Interview for Oddities Magazine

 

Celestial Singer and Conscious Music Artist

 

Was there a particular event or person that influenced your decision to become a musician?

 

There have been so many events on my journey that have moved me forward towards my decision to become a musician. It has been a miraculous transformation.

One early event was when I was working as a creative in Advertising in London many years ago. My friend who was working for a record company took me to see a talented male duo performing live. It was just two voices and a guitar, but they were so accomplished and passionate that I was seized by an uncontrollable desire to sing. I realised then I had to do whatever it took to become a singer. The next day I made the first phone calls towards finding a singing teacher. Little did I know where it would lead me.

I went on to study classical singing with a teacher at The Royal College of Music in London. About a year later I was returning from a business trip and watched the film ‘Shine’ on the plane. The film features a beautiful piece ‘Nulla In Mundo Pax Sincera’ by Vivaldi. It is a stunning soprano aria and one that totally moved me. Again I was seized by a powerful knowing that I had to up my singing lessons and completely commit myself to music. On my return from the trip I attempted to buy the sheet music of the Vivaldi piece, but it was out of print. By the time I managed to obtain a copy, I was just about to move to Australia. My UK teacher suggested I find a teacher in Australia and start working on the piece with them. Once I landed I made a few phone calls and started with a new teacher called Jane Edwards, it turns out, she was the soprano who sang the beautiful aria in Shine, the voice I had heard on the plane a year earlier. Yes this was certainly confirmation I was on the right tracks.

The most potent moment that sealed my decision to become a singer came a further year later when I was doing my singing practise in my apartment. I was suddenly overcome with this incredible sensation, a powerful feeling and a knowing that I had to give up my job and study music full time. It was really like the heavens opening up and a golden light pouring into the room. I immediately wanted to fall to my knees, but then felt embarrassed in case someone walking their dog along the path outside my window might see me. It was a powerful epiphany and I called my singing teacher straight away to ask how I would go about achieving my goal. The very next day I was sitting with a group of people and I heard an actor describe exactly the same experience. He had this sudden feeling of knowing absolutely that he had to take up acting full time and had wanted to fall to his knees, but was embarrassed someone may have spotted him. Straight away, he called his agent to find out what his next steps were to be. This certainly gave even more validation to the spooky experience I had had the previous day.

"Within two weeks, I became ill, I was completely incapacitated.  A doctor deemed me unfit for work and diagnosed me with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.  It was amazing how the universe chose to help me reach my goal.  I moved from Sydney to Northern New South Wales to recover.  As my health began to improve I started studying music full time.  I got a Diploma and then a Degree in Contemporary music from Southern Cross University."

Can you share with our readership your creation process (of a piece of music)?

I find the process of writing a song completely miraculous. In fact now even more so, as it is getting easier by the day.

I am finding the songs are just being delivered to me, like a kind of musical download, the pieces just arrive almost fully formed with little or no effort on my part, especially in the early stages.

I’m never sure when a new song will arrive, but usually I will be at the piano and a sequence of chords and a melody will appear. This is even more likely if I’ve been playing my other material for a while, it seems to get the creative juices flowing. I repeat the chords and melody over and over again on a loop, to continue to see what comes out. I usually grab my iPhone and record these sessions. I will play for about 30 minutes to an hour and record the whole time, so that no ideas are lost. Then I play the recording repeatedly in the car and around the house, so more ideas flow and I don’t feel like I’m really working. I never sit down with a blank piece of paper and say ‘right I’m going to write a song now!’, it just wouldn’t work. During this process the lyrics and subject matter of the song usually start to become clearer. I never want to force anything. I don’t believe the mind has a very important role in the song writing process. It does come in handy though when I need to craft lyrics and complete the song.

I am also collaborating with Dance Producer Simon Hollway and we have signed to a major German dance label, Plasmapool. I am really enjoying the process of writing dance music. The structure is amazing there is so much light and shade, a song can really build and take people places, it can bring about truly eurphoric feelings. We create tension and release with the lyrical hooks and the instrumentation. It’s a totally transformative medium.

I have quite a few new songs on the go at the moment and I love watching the music and lyrics forming. I feel really blessed and grateful. It’s just like walking down to my mailbox at the end of the drive, opening it up and seeing that new song has arrived in a crisp envelope.

How have you incorporated your belief systems into your beautiful music?

My musical journey is completely linked to my spiritual life. I found my music started to really blossom when I began my spiritual journey in 1999. It is impossible to separate the two aspects of me.

Over the years I have tried many modalities and spiritual practises. However since I began a committed daily meditation practise two and a half years ago, my music has moved forward rapidly.

I had no idea that I would be writing songs with a message and about spiritual matters. I have been doing this for years, but it has been more subtle. It’s easy to disguise a spiritual song as an ordinary love song. I have also sung a lot of mantra, this is musical rocket fuel, the chants are so powerful and transformative. During the last three years, my songs have become more overt in their content. My mission is to spread a message of kindness and compassion to all living beings. I’m passionate about protecting animals, vegetarianism and healing the planet and have found that this is spilling out into my material and lyrics.

Last year I wrote a song called ‘Wake Up Sister’ which is all about women finally having a voice and being the only ones who can really come up with solutions to heal the planet and get the earth back on track.

Not long after writing the song, I performed at the Uplift Festival in Byron Bay. Two Shamanic representatives from an ancient tribe in South America came to deliver their declaration about restoring our planet at this critical time. These two men lived in a remote tribe, untouched by western culture, they had never even left their village.

The tribesmen had very clear instructions about how the restoration of balance and healing of the planet and its people can only come about through women using their voices and bringing about change.

The first instruction on their list was for us to use song as a form of healing. Within this endeavor for cultural preservation, we recognize that songs, dance, music, prayer, restorative ceremonies and other cultural elements are invaluable and important”.

I believe that through meditation and tuning into mother earth, I am able to bring this directly into my music. I live in a beautiful location surrounded by powerful nature. Wherever I am performing, the energy of the land where I live is transported through the songs to the audience.