Wow, Carfest North – that was SUCH an experience. Half way to arriving the window in my car broke. It was a wet and windy journey up the motorway but I made it in one piece!
I arrived on Saturday to be greeted by Chris Evans and Hiten with their heads in their hands informing me of the very sad news that one of the pilots from the air display team – Kevin Whyman had tragically died in a crash that had happened just an hour before I got there. It was mortifying… Everyone on the day tried to carry on and be as professional as possible. But there was a sober mood. I really do send all my thoughts and prayers to Kevin’s family and send them as much strength as possible. Losing someone that close to you is the hardest thing ever and I wish I could do or say something to help them through this time.
After arriving I headed over backstage and had the great privilege of meeting and chatting to many inspirational artists and bands – Joss Stone was so lovely!
I also met The Feeling, Seasick Steve, chatting with and brushed my teeth next to Sophie Ellis Bextor in the glamping later on (what a delightful lady she is – her performance was awesome!) saw my lovely friends Ward Thomas, met several key people in F1 and generally had a wonderful evening with some wonderful folk.
My “tent” was practically a HOTEL!
For a start, I could stand in it!!
IT HAD PLUG SOCKETS!!!!!!!
Hay bails with Sunflowers!! The ultimate. My lucky number is 4… and my tent was no. 4, too which made me smile.
On Sunday, after this wonderful being arrived: (Mr Sam Rommer) Who was joining me on cajon and backing vocals.
We went off to see some cars!!
They were utterly gorgeous. Apparently 51 Ferrari’s were there. I saw all of Chris Evans’ Dirty Dozen… and took photos of them all, too!
I think this was my favourite though!
After seeing them, it’s quite funny how I arrived and parked in this:
I even got to “meet” the Chitty Chitty Band Bang” car which was a CHILDHOOD DREAM!
Soon after that I left the paddock and headed over grab my guitar…
Then we were taken over to back stage in golf buggies. SO MUCH FUN!
Tuning up backstage…
Here we are back stage in Chris Evans’ dressing room waiting to play! There was a beautiful tribute and a one minute silence held for Kevin Whyman, which was very moving. Especially as I saw his family briefly backstage after. I felt complete empathy for them. I tried to hold back the sadness and watched The Proclaimers do their set.
He welcomed us on stage just after The Proclaimers came off and it was quite a moment!!!
We performed “Riptide” – it was single of the week on iTunes and a good foot stomper so I figured it’d be the best song to do. I was only expecting to do one song, but then Chris asked me to play another, so I played “A Place Called You” (on guitar!) which went down really well! It was hard because I didn’t have any sound through my monitor, so could only hear what I was singing after a 2 second delay from front of house sound bouncing back at me! Despite the challenge it was so much fun! Shortly after I finished, Jack Savoretti went on stage and as he passed me he said complimented my set which was lovely – we went out front and watched him do his thing and WOW! He was amazing!
Thanks to the people who tweeted me this photo’s!
I came back and we decided to make a move, I needed to get my car fixed and didn’t want to be sat in Monday morning traffic. I couldn’t leave without having a photo by the naughty step though.
It was a surreal and amazing weekend. I can’t wait to play Carfest South in a couple of weeks!! Thanks to the amazing audience at Carfest who clapped along and cheered. It was a gig I’ll never forget. xxx
Hey everyone!! If you’ve come hear because you heard me play on Radio 2 this morning I would like to say THANKKKK YOUUUU SOOOO MUCHHHHHH!!!!!!! It all stemmed from Chris’s awesome week-long music festival he held at his pub last week… I played on Monday and Friday, alongside the one and only Seasick Steve! It was brilliant! Chris then invited a few of us to come and play on his show this morning to recreate the open mic night vibe last week, and what fun we had! The idea of an open mic MORNING is actually rather quirky!
I was playing at Monmouth Festival last night and had about 4 hours sleep, so I truly meant every lyric when I sang “So Stop the World” – “I’m fighting through that traffic half asleep under my make up!” It was lovely to see Mike Bushell there doing the news. Mike used my music a lot for his BBC Breakfast sports updates, and it’s so great to have his support!! His book “Bushell’s Best Bits” is amazing!
After everyone performed Chris then asked us whether we’d like to come and play at Carfest… WOAH! So this weekend I’ll be playing Carfest North on Saturday AND Sunday. I can’t WAIT!!!!
Here’s the link to listen back to the open mic section on this morning’s show.
Good times ahead!
