Posts Tagged ‘Lists’

A Year Upside Down

Thursday, January 2nd, 2014

2013 was spent in the glorious, most beautiful, breathtaking yet easy-going place I’ve ever been. The year at the Edge Of The World.

I watched some films, some TV shows and read some books. I even listened to a bunch of new music and some old music. This year though, my lists are just one and the theme is just me. And I am proper grateful for everything the universe has sent me.

1. I saw lots of mountains and the ocean. I saw things I’ve never even dreamed of. I did real physical outdoors work for the first time in my life. I wrote about some of it on the internet: Bimbling Along

2. I wrote some things that people liked enough to publish: the girls are and Hit and Miss

3. I played a packed gig in an important bar

4. I played a tiny gig to an audience of one in a very very important bar

5. I taught some incredible people how to speak and sing, then I set up a choir

6. I went on lots of beautiful, funny roadtrips and weekends away

7. I saw a screening of a film that changed my whole perspective on the world and I made the filmmaker become my friend

8. I was bench coach for 2 roller derby bouts with some of the best skaters in the country

9. I set up a new jeerleading squad the Rumbles and then let them fly by themselves

10. I survived the biggest storms I’ve been in and My First Ever Earthquakes (peaking at a not-too-shabby 6.5). I looked at the biggest, most stunning skies and sunsets I’ve ever seen

11. I filled in heaps of seemingly boring but actually exciting long forms

12. I made a whole bunch of new friends and learned how much I love my existing ones

13. I learned the difference between cultures who build stuff to claim land and cultures who live alongside the land with respect for nature and science

14. Cats. Lots and lots of cats.

15. I spent some time with a very special, kind and generous Hot Boy who repeatedly changes my life and who is, before you ask, definitely a Harley

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The year ahead holds many incredible surprises and I am filled with hope and reinvigorated ambition and thirst for more travel, adventure and bravery.

2014 will be The Year Folded In Half and it will be THE BEST YEAR EVER.

The Year The World Didn’t End

Tuesday, January 1st, 2013

WOWEEEEEEEEEEEE! WHAT A FUCKING STUPENDOUS YEAR THAT WAS.

I hope y’all had amazing times and did all the things on your to-do lists. I have had to start all sorts of new lists to prepare myself for 2013, a new to-do list, a new ambition list, a new crush list.

2012 has been full of more love and more fun than just one little person deserves. Adventure, inspiration and excitement are the focus of the next 12 months and “Just Get Really Good At What You Do” is my 2013 motto. Meeting lots of new people and cherishing the ones I already know is number 1 on my agenda.

Best Bits of 2012

I played Broomball, Jeered at some incredible London Rollergirls bouts, facilitated singing sessions with kids who are non-verbal, saw my artistic development programme for disabled musicians get funding, guested on the She Makes War album along with some other amazing artists.

I was commissioned as a composer twice, hung out with some brilliant life-changing people, tried to play ping pong, danced a LOT, laughed (so hard I cried) every week.

I finished working with the wonderful Drake Music after around 7 and a half years. I’ve never been prouder of anything as much as being a part of changing this failing organisation into a progressive leader in the field of music, technology and accessibility. The people I met while there and the experiences we had together will stay with me for the rest of my life. I hope I will work with them again in the future.

I danced on some tables at the BFI. I met some of the amazing people involved in the Barcelona post-porn scene and watched a hot boy stick needles into one of them. I was an extra in a fascinating photo project and got filmed licking a sign saying “Hot”.

The Fattylympics was one of the best, most life-affirming days of my whole life. Fatties and their allies gathered for fun and games including Twirling, Rolling and the wonderful Chubrobics. Zines about how to love your body the way it is were alongside yummy food and gorgeous clothes and fun stuff on the stalls.

I watched Empire Records on a roof with some of my favourite people. I watched Kate Tempest’s play Wasted at the Roundhouse with some more of my favourite people.

I learned to ride a bike, put on a party in an empty pub, tried to bowl, ate a LOT of cider and chips.

I didn’t sleep enough but had lots of bed parties, talked to some of my heroes and crushes, went to a book launch on a boat, went to some film festivals and saw Cirkus CirkorBoom Boom Club, Penny Arcade and La Soiree. I saw Nigel Charnock’s beautiful Haunted By The Future.

Someone very special invented a delicious cake for me and then some famous people tweeted about it.

I travelled into The Future. The world didn’t end.

So, all that’s left to do now are the lists:

Top 5 gigs of 2012

(7 this year!)

