Perhaps best known in the publishing world for founding the all-author garage band, the Rock Bottom Remainders, Kathi Kamen Goldmark is the author of a novel, And My Shoes Keep Walking Back to You, co-author of Write That Book Already!: the Tough Love You Need to Get Published Now (with her husband Sam Barry) and The Great Rock & Roll Joke Book (with Dave Marsh). She has contributed stories and essays to many other books, including Mid-Life Confidential: the Rock Bottom Remainders Tour America with Three Chords and an Attitude; My California: Journeys by Great Writers; Single Woman of a Certain Age; Feed Me!; The Face in the Mirror; He Said What?; Tales from the House Band; and Exit Laughing. Kathi and Sam write the Author Enablers advice column for BookPage, offering information and encouragement to aspiring authors. A 2007 San Francisco Library Laureate, Kathi was the winner of the 2008 Women’s National Book Association Award.
Kathi has also worked in publishing “on the inside,” for nearly every major publisher as a media escort and publicist, and is proud to have a speaking role as herself in Olivia Goldsmith’s novel, The Bestseller. She is director of cultural arts and adult programming at the Oshman Family JCC in Palo Alto, Producer Emeritus of Sedge Thomson’s nationally-distributed radio show West Coast Live, and has served as the author liaison for such high-profile literary events as Book Group Expo, Friends of the San Francisco Public Library’s Laureates Dinner, and Legal Services for Children’s Words, Wine, and Wit event.
As president and janitor of “Don’t Quit Your Day Job” Records, Kathi has written and produced dozens of original songs, one of which was included in Stephen King’s miniseries The Stand. She performs regularly with her country-rock band Los Train Wreck, hosting a monthly jam at a San Francisco nightclub. She started “Don’t Quit Your Day Job” Records in 1995 with the recording of her friend Jessica Mitford’s incomparable version of Maxwell’s Silver Hammer.
The label’s legendary CD release Stranger Than Fiction! includes music performed by Maya Angelou, Norman Mailer, Stephen King, Leonard Maltin, Molly Ivins, Dave Barry, Amy Tan, Robert Reich, and other writers willing to sing their favorite songs for a good cause—the PEN Writers Special Fund. Two spoken word releases feature Amy Tan and Maya Angelou. A children’s CD, Potty Animal, was written by Kathi with Gretchen Schields. These eight funny songs about potty training appeal to a market that will never dry up, and will send her career straight into the toilet.
A former teacher with a Master of Arts degree in Drama and Education, Kathi has worked as a family planning educator (producing The Rock Project, a national radio campaign in which music stars recorded public service announcements urging teenagers to “think about having a child before you make a baby”), media consultant to the government of Mexico, paid professional hippie, retail clerk, and very bad waitress.
She likes to think she is ready for anything.
E-mail Kathi Kamen Goldmark