Touring

Melbourne Awaits!

I hope you are all well and thriving or at the very least surviving the current ever changing times that we are in. Yeah I know it really is challenging but I guess we have to find ways to see what we DO have. For example I have a roof over my head, running clean water, power, food and am safe and I can still afford wine and chocolate on a Friday night which puts me in the top 5% on the planet, so in that context I am thriving :O).  However, if I jump into the context of not being able to travel as easily and the difficulty booking gigs, the decimation of the live music industry, well that’s a whole different story…..it’s not quite the end of the world but it’s getting close 😁. Yeah ok that was a bit dramatic but some days it feels like that so that is when I have to go back to my lucky to be in the top 5% posi

Me getting the admin done

After a 6 mths break from doing gigs I have now started booking again. I am keen to get out there playing again, although I say this as the latest reports are showing surges in COVID cases across the country.  Gigs don’t just pop up out of the blue, there is a lot of work to do behind the scenes, unless you are well known of course. For the sea of singer songwriters out there such as myself, there is a lot of chasing up to do and more…… It’s a very competitive area to work and even more so if you are female but I am not going to go there today, because if I use that as my excuse I will never get things happening. I won’t deny that being a woman in this industry has it set backs but I am changing tact today. I am going to look for the benefits and forge my way forwards. It’s important because there aren’t many of us and I have an opportunity to offer something to the up and coming young female musicians. They CAN NOT BE what they CAN NOT SEE.❤️

There is a huge amount that goes on behind the scenes for musicians and artists and the picture above is to show you that I do spend a lot of time on my laptop. Yeah OK it’s not that bad but I was short of photos for this blog post so I felt an up and close of me doing the not so glamorous work would fit the bill 😁.  It’s Monday lunchtime and I am still in my PJs getting all those emails and promo’s done.😁

So what is it that we have to do?

Phone venues to ask for gigs (it’s so hard!), then write emails with our bio, attach links to our work. You have to have examples of live performance to share and your social media pages. We have to keep our social media pages active and updated all the time. I have recently been calling venues in Melbourne to play a few gigs there so I need to make sure that they can see that I do have “something to offer”. It’s not easy to promote yourself and your creative work, most artists are not comfortable with this aspect of life as a creative but we have to do it. I then make contact with radio shows that play my genre of music and send them my latest releases and sometimes I get an interview or get asked to go into the studio to play a few tunes.

I have a long bio and a short bio that I send depending on what’s needed. Just one bio isn’t enough though because there are always variations depending on the venue. Recently I have been applying for Festivals which need to be done at least 6 to 10 months in advance. You have to put your expected fees which could be the make or break of getting the gig. Many musicians who really want to play may undercut themselves which undervalues the work of all musicians. However, I am not going to be too critical of this because I really don’t know what the answer is. Many people will say we love what we do and don’t mind playing for free which is not true of course, yes we love what we do but it doesn’t mean we can afford to not get paid or to be grossly underpaid. The arts is undervalued across the board and the whole culture of this country and of how important art is viewed and received needs to to change.

Anyway how did I get here?

I am supposed to be telling you about my upcoming gigs in Melbourne but first I want to thank Michael Crichton from 94.1 fm 3WBC radio Melbourne for playing my recent releases “Pledge my Soul” and “He’s My Brother” on two of his shows this week. I say recent releases because in these COVID times it has been much more difficult to release tracks due to the lack of opportunities to perform so I am going keep these as “recent” to make up for the lost time. 😁

Upcoming gigs

As stated in the heading of this post I am heading to Melbourne again, just for a couple of weeks but I do have some gigs booked in. The first one is a House Concert on Sunday August 7th. I will be sharing the evening with the lovely Cate Taylor who is an Indi folk singer songwriter, we are going to be doing an intimate concert at a friends house,  Jo & Dave’s, who are wonderful hosts living in Parkville. There are very limited seats s if you would like to join us please email me [email protected]. The tickets are $20 (supper and drinks are provided).

Tuesday 9th I will be playing at Open Studio for a dinner and music evening from 6.30pm – 8.30pm. It is going to be a bonus Tuesday free event, get your tickets from Eventbright to book a spot at this dedicated music venue in Northcote. Here is the facebook event.

Then on Thursday 18th August I will be playing for the Writers Block at the The Lomond Hotel which I am also really looking forward too.

