I can’t tell you what a relief it is to be up and dressed and able to walk into town (slowly). Pneumonia hits you hard. I was gutted to have to cancel my tour of Germany and five other UK gigs last month but I just couldn’t get out of bed and could hardly speak let alone sing.

Upsides to being ill were listening to a lot of Pema Chodron and reading some really wonderful books and having lovely friends come and bring me soup and flowers. Christian was amazing of course.

Most of my UK gigs have now been rescheduled so if you had tickets I hope you can make the new dates (all listed on my website). I’m so sorry for all the inconvenience. I am now looking forward very much to the rest of my tour starting with Gullivers in Manchester on Friday next week.

Hope you managed to avoid the flu and that all’s well in your world.

xx

I’m so sorry to say that both my gig at Ashcroft Arts Centre in Farnham tonight and Forest Arts in New Milton tomorrow night have been cancelled due to the weather.  We will rearrange the dates so hopefully I’ll be performing there before too long. Please contact the venue if you have a ticket – you can phone Ashcroft Arts Centre on 01329 223100 and Forest Arts on 01425 619983.

I’m knackered.  Yesterday I did 4 gigs in one day, singing my songs for staff and patients at Fulbourn mental health hospital and at Addenbrookes Hospital in Cambridge.

I’d been invited by Kimberley Iyemere, Arts Therapies Professional Lead at the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust (CPFT). The CPFT is unusual and wonderful in being committed to providing proper resources for music and arts therapy for their service users.

I turned up with my guitar and a speaker and sang my songs about my own lived experience. It is quite challenging but really rewarding doing mental health gigs. You never know quite what is going to happen or how people are going to react.

First I played in the fabulous music room, then on a ward for women with personality disorders, then at the Ida Darwin ward for teenagers where I met a young girl who had made me a lovely bracelet with my name on it and was learning to sing my song ‘Start Over Again’.

Then in the evening we headed to Addenbrookes Hospital where I performed for staff and patients from S3, the eating disorders unit. It was a great end to a very full-on day. I’m so glad I managed to get there through the snow.

A big thank you to Kimberley and her team for making me cups of tea and helping me lug my stuff around. I’ll be back in Cambridge for a gig at The Junction on Saturday 12 May.

The photos are of me with some of the lovely staff at Fulbourn Hospital – Dr Jorge Zimbron and Lee Davies, and Kimberley Iyemere.

I really enjoyed our warm-up gig on Saturday night which was a house concert in Camberwell, London.  Thanks to everyone who came – it was a really special night for us.  I’m looking forward now to the start of my UK tour this weekend at Dorchester Arts and The Hawth in Crawley.  If you’ve got tickets I’ll see you there.

xx

Back in the UK from Australia, jetlagged, we’re in shock at the sudden change in weather, light and surroundings. I guess it will take a bit of time to adjust. But today the sun is shining in Bath so all of a sudden things feel a lot better.

And I’m really looking forward to the start of my UK tour in a few weeks’ time. We’re playing Dorchester, Crawley, Wotton-under-Edge, Thames Ditton, Fareham, New Milton, Bromsgrove, Stockton-on-Tees, London, Manchester, Sheffield, Cricklade, Penzance, Worth Matravers, Bath, Cambridge, Penarth, Milton Keynes, Southampton, Barnoldswick, York, Carlisle, Biddulph, Crail, Glasgow and Newcastle.

This may be the last time in a while we’ll be touring the UK so please spread the word among your family and friends – all support very welcome. Dates and ticket links are on my gigs page.

I hope all’s well in your world. Thanks so much for your support.

xx

It’s boiling hot and all I can hear is the buzzing of the flies, strange-sounding birds and the cicadas. I’m on the verandah of the main house at Coolabine Farmstead. Coolabine means place of koalas, though I’ve never seen one here.

The view is stunning. Rolling hills and trees as far as the eye can see. It rained last night so everything is impossibly green. The goats are sheltering from the sun and waiting for their afternoon feed.

Our shack is unrecognizable – only the roof remains. The bora ants ate all the tree trunks that used to support it so Christian’s brother has rebuilt it. Gone are the potato sack walls. My yurt is still standing, filled up with boxes of our stuff and other junk. The tattered prayer flags flutter in the wind.

Yesterday we went swimming in a big waterhole down the road and had a picnic in the rain. I’ve seen a goanna and some kangaroos but I haven’t seen a snake yet. A spider got into bed with us the other night but thankfully it wasn’t the huge spider that’s been hanging out over the door.

We cleaned the cheese-room and made some feta and halloumi which was delicious. On Christmas Day I finished a new song. Next week we’re off to Melbourne to see Christian’s sister then back here to start vocal recordings for the next album.

I hope you had a lovely Christmas wherever you are. Wishing you all very happy new year and I’ll see you in 2018.

xx

Thanks to everyone who came to my last gig of 2017 at The George Hotel in South Molton last night.  It was a great way to end a great year.  If you’re on my mailing list I’ll keep you posted on what happens next…


Waiting to go on at The George

In 10 days time I’ll be standing on a hillside overlooking the Obi Obi valley in Australia, back at our shack in the Sunshine Coast Hinterland for the first time in 4 years.  I’m so excited to be going – seeing friends, family and goats (trying not to think about the snakes).

We’ll be doing some recording for my next album in a beautiful old Queenslander with my favourite sound engineer Pix Vane-Mason. He recorded my first two albums ‘Stranger Place’ and ‘Keep Walking’ there as well as the vocals for ‘A Bit Of Blue’, and I love the place.

It’s been a wonderful year. I’m so delighted to be playing music again and it’s been so lovely meeting old fans and seeing new faces. Thank you all so much for your fantastic support of my music – I couldn’t do it without you.

As we’re away for Christmas, if you want to buy any gifts direct from us we’re here until 6 December, but you can always order my albums and books anytime from Amazon.co.uk.

I’ll be touring the UK again from February to July next year with a new show which will include some previews of the new songs on my next album. Dates are on my website.

Hope to see you at a gig before long, and in the meantime I wish you all a very happy Christmas.

xx

I had such a wonderful time touring Ireland with Duke Special.  I haven’t played there since I toured with Don McLean and Eric Bibb and it was so great to be back.  Such lovely people and lovely venues to play.  And a proper pint of Guinness!  It was a pleasure and a privilege to watch Duke from the wings and to play with him on his songs.  His latest album ‘Hallow’ is based on the poems of Michael Longley – check out his website.  Thanks to all the fans and friends who were there at the gigs, especially Mike Watts for introducing us in the first place and taking photos, and Tim Pardoe for being my merch man.  I’m looking forward to playing in Ireland again next year.