6 gigs in 4 days - that must be a personal record, and a mad few days they were! I started off this week’s gigs in beautiful Frome with an exploding egg (tip: never advise somebody ((especially somebody you’ve only just met)) to put their boiled egg in the microwave when they haven’t cooked it for long enough - it will explode all over their face and hair when they put a knife in the top), pizza and plenty of very musical guests (no pressure). What a wonderful audience they were - it was a joyous evening! Once again I forgot to take the selfie at the end of my set so most people had headed off into the night, but here are the hardcore who stayed for extra drink and chat.
Next on the menu was Chichester (where I grew up). That afternoon I played a little set at a local care home where a family friend is in residence, then I headed off to Fishbourne and the best cucumber pickle I have ever tasted (also the only cucumber pickle I’ve ever tasted, but I’m sure it would still be the best even if I’d had it every week for the last year). A crowd perfectly fitted to the size of the living room assembled and it was extremely cosy with everyone squeezed onto sofas and armchairs. Another truly lovely bunch of people and this time I remembered to take the selfie, yay!
On the Friday afternoon I headed over to Shoreham by Sea for a gig at West St Loft with my friends Laura and Adam of Hickory Signals. The converted loft space is one of my favourite venues around - cosy and intimate while still having room for 50 - 100 people. The chairs are old school cinema seats and the place always has a warm vibe. Like the last time I played there, Hickory Signals and I collaborated on the majority of my set, which was great fun and made for a slightly different sound - flute solos and excellent improvised drumming is a speciality of their’s along with some beautiful harmonies of course!
On Saturday morning I set off back to Gloucestershire to play at a wedding, but this was no ordinary wedding gig. To cut a long story short - I had been booked separately by both the bride and groom as a surprise for each other - great minds and all that. You can imagine the plotting and scheming that had to go on with the venue manager behind the scenes in order to make sure that the timings were the same and that neither of them found out that neither of them would be surprised. I ended up arriving with all my kit and setting up while they were in the ceremony so that nobody would see me. When the bride and groom came down the steps into the sunshine and I started to play "All About Love" as their first dance, there was a moment where they must have thought each other very ungrateful, but all was swiftly explained and there were smiles all round. Here I am with the happy couple.
You may think that my week was over there, but no no, the adventure continued and I found myself in the familiar surroundings of the Stroud Subscription Rooms to open the Stroud Festival Concert that evening. As always the sound there was fantastic, the welcome incredibly warm and the number of familiar faces a plenty. It was a fantastic way to end the third leg of my UK tour. Thanks to everybody who came along!
I have some very exciting gigs coming up in between my equally exciting living room shows during the next few weeks:
September 28th, 8:30pm - Oporto Bar, Leeds - FREE ENTRY!
October 2nd, 8pm - Tree House Book Shop, Kenilworth, Warwickshire - http://www.wegottickets.com/TreeHouseBookshop
October 3rd, 7:30pm - Spilsby Theatre Cafe,
support from Fern Teather - to reserve tickets 01790 752936
October 4th, 6:30pm - Strawhouse Studio, Rugby, Warwickshire -
This is a public living room gig so only 10 tickets available!
I recorded a new cover (above) earlier this week for your enjoyment :-)
Finally I must tell you that we had to say goodbye to our beloved bear at the weekend, almost a year to the day since the release of “Old Eyes”. Panda was a gentle soul, a loyal friend and cherished childhood companion. He will be missed by our family and many of our friends but never forgotten. Panda Briggs - 1999 - 2015, RIP.
I'm off up North tomorrow for my next set of gigs! More news when I get back :-)
Stage 2 of my Living Room adventure is now complete and I have much to tell you - dragons, war, love, lust, betrayal, heart-break, Kings and Queens…oh no wait, that’s game of thrones - our tales are so similar I got confused.
