Monday, December 27, 2010

Christmas from the Caravan

December has been a fun but tiring month. I visited Bowen Island BC and Portland with several weeks of shows in Northern Germany until a few days ago.
This was my first proper solo tour and I played some wonderful shows all over the place including house concerts, an alternative Christmas market, a TV show , music clubs and bars. During this period I also found time to move to my new home about 90 min North of Berlin, at least for the next few months. I am living in a rural village and living in a caravan I have called 'Magdalena' with my cat Reece. Over January I will play some more concerts in Northern Germany as well as work on some new songs and begin planning for the 'Exorcism' single which will be part one of a 4 CD single set for the new album. This song will also be accompanied by my first music video and will feature two non album b-sides with some very special cover art, more on that soon. I hope you had a wonderful Christmas! x

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

notes from the road: yank cannuck: nelson bc

I am an explorer. I am brave and a little foolhardy but I live.Yesterday I left Portland where a transformation took place. Today I walked over the US/Canadian border through the snow in orthopedic shoes on my way to Nelson BC. I managed to hitchhike from Colville to the border to the surprise of the Canadian border patrol. After a few questions, they photocopied my passport and Canadian permanent resident card (as valuable as the psychic paper in Doctor Who in these parts!), wished me luck and I stood on the other side with my cardboard to hitch another ride. One car came through and they took me to Rossland. What a pretty little town! I got me some pink snow boots and an ugly hat and by the time I had walked from one end of town to the other, people were stopping me in the street asking if I was the girl who needed a ride to Nelson :) I made it to Nelson with two rides and the last guy gave me a giant box of chocolates and wished me well. He lives with his gay partner and they have a pest control business in the area. 15 years later they are still very happy. That is rare to hear these days and gives me hope.

The streets of Nelson are covered with glistening snow. Couples hold hands with puffy gloves, slipping on the sidewalk but smiling. I really like it here. Why did I move to Toronto last year instead? Was it really for the promise of love with a self centred broke comedian or was it that I felt that I had run out of options and needed to find a good job and create some stability? Ha! I didn't know what love was. I didn't know what living was back then. Nelson, what is it that makes me feel so at ease in your streets? But after more than 8 weeks in the US I balked at your prices. $6.99 for Tofurky Italian Style Sausages? WTF? But you are beautiful. This weekend I will play 3 shows in the area. 2 shows in Nelson including a health food store that runs a music series on Saturdays and a house concert in Salmo at a music studio, fun!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

This Halloween hasn't been all that's been cracked up to be

I had to go and get sick on Halloween weekend so sat around watching Arrested Development with my friend in Cleveland for 12 days until my throat got a little better and I pushed onto the west. Unfortunately I had to cancel and postpone my shows as my voice has been taking it's time to come back but will be playing a handful of solo BC Canada shows from late November before heading back to Germany in early December. Thanks to all the folks who have been so supportive, letting me stay at their houses, sleep in their beds and put up with me :)

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

notes from the road: love, dreams & potatoes: buffalo ny

Last night after a lovely gig, the power went off in Buffalo. Tim and I sat surrounded by candles and watched 'the station agent' on my wee laptop until the early hours of the morning. How I love that movie, the simplicity, the beauty of friendship between such unlikely folk. Such a lovely, quiet movie but with such power.

Before retiring, I read by candlelight a graphic novel on the peoples history of america until I drifted into sleep. There were dreams of love, desire, pain and loss. I awoke, sliding between the two couch chairs and tried to make myself comfortable by placing the cushions on the wooden floor but they kept sliding apart. I didn't sleep too well. I have been thinking too much and my body is too long for two cushions.There have been many questions lately about feelings, intentions, expectations, reactions. In a way, I feel I need to throw these all away and start fresh, but is that possible? Even if I were able to magically transform into a person that was able to be this free there is always the other person and their reactions to deal with.

People keep saying I am brave. Is it bravery or a tireless need to discover something, feel something, figure something out? I just don't know what....What is it? If I start at the beginning, if I strip everything the core, to the essence. Who am I and what do I want from people?When I love, it is not fickle, it does not pass by in a month, a season or a year. It is not something you need to be afraid of, you do not need to feel that I expect anything in particular in return, just treat me with kindness. My love for you means I am here for you and I see your beauty. I don't want it to be complicated or scary, just to let it be.

