Heath, who’s served in more local bands than you probably knew existed, including Redd Tape, Mushman and the Vile Blue Shades, splits her time between New York City and Salt Lake City, working with Sibyl Buck, Valerie Gefner, and Jen Turner on the East Coast. Here in Utah, Heath focuses her attention on the spectacular electronic trio Muscle Hawk, along with No Blood to Spare, Under the God, and Twin Lull. She also often accompanies Bronwen Beecher on the Salt Lake City violinist’s various eclectic projects. Many people recognize Heath for longstanding solo project, Kid Madusa, for which she plans to release several EPs, or an album, later this year. Just hearing about her schedule is exhausting, Heath can’t imagine slowing down.
“This is what I do. I keep myself busy,” she says. “It is very important to me to be so diverse because I feel that my skill as a musician is developed and expanded tremendously this way.”
A Utah native, Heath was raised as a member of the LDS Church, though her experience as a lesbian shamed for her “lifestyle” eventually drove her to a different, more accepting community. Though she credits Mormon hymns with nurturing her love of music, Heath now looks to another community for inspiration.
At the 2000 Utah Pride Festival, “I had just come out and had a very messy experience with my family. I just happened upon the festival and I was extremely inspired and moved,” she says. “This last year I performed my Kid Madusa music there. A lot of my songs have to do with, not necessarily being gay, but knowing the reality of feeling separate from the majority or the whole. To be able to go there and perform is such an honor for me and I feel as though I’ve been given the opportunity to voice a personal anthem.”
Muscle Hawk seems to be the most active of all Heath’s groups. “It is very professional, and I feel that although the sound is unique and a bit advanced for many listeners, the dance pulse and energy is widely accessible and excitable. I am wanting to be as active as possible. We have a long list of upcoming performances,” she says. “And I’m going to England in March for a music festival called Block Party. Aphex Twin is going to perform, one of my favorite and most influential artists ever. Josh [from Muscle Hawk] and I were talking about, just today, doing a two-week tour there.”
Heath, who toured the UK as Kid Medusa last year, also plans to perform several West Coast shows in 2009. Some recordings are in the works, too. Expect Muscle Hawk’s debut EP, The Speed of Dark, within the next few months.
Ultimately, Heath’s hard-working energy seems to be funneling into her own solo material. Along with the help of some local computer wizards, she will one day be able to tenaciously perform her work solo, including all the layered parts usually performed by other musicians—and she’ll do so until the final curtain call.
“I will forever devote myself to music. I will always be an active musician. That is where I am now, that is how I survive, that is where I will be a year from now, and forever on—in this physical realm, or another.”
Kid Madusa, "Battery Acid"n