Tell us about the new release ‘The End’ and why was it important to make it a single?
The End symbolises the start of new beginnings for me. An end to things no longer serving me. I was inspired initially by watching some protest and riot footage and it came at the exact same time a relationship I was in at the time blew up in my face very dramatically almost riot style and I chose to walk away, hold my head high and realise I wanted better. And that I could choose to leave. In direct ‘protest’ to rotting in a place that was not nourishing me. I drew a direct synchronistic sign between watching the footage and the riotous and significant way I was feeling my energy shifting. Onwards. Upwards. Endings=beginnings.
The music video for ‘The End’ is visually captivating, talk us through your thought process there
Like I mentioned, the riot footage I was watching on the day was a compilation of rioters protesting environmental destruction such as animal agriculture/slaughter (hence the line “with sodden hands and rotten meat”) topics which I feel very passionately about standing against and raising awareness of. I started to conjure up an image in my head about it being the end of the world in the video and that there was just this one human lizard left (hahah!!) singing about how it’s the end of the world now but remember when life was sweet.. So it has a dual meaning of self empowerment and as a call to arms to recognise that we can only go on living like we are for so long before it will be ‘The End’.
I went to a fire walking ceremony about a month before we filmed and before we walked the hot coals we went through a meditation process and part of it was to put an arrow to our clavicle and step firmly into a wooden board with the arrow into our throat in the faith that it would snap. I was so terrified I nearly wasn’t able to do it I got very distressed but the facilitator was amazing (Ceremony held by the wonderful facilitator Fiona Morgan of ‘Shenkido’) and I visualised all the old habits I wanted to break and what I was walking into as I stepped in and it slammed snap against the board!! Ground breaking moment for me. That arrow is the arrow I use in the video. My lovely mentor Aid painted it black and gold for me, we glued it together and at around 1:32 in you’ll see a glimpse of me ‘snapping’ it into my clavicle again. This was so so symbolic to me and for this song I just had to have it in. It was such a personal break through and so so fitting for the song…through the video you’ll notice me put the arrow to my throat several times…
Every song I write I feel like I take on a character when it comes to putting out the visual (music vid) and the characters are all part of me but have different personalities and emotion and twists and motives. This one I was like “I need to be a lizard in this one, that’s my character”! Luckily I had the amazing Adam Paul MUA to do my make up. He’s worked with me on my last 3 vids and he’s a dream he just goes with the idea and runs wild with it.
Tell us about your journey to music
I always adored singing since being a tiny child and wrote songs instinctively from a very early age, me and my bro used to make up songs non stop. It’s what I knew I ALWAYS wanted to do. I was heavily into listening to music also. Obsessively. It was when I was sectioned into hospital at the age of 14 when I first picked up a guitar and started to write ‘properly’ I had been writing files full of lyrics to express how I was feeling. Sometimes I can’t communicate in words how I feel but I can put it in a song… At 14 I had been running away from home lots, self harming, over dosed and was declared a danger to my self and put in Highroyds hospital for 9 months. That’s when my huge passion for songwriting flooded out of me. I still remember the first song I wrote on the one stringed guitar. I have become an avid mental health advocate and campaigner since starting my songwriting career, I was awarded “social impact star” at the Inspiring Women Changemakers awards last year for the mental health campaigning I have done alongside my music which was a real honour.
When did you start song-writing and what is your writing process?
As I say I started from a very young age but properly and more structured as a teen. My writing process varies but very often I will just write a song in my head like it will just come to me when driving or doing the washing up or pottering about even when I wake in the night there will have been a song in my head in the dream and I will immediately sing it into my voice recorder on my phone this riff or chorus or sung line and then I’ll go to my piano and work it out with the music and it flows from there. Sometimes I’ll just sit down at the piano and write a riff experimenting with different shapes with my hand. I don’t read music and don’t know any chord names I play by ear and the patterns that I see in the keys or the strings on guitar.
It’s also important for me to have a special lyric notebook I adore on the go at all times. I have a great relationship with my notebook! I always wait for a special one that takes my breath away and I feel for in my heart. My current one has “The Unicorn in Captivity” ancient tapestry print on it. The unicorn is in captivity but only kept within a fence a couple inches high that she could jump out of at any time she wants to break free. Very symbolic and significant personally to me. I just love seeing that every time I go to write my words.
Do you have any advice to other women in music?
Be yourself. Get to know you and make that a thing worth doing. Never see anything or anyone as competition. Competition stifles creativity. Compare yourself to no one and let go of the fear of other people’s judgements. Life’s too short to worry about what other people think of you. Find what makes YOU tick and tick it. Have integrity but don’t be afraid to take risks. Be true to you. Have self compassion, be kind to yourself and practice gratitude. Don’t ever give up. Persistence is a key.