Fever Fever’s final ever show, Lexington London

Bright Light Bright Light, Cargo London

Paul Simon and Ladysmith Black Mambazo doing the whole of Graceland, Hyde Park London

Dry The River, Shepherd’s Bush Empire London

Micachu and The Shapes, The Arcola Tent London

Slow Club and Spaceships Are Cool, Village Underground London

Zombie Zombie, the Lexington London

Special mentions for Band Band at Pony, Melbourne; Midwinter Picnic at West Hill Hall, Brighton; Chris T-T singing A A Milne at King’s Place, London; and the Bermuda Triangle Transmission set at the Resonance FM party.

Top 5 albums of 2012

I haven’t listened to a lot of new stuff this year so I found this category tricky. I adore Dan Le Sac’s Space Between The Words, Jack White’s Blunderbuss and Michachu & The Shapes’s Never.

Most other new stuff I have heard recently has been pretty boring to tell you the truth. I’ve listened to a lot of older stuff, rock n roll, 90s punk/emo, riot grrrl, hip hop, 60s girl bands, doo-wop. Some of which I’d heard before, some of which I hadn’t.

2013 is the year for getting everyone back into music that sounds like there are bits falling off or it’s been stuck together from things found in skips. There hasn’t been enough drum ‘n’ bass in my life (I’ve missed it a lot). It will be the year for real music and real musicians, for finding new sounds and making beautiful songs.

Top 5 books I read in 2012

Venus As A Boy, Luke Sutherland

Short Stack, For Books’ Sake/Pulp Press

Assume Nothing, Rebecca Swan

Nights At The Circus, Angela Carter

No Room For Secrets, Joanna Lumley

Best TV shows I saw in 2012

Generation Kill, Game of Thrones, Breaking Bad, Sons Of Anarchy, Doctor Who, Mad Men

Best films I saw in 2012

Far ahead of the rest is the stunningly beautiful The Adventures of Prince Achmed. See it if you’ve never seen it. Get a projector and watch it with friends.

Whale Rider, But I’m A Cheerleader, Boy, Eagle vs Shark, No Country For Old Men, The Girl Bunnies, Drive, Once Were Warriors, Keep on Livin’ and Extracting The Bomp.

Top 5 Welsh people of 2012

Kate Ellis

The Tiger Bay Brawlers

Abigail Chicken

The owners of Dragon Bar, Wellington (which I haven’t been to yet)

My Mum

Top 5 bars of 2012

Matterhorn and S & M’s, Cuba Street

The Swan, Southwark

Bar, Lower Marsh, Southwark

The Old Haberdasher, New Cross

Mr Lawrence’s, Brockley

Best shops/places of 2012

Bad Rep at the Resistance Gallery (monthly) was the best thing that’s happened to me in a long time

Unskinny Bop at Bethnal Green Working Men’s Club

Prick Tattoo, Shoreditch

Te Papa, Wellington

The London Particular, New Cross

Allpress, Shoreditch

Most embarrassing moment of 2012

Hiding behind one of my very favourite rollergirls while a female performance artist ejaculated on us. You can’t make this stuff up.

Inspirations

Food, Maps, Nature/Weather, Harley-Davidson, New Zealanders, Roller Derby, Kittens and Ponies, Nerds.

Normal clothes as fancy dress

There’s not been enough of this this year. I think my favourite has to be when I was A Parcel.

Biggest lessons I’ve learnt

When good stuff happens, enjoy it. You deserve it. Don’t second-guess or over-think. Appreciate the positive things. Be bright and bold. Do stuff. Life is long. Go on adventures. Listen to lots of other people’s stories. Ask questions.

Show people how much you love them. Hold on to the good stuff. Keep in touch. Geography means nothing. Write In Real Life letters and cards.

Have high standards. Expect good things. Keep your integrity. Everything is funny if viewed from the right angle.

extra special Thank Yous for bringing me magic in 2012

Charlie Brown, Jane Bradley, Cassie Vallance, Roseanna Everitt, Becca Horn, Melanie Clifford, Vikki Von Vixen & T, Kayleigh O’Shea, Eva Monkey & Kate Ellis, Kyle Gibbens, Holly Casio, Nicholas Graham Smith, Jen Macro, Annette Barlow, Kathy Taylor-Jones, Chud & Ruth, Becky Davey & Brad Perry, Gawain Hewitt, Emma Hogan, Penny Lane, Lola & Mariana, Nathan Harrow & Malika Mezeli, Tom Snowdon, Alex Anderson, Colin & Paula McCracken, Hera, and all my family.

2011 The Year Of The Pom

Saturday, December 31st, 2011

I’m not going to lie, 2011 almost entirely sucked. As you know, I try to remain positive so let’s not dwell on the rubbish bits.

