Happy Summer everyone! I say that with crinkly sun burnt cheeks - I fell asleep on an overcast beach... what can you do haha Okey dokey definitely time for an update. For those of you who don't know I'm getting married this year which has meant I haven't had much time to push my original stuff because prime-festival-time is completely taken up with wedding prep and then the actual event. Even so I do have three gigs coming up that I am super looking forward to, I have two booked for RHS Rosemoor (one is Friday 5th July 6pm and the other is 11am at the flower show) and the other is at Lapstock which avid readers will remember I had a fab time in the rain at several years ago and wore glitter on my face. So there's plenty to practice for!
I'm happy to say I've got some other weddings and garden parties coming up that I've been booked to play at which is just lovely so I'm really looking forward to travelling around playing them but now I shall tell you a good old fashioned love story... (not mine)... replacing all names with Buffy The Vampire Slayer Character's names just because...
I launched Dust Off last November at St Anne's Chapel and this is where I first met Buffy. She was so energetic and enthusiastic and I am so perpetually shy so she mostly just scared me haha but Buffy wanted guitar lessons. At the time I couldn't teach her but we stayed in touch and I saw her at local open mics and we became friends. Fast forward a bit and I could teach Buffy and I have to say teaching her has been the easiest thing ever. Buffy has a musical ear and is just the most wonderful company. Fast forward a month or so and she tells me her old flame Angel has been in touch and they're going to meet up. They haven't seen each other in 25 years and she is SO excited. I mean I have never seen anyone this excited and nervous and eager and terrified before. Fast forward, they meet up and the magic is there and it's weird how easily they click. Several meet ups, a yacht race and a Tom Jones Concert later Angel proposes! The whole world is just so happy for them and one day I just sit down and take all the things she's told me about him and put it into words. I write a song called Boomerang and forward it to Ben who then forwards it to Buffy. I panic that she might be totally creeped out by that but it turns out it's the opposite. The next day I record it properly and send it to her and I get a lovely email from both Buffy and Angel saying how it's brought them to tears and they love it. I'm gobsmacked and honoured!
And it's little moments like these that make my existence complete. Thank you universe x
So there you are, lots of Johnny Cash gigging going on, lots of musical endeavours and lots of love in the air. What more could you want :D haha
On a list of memorable moments, bashing out Folsom Prison as the Tarka Train rattles through Lapstock rates pretty high. Ian & I had a cracking time at Lapstock on Saturday. Lapford really is a lovely part of the world and we had great weather for it! It was great to play a mix of Johnny Cash and my music - can't wait to play more of my music and get recording in the winter!
We exhausted ourselves in June with gigs and July has been far more chilled out. We've just got our gig at RHS Rosemoor's Flower Show on the 17th of August and then my brain will switch permanently over to wedding mode - aaahhhh. Luckily I've pencilled in some me-time in the form of a really cool hen doo in Paris! Yay! I have never been to Paris so I really can't wait to check out the art, the river and hopefully swing by the opera to check out the buskers. I'm expecting to be proper-inspired :D
So just a quick little blog entry from me really but I felt the need to say how much I enjoyed Lapstock before I disappear for like a month whilst I cope with getting married! See you all on the other side of tulle & foliage haha
Today I went for a walk and I saw a squirrel, something I might've ordinarily missed, but today I was out walking with contacts on and it caught my eye. It hurried up the tree only to stop in the fork and stare at me. For a second there we shared a moment :D
I'm really enjoying having more time to get inspired and write and try new things; I've had so many wonderful experiences lately as a result! I definitely feel like I'm having a bit of a break through in my personal life... I've been trying contact lenses again (this time with far more success) and actually did my first gig with them in on Friday at The Black Cock Inn. It was surreal!
Rewind though because I thought I'd share some tales about our show at The Plough Arts Centre, April 12th. We had a fantastic turn out and it was incredible to walk out again on that stage and to have a full auditorium staring back at me. The evening began with some ridiculously tasty scampi and chips for me and a curry for Ian in the dressing room, straight after soundcheck at 6:15pm. After sharing the feast with Ben (faithful subject) and polishing off every last morsel it occurred to me I hadn't used the cutlery once. Which is weird. Clearly I was too excited... I went next door and got dressed into my new swishy pink dress (that I had been dying to try out I might add) and of course some sparkly heels (too damn high to walk further than 10 metres in I can assure you, sticky stage wear) and none of the boys commented. This PC world we live in haha they are damned if they do damned if they don't but sometimes you just wanna hear you look good.
Fast forward an hour and there's a nervous excitement backstage as we hear the auditorium fill. I am absolutely bouncing up and down, raring to go and then... we are introduced and out I go! Into the bright light *don't trip, mind the guitar, there's the seat, sit down ahhh* The moment I sit down I'm settled in for the night haha and the hilarities from Ian begin. Now I will confide in you lovely people, yes we were making notes on the songs but no there was no script that was pure banter and Ian really is that hilarious to be around. It just comes out of him and that bone solo! I mean he was already impressive and then he got up and started dancing around, completely unrehearsed. Fantastic. The evening was alive with magic and I especially liked our rhythm-off (like a dance off but with instruments) on Ghost Riders. When I ended with 'Hurt' I didn't want to stop. It is a painful song and brings up a lot of demons and I am quite reluctant to channel the buggers normally but I have to say I got to that final chorus and I could've gone on and on. Since that night I have had so many wonderful comments and such lovely feedback. Richard Wolfenden-Brown gave us a wonderful quote which allowed Ben to Kindly update the Johnny Cash Tribute section of the website so it has just been the most wonderful April! So here are my shoutouts, Thank you Di & Tim, Mike & Barbara, Richard, Ruth & Chris, Fiona & Mike, Sheila, Stef, Rich, Lizzie, Frances, Rachel, Louise & Liz, Colin, Matt & Angie, Uncle Ben and to Marcus for doing such a superb job on the sound.
Gigs and opportunities seem to be pouring in at the moment and I'm so grateful. I'm doing my best to keep you all updated - mailing list button coming soon! - but until then facebook and my newly established instagram are the best ways to keep round-the-clock up-to-date with what I'm up to.
As always thank you for your tremendous support everyone and I shall see you all again soon!