If you would like to purchase any of my tracks please download them from Bandcamp and please also subscribe to my Youtube page where you can be updated on any new videos or play the ones already uploaded. Last but not least you can also follow my music page on Facebook where I will always keep you updated where I am playing or you can go to “Upcoming gigs” on this site.❤️

Post Tour then WAM nominee!

It’s been a crazy few months. My “Manus Music Talks” events went unbelievably well and I think the worst thing that happened was leaving my purse at a servo and finding out the next day 2 hrs down the road, then sleeping in a caravan with giant spiders….. apart from that it was all good. lol…. I started in Kuranda QLD and drove down the coast stopping at Cairns, Townsville, Rockhampton, Yeppoon, MacKay, Cooran, Brisbane, Ballina, Port McQuarie, Newcastle, Gosford and Sydney. I grabbed a car in Cairns and did approx 3,000 kms which was incredible and I never imagined that I would get through it all in the 4 weeks I had. I met the most amazing people and they were so generous in the way they took on the job of organising the events and giving me a room for the night and sometimes 2 nights. Cairns for Refugees were the first group to host me and the Uniting Church in Kuranda.

My next stop was the Townsville Cultural Fest where I released my new EP “Can’t Let Go”. It was an incredible weekend and I met so many amazing people and it was wonderful to catch up with Farvardin again who is the person doing all the behind the scenes work of this great event.  Something I noticed as I drove down the coast was how dry it was, very dry and it surprised me because even though I knew there was a drought in Queensland I didn’t think it be that bad and that it would stretch the coast too.

The Greens Keppel

My next stop was Rockhampton and Yeppoon where I did performances for The North Rockhampton Uniting Church group and the Greens Keppel.  There are many many people doing a huge amount of work behind the scenes when it comes to the refugees in offshore and onshore detention and I can’t believe that between us all that we haven’t managed to find a way to end this disgusting policy. People should never be detained for no crime and especially for 7 years. 

Ballina for Refugees

Ballina for Refugees, Rik and me

My next stop was Cooran and then Ballina where I did a performance for Ballina Region for Refugees and a small refugee group in Cooran. I played songs from my previous album and my recently released EP. The most important one was a song called “In My Name” which I wrote last year. I wrote it because I thought change was coming and I imagined that the election would bring change…..HOW WRONG I WAS :O(  This song is about acknowledging that people are coming together and that change is coming so I play this near to the end of the performance and get everyone to sing the chorus with me…it’s the best feeling when everyone joins me. :o)

The photos above are of my gig at the Ballina Region for Refugees they were amazing and it was lovely to stay with Rik and Lisa Dillon.

My next stop was Brisbane where I did one in Hawkesbury with the Redland for Refugees and once again I was hosted by a lovely couple and a great venue was organised. When I organised this tour I really had no idea how it would all go and I didn’t know if it would have the desired outcome. My goal was to tell the story of how I got involved and how I had used my art (music and songs) to bring awareness to the issue and spread the word. I wanted to show everyone that they too have a voice and that we are in a position of power. I write folk songs and in the true traditional sense folk music is about activism and I love that part of it and I love having a purpose for my songs that is more than entertainment alone.  I had an incredible response from every single performance and it went way beyond my expectations.

Qassim and me

While in Brisbane I spent some time visiting the refugees that I had helped to get to Austraia via the Medivac Bill. They were all incredibly sick but it was so nice to see them smile and to spend a bit of time with them. Here is Qassim from Iraq, he spent 6 years on Manus and was tortured by ISIS. He had 11 bones in his body broken. He was incredibly sick when I saw him on Manus and here he is now looking so much better. I wrote “We Live and We Die” with another refugee called Kazem after visiting Qassim in the Lorengau hospital on Manus. I will be doing a professional studio recording of this song at the end of November. He is still in detention here in Australia and who knows how long the government will keep them there.

After Brisbane I went down to Port Macquarie then Newcastle and then Gosford. The Port Macquarie was with the Mid North West Refugee Group and Newcastle was organised by Niko at the Hunter Asylum Seekers group. Once again the events were organised beautifully and I was hosted by so many wonderful people all working really hard behind the scenes. My next stop was Sydney where I did my final two performances, one with the Hawkesbury Rural Australian for Refugees group and the other was actually at a music venue which was a bit novel for this tour… lol…… It was lovely to meet Geoff and Sue who hosted the Hawkesbury event and I really don’t want to miss anyone out because I was so well looked after by so many lovely people. The venue in Crows Nest was called Street Market Asian Tapas Bar and Restaurant and I had a lovely night there too. I was also very happy to be at the tail end of my tour. I was exhausted and really enjoyed my last few days with my very good friend in Sydney.

