Susan Kean Cattaneo

Class of 
1998
Associate Professor
617-747-8125
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Susan Cattaneo is one of Boston’s most respected singer-songwriters. A powerful singer and sophisticated writer, she combines vivid storytelling with a modern songwriter’s spin. Respectful of tradition but not bound by it, she blends rock, folk, and blues with a healthy dose of country. Call it New England Americana with a twang.

As a writer, Cattaneo is a sought-after collaborator, as evidenced by her cowriting on recent albums by Dennis Brennan, Jenna Lotti, Jenee Halstead, Steve Mayone, and more. Her latest album, The Hammer and The Heart, reflects her love for collaboration. A double album with an electric side and an acoustic side, the record features 40 local and national artists including Mark Erelli, the Bottle Rockets, Bill Kirchen, Jennifer Kimball, Dennis Brennan, and Jenee Halstead, just to name a few.

  • Career Highlights
    • Opened for and shared the stage with Bill Kirchen, David Wilcox, the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Amy Grant, and the Pousette-Dart Band
    • Recordings include The Hammer and the Heart (2017), Haunted Heart (2015), Little Big Sky (2013), Heaven to Heartache (2011), and Brave and Wild (2009)
    • Published in American Songwriter, Guitar World, and Acoustic Guitar Magazine
    • Presented master songwriting clinics at Folk Alliance International, Northeast Regional Folk Alliance, Southwest Regional Folk Alliance, and Southeast Regional Folk Alliance music conferences
    • No. 1 on the Billboard Heatseekers Chart
  • Awards
    • Emerging artist at Falcon Ridge Folk Festival
    • Kerrville’s New Folk Contest finalist
    • Philadelphia Songwriters Project finalist
    • Wildflower Festival Songwriters Contest finalist
    • International Acoustic Music Awards finalist
    • Independent Music Awards finalist
    • 5 Unsigned Only Song Contest finalist
    • USA Songwriting Competition finalist
    • Mountain Stage New Song Contest finalist
    • Mid-Atlantic Song Contest Directors Choice winner
  • Education
    • B.A., Pomona College, English literature
    • B.M., Berklee College of Music, songwriting

In Their Own Words

"My job is to provide a nurturing and inspiring environment, a creative place where students feel free to express their musical ideas. Within this construct, my role as professor is to introduce concrete methods and tools that songwriters can use to refine their craft."

"As a touring and performing singer-songwriter, producer, and collaborator, I am able to provide my students with real-life examples and experiences to help them navigate life after Berklee."