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What is your background in music? 

Well…. my mum was a singer in Trinidad (where I was born) she used to sing Burt Bacharach, Carpenters songs, all those classics. She also sang around the house all the time… my granny played the piano and my uncle loved playing his records. There was music everywhere.

How would you describe your music? 

Mmmmm … I’d say my songs are stories told from an honest, raw and secret place. I write from experiences, it can either be from a conversation with someone over a drink at the end of a night or just being a fly on the wall, a lot of my songs are personal and from that reflective place.

Has where you are from influenced your music tastes? And how has this changed throughout the years? 

I think it must’ve slipped in somewhere down the line when I was young being around a lot of music. We always listened to a lot of country music growing up, so I think that style grabbed me at an early age. Three chords and the truth!

Do you remember the first time you wrote a song? What was it about? And did you play it to anyone? 

One of the first songs I ever wrote was after Romeo my brother taught me a few chords on the guitar, I remember suddenly feeling this magic within my fingers that I could finally talk, breathe now and it was ok because my guitar would help me to make sense of what was going on inside.

The song was called ‘If You’ it was (without realising at the time) about being me being painfully shy … it was a lonely song that asked questions and fantasised about a different reality. I had many songs for years I never played to anyone (still have a few of those). My family were always supportive so the first time I played that song was in front of a thousand people at some Arts Festival at my high school. So there I was in front of everyone I was terrified by, sharing my fears, but I felt the most comfortable I’ve ever felt up on the stage singing songs. 

Who is your inspiration? 

This has changed over the years and also keeps changing. I’m mainly inspired by life and the energy of people … I’m inspired by women especially doing their own thing, breaking moulds, going against the grain, standing up for themselves and just generally saying shit that’s real and making no apologies for that. But yeh… musically and lyrically drawn to singer songwriters like Joni Mitchell, Gillian Welch, Emmylou Harris, Ferron, Leonard Cohen of course my good friend Kathryn Williams, who’s helped me with so much over the years. My mum, my daughter.

What are you working on right now? And what will you be playing for us at the Hebden Folk Roots Festival? 

At the moment I’m working on songs for my next solo album. I’ve been doing lots of projects, curating, playing on other people’s records, rocking out with the band. It’s been a crazy two years though personally, after my break up my whole world took a shaking I wasn’t expecting. It’s been a journey of building my self up again, trying to believe in myself. Took a while but I’m gonna start the beginning process of making my next record this month. Expect some new songs at our festival. 

What do you like about Hebden Bridge? 

Apart from it being an absolutely beautiful picturesque place. The people are really sweet… warm hearted, straight talkers. Ha! Always love playing there… have had amazing gigs at The Trades Club. So very much looking forward to the gig at Hope Baptist Church.

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Michele Stodart (The Magic Numbers) is joint headlining with Kathryn Williams, with support from Keith Donnelly at Hope Baptist Chapel as part of the Hebden Folk Roots Festival on Saturday 11th of May. Doors open at 7pm to the bar area.

Day, Evening and Weekend Tickets are available – To find out more and get your ticket go to http://hebdenfolkroots2019.eventbrite.co.uk http://wwww.hebdenfolkroots.org

Box Office is based at Hope Baptist Chapel, in Hebden Bridge.

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