Anyway, my journey began on Friday with an interview at BBC Radio Oxford. I played “Tilly’s Song” live and spoke with Ali Jones about how much has happened since I quit University last January. If you’d like to catch up on the interview you can do so here - http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p030s9gf - I’m about 1hr 30 into the programme. From Oxford I headed on to Harpenden, which is beautiful, and as I was super early I decided to go for an explore. I wandered around the town, had one of the best smoothies ever (strawberry, papaya etc) and then had a very enjoyable walk around the common. The common is pretty huge (much of it is golf course) so I was walking for a long time, over 2 hours, and I did get lost a couple of times as the posts with the arrows marking the trail are few and far between (there has never been a more perfect opportunity to use that phrase!). The journey was perilous, but I managed, despite the stray golf balls and my growing hunger, to avoid the poisonous berries that surrounded my path at every turn (who needs Game of Thrones hey?! Oh yeh, I do.) and to make it back to the car unscathed. I then headed off to meet my hosts and set up for the gig that evening. And what a gig it was! There was music (obviously), dancing, some jousting dwarves, a whole wild boar roasted…oh no wait, that’s Game of Thrones again, shucks. It really was a fantastic gig though, with laughter, tears, audience participation and lots of lovely people to talk to, yay! Here’s a pic of the tennis-playing, table-laying, club-daying, midnight-staying bunch, thanks for a great evening Team!
The next day I headed back to Gloucestershire for an afternoon garden party, family gathering gig, and wow, what a sizeable family gathering it was! There were even relatives from Chile, who’d come over specially to see me perform (I lie, they were actually there because the host’s son has recently got married to a lovely Chilean girl), and it was amazing to have such a ranges of ages and nationalities in the audience. It was also really nice to play in a marquee on a warm day that was probably the last day of summer, waaaaaaa. Here is a small segment of the brownie-eating, outdoor-seating, cloud-defeating clan, you were wonderful! Apologies for the references to Game of Thrones. I have recently finished the last book in the series so far, and am now having serious withdrawal symptoms. If you have suffered this illness previously, perhaps you could suggest some possible cures.
Next I must thank all of you for supporting the release of “Tilly’s Song” single and video. I really appreciate all of your likes, comments, shares and retweets, and it’s down to you that we’ve already passed 1000 views on YouTube. I’m also very happy to tell you that the single is now available to download from all online stores, and to stream from Spotify among others. Here are the iTunes and Amazon links in case you missed them - https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/tillys-song-single/id1037277110, http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01554QNXI, and don’t forget that there are signed, numbered (1-100) limited edition CDs of Tilly’ Song available via the shop page - http://www.hattiebriggs.co.uk/shop - grab them quick before they’re all gone!
On the subject of Tilly’s Song, PennyblackMusic published this fantastic review of it last week that I'm really chuffed with - http://www.pennyblackmusic.co.uk/MagSitePages/Review/10108/R/Hattie-Briggs-Download-Tillys-Song.
Lastly I must mention some gigs, as really that’s what this whole thing is about (and not Game of Thrones, which is definitely a good thing as all the main characters in the books seem to get killed off all the time or captured and put in a dungeon, or pushed off a cliff, even the singers, and that wouldn’t be ideal so this is much better). And I have 2 regular (non-living-room) gigs coming up this week:
Sept 18th - West St Loft, Shoreham - http://www.wegottickets.com/event/328941 - this is a very small venue and I know that most of the tickets have gone already so booking is definitely the safer option.
Sept 19th - Stroud Folk Festival, Stroud Sub Rooms - http://purchase.tickets.com/buy/TicketPurchase?agency=SUBSCRIPTION&organ_val=22548 - I’m on at 6pm on the Saturday.
Final final thing is that I’m looking for a LIVING ROOM GIG or 2 on the 28th/29th of November, somewhere in the vicinity of Peterborough/Cambridge/Norwich. If you’re interested in finding out more, please email me on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cheers ma dears!
