My Inspirations – David Coverdale

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Yes, it’s the king of hair rock, David Coverdale’s turn in the spotlight of my inspirations this week.

david coverdale
David Coverdale in the olden days when he was a bit gorgeous.

I literally cannot tell you how many times I span my vinyl ‘Come An’ Get It‘ album; signing along with passion and heart yet coupled with pangs of awkward guilt at the content, but loving the absurd cheek of it all the same.

David Coverdale as frontman for Whitesnake was/is unashamedly sexual in his image and lyrics. Ordinarily that would put me off; that’s the main reason I find AC/DC so objectionable (there are other reasons too!), but in the case of Coverdale / Whitesnake, I just couldn’t write it off; I loved that voice, the blues-influences riffs and melodies, Bernie Marsden’s singing guitars – it all had me well and truly hooked.

Oh man did I ever face ridicule for it from my feminist friends; the assumption being that any intelligent woman couldn’t possibly take Whitesnake seriously. The thing is I don’t think Coverdale himself ever totally took Whitesnake seriously. He’s quote as saying ‘a lot of my songs are firmly tongue in cheek.’ Thinking about it, that comment could be tongue in cheek in itself!

I preferred his edgier early stuff, and so my enthusiasm started fade when they moved into the fluffy poodle-haired synth-soft-rock stage in the mid/late 80s with songs like ‘Is this love’ and the remix of ‘Here I go again’.

Whitesnake in the mid to late 1980s fluffy poodle hair David Coverdale
Whitesnake – 1987 Crufts Champions in the Poodle Category

Probably my all-time favourite song – one that couldn’t in any way be seen as being sexual/sexist – is Child Of Babylon. In my opinion it still stands its ground as an epic classic rock song, brilliantly arranged and performed, and I would love to cover this one day, either live or on a record, and put all those hours of bedroom singing practise to the test.

Lyrics – Stranded

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Working on some other things today, I visited my Soundcloud and noticed a comment on ‘Stranded’ saying “Wish I could read the lyrics.”

Well, I am to please – here they are!

Stranded is a bit of a tongue-in-cheek love-sick teen-angsty kind of a song! It was written about the ending of a relationship that was supposed to be ‘just for fun’, but after a while, surprise – I realised I’d got feelings for the guy, and it left me hanging in mid air wondering if he felt the same way. I’d be willing to bet I’m not the only one who’s ever gone through that scenario! Thankfully I’m older and wiser now :)

Lyrics - Stranded

 

 

Video – Sometimes

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I’m so excited to finally be able to post up a video for my favourite track off my album ‘Along the way’.

The song is set to some awesome time-lapse footage of a sunset from from Haleakala summit in Maui, Hawaii.

I think it works amazingly well with the melody, the rhythm and the lyrics. Hope you enjoy it too.

The footage is courtesy of Mike McCabe, under community commons. https://archive.org/details/HaleakalaSunset

My inspirations – Ronnie James Dio

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dioThe Urban Dictionary defines a ‘legend’ as “someone or something whose coolness extends beyond all space and time.” That, my friends, totally sums up Ronnie James Dio.

According to the BBC’s review of ‘Mightier Than The Sword‘ Ronnie James Dio was “a genius, a gentleman and perhaps [rock and metal's] greatest voice.”

Sadly, I never met they guy to know whether or not he was a gentleman, all I know was that growing up I was simply awestruck by the quality and power of his voice.

I first discovered Dio in the Holy Diver era. At that time Rainbow was headed up by Joe Lynn Turner and I didn’t learn until much later that Dio had previously fronted Ritchie Blackmore’s Rainbow as well as Black Sabbath. So my formative memories of Dio were from songs like this:

And of course wishing I could sing like him!

I’ve had the great pleasure of seeing him live twice and it was probably the closest I’ve ever got to hero worship! He was (and still is) one of my most loved and enduring inspirations, not just because of his voice, but also because he simply kept on and on writing and performing really great songs; powerful, passionate melodic and thoughtful. That’s where his main inspiration lies for me; the consistent quality of his output. He was unquestionably someone who discovered their God-given gift and lived it to the max.

A few years back I gigged at the Cheese and Grain in Frome with my old band. It was a great venue, one of the few times we had a decent sound guy; this enormous but mellow dreadlocked American guy with a southern Californian drawl. We sound-checked with Holy Diver and I’ll never forget his reaction “WOOOAH Holy Diver, I was NOT expected that. That was totally aaaawesome”. Yup, you got that right.

Lyrics – Seeing You

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Next up in my series of ‘what are Janey’s songs all about?’ is Seeing You, from my album Along the Way and also featured on my first EP, Introducing.

I wrote Seeing You a couple years after I lost my brother. One of the themes of the song is about how we remember people we’ve lost. If we are open to sharing in such a painful time, we can hear so many different memories from family and friends. So, although we all knew him, we all did so in different ways. Talking to people about how they knew him was not only a fond way for us to support each other but, for me, it was a journey of getting to know and understand my brother in new ways. 

Lyrics - Seeing You

A first time for everything….. here we go

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OK so I’m not normally one to share demos of songs, but it seems to be ‘the thing’ to do.

So I figure maybe it’s time I get brave and take the plunge to post my very first ‘draft’ song! GULP!

I’ve been working on some new songs for a while, but life’s been throwing all sorts in my direction so it’s taken ages longer than I hoped! But I’m finally enjoying making some progress and I’m now getting the demos ready to go into a proper studio around Easter time.

This one is called ‘Without you’ and it was one of the songs I put in my acoustic gigs I did at the end of 2013. I would love to have your comments!

Quite a surprise, but awesome anyway

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Just received a really amazing review of ‘Time WIll Tell’ courtesy of Tony Cannella from Femme Metal Webzine.   Quite a pleasant surprise as it’s been a year since it was released!

Check out the review here

http://www.femmemetalwebzine.net/2014/01/16/janey-summer-time-wil-tell-single-2011/

While you’re there, why not take 5 to find out about some of the other awesome female-fronted heavy bands that are getting showcased. Well worth a quick peek, I reckon :)