The positive bits have been amazing, beautiful and a little bit overwhelming. I am very much looking forward to 2012 and all it brings. It will be an important special year.

As is tradition, here is a round-up of the year that was.

Overall Best Moments

Became a Jeerio, visited Bali, had My First Ever Cup Of Coffee, solo UK tour, Brighton Tattoo Convention, London Chocolate Festival, Scifi London Festival, pitched a Hello Kitty party-girl tent, set up Turn The Tables, watched a lot of roller derby, rode on a big wheel, started my second tattoo, went to Trill Farm, Hannah & Mike’s wedding.

There are two memories that will last forever from 2011:

  • 13th July 2011 the moment when pom poms were put in my hands at Jerwood Space, London
  • 17th October 2011 the moment when I saw the ocean from a beach in Bali, Indonesia

Top 5 gigs of 2011: Extra Special Mention for The Best Gig I’ve Ever Been To: Prince at Hop Farm

  1. PJ Harvey at Troxy
  2. Robyn at the Roundhouse
  3. Shonen Knife and Smallgang at Scala
  4. Hop Farm Festival: especially Sound Of Rum, James Yuill and Dry The River
  5. High Voltage Festival: especially Dream Theater, Queensryche and Judas Priest

Special mentions for: Something Beginning With L & Singing Adams at 12 Bar; Envy & Bellatrix at Spit launch; Chris T-T at Old Blue Last; Tom Williams and The Boat, My First Tooth, She Makes War at Borderline; We Are Lizards (Scroobius Pip) at The Book Club, The Indelicates, Dave Hughes & The Renegade Folk Punk Band at 13th Note; Chris T-T, MJ Hibbett at Portland Arms.

Top 5 Bars of 2011:

  • Tsuru, Southwark
  • Old Blue Last, Shoreditch
  • Facebar/Mixwells/Bali Joe/Club Cosmo/Potato Head/Ganesha Beach, Seminyak, Bali
  • The Kenton, Hackney
  • Off Broadway, Hackney

All the bars I’ve played in during 2011 are listed on my Live page. They all deserve a special mention, particularly 13th Note in Glasgow.

The Best 5 Welsh People of 2011:

  1. Adam Walton
  2. Bethan Elfyn
  3. Becky Davey
  4. Clare Potts
  5. Megan Peppin

Top 5 Websites of 2011:

  1. The Girls Are
  2. For Book’s Sake
  3. Derby News Network
  4. NASA TV
  5. TED

Best Shops/Places of 2011:

  1. Prick Tattoo
  2. Vision Hairdressers
  3. Rich Mix
  4. The London Particular

Normal Clothes As Fancy Dress

Shakespeare Hero

Peter Pan

Lady Gaga

A Chef

Barbie/Doll

This year’s lists are brief. I haven’t listed my favourite albums or films of this year because looking back on 2011 has been a bit tricky. Having said that, I met new and existing friends who are really incredible people and have had a massive impact on my life already. Most of them don’t know half of the good they have done and I’m not sure if I’ll ever be able to show them my appreciation.

And now we go into 2012: the year of travel, the year of love. I am filled with hope and excitement for the future. This will be the best year ever.

No bravado.

AMx

Rainy June

Saturday, June 18th, 2011

IMG_0349

Argh! So much has happened since I did a proper blog I don’t know where to start. With a list of course!

  • In October 2010 I had the start of my first ever tattoo. It was finished in February 2011 and is one of the best things I’ve ever done. I love it and I am so grateful to the artist Henry Hate. He is like the Juliette Binoche character from Chocolat but for tattoos. I went in with an idea and came out with my soul on my skin.
  • I did my first ever solo tour of the UK. Unfortunately I didn’t manage to book any Wales gigs this time round but I’m hoping to soon enough. I went to Bristol, Cambridge, Glasgow and Ayr. The Scottish gigs were with tour buddy Dave Hughes who is like a cross between Shane MacGowan and Macaulay Culkin and knows more about Bruce Springsteen than anyone I know. I had tonnes of fun and adventures along the way. The new set-up using a small 80s keyboard rather than my big full-size one works much better (even though it does leave me with nothing to hide behind!).
  • I have new hair. It is short-ish and blonde. I adore it. The best hairdresser I’ve ever had did it. You can find her on Twitter. If I ever get a world tour, Sapphire is coming with me to do my hair.
  • I finally got to the Out Of This World exhibition at the British Library. It is fantastic. The only frustrating thing is not being able to touch and smell the original copies of these wonderful books. I will be going back again before it finishes.
  • My favourite wannbe-rollergirl’s boyfriend arranged an incredible birthday surprise treasure hunt for her around the National Galleries and Trafalgar Square. Her closest friends all dressed up as characters from her two favourite stories: Alice In Wonderland and Mary Poppins. It caused a bit of a ruckus when security tried to chuck us out though and we ended up being chased by around 7 security guards. It all ended in a tea party. I was the Cheshire Cat, obvs.