Right now, I need to travel, I need to experience, I need to taste everything, I need to understand the world, to understand myself but most of all I need to grow. I love the idea of roots, but I am not ready to grow a huge tree just yet but eventually that would be so lovely and I look forward to the time I am ready for it and all that it will bring. BUT right now I  want to get to know you, I want to share with you, I want to sleep with you, have you fall asleep in my arms and lay quietly, listening to you breathe and dream.  I won't ever forget you. I will always come back and spend time with you, just let me have the space I need right now and we will continue to share beautiful moments together.One day there will be a house, I hope to build it with my own hands: dirt, mud, Real, in my hands, dirty hands at the end of a day, satisfied, tired and hungry. The walls won't be smooth. There will be hand prints, fingers smoothing, shells, coloured glass, pretty stones. Inside the bowls and cups will also be made by hand, painted with colours that don't go together, made with love and joy sharing the space with a piano and harp, books and spices. Surrounded by trees, a beautiful garden will grow around the house with carrots, blue potatoes, red potatoes, cabbage for okonomi yaki, spinach, beets, lavender, basil and mint and rows and rows of endless colours, tastes and combinations. There will be fruit trees, maybe oranges or apples, or peaches for peach pie just like Anna makes, raspberries, blueberries, berries I haven't discovered yet. There will be a river or lake for swimming, dreaming, washing, watching underwater creatures living. Many animals will live in this paradise. They won't be pets but friends: hens rescued from battery farms that I will protect from the wolves, maybe some funny sheep or goats, a grumpy horse that will be won over with carrots and bruised apples, cats with dappled coats, dogs with overbites who love life and need a wash but really they don't mind. Will there be children? I just don't know? I need some time to decide but this would definitely be a special place for children, for fairies and eating google buns and pop biscuits under that huge tree while reading the magic faraway tree and the magic pudding. Little hands could stay dirty, knees grazing and tree climbing, constant threats of falling but no fear. Remember when we had no fear?Yes this one thing I know for sure. This place, will be so wonderful...and you, my friend, my lover, my companion will be very welcome because I love you.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

notes from the road: thoughts right now: harrisburg pa to nyc

i have on been on the road for 54 days and have 40 days to go. i am feeling indulgent and brave in equal amounts and look for answers in the miles and sleepy wooden houses peeling paint which were once yellow, powder blue and flaming red through the bus window. my staples have become chocolate soy milk and bagels in numerous flavours: stay away from blueberry! and those juices emil points out don't really have a lot of good stuff in them...but still i like the taste and i like to believe they are doing me good. lately i have loved and hated in equal amounts and i have fought the teenager in me to keep the peace in favour of finer weather and the avoidance of the loss of a peculiar friendship that i have grown quite used to and value. i have whined until i was sick of the sound of my own voice. i have surprised myself with maturity i didn't know i had. i have laughed and cried in the desert but didn't get sunburnt. i saw wild horses in nevada and ate deep fried oreos at the NC state fair. i fell apart in san francisco and got stoned to avoid it all. i grew balls in phoenix and i was strong and beautiful in cowboy boots that would later cripple me in new orleans. i have doubted myself into a nervous wreck and flirted confidently with a boy i somehow missed out on when i was his age. i have been a mother and a teenager and recalled my age too many times to remember, sometimes proud, sometimes sad, sometimes with regret, hoping eventually it will fit with my mindset, my clothes, my face and frame and my dreams.  at this point i am sure of one thing. i am growing and i am not running away...i am running towards something...

Sunday, October 17, 2010

notes from the road: time and friendship: north carolina to pennsylvania

time changes when you are on the road. it slows down and living just feels is concentrated, and pain and confusion become almost unbareable, suffocating almost as there is nowhere to run.friendships are tested and change. sometimes they are lost forever but if you can get through it, then it's kind of like forging steel...reforming a special bond together and these kind of friendships can last a lifetime.

Monday, September 20, 2010

From George to Rupert

We spent a lovely few days in northern BC and here is a little recap:

Thursday 16th September - Cowpuccinos Prince Rupert

Played our first show at lovely cowpuccinos in Rupert and sang backing vocals on Mudcat Joes 'Whoa that Chilli'. Emil and I hung out with Hailey and her friends after the show. Wish we could have stayed longer.

Friday 17th September - CafeNara Terrace

More people came than we thought. Lovely audience and good to see some familiar faces again. Sonny made me something yummy and Korean for dinner. Spent the night at Jims, what an amazing view in the morning!

Saturday 18th September - Hazelton House Concert

Played an intimate show in Charlotte's lovely house and she showed us around too. Bought some delicious raisin cakes in the organic bakery. This was one of the most beautiful places we went to and it was a shame to have to leave so early.