Well hello there! Here we are again and I have lots more news for you because as a wise girl once said "no news is not good news (unless the news is bad news), but this news isn't of that kind". So anyway, my Living Room Tour has started with a bang, and I have 3 very different, but very wonderful gigs to tell you about!
My first gig of the tour was in Cofton Hackett near Birmingham and I managed to get there on time without filling up with the wrong fuel (I’m borrowing my Mum’s car because I can’t fit everything into mine) or getting lost, despite there being a crash on the M5, which I managed to avoid rather expertly - well done me! That evening I performed for a small but perfectly formed bunch of lovely people, and to their dog called Ruby, who seemed to have powers unknown to her owners. I kid you not, half way through “Old Eyes” (which is about my dog) Ruby came into the room, stood right in front of me and stared deep into my eyes, before lying down and staying there for the rest of the song, after which she got up and walked out again. It was so weird and wonderful, we couldn’t quite believe it! Luckily we’ve got a picture for proof :-)
The next day I went into Birmingham to catch up with a friend who has just started a teaching job there. We went for a very enjoyable walk in the park and stumbled upon a flowers and vegetable show. I honestly didn’t realise leeks could get that big - you could feed a small army with a couple of those. Then in the late afternoon I headed off to Halesowen for a gig that couldn’t have been more different from the night before. The living room was absolutely crammed - we had people sitting on the floor and people standing at the back as well as people on chairs in the middle. What a bonkers group of people! It was a brilliant evening, really interactive with questions asked about how the songs were written and how my mind works (I don't know!). It was filled with laughter, enthusiasm and crowd participation - I really couldn’t ask for more, and it was lovely to meet so many of you and have a proper chat before and afterwards.
On to gig number 3 in London. My journey there wasn't quite as smooth as I'd hoped, with every other road closed, but I got there in the end to a very welcoming group and the most perfect living room, which must have been unconsciously designed with private gigs in mind. The evening was opened by a newly formed trio made up of the host and 2 friends, who had us all singing along in no time. “Jolene” and “Wagon Wheel” were included in the very well chosen set list. Then it was my turn, and once again I couldn’t have asked for a more attentive audience, or more hummus and pitta bread! Apologies to those who aren't in the photo because I forgot to take it until half of you had left.
The one thing that all these gigs had in common was that everybody I met was really lovely and I was looked after amazingly well. Also, everyone massively over catered on the food so will probably be living on pork pie, crisps, sausage rolls and dips for the next month, but ah well, there are worse things. Thank you so much to my first three hosts and everybody else who made me feel welcome. If this is anything to go by, the tour is going to be a huge success!
The next thing to say is that Tilly’s Song has now been released on iTunes https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/tillys-song-single/id1037277110 and will be available on all other online stores from this Sunday. Thanks for all your support with liking and sharing the music video https://youtu.be/I9Q5868iRMY - it's almost up to 1000 views on YouTube already!
If you’d like to purchase Tilly’s Song as a LIMITED EDITION CD then look no further, as they are now available via my “shop” page http://www.hattiebriggs.co.uk/shop - 100 copies numbered and signed. These are selling fast so get in there quick before they're all gone!
Talking of my website, the Holland tour now has it’s own page, so for full gigs listings, updates etc head over to http://www.hattiebriggs.co.uk/holland-tour.
Crikey, this is a long one! Last thing - I have 3 non-tour gigs coming up this month all of which I am greatly looking forward to:
Sept 18th, West St Loft, Shoreham - http://www.wegottickets.com/event/328941
Sept 19th, Stroud Folk Festival, Stroud Sub Rooms - 01453 760900 or http://purchase.tickets.com/buy/TicketPurchase?agency=SUBSCRIPTION&organ_val=22548
Sept 28th, Oporto Bar, Leeds - FREE ENTRY
For full details and listings - http://www.hattiebriggs.co.uk/current-gigs
I hope you can make it!!
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