‘One of the albums of the year’ and Nico x2

Ey Up y’all!

Well today was a different kind of day in that I went off down to see the lovely Stu Hanna to begin rehearsals for the ‘Lucy Ward Band Awesome Swanky London Album Launch’ (official title of course hehe – tickets found HERE)

But then my phone start bleeping off the hook…that sounds odd…what I mean is, emails flying into my inbox, texts arriving, missed calls – the whole shabang! and then it dawned on me, something must have cracked off, and it had, the first reviews of Single Flame had come in that morning.

ARRRGGHHH! Was my first thought, but then I resolved I should at least read them before I ARRRGGHH and you know what, I’m glad I did.

Spiral Earth and FRoots both released their reviews today and here be a whistle-stop tour of what they said as I know y’all busy bees

Spiral Earth:

‘When I listened to [Single Flame] my reaction was one of astonishment – This album tears up the rule book and Lucy puts her fist through the door marked ‘predictability’

‘On the opening track I Cannot Say I Will Not Speak she sounds like a Northern Nico, her voice is haunting and stern against the beat of a drum. That surprise sets the tone for all of this amazing album, it feels like a recording that should have come out mid career, where are the lost albums between this one and her debut? I looked away and she developed from singer songwriter to star.’

‘Lucy Ward is best when her great voice is like a great tree fast against the storms and sunshine that beat down upon it… One of the albums of the year for sure.’

FRoots:

‘[For The Dead Men] showed a deeper, much darker side to her that’s evident  here and which explodes with such extraordinarily powerful resonance on this album, she’s barely recognisable as the singer who gave us Adelphi Has To Fly. In two years she’s blossomed into a challenging songwriter and a richly involving singer with mature and accomplished arrangements’

‘…sounding like a brooding cross between June Tabor and Nico…’