Sunday 19th September - Books & Co Prince George

Haha this was a fun show, our new friend Ray or Roy came down. What a character. A very intimate show even though space was bigger than previous concerts. Also stayed with lovely couchsurfers who fed us so much yummy food. We were like their children, it was sort of nice though smile

Em and Em riding the famous Cowpuccino's cow in Prince Rupert

Emil, Em and Mudcat Joe after Rupert show

The fun never ends, cross dressing cows

Em and an audience member in Terrace who took 'Spank me Man' a little too far ;P

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Emil arrives

Yesterday Emil arrived in Vancouver and I was relieved. I kept creating these scenarios that something would happen and then the bus was late but I am just paranoid. The day cleared up into a fine weather and we spent a few hours wandering around Bowen Island where I used to live including meeting some of the colourful locals. We also danced in the forest to traditional Swedish folk music, well Emil danced and I felt awkward. I really need to get over silly stuff like that. In the evening I had a small birthday gathering with friends ni Mik-sa...a day early as we have to leave tonight for Vancouver to get our early bus the next day. Didn't sleep so well because the cats kept wanting to go in and out all night. There are 7.

Oh we met a lovely guy called Jordan on the bus to Horseshoe Bay yesterday too. It was like Emil met his long lost brother or something ;P....K I am sure will have some more exciting and woeful tales soon including the awful 20ish hour bus ride to Prince Rupert tomorrow. Bye for now smile em.....emaline that is

Saturday, August 07, 2010

until next spring

my fingers pinch bruises
and thighs bending weight
underneath hips like knives
biting and stinging
but sweet

and when we leave here
it will be like my death
mourning for fall
until winter takes her place

you will do your very best
not to count our ages
to stop these moments taking over
leaving us possessed

but at the very end
i won't beg you to stay
and we won't speak of it
we will simply go about our day

until next spring
when the flowers
climb up through the dirt
longing for the sun
and the cycle begins again

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Northern Germany Spring Tour Recap


nihan arrived from london at 7:21pm and was on the stage at 8pm playing, what a sport!
lovely crowd, nice intimate space. cafe mojo's owner david is a very cool man and drives
a mean red van. sold lots of cds, slept in a lovely bed. a fine start to the northern
germany tour.


oh kiel you're just lovely, who would have known?
very pretty venue and willy of prinz willy was a fine chap. very very cool audience....sold stacks of cd's
and had loads of fun. sound a bit shit but we powered on. stayed with the lovely suse and her italian friend who were so helpful to us. i really like it in kiel and want to go back soon for sure.


big city, show was ok. not terrible not great. didn't really make much of an impression on me to be honest. maybe another time perhaps?


oh dear. the day started with the turkey faced deutsche bahn woman on the way to norderstedt which emil wrote a song about. i don't know what i can say? the sound was atrocious and venue not really nice at all. i do remember after the show a lovely woman called birgit coming up and thanking emil and i so much for i guess i will remember her instead of the other negative stuff.


oh we love you and your giggling bakery girls , your crazy christians including one man in the audience who has his own website claiming to be jesus reincarnated...(i just found this out, he added me to myspace!), the lady with the bunny ears kissing her dog, rainer the owner of the kneipe and his little grins but less english, the classy 80's hotel we stayed in, the appeciative audience and breakfast in the morning. we really needed you after the other STEDT!


GAY PORN WORLD! lots of porn places around the station. kind of a weird show, not bad but weird. mixture of high class germans across from an english football team. weird atmoshere but some friends and family there for nihan which was nice and we drank some sort of local drink with bitch in the title and ate yummy soup. thanks to the lovely smiling man who came up afterwards and roland who was a lovely host. might be nice to go back without football fans, who knows?


not enough sleep at the start, nihan's tooth problems flaring up in berlin, the man smashing the bottle and shards of glass going in my hair in berlin, catching a million trains, norderstedt, too much bread, stupid fricking b string going out of tune contantly, bad sound when we had it, stinky clothes, emil losing chargers, me losing cords, crying after norderstedt, having to play so much guitar when i didn't feel i was ready for it


the drunk man at the end of the carriage singing german white hip hop with his friend on back up vocal zombie throat singing underneath for several hours on the way to norderstedt, the recording i made of it, the crazy sarstedt christians including jesus reincarnate and the bunny ears lady practically molesting nihan cause she loved her so much and her telling us she will be waiting for us next time we are on tour


first gig with just nihan & i, kiel and suses italian treats, rainers kneipe and smiling sarstedt faces,

emil singing me the turkey cow song in the norderstedt hotel room after the gig: cheering me up and then leaving norderstedt the next day, sleep when we got it, selling lots of cds in the nice venues, buying clean underwear for the first time in years, giggling a lot till it hurt when we were so tired and everything seemed so absurd, emil's face in spank me man when i started taking off my jacket, nihan when she told emil and i just STOP!, lots of nice dogs in the streets, andrea's cool cat merlin in berlin! ha!, rossman in train stations, hotel breakfasts and me and emil stealing so obviously and not noticing nihan do it at all, playing guitar and being crap sometimes but knowing i did it and it can only get better!, nihan's kind family, jonathan doing sound and being a guitar tech at the last show, balou: rolands dog and hugs and so much laughter with nihan and emil!!!

