A Sell Out Show

What can I say?? A sell out gig at Clwb Ifor Bach for my first show, and people being turned away at the door! Very very chuffed. Thanks to all of you who made it such a special night, my wonderful community, who donned robot masks to make the show all I imagined it to be.
I can’t tell you I wasn’t nervous, because boy was I nervous! There are always so many things to think about before a show, and so many things that can go wrong on the night. It’s not until I was painting the face of the last string player, the lovely Jo Walters (Sorry about the mass of glitter Jo ha ha) that the nerves really kicked in, when James Kennedy (guitarist) rushed in to the toilet and said to me… 

“Babe. You’re going to need Matt (Warr – friend and Kyshera Bassist) to make a pathway for you to the stage. It’s packed out there!”. 
I started to get excited but was freaking out at the same time! Lots of nervous energy.

My mind was still ticking until that moment I arrived on the stage, as I gave a nod, and the voice of Dr Bernard Kane kicked in. 
“What’s this? Her brain is functioning at a 100% capacity! The more she believes, the more she begins to express her latent super abilities. She has privileged access to all areas of her mind!”. 
Looking down at the sea of people I started to get excited. This is it! Time to put on a show! 
“Hello”….. 
I drifted off into the world of Nancy Neuron. My alter ego. The person who can do anything she puts her mind to. The person who can make dreams come to life. Who has no insecurities. 
I made it! 
A month of hard work and planning and promoting. An awesome band, of amazing musicians, who rehearsed every single week and made the album come to life. Who were up for anything to make it the spectacle I wanted it to be. No idea was too crazy for these guys. I could have dressed them in lycra and they would have been happy enough (Erm…maybe not ha ha) 

Lego (Guitar) James (Guitar) Steve-O (Drums), Mitch (Bass) I feel very lucky that you walked into that practice pad in February and kept coming back. 
Thanks you to The Vulvan String Quartet – Jo, Andy, Nathan and Bernard. Who asked “Are we steambots too, or can we have our own alter ego?” ha ha. YES!!!!! that's my team.
I certainly didn’t realize quite how much I missed being on stage until I was back up there again that’s for sure. This is only the beginning because…

I’m home.

My Dream.

Yay! My new Website is Live! If you want to hear about my World. My songs, my thoughts, my hopes, my dreams, my inspiration, then come here. I'll be trying to update it as often as I can.

To tell you a little about the story so far. The ideas for the album started to form a few years ago. I was just enjoying being creative, writing, coming up with ideas. I knew I wanted it to be very 'me' incorporating all my influences and loves. I spent hours listening to music, writing lyrics, drawing and pasting pictures on mood boards. All these thoughts and ideas came together to begin to create my very own concept album.

Having been in the same band for 12 years. The whole thing terrified me. I didn't believe I could do it, but I knew I had to face this fear and get on with it. Of course I couldn't make this vision a reality without the creative genius of my best friend Noog, the support and belief and dedication to my cause from my partner in crime Mr James Kennedy, my amazing street team 'Cat's Army' and 'Cat's Tales’ and my band mates.

I've always loved being creative, the person I am when I'm creative is the real me, the person I know well. I feel at home and happy being creative me. It's all the other versions of me I haven’t always understood. Sometimes the fear tries to hold me back, and boy do I try and hold myself back, I know that, but I push my way through it, and I guess this album is a lot about that. It's told through the eyes of me - the Superhero, and is intended to show us that we can be whoever we want to be, we can all be superheroes in our own story.
Though we're all creative beings and all have amazing talents, the enemy within us, our self-doubts, self-criticism and worries squash our hopes and dreams. This story is about stepping above it all, and at the end of it becoming the best versions of ourselves.

This is Me. The sound, the aesthetic, the spirit of it. Experimental, hooky, unashamedly pop and addictive. But that's just my opinion :) Come see what you think. 

Starman

The news came to me in a text from James Kennedy at 7am Monday 11th of January.

“Jesus babe, sorry to lay this on you first thing, but David Bowie has died!!!”

He knew how I’d feel. He knows me well. He who calls me “A bloody frustrating, adorable, uncrackable puzzle” ha ha. He knows who and what inspires me. He knew how I’d feel about Dai Bow - as we call him.

The funny thing is we’ve been talking about him a lot recently. I sent James a link over Christmas to his performance of The Little Drummer Boy with Bing Crosby. He hadn’t seen it. I love that scene. I’d been trying to recreate a Judy Garland style family christmas in my music video, which inspired me to look through old Dean Martin and Bing Crosby footage. I remembered that scene with Bowie, so I watched it again.

He can’t be gone! I felt so weird. This can’t be true. But he just released the album. He’s surely gonna do a tour. He can’t be dead. I was going to see him. I was going to meet him one day.

I felt low, like I’d lost a good friend. Upset. Numb. But I felt strange for feeling that way too, a little silly really. I’d never really felt like that about someone I didn’t know before. I didn’t expect it.

Then I started hearing from other friends who felt the same. We were all talking about it and talking about life and death, and catching up and discussing that feeling we shared. I checked out the social networks and the radio coverage, and we were all feeling it. 

Bowie’s death connected us all. How powerful is that? How art can connect us like that. 

After I stopped feeling sad, I had this feeling of hope. This grateful feeling for all that he’s left behind, so much inspiration. 