‘…Lucy Ward has grown up…’

~~~~~~~~

Not sure if I would agree with the growing up part ;p but I will certainly take the dual Nico comments and the general positive loveliness on offer. I said this last time round with Adelphi, but I think making album is very much like giving birth…all your hopes and fears all package up in one neat bundle that eventually goes into the world to be judged. I am very glad that the first people Single Flame has met seem to think she’s cool 🙂

Can you call albums ‘she’? I dunno, but you can pre-order her HERE

Anyways in case ye missed it yesterday here is my brand spanking new music video. I give you ‘Icarus’

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‘Single Flame’ Pre Sale Chart Mission!!

Ey Up,

How are you this fine drizzly morning? Grand I hope 😀

Well I am very excitable today because my new album is up for pre-sale!!! Squeeeee!!!!

You can find it HERE

And in honour of this momentous day here is a cheeky gleg at the track listing and artwork for the back of the record

Hope you like it :)

Hope you like it 🙂

.A psychedelic treat from the lovely Elly Lucas.

Until it’s full release on 19th August (when it will be available at all good music outlets) you can get Single Flame from propermusic.com, itunes and a certain tax dodging company named after a jungle.

Why should we buy it on pre-sale? I hear you cry

Well of course it is totally up to you 🙂 you know I am not a pushy sales lady in real life, but every copy you buy pre-sale adds up for the UK Album Charts so if you feel so inclined to buy one for yourself, your friend, your dog, your cat, your mortgage advisor and your doctor then feel free :p

Have a great week, and I’ll catch you soon

Luce xx

 

New Album Announcement!!!

Ey Up!

The day has come! I can finally announce the name of new record!!!

Here’s the vid I posted this morning…I also genuinely recorded it this morning, it takes A LOT of tea to make me look that awake of a morn…nothing I can do about the tired voice hehe

 

As you heard there, Single Flame will be released on 19th August 2013 ARRGGGHHH 😀

Keep your eyes peeled for all sorts of little tasters and treats as the time draws near, and those of you who are signed up to my mailing listcan also expect extra special exclusives to hear and see things before anybody else and opportunities to win all kinds of exciting stuff 🙂

Ciao for now

Luce xx

 

The Flown Tour : Part Uno!

Eh Up 🙂

How’s it going you lovely lot? I am well thanks, I have been working hard since we last spoke and catching up with the tv brilliance that is ‘Nashville‘! Have you seen it?! The music is flipping ace! It’s got me feeling all inspired to write a country album :p hehe or to at least crack out my Patsy Cline vinyls!

So then, the tour has officially kicked off, I have done 4 gigs, and it has been a blast, I am loving being out on the road again, gigging, meeting loads of new folk, catching up with old friends – to cut a long story short – I’m having a ball! 😀 And thankfully there is plenty of touring still to be had 🙂 I’ll be in StaffordshireKent (Just 8 tickets left!), Sheffield (Limited availability), Lincolnshire (Just 8 tickets left!) , DevonSouthportKetteringBedfordshire and Hull before the spring is out!

As part of this tour I will also be doing two rare gigs with The Lucy Ward Band 😀 Members of the band include the gorgeous, uber talented, BBC Radio 2 Folk Award nominees O’Hooley and Tidow, Sam Pegg on bass guitar and Joy Gravestock on strings. Catch us…

18th April – Derby Guildhall  (Limited Availability – Can’t wait to play my home town!)

19th April – Abingdon Guildhall

————————

Anyways, shameless plug over, here is a little round up on what has happened so far on this here spring tour 🙂

The tour kicked off in Croydon with a night hosted in super indie, super lovely Matthews Yard. The first thing that told me that this was gonna be a great gig was cos people were allowed to bring cups of tea into the gig…how brilliant is that! But hot beverages aside, two great support acts, 1 young duo just starting out (in fact it was their first gig) and comedy songstress Jenny Lockyer kicked off the night in style

Another reason I was proper chuffed was because we reached ’emergency chairs’ capacity, which is always a good sign 🙂

The gig went well and the audience were lovely. Afterwards I asked a lady if she knew of anywhere good to get some grub (cos I have always have the major munchies after playing) and it turned out she was the land lady of  fantastic local pub, The Green Dragon, and though the kitchens were closed she went and personally cooked me and Rob chip butties 🙂 GET IN!

Bit dark but YAY for chip butties!

Bit dark but YAY for chip butties!