Future things:

  • The Very Exciting Thing I am doing is now underway. I still can’t say much about it but as soon as I can I will let you know. At the moment it is just in the research stages.
  • I booked my first holiday for about 5 years: In October I’ll be visiting one of my best friends in Bangkok then we’re also going to Bali too! I almost fainted when I read the confirmation emails. I have been ordered I’m not allowed to do any work at all while I’m there. I might have to sneak some online time to dispel any withdrawal symptoms!
  • The new single Milk and Water is almost ready. It has been a labour of love.
  • The artist development programme I created for Drake Music has finally been given a little bit of money for the first session. I’m really looking forward to it although it means more work for me!
  • Lots of changes have happened that make me think East London might not be the place for me soon, I love it here and of course my heart will always belong to London but I’m thinking more and more about moving away. I won’t be going too far and I’m sure you’ll read about this in the forthcoming year.
  • And FINALLY I am planning my next party. It won’t be until the autumn and will have a very different feel as well as be a more ‘exclusive’ event. More to follow!

So all in all a transforming few months. Not sure what’s next, which is (as you know) how I like it. Exciting times. #followthesigns

London Tips

Wednesday, March 16th, 2011

1. Buy an A to Z

2. Go out without anywhere to go

3. Walk or Get the Bus

4. Look up as well as down

5. Speak to strangers

At The Gates Of 2011

Saturday, January 1st, 2011

Welcome to 2011. None of us have any money and many don’t have access to adequate healthcare, social services or education. But we do have a fresh start. We have each other. And music. There’s always the music.

Aims/Hopes:

Play loads of gigs

Finish the next single and the album

Find Toto

Get taken to Japan [Shut up, it could totally happen]

Visit California and Thailand

Dance more

Live consciously and give to others

Playlist (on Spotify)

The Tin Man Grasscut

Second Life Zach Hill

Made By Maid Laura Marling

Why Do You Let Me Stay Here She & Him

Every Exception Has Its Rule Blood Command

Fallen Angel Poison

Seasons of Love Cast of Rent

It Takes Blood And Guts To Be This Cool Skunk Anansie

Sweet Dreams Eurythmics

Shitlist L-7

Dancing In The Dark Bruce Springsteen

I Punched A Lion In The Throat Pulled Apart By Horses

Little Lion Man Mumford & Sons

Cliffs Karen O & the kids

28 Days Later London Music Works

London Is The Reason Gallows

London Loves Blur

Olympian She Makes War

You Don’t Own Me Dusty Springfield

Love The Lie Sage Francis

Pretty Good Year Tori Amos

It Had To Be You Harry Connick Jr

(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction Cat Power

Friendship Station Le Tigre

Next Girl The Black Keys

Where Is My Mind? Pixies

Ever Fallen In Love (With Someone You Shouldn’t've) The Buzzcocks

Somewhere Over The Rainbow Judy Garland

Round It Up! 2010

Sunday, December 26th, 2010

Wow. Ummm. Almost speechless (Almost but not quite!)

2010 was the year that was. The year that changed my life. The best, most amazing, magical, phenomenal, happiest, luckiest year ever and it’s nearly over. I met truly wonderful people, some of whom I am now lucky enough to call friends. I reforged existing friendships and strengthened bonds with family. People were more kind and generous than I could ever imagine. I discovered you can’t take the party out of the girl, no matter how hard you try.

And I am truly grateful. Grateful for it all.

So while I write a list of secret things in preparation for the year to come and all the hard work and excitement it holds, here’s a round-up of 2010…

Best Moments:

getting my first tattoo, The Crush List party, having my first ever guitar lesson, launching The Angel EP, spending Halloween in the cinema, laughing so hard I cried, watching shooting stars on Hampstead Heath, something I can’t say, getting a black AAA wristband for a festival, spending time with my nieces, walking through London at night, being longlisted for the Just A Girl competition, assisting on Chris T-T’s LINR tour, having my nails done in the street, watching Roller Derby, learning Reiki 2, going to fashion parties, seeing Alex CF’s Many Dead Things exhibition, dancing in the basement at Ladybird, dancing upstairs at Catch, meeting China Miéville (twice), following signs and not knowing where they will lead.

