March Wasp

20 Mar

With a head full of cottonwool, I send a million emails for myself and others whose music I adore to round up more work/money so we can continue on this picturesque clifftop gravel path of making music.

Since the last email, I have had a good long think about my direction as a a musician who needs to pay the rent. Thus, I am plowing my energy into three areas – rehearsing and writing for Wasp Summer, singing as often as I can in a variety of styles and booking shows in the A Headful of Bees Booking Agency.

As much fun as I’ve had touring since 2011, I really had the urge to stay closer to home this year, develop my ideas and get some sleep. You know, eight hours a night, every night. (It’s not always working. I binge-watched the new US TV series Nashville in five days). I play gigs, have after-singing drinks with my choir, go dancing to noise bands (Oneida! “You’ve got to step into the light light light light light light…”), try to experience the many joys and madnesses of Berlin. I figure if I ever have a baby, I’ll won’t resent the loss of sleep so much if I have some sleep now.

Really, I want to get to the end of 2013 knowing that I am in a kick-arse rock ‘n’ roll band. The guitar-work should sit nicely around the vocals. I’m doing tiny solos, getting lessons and learning how to play slide guitar. I will get a delay pedal. I might get a Big Muff fuzz pedal.

My songs want me to use the lower, sexier, more womanly voice I’m growing into as well as the showier parts of my range. I will eventually be as comfortable behind a guitar as I am with a microphone in my hand. I want people to think PJ Harvey and not Sheryl Crow when they see us play.

In fulfilling my aims, I have some shows coming up. I’m working with a lovely West Berliner called Tom Cunningham, a sweet and very interesting guy who’s been here since the early 70’s producing records and releasing albums. My dearest friend in Berlin, jazz singer Lena Tjäder invited me to work as a backing singer with Tom. We debut this Saturday night at Ufer Cafe (Nordufer 4, Wedding for the Berliners) with a mix of his, my and Lena’s originals and covers accompanied by guitarist Michel. 20:00.

Next month, I am working with Salonband, an amazing group of pro musicians who worked with my compadre Eric Eckhart on his DIT album. Once a month, they invite singers, learn their albums and back them at Kugelbahn, also in Berlin-Wedding. It’s my turn on April 11 and I’ll be doing some stuff off my record plus a couple of songs that influenced how I sing and write – Total Control, One Day I’ll Fly Away and Tobacco Road. This is going to be an amazing night.

Look out for some more Wasp Summer band gigs over the Summer. There’s big shows coming up for 48-Stunden Neukölln, Fete de la Musqiue and Berlin Music Week and smaller ones in great rock ‘n’ roll basements.

If you want to hear my album again, please check it out at
waspsummer.bandcamp.com, but I post new demos up at www.soundcloud.com/waspsummer.

Here’s hoping for the Spring to break. I need some suuuuuuuuuuuun.

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