A musician - who me? I had always liked singing and probably, like most people, I sang along to the radio, sang in the shower, and sang when I was cooking and probably lots of other places too.
February 8, 2015
Friends and family always told me that I had a good voice and I should sing in public, suggesting that I look for a band to join. So, in my early twenties, I decided to take their advice and spoke to a neighbour, Martin, who could play a few chords on the guitar. We decided that we would form our own band and so advertised for musicians and a band was duly formed with the addition of bass player and a drummer. Martin pulled out quite quickly after that and new guitarist Kim joined so we were now a four piece band called Loose Ends.
Kim and I wrote songs and brought them along to the other band members and we went out performing in local pubs and clubs. Our Manager sent our music out to various record companies. I am sure that we came close to a recording deal once or twice but nothing concrete ever materialised, so we stuck to gigging in London, throwing in a few cover versions of standards for good measure.
I must admit it was great – there is something about playing in front of an appreciative audience when you know you sound good, your music is good, the acoustics are right and the crowd are just into you – there is not much to beat that feeling.
The worst thing about live music is that the pay for performing is generally utter rubbish, although there are of course exceptions, but I don’t think any musician at the local band level does it for the money but rather for that ‘feeling’ that I mentioned earlier. For me, probably just like many musicians, once I accepted that a recording deal wasn’t actually going to happen, I just carried on because I liked performing, I liked the response, and the applause, as well perhaps as the excuse it provided to get away from the TV, dusting, and possibly various other reasons.
Over the years I have been a session singer, played in many different bands, duos and trios performing an eclectic mix of blues and rock to various audiences in all sorts of venues – some good, some average, some small and some large, remembering the ‘feeling’ all over again each and every time. Click here if you want to hear a sample track
Even after all the years, I think it’s fair to say that as long as the band is good and the audience is lively and appreciative of the music, each and every gig is a thrill, it’s terrific - irrespective of the venue or the pay!
Anyway, I used my knowledge and experience of music in my book Possession is nine-tenths of Desire and Eleanor, one of the main characters, is a musician - and a good one at that.
Read the book to find out about her and what she gets up to.