Hang the DJ | I Am Not An Entertainer

Tuesday, 22 May 2018

I've been thinking a lot recently about where I want to take my music. Do I see myself doing this in the far future? Is this just part of an ongoing identity crisis? Will I be able to create a sustainable career from this? These are all the questions going round in my head regarding my journey in music. The answer to these questions were all challenged last weekend at a gig, in a pub, in the middle of nowhere.

I don't want this post to be particularly negative, most of the crowd were lovely and I'm not judging or blaming anyone involved in this gig. This is more due to my headspace at the time.

I let out the biggest sigh in the car on the way home from this gig. I was exhausted, which is strange because normally I'd be so full of adrenaline after being on stage. I played a two and a half hour set, mostly covers, some of my own songs and some requests. Now I don't normally do requests but this gig was a favour for a friend. I learned four extra songs, songs that I didn't even like and as I was playing them, all I could think about is the fact that I didn't want to be there, playing these songs, just like the artist originally created them.

I like playing covers, but I've come to realise; only on my own terms. I like putting my mark on them, mashing them up and making them exciting, changing the chord sequence and tempo etc.
But this gig didn't really allow creative freedom.

What I think happened was miscommunication. They clearly wanted someone to entertain them, sing the songs they knew so they could dance around and sing along, have a great night and then go home and probably forget about the songs they heard the next morning. And call me selfish, but I didn't want to give them that. I know I could, I so easily could, but at the cost of my own happiness and musical integrity. Some people asked to see my setlist, which I've never had before, going through the whole thing and picking out songs they didn't know and asking me to change them to songs they did, I mean.. I basically felt like a glorified DJ.

I'm not an entertainer, I'm not a cover artist. I'm a songwriter.

The sentence 'do you know country road\wonderwall\summer of 69' turns my stomach upside down. It never used to, but I guess I've grown as a musician now and having a whole set of my own songs ready to go, frustrates me to no end when I can't get the opportunity to play them.
I don't want people to think that I'm saying 'I'M A SERIOUS MUSICIAN SIT DOWN AND LISTEN TO ME' because that's not what I'm trying to get across with this weird blog post. What I'm trying to say is I don't want to be a carbon copy, I don't want to crank out the same shit that people have already done, I want people to hear new things. But sometimes people don't want to hear that and that's okay, but I don't want to be the person anymore to tell that to. There's nothing wrong with being a cover artist or a DJ, I just want to make that clear, as long as it makes you happy and it's something you want to do.

I was talking to Emily about this and as an illustrator she gave an amazing comparison that I'll use here:

'it's the same as someone coming to me for a commission and telling me they want a copy and paste of another artists work, basically a traced drawing. That would make me and any other artist with creative integrity feel like shit and that's exactly why you feel like this'

thanks Em xo

I'm going to be more picky about gigs. I don't care if the money's in the covers, if I say yes to anymore parties\weddings\conventions, it's going to make me quit music. I need to be true to myself, I need to think about the bigger picture and think about the people that might appreciate my original music more.

I don't want this post to sound like I'm complaining, even though I basically am. I just need to think about my own creative integrity as a singer\songwriter\musician.

Idk man, I'm just tired of doing these kind of gigs and getting nothing from it. If anyone ever asks to see my setlist again imma' run for the bloody hills. Ah well I'm going to carry on what I'm doing and writing and recording all the songs, for me, no one else.

Morrissey said it best.. before he became a twat that is.

I really want to open a discussion about this, I tried to on twitter and I'm going to carry on trying because I really want to hear other musicians or artists opinions.

Have you ever felt like a carbon copy? Would you pass over your integrity for the dolla? Or do you like doing cover gigs because they're easier and probably less judgemental?
Lemme' know, thanks for listening to my weird rant about da' musics.



A Not So Blue Monday

Monday, 21 May 2018

Hello pals! It's been a busy ol' week, getting back to a working routine and on top of that, a lot of late nights playing gigs. Honestly I'm glad my job doesn't really require me to think too hard, I've been sleep walking through this week! I've been told at work that I don't stop, because I have so much to do in the evenings, but we all know; that's the way I like it. Here are the things that have made me particularly happy this week: 

Dear White People_________________________________________________________________

I watched the film about a year ago and loved it and I can't believe it's taken me this long to start the tv show. But after a week I'm completely hooked and am already halfway through season 2. It's so clever and aware and educational, but it's also so, so hilarious. I just love the kind of comedy. And the plot is brilliant, I was wondering how they would carry the story on after the film but the tv show has really allowed the production team to expand existing characters stories and introduce us to new ones. Everybody should totally give this a watch when it next pops up on Netflix, it doesn't disappoint. 

Happy Place ______________________________________________________________________

I've been trying to get into podcasts for so bloody long and I can't believe it took me an insta post with Fearne Cotton and Stephen Fry to get me into them, but here we are. I started listening to Happy Place this week and it has been the perfect companion to my morning routine. My favourite so far is definitely the SF one, they get into a very knowledgeable and intimate conversation about mental health and Stephen's work with the charity Mind. I think I'm finally joining the podcast bandwagon, it's about bloomin' time!

