R-O-C-K in the U.S.A.: Liza Kate first took up the guitar at 12, but made her musical debut as a drummer in an all-girl pop-punk band in Clearwater, Fla. Until five years ago, she'd played only in rock bands. "The first time I played anything by myself, I was doing a solo acoustic thing with a friend," she recalls. "It was really, really nerve-racking." Even now, there are still some pre-show jitters: "It helps a lot when it's really quiet. I pretend no one's there." That shyness may explain why Liza Kate's shows are so powerful they allow the audience to become silent voyeurs into her own private world. But with a growing coterie of friends and fans, performing is getting easier. "Playing music saved me a lot," she says. "I used to be so uncomfortable with myself. Playing in front of a bunch of people has made me more confident."
On the horizon: There are plans. Big plans. But first Liza Kate has to get through graduation. "My biggest challenge is finding time," she says. "I need to spend the semester concentrating on school. After that, I would really like to do some touring with friends. I really want to do a full-length. And I'm definitely going to put together a band."
Liza Kate performs at 8 p.m. with Josh Small and David Shultz March 3 at Studio 6, above Art6, 6 E. Broad St.