down and her solo debut Fall. For nearly a decade, Katy performed throughout Minnesota and tours brought her to stages from Michigan to Washington. During her 20-year pause from the stage, Katy raised two sons, fought a victorious battle with breast cancer, authored an award-winning children’s book entitled Our Mama is a Beautiful Garden, and was named CHANGEMAKER by the Minnesota Women’s Press.
The pandemic sparked a reawakening in Katy's songwriting, igniting a fresh surge of energy to start performing again. This newfound inspiration led to her re-debut in 2022, marking a significant musical resurgence that led to selling out listening-room shows, releasing a handful of singles, and publishing the accompanying lyric picture book Hero Now Crowned which Melodic Noise calls “a passionate tribute.” October 2023, Katy releases her eagerly awaited album Fly, marking her return to songwriting and performing after a twenty-year hiatus.
In addition to curating showcases throughout the Twin Cities, Katy is involved in many outreach events; from organizing a fundraiser concert for the Angel Foundation, to speaking at the MN Young Survivor Coalition gathering and being a guest on the closed circuit television program at Children's Hospital, Katy aims to spread hope and joy, courage and strength.
Katy’s live shows are flexible to what the event / venue requires; Katy can perform solo, as a Mom + Son duo, Turnbuckle Trio, or with a full band Katy Tessman and the Turnbuckles. Various instrumentation is used, from an acoustic folk sound with mandolin and fretless bass to a pop-rock-americana band with electric guitar and full drumset.