Deadpool II_______________________________________________________________________

We decided to go to the cinema on a whim this week, I always forget that I now live in a city and there's a cinema right around the corner, I definitely need to go more. We decided to go to the opening night of DP2, I was a bit worried that it wouldn't be as good or funny but it was still as hilarious and as appalling as the first one, with a surprisingly thick plot and some equally surprising twists along the joy ride that is Ryan Reynolds's stream of conscious. Also the sound track was amazing and not in a 'we're doing the same as GOTG' kind of way, Dolly Parton should always be a firm choice for an action scene that's all I'm saying. 


A very media based Monday. 
How was yours?


A Not So Blue Monday

Monday, 14 May 2018

Hello pals! On the week that brought us that debatable Arctic Monkeys album, I also celebrated my birthday. A full album review may come soon because I have opinions. Anyway, this week has been lovely and pretty chill if you don't count the mindless dancing around in circles and countless gin, oops. Here are the things that have made me particularly happy this week:


My friends and I watched this all in one night. It's such a good program and so, so important. If anyone's not too sure what it is, it basically revolves around a Big Brother concept where people share a house for 2 weeks and get to know each other. The difference being is that the house is occupied with gender-fluid, transgender, non-binary and more of the LGBTQ+ community. Also there are cis people there too and this social situation was fascinating to watch, it was altogether a really wholesome and uplifting program, but it did contain some unnecessary drama that I hope had really opened people's eyes to handling certain situations surrounding the trans community. Everyone I know has watched this program, including my mum and that's so refreshing and hopeful to see these things being discussed on a form of mainstream media like channel 4. There are only two episodes and I really hope they make more in the future, loved it. 


On Tuesday we became babysitters. Angie the adorable lil' pawed, fluff balled feline came to stay with us! Our friends cat needed looked after for the day and even though I did have work, I did get to spend some time with her and I can't believe how much an animal in the house makes it feel more like a home. She is crazzyyy and only a kitten, we basically felt like run down grandparents when our friends came to pick her up but she was so much fun and I hope she gets to stay here a lot more. I wanna kittyyyy! 


The 12th of May always marks a special day for me because of two reasons; the first being it's the day before my Birthday and I love birthdays -it's the taurus in me, ask any of my friends- The second being it's time to get royally fucked up on '12 points go to..' shots, shots shots. My party this year was as wonderful and as crazy as the ones before, my countries; Norway and Ireland didn't do too well, which I'm kind of glad about because those shots were deadly. But I am proud to say that my very, very good friend Elinor won Eurovision for a second time and was indeed very, very euro-visioned, proud of you El! I think this is about the 5th party now and they're not getting old yet, bring on next year where I'll hopefully choose better countries, also sorry to my neighbours, the sing-songs must have been hella' annoying. 


How was your Monday?


April | Mother of Pentacles

Wednesday, 9 May 2018

(definitions are taken from The Wild Unknown Tarot Guidebook by Kim Krans)

Domestic, Loving, Patient 

The Mother of Pentacles excels in the home. She knows exactly what to do while raising a family and tending to the tasks of daily life. There's a potential for her identity to become wrapped entirely around her children and home, which leaves her needy and attached. This is the cause of most of her turmoil. She often has qualities of a healer and is very connected to nature. 


Well, I got a flat didn't I?! So this month has been pretty domestic. I also received some very sad news this month and I've been taking a lot of time on my own, processing it. Family is incredibly important to me and I found out especially this month that blood relation means nothing and you can find family in anyone. For the most part of the month I've just been settling in and getting used to my new surroundings, I didn't leave the house for the first week and my friends did have to drag me, kicking and screaming to the shops! I found myself thinking I was in an air bnb and therefore productivity and motivation went straight out of the window but that's only normal, it's definitely getting better now though, hense why I'm writing and making videos again. It just feels so, so nice to have my place and my own space and now I'm fully settled in, I'm so excited for what May and spring has to bring rhymes. Once again the cards we're right. We're four months in and they've been pretty close so far spooky. This experiment is so interesting and I'm so pleased it's going well.

How was your April?

A Not So Blue Monday

Monday, 7 May 2018

Hello pals! Apologies for not being around last week, the days just seemed to slip away and before I knew it, it was Sunday already! I'm hoping this week will go slower though because it's my birthday week and I have a whole lotta' celebrating to do! Here are the things that have made me particularly happy this week:

HUJI app_________________________________________________________________________

Like everyone and their mother on Instagram -literally my mum loves this thing- is now using this app and I think I am a little late to the party but I can't get enough of it. It's literally an app that works like a disposable or 35mm film camera, every photo you take is different and it allows you to experiment with exposure and light leaks. I do think it is a bit gimmicky and I understand that photographers are pulling their hair out over this app, but it's just so fun and the  a e s t h e t i c  is so darn pleasing. It's also giving my insta theme a new lease of life, I might be over using it but I'm having fun darn it and I just love the effects this app makes. I guess we've all travelled back to 1998, what a time to be alive. 