Top 5 gigs of 2010:

1. Dan le Sac vs Scroobius Pip at Shepherd’s Bush Empire

2. Sage Francis and B. Dolan at the Scala

3. Islet and Pulled Apart By Horses at Truck

4. Fever Fever at The Windmill

5. Liars and Efterklang at Standon Calling

Special mentions for Something Beginning With L, John John Slave, Chris T-T, the Hoodrats, She Makes War, Dry The River, 30lbs of Bone, Mary Epworth and the Jubilee Band, Akira the Don, Le Dance Pour La Floor, Gill Sandell, Tunnels, Justice Force 5.

Top 5 albums of 2010:

1. The Logic of Chance – Dan le Sac vs Scroobius Pip

2. Pulled Apart By Horses – Pulled Apart By Horses

3. Learning – Perfume Genius

4. Body Talk (part 1) – Robyn

5. Ghostclocks – Blood Command

Albums you should also go and buy: Method (30lbs of Bone), 1 Inch/1/2 Mile (Grasscut), The Kidnapping of Akira The Don by Joey 2 Tits (Akira the Don and Joey 2 Tits), Love is not Rescue (Chris T-T), Tarry Awhile (Gill Sandell), Wimmy and Celebrate This Place (Islet), Disarm (She Makes War), Body Talk (part 2) (Robyn), Crystal Castles (II) (Crystal Castles), Latin (Holy Fuck), European Monsoon (Pagan Wanderer Lu), I Speak Because I Can (Laura Marling), The Sea (Corinne Bailey Rae).

Top 5 TV shows I saw in 2010:

1. Carnivàle

2. Twin Peaks

3. Fringe

4. Misfits

5. Mad Men

This is England 86 and The Walking Dead would’ve been 6 and 7

Best films I saw for the first time in 2010:

Let The Right One In, Amer, We Are What We Are (minus the last 5 minutes), Night of the Living Dead, Splice (minus the last 5 minutes), Where The Wild Things Are, The Scouting Book For Boys, Inception, Them (minus the last 5 minutes), Valley of the Dolls, Coco Before Chanel, Juno, Whip It, Kick-Ass, The Science of Sleep, Frenzy, Spider Baby

Most Disappointing films I saw in 2010:

500 Days of Summer, Kick-Ass (I know), Altitude

The best 5 Welsh people of 2010:

1. Roseanna Everitt

2. Emma Hogan

3. Sarah Harries

4. Noreen Blanluet

5. Mags Anthony

Top castles of 2010:

Castell Coch, Nottingham Castle.

Top 5 bars of 2010:

1. BFI Riverfront Bar, Southwark

2. Catch, Shoreditch

3. Ladybird Bar, Islington

4. Prague Bar, Shoreditch

5. The Approach, Bethnal Green

The bar at Udderbelly would be on the list if it wasn’t pop-up/temporary.

Top 5 books of 2010:

1. The Walking Dead

2. Kraken

3. The Human Nature of the Singing Voice

4. Storage Stories

5. A Concise History of Costume

Most embarrassing moment of 2010:

Getting asked for ID on a first date and being refused alcohol because I didn’t have any. It wasn’t in East London and I was wearing heels. I wanted the ground to swallow me up and properly didn’t make the situation any better but won’t share the rest on here.

Most over-used conversation of 2010:

“Is she taking the piss?” “No, that’s just her face”

“She does that to everyone, she doesn’t fancy you”

Inspirations: wings, crushes, quantum physics, compasses, clifftops, magic, corsets, limbs, clocks, gears, hearts, nakedness, castles and (as always) dancing and the circus/carnival.

Normal Clothes as Fancy Dress:

Dorothy Gale

Zombie-fighter

Peter Pan

Street-urchin

Biggest lesson I learnt:

It hasn’t all been good, we’ve lost a lot of good people, many of whom chose to take their own lives. Times have changed for the worse politically and financially. Sometimes it’s hard to see past the sadness, past the fear.

HOWEVER:

There are people who see you; past all the bullshit, bravado and masks you wear. They hold a mirror up to you and show you all the wonderful things you can be. They teach you how to be better than you are. These are the only people who matter. They are the ones who make you a better version of yourself. They are the ones who will still be there when you fail. These will be the people who go to your funeral.

These are the people you should cherish. They are your family, whether blood or water.

Oh, AND you can do anything you put your mind to, however impossible it first seems. All you need is faith, energy and a lot of hard work. You have to keep trying, whatever happens, whatever obstacles are in your way.