WAM Nomination

I had the shock of my life a week or so ago when I found out that I had been nominated for the category of “Best Regional Act” for WAM (West Australian Music). I have worked really hard in my music career and I had no idea how hard it actually was when I first started. I never really intended to take it this far but I just love it. Each time I say to myself well that’s it now I’ve done more than I could possibly have imagined, it’s time to get back into normal life but I can’t do that because I have learned in the last 8 years that this is normal life for me….the roller coaster of writing songs, performing, recording and touring. I love it wouldn’t change it for the world.

I received an invitation to the WAM Awards evening for October 31st so I am really looking forward to that. It says leave your ripped jeans at home so it looks like I might have to dress up a bit. :O)

Perth Royal Show

So far October has been extra busy with a gig at the Perth Royal Show and then I have a house concert in Northam for friend and Radio Presenter Allen Tonks. His partner Lisa is celebrating her 50th Birthday. Then I will be going up to Perth for the awards night. Well that’s it from me folks and I look forward to my next update soon.

 

 

Townsville Festival & Manus, Music Talk’s

Townsville Festival

I’ve just finished my last gig at the Albany Boatshed Markets before I head off over east for 4 weeks. I haven’t done a 3 hr gig for a while so it was quite an achievement to get through so early on a Sunday morning … lol.

It’s that time of year again and I am very excited to have been invited to the 25th Townsville Cultural Fest which starts on Friday 16th August.

I will be playing on three different occasions on the “Music Stage” and not only that but Xavier Rudd is going to be there and Baker Boy! and many other great artists which is very exciting!!!. This is an all inclusive festival and gender equity is a priority for Farvardin Daliri the Director and founder of the event 25 years ago.

The other very exciting news is that I will be releasing my new EP “Can’t Let Go” at the festival. I will have the hard copies in my hands very soon. They can also be ordered from Bandcamp as a digital download or a hard copy.

Manus, Music Talk’s Tour

The people who know me would be very aware of my activism with regards to the refugees being held in offshore detention.  My song writing has merged more and more with my connection with the refugees and their plight. The recent election brought a considerable amount of despair to the refugees on Manus and Nauru because if Labor won there was hope.  I am not really politically aligned but I do care about people and the planet. Labor was going to accept the New Zealand deal and Labor supported the Medivac Bill. 

So after a week on floor crying I felt the need to get back on the road to do what I love that is playing music and touring from Cairns down to Sydney. I will do “Music talks” at as many towns as possible, so far I have 8 bookings. I will be playing songs that I have written, and dedicated to the refugees for the past 2 years and also a song that I wrote with one of the musicians on Manus. Please check out “”Doco Screenings & Music Talks” link on my main page.

I have found music to be a great platform to engage with people and it feels soooooo good to have a purpose for my art.  I guess throughout history it’s been the artists that have forced change and I really do believe we are at a point in history where logic, reason and policies will not cut it anymore. I want to weave the story of offshore detention and onshore detention with my songs and offer a QandA at the end. The idea is to encourage people to find creative ways to force change and who knows what could happen.

 

Studio Recording and Airpla

Thanks to Rob Castiglioni and Tony King I now have a new studio recording of one of my new tracks “In My Name”. We did it in my music room right here in Denmark WA and it was a lot of fun.

I’ve also had the surprise of receiving my AMRAP Airit report only to find out that I have been getting a fair bit of airplay on community radio across Australia. So I want thank all those radio presenters who have ordered my tracks and given them a spin on air. They include Libby Carmody from Tjuma Pulka Media Aboriginal Corp , Peter from The Cleaner show at Seymour FM, Alan Edwards from the Musical Australiania show at  OKR FM, Junita from Outback Junita’s Aussie Playlist at ROX FM and Wendy from Noosa FM Wendy’s Words at Play show, The Dylersloop show at Nambucca Valley Radio, Disc Drive show at Artsound FM , Sally’s Environmix at Alex FM, then Carmen Moran at Highland FM Sunday Breakfast show, The Folk Show with Julie and David at Radio Adelaide and I’m sure I’ve missed a few out but I will add them next time.

 

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