The next day the tour took a turn further south with a stop at Burgess Hill Fairtrade Festival supporting the mighty Martin SimpsonI was bricking it, naturally, but Martin was really lovely and I can now say I have sat down to lasagne with the great man himself (pretty cool eh?!). This was the only support spot in the tour, but (in addition to supporting Martin Simpson) to be part of this festival which works so hard to highlight the core issues surrounding Fairtrade and to educate us on how we can all make a conscious effort to support justice and equality in our day to day lives, was just too important a thing to miss.

Back up in the midlands, a gig at Tump Folk Club, where not only tea was served but you could get it in whacking, great, massive 6 cup teapots HAPPY DAYS 😀 hehe! A cracking club with a lovely audience, I was supported by the americana influenced outfit Borderline Crossing, they’ve got a real groove to their music those guys and a fun night was had. I also got gifted some proper fancy macaroons…which were amazing! 

Lastly for this update, it was off Macclesfield way to Bollington Arts Centre, a gorgeous venue in a converted Methodist church. And it turned out to be a really special gig, as loads of you folks that I have met over the years came down to say hello and the energy in the room was buzzing. Plus it was sold out which was a right cheeky bonus! 😀

Right then folks, you take care and I’ll hopefully see you somewhere soon

Luce xx

Belated 2012 round up, the future and so on :)

I am sure you have all seen the terrible news this week about the tragic accident at a Fisherman’s Friends show that killed Paul McMullen and Trevor Grills. I have written this blog today with a sadness in my heart as it was over 2012 that I met, worked with and became friends with both of these kind and talented men. My love and thoughts go out to their families in this time of great tragedy. Both Paul and Trevor made an impact on many peoples lives and they will not be forgotten.

Ey Up 🙂

Well here we are, 2013.

What with having the lurgy and starting to record the new album, January kinda flew by and before i knew it…it had gone. But even though we have now rolled on into February this IS the first blog post of the new year, so it seems appropriate to do a quick round up on all the mentalness that 2012 held…so here we go, a whistle stop tour of the year that was! Bestest highlights only to keep this blog to novella length hehe! 🙂

January:

  • I started the year with a lovely writing holiday on the Devon/Cornwall border, in an attempt to kick start my mind into second album gear 🙂 I think I succeeded more in scaring myself half to death with the thought of ‘the difficult second album’ but a year later it’s all written and I am finally in the studio laying it all down 🙂
  • My first Derbyshire Volounteers gig – This was veryyyyyy special, I had been inducted into the ranks of ‘official’ Derbyshire Folkies, playing in a scratch band with the likes of John Tams, Barry Coope, Fi Fraser, Kendrick:Needham, Cupola, Mick Peat and more…there are nearly 20 of us in total! It’s just an amazing opportunity to play with a myriad of ridiculously brilliant and giving musicians, plus I think I am the honorary baby of the group which is quite a nice experience hehe
  • For The Dead Men was released…

February:

  • THE FOLK AWARDS! what an amazing experience that was, and looking back nearly a year on; what an array of amazing opportunities that award has brought my way…a really special evening that I certainly won’t be forgetting in a hurry. Click here for full blog on the folk awards!

March:

  • I went on tour with the lovely Phil Beer, the man is truly a ledge! Beautiful music, beautiful venues and a particularly beautiful sandwich in Torrington I seem to recall, cheese and pickle, mmmm
  • I moved house, and painted it every colour you can imagine…BUT NOT MAGNOLIA! 😀 I also put a tardis in the kitchen, you know, just in case the doctor wants to come for tea 🙂
Polyfilla Poser

Polyfilla Poser

April:

  • I visited the hallowed halls of Cecil Sharp House for the very first time. I guess for all folkies the place has a strange majesty to it (sounds daft but it certainly evokes that feeling in me); perhaps because you know it holds the roots of  the tradition, or perhaps it’s the gorgeous little bijou cafe, either way, it’s worth a visit. I was supporting my self pronouced ‘surrogate lesbian parents’ O’Hooley and Tidow (btw, have you listened to their 2nd album yet? It’s beautiful!) Find more about their music here.
  • We got kittens! And they are well cool! Totally make the house, I named mine Ziggy Stardust, for this reason: ‘Screwed up eyes and screwed down hair-do, like some CAT from Japan’…’Well hung with a SNOW WHITE tan’…there really is no better name for a white cat wouldn’t you agree? 🙂
Ziggy

Ziggy

May:

  • Rob got Laser eyes! I was kind of hoping that this would mean he would be like Cyclops from X-Men and be able shoot lasers out of his eyes…apparently, that not how it works 😦 boooo! but none the less this got a mention because science is amazing, a 7 miunte procedure followed by perfect vision, it’s just unbelieveable! 🙂
  • I somehow managed to land myself a gig at the famous Ronnies’ Bar, yep, i do mean the famous jazz club Ronnies Bar, but what a spectacular evening it was. I’ll be honest, I was pretty apprehensive as to whether he audience would go for my brand of daft banter but they were well up for it. It was transformed into a folk club in minutes and I am very proud to say that I even had the suited and booted business men singing ‘Maids When You’re Young’ hehe 😀
  • May also saw me headline a festival for the first time ever. The small but perfectly formed Doncaster Folk Festival! You know what, I spent my childhood going to music and new age festivals, I spend my working life at Folk Festivals, and this festival, despite being a very simple and small set up, has an amazing vibe. The crowd are always up for a laugh, they are warm and giving and it’s all indoors so no mud (I am not put off by a bit of mud but it is a pain when you’re carting stuff about) Plus there are hot homemade stews on a dolly trolly…whats not to like!
  • It’s very rare that musicians get to go to gigs cos they are always gigging themselves;  and in all honesty, when I aint gigging, the novelty of a night in is sometimes just too much to resist. But back in May me and Rob went to see Coldplay for the 2nd time, and I tell you, big arena concerts aren’t my fave (if you are at the back you sometimes can feel so disjointed from the gig that you feel you might as well be watching it on the telly) but this gig was amazing! An inclusive, emotional and communal experience from start to finish. Cracking night!
I love you Chris Martin!!!

I love you Chris Martin!!!

June:

  • Festival season was well underway by this point, and the  true beginning of my summer under canvas…i am definitely the queen of camp! Palatial tent for the win!
  • Cupola:Ward had it’s first gig. Tis proper exciting to be part of band, especially cos I almost always play solo! And even more especially because Cupola are all so flipping talented, I just get to prance around pretending I’m Mick Jagger or Iggy Pop :p
  • Mills and Chimneys combined with mighty Sinphonia Viva to undertake a mammoth project involving schools from all over Derbyshire in composing music and songs inspired by their own county’s history. It was the first time I’ve worked with an orchestra, and my they are a clever bunch of clogs! And the kids were amazing; singing songs we had written for and with them – not a dry eye in the house!
  • A true rarity! I went to a festival purely as a punter! Isle Of Wight Festival is a blast. It’s got a really chilled communal vibe and when it wasn’t raining, the sun was so glorious that my nose was not dissimilar to Rudolph’s. Best acts we saw were probably Biffy Clyro and Joan Armatrading (I cried at her gig, I love her music so much and she is such a beautiful performer)…ooo and it was a bit muddy to say the least:
MUD :D

MUD 😀

  • And then we went to Sark. Sark is amazing. No cars, No pavements (cos there are no cars to run you over), No streetlamps (The sky was bursting with stars!) and a cracking little festival! You must go! Because Sark is awesome!
Playing in a vineyard :)

Playing in a vineyard 🙂

Ah man I’ve rambled on loads, congratulations if you have made it this far, I am just rubbish at being succinct! Right, time to step it on up a gear WARP SPEED AHEAD!

July:

  • Supported Seth Lakeman again…I love him!
  •  I was invited back to my old school to judge their music festival. I was in it 7 times, very weird to be the one making the decisions hehe
  •  I met oddsocks and the journey of becoming a composer for theatre began…yay 😛
  • I played for the first time at Cambridge Folk Festival, and somehow managed to pull a full capacity crowd…MENTAL! Whilst I was there I also did a stint for Sky Arts (for both tv and an exclusive web interview)…MENTAL! watch the exclusive video here.

August:

  • Rebellion punk festival! Oh man, it was so good! And I had the most boring hair out of anyone there which made a refreshing change hehe :p It was great to be included! Folk and Punk are very similar in my mind, songs of the people, by the people…plus I can now say I have supported BOW WOW WOW…’GO WILD IN THE COUNTRY’
  •  More dashing up and down the country for festivals 🙂

September:

  • The recording of the soundtrack for Folie a Deux!  And working with the amazing Barna, a Hungarian gypsy fiddle player who’s music was out of this world…more about that project here

October:

  • My beautiful new nephew was born, he is my 9th little one and a right little man!
  • Netherlands tour and european jaunt…which was brill…so much cheese…more info here

November

  • Premiere of Folie in Amsterdam! My name on the big screen, utterly mad, but an amazing moment that I will treasure.

December:

  • After working through out the year on writing new material for the album I was back in the studio beginning to lay down the bare bones of the tracks 😀
  • Took part in an amazing collaborative project with the Hullaballoo Community Quire down in Brighton. They had set some of my songs to music and we performed them together in a beautiful chapel, ah man, twas just lovely!

Then it was xmas, and xmas is always super special in our house, what with 5 brothers and sisters and 9 nieces and nephews you can imagine it’s a pretty hectic one 🙂

I played 28 festivals, 86 Folk Clubs, traveled 16,00 miles, and (soppy moment brewing)  I want to thank each and every promoter, committee, techy, audience member, pie maker and pizza seller that I have met along the way…you continue to make my job a pleasure 🙂

So there you have it, 2012 in a nut shell!

I’ve babbled way too much already, but in the worlds quickest run down 2013 has much in store for me already:

2nd album release  International Folk Conference in Canada, Touring again in Holland, more touring, the release of the Penguin Companion album (more details of that coming soon) and so much more, I can’t wait to see what else 2013 has to bring 🙂

For now, you take care out there, and live everyday like it’s your last.

Luce xx

BLOG MONDAY: Single is launched, and insight intro recording and Australia

Ey up!

How are you?

‘Lucy, it’s Monday, how do you think we are?’

errmmmmmm, ok, so maybe you’re not quite fully into the swing of things yet but I hope that whatever you are up to you are all gravy and life is treating you well 😀

Yesterday saw the official release of ‘For The Dead Men’!!!!

‘Sunday was an odd day to release a single luce, did you get your days muddled?’

No, apparently that’s just the way of the world when it comes to download releases 🙂 I must admit, that little nugget of info was news to me too!

So yes, it is here at last! The response has been pretty overwhelming if I am honest with you; and as cheesy at it sounds, I really feel like we are all in this together, I’m feeling a sense of unity right now.

Bono bit out the way :s

Guess who shared the video last night…Mr Mike Harding

 

 

With a comment of ‘I love this song – what a lass’

Cool beans! in fact, not just Mike Harding but loads of people on facey b in particluar have been sharing the video, posting it on your walls or on the walls of like-minded friends . Thanks to all of you, I am quite sure the success of the last 24 hrs has been down to you lot being well cool! 🙂

Haven’t downloaded it yet but think that you would quite like to?

No worries, You can get you mitts on it on itunes

http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/for-the-dead-men/id497199644?i=497199645&ign-mpt=uo%3D4

or amazon (in fact, you lot made For The Dead Men #5 in the folk singles chart on amazon and #2 in the folk album chart (although I dunno how it got into that category hehe)

So anyways…as it’s Blog Monday…I’m going to fill you in on recording for the dead men…both the single and the music video

Well, when it was decided that ‘For The Dead Men’ was going to be released as a single I was right over the moon. We hadn’t even really discussed a 2nd album at that point and were just focusing on making the most of the unexpected success of Adelphi, I sent Stu (Stu Hanna from Megson, who produced Adelphi) and the peeps at Navigator the  live recording of me playing it on ‘Sounds of Folk’ with a view to just letting them know I was writing. Within a few days it was decided that we should put it out as a single and start working towards a second album release on the label. (I’m writing for the album at the moemnt so may have some more light to shed on that one for ya in a few months time) 

Lyrics printed out ready to map out arrangement

So anyways, it got to recording week and everyone in the family…repeat…EVERYONE…caught the dreaded lurgy. There were technicolour yawns everywhere. I’m blaming some nameless youth at my niece’s eight birthday party…not that I usually make a habit of holding grudges against small children, but it was the last week I needed to be ill

Luckily despite being extremely busy working with other artists, gigging and doing all the things new parents have to do, Stu was alble to fit me in for a day and a half to try and lay down the single, a b-side and a back-up plan.

Is Lucy in the studio?! She must be! It's a tip!