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

life is gut

I am writing this in the wee hours of the morning from a farm an hour from frankfurt which will be my home for a little while.

lots of exciting news!

playing guitar/keys at all shows and with two new wonderful musicians by my side: teresa on guitar/bass and nihan on cello. shows are going well, hopefully lots more to come, we are open for bookings in the UK and further abroad. so many new songs!

this week we have a couple of shows in reading and wootten bassett and we will be doing some recording a couple of days after that. have asked old friend/violinist emily mcmillan to join us for that as well as for some upcoming shows.

will play a show with lovely canterbury harpist cristyn williams in april, and hopefully some more in the summer. also doing some stuff with wonderful swedish singer songwriter emil brynge/maple mountain including uk/eu shows. working on that now and open for bookings for ireland/sweden/uk so drop us line for march/april/may opportunities :)  we shared a sell out show at house concerts york, and spent the next day wandering around the old city searching for a roast and scones. we managed the roast but alas big bettys had sold out of scones, maybe next time?

yeah it's late and i am tired and having trouble completing sentences that make sense so here is some more randomness:

i have a sauna in my apartment

i've had two saunas this week already since moving in

i think i ate mashed potatoes from a box tonight

my cat went outside for the first time today since we moved in this week

i was meant to go back to my apartment to watch the long way around w/ stuart the liverpudlian but have been on this darn computer, i hope he's asleep

i went to see a german punk rock band playing johnny cash songs the other night

i think i have a crush

the shops are really hard to get to when you want chocolate and live in a forest

toronto seems like a lifetime ago, i'm so glad i'm here and not there but i do miss my friends and okonomi house

last night i wrote a song called 'bring me a viking'

i really want a celtic harp

it's time for bed, gut nacht!


Tuesday, January 26, 2010

mini uk tour recap

live at the institute: essex

quick teresa and nihan, learn this song 30 min before the gig.
lots of lovely snacks for us. nice audience but couldn't see their faces. ladies, it was great to see some strong talented women in music. good first gig. sweet essex town. content.

the slaughtered lamb: london

so sick, so many pain killers. which song am i playing right now? friends came, really nice, wish they would come when i was playing better and could see straight. people laughed and liked. mule sounds. lloyd brought me sandwiches.

little george: chippenham

they got date mixed up. all men at bar, leering, maybe a little? but listening, into it, open and accepting. i played keys for the first time. someone stole a cd. they painted the room for us, we talked until we were so tired, paid in the morning but nice eggs for breakfast from barman.

york house concerts: york

spilled earl grey tea in car. to york via cornwall 6 hours?, delirious when arrived, so happy to see emil again, audience were sardines in a tin can but smiling, laughing so perfect. could not be more perfect. i was happy to share it with nihan, teresa and emil. they are brilliant. york is awesome. next day: roast with emil, walking, candy store, man playing piano on wheels, playing kate bush!, happiness, fat, giving emil oregano oil for a cold, why does he listen to me? that man staring and listening opposite us on the train. the magical weekend over :(

gallery cafe: bethnal green

short and sweet. the bathroom became a social club for us. walked to liverpool street station. i think there was chocolate?

black hole house concert: hackney wick

so much better than i thought. great night, courage was born. teresa's birthday cheesecake in everts room. interview, happy, really happy.

the ship inn: dorset

well there had to be one. but...soup and bread and loveliness from teresa's parents at 2am in dorset and a book from her mum on bach flower remedies. the next day a walk to the edge of the world, standing over the ocean. happy again.

the castle: north west london

guinea pigs, experiments but ok. maybe too complicated for them but the room was so beautiful. last gig for a while. after went to see emil with teresa. sebastian, lloyd, evert, oliver and anthony were there, met jamie n commons in person finally he is lovely. emil and his drummer sounded good. i forgot his candy again. chips and vinegar with evert and sebastian. i love my friends and london. i am so happy. this is living.