A conversation with Cati (and Aiko)

GW Musket | Erin McGeoy | April 8, 2016

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Many of you know Cati, whether you are aware of it or not. You either personally know her or have stopped to pet her Shiba Inu, Aiko, when you see them walking around campus. She hears the usual things one says when they stop to pet a dog, such as, “How old is he? What kind of dog is this? He looks so much like a fox!” But, how much do you know about his loving owner?

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Cati is a rad person, not just because she has a Shiba Inu who is able to brighten the days of many college students. She is a rock-star on the drums, has played in many venues around DC, can be seen on any warm day driving in her yellow Jeep with the top down, and hails from Bogota, Colombia.

Cati is a music major, so when GW made budget cuts last March (a 5% cut through all departments and a nearly 50% cut for the GW music program), Cati was affected more negatively than the average student. Not many people knew how big of an impact this had on students who weren’t majoring or minoring in music.

The biggest thing for Cati was when they “cut a 20 year old program where all the faculty of the jazz department got together on Friday afternoons to jam. It really helped with [my] jazz playing skills and overcome my stage fright. It was so cool to jam with professionals and hear their input.” Since this program is no longer offered, she rarely sees these professors anymore.

Ironically, her favorite moment at GW came from these budget cuts. The music students who were affected held a 24-hour concert in the park next to the deli. “It was so cool to see the crowd we got from people who were just on their way to get a bagel. I feel like before this event, people didn’t recognize all the talent inside the music department. What we do down in the Phillips basement does matter, even if nobody knows who we are.”

Cati is still playing her music, whether in flash bands (which as she put it is
“speed dating for musicians”) or with other musicians she finds through a Facebook group called DC Musicians. She also has her own Facebook page, where she posts where she will be playing next. She gets many of her gigs through the DC Musicians Facebook page, open mics, and just from knowing the right people.

She is killer at the drums, but she also plays the piano and has played the ukulele since high school. She is currently debating whether she should learn bass or guitar next.

In regards to the future of her music career she “[has] 0 interest in being famous. I want to work for someone who has already made it, and just play in the back and help them with their beats. I also want to see more female drummers out there; I have yet to meet one in DC.”

So next time you see the pup named Aiko being walked by Cati, ask her what’s up and when her next concert is!

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Follow @aiko_the_pup on Instagram!