Working with Stu is always great and I felt we managed to slip straight back into the work mode we had during recording  Adelphi. I think we make a good team. Stu by nature is pretty laid back and is always open to ideas…in my experience when you are both open to trying different things (although that can be really hard when it’s your own songs and arrangements) that actually you make something that is bigger than the sum of it’s parts. ‘CHEESY!’ I hear you shout! But it’s kind of true, so please excuse the distinct hint of chedder!

We laid everything down pretty quickly and then, once it’s there in principle, thats when you can start spending  time experimenting, singing harmonies, trying diffent instrumentation and effects. I guess when you always perform solo, recording is a rare opportunity to add in all the bits you could hear when you were writing, the rumbling percussion marching onwards, the voices multiplying as we ‘stand up….’ (although you lot usually provide that bit at the gigs 😀 cos you’re lovely). Ofcourse, all this adding stuff malarky is all about being careful not to overload it and make sure there is room to let the words do their thing…words are always my favourite bit of a song 🙂

The lovely Anna Esslemont also offered up some incredible haunting fiddle to go onto the track, so ya never know, that may just make it onto the album version 😉

And lastly, it wouldn’t be a blog of mine if it didn’t involve food! :p

Mmmmmm....my M&S 😀

 OOO Yeah, for those of you who fancy a physical copy, thats still not a prob, as per yesterdays blog (go there for fuller deets)

They are just £3 + £1 for postage and packaging (£2 postage and packaging if you need it sending overseas)

If you would like a copy, then please drop me an email

info@lucywardsings.com

and let me know your

  1. name
  2. address
  3. how many copies you would like
  4. and whether you would like to pay by paypal or cheque

I will email you back asap and we’ll take it from there :)

So then, back to Blog Mondayness – AUSTRALIA

Check this bad boy out…I’m being played on mother jeffin Australian Broadcast Corporation’s Radio…NATIONAL RADIO!!!!

http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/dailyplanet/lucy-ward-show/3790968

AHHHHHHH!!!!

So totally amazing, a whole show dedicated to my album!!! It’s just surreal, a whole show! I am just astounded that somehwere thousands of miles away from where I live or have ever played feel that their listeners across the whole  of AUSTRALIA would be interested in listening to me.

I’m flabbergasted

So with that, I’m out!

Luce xx

Date changes! and a little tit bit of tomorrows BLOG MONDAY :)

Ey Up Blog Beans

How goes it? Well I hope! I have been off to the pasty filled delights of Cornwall/Devon this week  to try and make some head way on material for my new album, and squidge a bit of a holiday too. It has been smashing, uber peaceful, pretty creative and just generally lush all over 🙂 but I shall tell you more about that tomozipan (knicked that word from Miranda Hart, I LOVE THAT WOMAN)

Miranda...be my bride!

 So anyways my lovelies, those of you who read the last BLOG MONDAY, or follow me on Twitter/Facey B will know that today was due to be the release of my forthcoming and first ever single ‘For The Dead Men’,

however,

‘For The Dead Men’ will be released on 29th January 2012

So only an extra week to wait, and an extra week for me to get nervous/excited and become a babbling wreck! :p

The download of the single will be available from all the places you would expect, itunes, amazon etc butttttttttt…there are some REAL LIVE COPIES that not only have the single but a cd exclusive (that won’t be avavilable for download)…a maids when you are young remix, which has a rather chilled and cheeky vibe even if I do say so myself.

Now then, here’s the deal, the physical copies of the CD are completely limited edition. Basically, It’s a one off print, so at risk of sounding like I’m giving you the hard sell, once they are gone, they really will be gone 🙂 I must say having a limited edition single is pretty cool, I feel like a Spice Girl, Blue Spice perhaps? But anyways, You can only buy the real singles directly from me so I’ll pop a link up on here tomozipan (I will never get bored of using that word!) and  if you feel like you want a copy, you’ll be able to get one 🙂 if you’re fast enough :p

Soooo then, BLOG MONDAY will contain all sorts of goodness,

  • the filming of my music videos…plural!
  • the recent mother nature photo shoot with the wunderbar Elly Lucas ( find out more about her beautiful self here http://www.ellylucas.co.uk/ )
  • annnd what I got up to on my recent trip to Devwall/Cornon…see what I did there 😛

 

woo me and a palm tree

Right then, now you are fully updated on proceedings, I shall take my leave.

Hope you’re having a smashing sunday, see you tomozipan

BEST WORD EVER xx