I also want to say a HUGE thank you to everyone who texted and tweeted words of encouragement. It meant SO MUCH to me. Thanks to Sam Rommer for being there with me at the open mic’s last week and today, too. WOW. I am feeling TRULY FORTUNATE right now.
I’m so grateful to Digital Fix for this exclusive feature on my brand new “live in the studio” version of “A Place Called You”… Check out the feature HERE:
And the video HERE:
Hey there lovely ones!!
I’m proud to announce that I will be releasing a digital deluxe version of “Waves” with 8 new tracks added to it!
You can pre-order here:
Hey there beautiful friends…
Some of you who pre-ordered the single may have had some trouble in downloading it. Turns out even Apple make mistakes… Who knew?!
Anyway – If you are concerned about being charged twice DON’T BE, please all go to the link below to download the single:
You will only be billed AFTER it appears in your iTunes library.
I really hope you all enjoy the song. I wrote it for all the people in the world who feel like they’re forced into being someone or something that they’re not. We are all diverse, unique, different and we should REJOICE at that and be proud of who we are. What we enjoy. What we like doing. What we can’t do. What we really can’t do……In my case, it’s DANCING! But does that stop me….?
Love you all!
If you are a non APPLE here are the other links to download the single:
Nashville – Week One!
I arrived in Nashville on 1st June and was met at the airport by the AMAZING Michael Spriggs and his beautiful wife Carla. They’ve got to be the warmest and sweetest people in the whole of Nashville.
After some dinner at Ruby Tuesday’s we arrived back at their home. WOW. What a beautiful place!! Wildlife everywhere – hummingbirds, deer running around with their baby fawns, two raccoons (who visited us at 7 on the dot every evening for snacks), chipmunks, birds galore and yes… BUGS GALORE! But we will get to that later…
After I put my bags down in my bedroom, Michael showed me around the house and I saw his studio for the first time… I had to pinch myself!!!
What an amazing writing room and studio.
Michael and I started writing immediately! As you all know, I have an unhealthy obsession with stringed instruments. Among 120 guitars, banjo’s ukuleles, mandolins etc he also had bouzouki’s… (an instrument which originated in Greece). I was so inspired by the sound that we wrote a song the second I picked one up, it is soooo pretty! I can’t wait for you guys to hear it!
I had a whole load of meeting’s and writing sessions scheduled for the first week of my trip… Here are some of the highlights of my first week in Nashville:
Spencer Day – an awesome writer and artist – check him out!
Sarah Spencer – beautiful inside and out!
Matt Koziol – comes with Charlie (the worlds cutest dog) and has the most beautiful voice EVER (Matt does, not the dog!)
Billy Livsey – WHAT A TOP PERSON! Lovely to finally meet his wife, too!
I was sad not to see my friend Jenn Bostic whilst in Nashville (her home!) but I was able to meet Kyshona, one of her friends who is BEAUTIFUL and WOWZA, that girl can sing, too!
Michael and I met with JW for lunch, manager of Trace Adkins. He is a lovely, kind soul and I am so grateful to him and his team for giving me the honour of performing on two of Trace’s songs from his album “The Kings Gift”.
I went to visit Mike Dungan at Universal Music Group. It was an amazing opportunity to play him my music and to have his feedback. I was thrilled to hear that he loved it and said “this is the music I really like to listen to”. He introduced me to Sam Hunt, and Pain Killer – two of the label’s exciting new artists. They are amazing! I’m looking forward to showing them around London sometime!
On day 2, I ran into an injured fawn on the side of the road… It was the sweetest little thing!!! Michael and I took it to the animal sanctuary. In the car, it must have thought I was its Mum, as I started getting licked! I could have cried!
I met some awesome dogs – one I particularly loved was aptly named BANJO!
On Saturday night I went to the Opry for the first time! It was magical to meet the incredibly talented musicians that have played there for decades and to hear Sara Haze sing “Riot” which was recently cut by Rascal Flatts… It totally blew me away and I was thrilled to be able to give her a big hug and thanked her for the song.
Which leads us on to Sunday… Wow.. That week went by SOOOO fast!! Sunday was an exciting day for me as I went to collect my gorgeous Sam from the airport, and began to introduce him to the wonder of Nashville! The next two weeks will follow soon….
I am SO EXCITED about my new single “Never Gonna Change”….
Make sure you check back here on Friday as I have some awesome news about it’s first exclusive radio play!
Here’s a little tiny sneak peek at what’s to come… Huge thanks to Brian Cadge for his awesome video director skills!
A massive MASSIVE thank you to everyone who took part in my guitar raffle. Here’s the video for the raffle draw!!