Zozaleenie _______________________________________________________________________

I have a new favourite youtuber and she's bloody great. Zoe's videos are a mixture of everything and when I watch them I find myself wondering how one human can be so multi-talented! Honestly she writes music, sings, draws, paints, does gymnastics and is just a lil beaming ray of sunshine and watching her live her life through her videos gives me endless motivation and positive vibes, especially whilst the sun shines outside. 


Picture the scene. My flatmates and I are lying on our sofas after a pretty long night of gin and dancing. We have just finished yet another season of Ru Paul's drag race and our sleepy eyes are opened by an automatic trailer. The trailer contains clips of a lil, cute red panda skipping and then the next moment, there's screamo music playing and the whole screen goes red. We sit up, transfixed. Emily exclaims 'what the hell was that', Charlotte turns her head with a smile and says 'let's find out'. We watch all ten episodes in a day, this show is life changing. It's basically exactly what I described, the plot revolves around this lil, awkward, relatable red panda who hates her job and has a misogynistic boss. Her cathartic way of emotional based coping is to head to a karaoke bar and sing songs in the heavy metal genre. It's as crazy and mental as it sounds, but it's so, so good. Absolutely hilarious and probably one of the weirdest things you've every seen. If you too are hungover and in need of some light, relieving, Japanese cartoon animals singing heavy metal, this show is made for you. 


How was your Monday?


Treasure Hunt | April

Saturday, 5 May 2018

I can't believe it's almost May, March disappeared before my eyes and the favourites I had that month became the favourites for this month as well! Because I've been moving house, I've been a super scrimper, but I did manage to collect a few new treasures to talk about and enjoy. Here are the things I've collected in April:

Fitted Denim Jacket________________________________________________________________

Every denim jacket I've ever had has been second hand and baggy. Now there's nothing wrong with that, but after I tried on a friend's fitted denim jacket from Asos, I knew my wardrobe could do with one. So I bit the bullet and ordered a very similar one in my actual size. I don't really conform to sizing normally, sometimes I can be an 8 and sometimes I can fit into a 14 it doesn't make any sense to me either. I got this jacket in a size 8 and I love the way it looks, I've been wearing it with dresses and culottes and pyjamas on late night trips to Lidl. I've also been enjoying sticking all of my pins and badges onto it, especially my repeal the 8th badge and this cool animal rights badge I got randomly from a seller on depop. This jacket is definitely going to see me through these spring and summer months, it's light enough for those hot days, but can still be layered with a hoodie. It's just a perfect piece for my wardrobe and I'm so glad I decided to get it in my actual size, I just love it and I feel like it's such a timeless piece, I now look like even more of an 80's throwback!

Superdrug Charcoal Facemask ______________________________________________________

So Superdrug have started making affordable fresh face masks and I'm all for it! I picked this pot up whilst queuing for the tills dangerous and after a slight tingly face the first time I applied it, it's worked wonders for my skin. Dare I say it they're definitely on par with Lush's fresh face masks and a lot cheaper with much more product; this mask lasted me the whole month using it 2 times a week and I still have some left. I'm really excited to try out the whole of this range throughout summer, they've also just added some Jelly ones into the range too, much excite!

Pin Striped Culottes _______________________________________________________________

It is no secret that I love a culotte, I'm sure I've mentioned my love for them on here before. But this pair have changed the game! They are the most comfy pair of trousers I have ever worn apart from pyjamas of course and they're socially acceptable to be worn in every situation! I love styling these with a cute lil band tshirt and my denim jacket, or even a baggy jumper or hoodie for ultimate comfort on a night out. Culottes are all I'm going to be living in this spring! 

Newly Acquired Vinyls _____________________________________________________________

This month I got the chance to look through my parents old vinyls before I moved out and lets just say my collection has e x p a n d e d. It's so cool that my parents have an amazing music taste, I now own allll The Beatles albums and some other iconic people like Stevie Wonder and Elkie Brooks. I've been having so much fun recently listening to these albums back-to-back and taking so much inspiration from past music and now I have my own place we've been listening to vinyls in the living room, with gin; how old are we?

The Assassination of Gianni Versace ________________________________________________

I started watching this show when I was still living at home, but decided to show it to my flatmates because I was so impressed. It's just such a beautiful and twisted show and the aesthetic is on point. It's so similar to AHS visually and is actually almost as creepy in some parts, but doesn't have the weird plot twists because it's based on a true story. And after a lot of research after watching the show I found out that it's so, so close to what happened. Some of the scenes are created for tv drama but even down to the locations and the actors, the guy that plays Andrew the main character and Darren Criss look soooo alike and the actor that plays Gianni has got his mannerisms and look down to a tee from watching old videos of him. It just makes it all feel very real and like you were there,we all already know that Ryan Murphy is an absolute master for storytelling. We're about to start the OJ Simpson series soon, because we completely missed that hype when it came out, but I'm not sure if it's going to top Gianni, jus' sayin'. 

What treasures have you found this month?