Then I wanted to explore. I wanted to pour through my favourite Bowie tunes from Hunky Dory, The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust, Low, Station to Station, Diamond Dogs, Heroes, Aladdin Sane, The Man Who Sold The World… Engulfing myself in Bowie’s World. His music. His style.His thinking. Dissecting everything he created, then reading the newspaper coverage, the tributes, buying the special edition magazines. 

So many people said to me. “Well I don’t really know that many of his songs, but he was always there, you know?”, and that’s the thing about Bowie, he has always been there, and though there was no doubting his exceptional musicality, there was so much more to him than his songs.

“I’m going to be huge!” he told the World in 1972. He didn’t have a clue did he?

I honestly did think that I would meet David Bowie one day you know. We all dream of meeting our heroes, but I really did see it as a possibility. Those of you who know me, will know that I don’t see anything as impossible, I’m a dreamer and no dream is too big. *big silly grin*

I met his son Duncan Jones in 2011, Zowie. He was a lovely guy. Really warm and funny, he laughed a lot, he looked so much like his father too. It was the World Premiere of Source Code and I interviewed him on the red carpet. I’m a the sci-fi buff and loved his directorial debut ’Moon’, so was excited to meet him. There wasn’t enough time to ask him much of anything, but it was really nice to meet him. I thought of him when I heard the news.

"His death was no different from his life - a work of Art. He made Blackstar for us, his parting gift. I knew for a year this was the way it would be." said Tony Visconti.

I spent nights pouring over the dark lyrics of “Blackstar”.  But what seemed dark suddenly became so clear to us all. After he left, we heard it in a completely new light. How brilliant. “Look up here. I’m in heaven” and “I’ve got scars that can’t be seen”. Fair play! What an incredibly brave work. 

To me Bowie was a Hero, not only for what he created but for who he was. It wasn’t just because the music was good, but he made it okay to be different. Bowie’s androgyny was a rare gift. He challenged what the media saw. I loved how unconventional and ostentatious he was, how flamboyant he was with his masculine and feminine sides. His otherworldliness. From his multicoloured bodysuits, to his leopard print blouses, to his coloured suits and flashy ties. Both theatrical and cabaret, interesting in every way. He was a glam rock pioneer. An Innovator. A real Pop Star and I’ll miss him.

"Most people are scared of colour, their lives are built up in shades of grey. It doesn't matter how straight the style is, make it brightly coloured material and everyone starts acting weird." David Bowie

 - and with that he changed the World. Famous for all the right reasons. He made way for the great bands ahead of him who wouldn’t have existed if it weren’t for Bowie. Joy Division, Culture Club, LCD Soundsystem, Suede, Placebo. Arcade Fire. So much wouldn’t have existed.

What a truly classy guy you were David Bowie. What grace you had. You were wonderful. You’ve left a big hole in the universe.

Savage Beauty

The day had arrived. I was incredibly excited.
It was 8:30am on a Friday morning. I stood eagerly outside the V&A about to enter the Sold Out Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty exhibition. It was raining, I had no umbrella (as practical as ever), but I didn't care as I waited in anticipation. There’s something you need to know about me, I absolutely love fashion, always have since a young age. I look at the beautiful creations of my favourite designers in the same way as I would works of art. McQueen is one of my favourites and I have always found his creativity inspiring as his designs are bold and brave.

As I walked into the first room I knew I was in for a treat. It was as intriguing and gripping as I’d imagined it would be. It was obvious that this was a fashion exhibition like no other I’d ever seen. This was a visual treat and these were definitely more works of art than pieces of clothing. They all had a unique story to tell, sometimes romantic, sometimes disturbing and cruel. The Clothes were beautiful and I was completely transfixed.

McQueen famously designed from the side, the body’s worst angle, to ensure the clothes worked all the way around. The clothes are like armour.
I Love the sculpted well structured jackets which have an unconventional air, distracting from all the bits us women want to hide. Mcqueen wanted to make a woman feel powerful. 
I want people to be afraid of the women I dress” Alexander McQueen

'A Cabinet Of Curiosities' to me was definitely the highlight of the exhibition. I sat down in the middle of the room, surrounded by towering shelves with displays of dresses and accessories, inserted amongst screens showcasing videos of McQueen’s incredible catwalk shows, and was transported into his World, his mind. I was so transfixed, that I must have been there for over an hour without realising it.
The cabinet showcased everything from Philip Treacy’s famous “butterfly” headdress created for the la Dame Bleue Show in 2008, to the “armadillo” shoes and the reproduction of model Shalom Harlow being sprayed with paint by robots, recreating the drama and intensity of the Alexander McQueen fashion shows. 

Within the Romantic Gothic Gallery was the Angels and Demons collection. This collection was inspired from the dark inspiration of poet Edgar Allen Poe and the Victorian gothic for the Alexander McQueen/Givenchy (A/W 1997) collection, of macabre bird-women, which included a gown with bodice, sleeves and high collar formed of golden feathers. 

McQueen’s final 'Platos Atlantis’ show. inspired by Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species (1859) was a fitting ending encorporating the digital age.
 


As wonderful as the exhibition was, i
n my opinion McQueen should have been put into context of the art world of his era and so many parts of his journey should have been referenced in this exhibition. 
His years in Savile Row where he trained as a tailor’s apprentice, and his period at the House of Givenchy where he experienced haute couture. I do wish that the exhibition would have explored this tortured genius more.
I was however taken on a journey through the mind of the designer.

It as always a dream of mind to combine all art forms into my albums and live shows and I walked away inspired and full of ideas.