By Navid Dayman
“Special” to The Dryersonian
It’s the cat’s meow -— literally.
A Rye prof has released a 45-minute CD featuring the melodic mewling of her cat, Miss Kitty Fantastico, called: Show Me Your Kitties!
Catherine Lady, a loneliology instructor, revealed in an exclusive Dryersonian interview that this is a project she’s had on her mind for a long time.
“Sometimes at night, the only one I have to talk to is Miss Kitty,” says Lady. “To entertain me, she would start to meow and just wouldn’t stop.”
It was during these late-night yowl sessions that Lady first noticed the uncanny similarity between Fantastico and the vocal stylings of Shirley Bassey, best known for singing the theme songs to several James Bond movies.
She was struck by a rendition that Fantastico performed of Diamonds Are Forever.
“Miss Kitty is actually very melodic,” says Lady. “She can meow all the old standards. I found myself tapping along to her songs.”
Wanting to show off her cat’s unique ability, Lady started making recordings of Fantastico to share with her friend.
“I just couldn’t believe it was a cat making those sounds,” says Bernice Higginbottoms, Lady’s friend who heard the original recordings. “I just knew that Cat had something special.”
Higginbottoms introduced Lady to a fellow feline enthusiast who also happened to be a music producer. DJ Scratch and Sniff loved the sound of Fantastico belting out “My Way.”
“If that little kitty could actually enunciate words, I would swear that it was Sinatra himself singing,” says Sniff, who has produced for superstar animal acts like the Jingle Cats.
Always on the look-out for hot new talent, Sniff immediately brought Fantastico into the studio to lay down vocals for what would become the 11-song masterpiece. Fantastico meows her way through classics like “Summer Wind” and takes on modern hits like “Fergalicious.”
“I really think this is going to revolutionize music,” says Sniff. “People love cats. Just hearing them in the back alley in the middle of the night isn’t enough. The demand is there for people wanting to listen to cats whenever they want.”
His experience working with the Jingle Cats has taught him that there is a built-in market for cat recordings. Sniff sees real market potential in Fantastico’s art.
David Bowie is already a fan, mentioning Fantastico’s CD on his website.
“I am continually astounded by the genius of the Canadian music scene,” wrote Bowie on his blog. “I thought the Arcade Fire were great, but Miss Kitty Fantastico sets a new standard for avant-garde music.”
The Thin White Duke has already been in contact with Lady about a collaboration with Fantastico.
Pitchfork Media is also a fan, giving Show Me Your Kitties! an 8.5 rating.
But not everyone is impressed with the recording. “Are you joking me?” Asked first-year journalism student Harper Lee. “There is no way you could ever pay me enough to listen to 45 minutes of a cat meowing. What idiot came up with this idea?”
Lady, who has quit her job in order to promote the CD, hopes that Show Me Your Kitties! takes off.
“I would love to be able to do this full-time. Miss Kitty is an amazing, unique talent. I just want to be able to share her gift with the world.”