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“By the time the last notes die away, all that’s left should be you,” Leif says. “And I’ll be somewhere else. And that’s ‘Twin Solitude’.”

Love this song – check out ‘Elegy’ the catchy heart thumping, soulful third track from the new album “Twin Solitude” to be released in 2017 from Leif Vollebekk..

Leif Vollebekk, the Montreal singer songwriter and multi instrumentalist, had hit a wall. In the midst of endless touring, Leif found himself retreating to his lonely hotel rooms after shows and listening to Nick Drake’s ‘Pink Moon’ alone in the dark. His own songs didn’t sound right and he felt the bright spots in his sets were the covers he’d end with: songs by Ray Charles or Townes Van Zandt. In this deep blue mood he booked a secret show at a Montreal dive bar, only playing covers with a band that rehearsed once. The experience led Leif to change his approach to songwriting: explore the ideas that came spontaneously to him, and let the songs shape themselves.  Soon the songs came pouring out of him. This approach is what created the lush, freewheeling and often devastating ‘Twin Solitude,’ out Feb 24 on Secret City Records.


“By the time the last notes die away, all that’s left should be you,” Leif says. “And I’ll be somewhere else. And that’s ‘Twin Solitude’. Leif’s third album features 10 delicate and expansive original songs, with lyrics that pour out of this singer songwriter that’s often compared to Jeff Buckley. Leif’s words lay on a bed of elastic instrumentation full of piano, synthesizer, guitar, rich electric bass and strings.


Several songs on the album came to Leif and were written in one sitting. ‘Into the Ether’, came to be while he was exploring a Moog synthesizer. ‘Elegy’ is a bedside soliloquy, of love slipping through fingers and came to Leif while he was riding his bike through Montreal. The meditative ‘Michigan’ was written on a half-tuned guitar and fully written as he was about to go to sleep. Other songs on the album capture the countless hours Leif has spent on the road, crisscrossing North America. ‘Big Sky Country’ recalls a trip to Vancouver with his family when he was young, never forgetting the expanse of Montana and listening to Ian Tyson’s song ‘The Gift’ in the car over and over again.


‘TWIN SOLITUDE’ TRACKLISTING:
1. Vancouver Time
2. All Night Sedans
3. Elegy
4. Into the Ether
5. Big Sky Country
6. Michigan
7. Road to Venus
8. East of Eden
9. Telluride
10. Rest
Pre-order Twin Solitude here: http://goo.gl/tzMJTH
LEIF VOLLEBEKK: official site | Facebook | Twitter
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Three months and two weeks (and two days actually but hey who’s counting) I took myself to the doors of what I hoped would be… redemption. The desire to skip over this part is strong. And I might just indeed do that. A culmination of fear of judgement, other people’s opinions , advice and psychiatric diagnoses headed my way… “all you need to do Becki is..” … “if I was you I would…”… “why don’t you just…” … resulting in… “I think sometimes its easier to just say nothing at all”. But here I am writing about it and wondering where shaming and fear starts. The playground perhaps… where whispers, gossip and damaging ideas are vocalised… “did you hear about so and so” for example.. “he’s damaged goods…”.

 

I’m trying to type this on an tablet. God it’s hard work.

 

Anyway, with the utterances of “honesty is always the best policy” I tend to find myself thinking… “are you sure about that”. I am usually on a get fit and quit everything mission but generally have been on the first rung of the ladder or in a two steps forward and three steps back position. Stuck in that place where one can’t see any growth or progress but are learning some lessons at least.
“Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom” Aristotle
But right this minute as I’m typing this… I’m two steps forward rather than several back. But I’m aware of how that can change. And thus I’ve learnt in my short yet occasional seemingly long life on planet earth that sometimes some things that ‘should’ be pretty simplistic can be harder than one thought to put into actual practice. I might tell myself I’m giving up coffee for example but by 7am the next morning when I’m reaching for the kettle my mind has already decided that that goal is going to be delayed til tomorrow. So three and a half months back I started training and working out with no specific goal in mind or outcome other than I wanted to feel better than I felt. Which was like crap. And something that was significantly holding me back in any of my fitness goals or getting to my desired weight was alcohol.

 

It was not a lack of working out that was the problem…I tried it all…bootcamps, yoga retreats but.. it wasn’t until I broke the spell with what I now see as a toxic substance (in my life) that anything else was going to work.

 

My first get fit goal was a 5k race… and to build up to this I started off small and regular. I was actually in rehab whilst I started this part and although one wasn’t/isn’t allowed off site alone… I knew I could get away with not being missed for an hour. I guess I was one of the less troublesome ‘inmates’ and didn’t need keeping an eye on. So off I started..  down the winding paths of the glorious British countryside on a blazing hot summers day with nothing but my music and a water bottle.

 

Which was totally fine until on my way back I found myself at a Wizard of Oz crossroad and had forgotten which way it was back to safety.

 

Left. Or was it right. Sh*t.

 

I was walking through a field wondering if anyone was aware I’d disappeared yet.. when I came across a man and his dog. Most probably looking beetroot red… he asked me if I was ok.
“Erm yes er..“ … “are you lost?” he queried. I wanted to ask for directions but didn’t want to admit where I was staying. It just sounded… stupid.

 

“Erm yeah.. er do you know where the main road is?” I queried…. he peered at me.

 

“Ok I’m staying at a huge house.. in about – er that direction do you know where it is?” I blurted it out.

 

“The rehab?!” he asked.

 

“Yes…the [bloody] rehab” I quickly shot back resisting the temptation to roll my eyes.

 

“Oh sure..that way” he pointed off into the distance.. ”it’s awful hot to be running around in this weather…be careful” he said slowly peering at me. I thought I sensed him trying to figure out what I was there for but he was probably just being considerate. After all…it probably happened ALL the time…people running away to get to an off licence for instance.

 

“Thank you” I shouted putting my headphones on and running in the direction his hand  had waved at…  as fast as I could trying to hide my embarrassment by the speed of my feet…which admittedly wasn’t fast enough…

 

I completed my first 10k a few weeks ago.. and have so far lost 17 pounds.. I’m working towards my next goal of running a half marathon.. which to be honest.. sounds like hell. Exercise/fitness for me is.. a huge motivation for staying on the right track. It clears my mind and exerts unused energy. I’m doing a culmination of British Military Fitness and Park Run‘s when I can fit them in. Although I’ve developed a bunionette from ill fitting trainers.. I’m pushing through.. I’m running a half marathon for ActionAid and Children’s Society.. sooooo.. 

 

PLEASE CONSIDER SPONSOR ME FOR A HALF MARATHON HERE:

 

 

Your motivation and support is greatly received.

 

BeckiBx

 

I am currently reading and gaining a huge amount of strength and inspiration from James Rhodes’ ‘Instrumental’.. Buy it.
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“Be More Fucking Empathetic Kate Tempest

I headed down to the Caught by the River Thames Festival last weekend, which was a small, friendly, yet relaxing festival hidden down a quaintly decorated winding path down the back of Fulham Palace Park. My highlight of the experience… without a doubt – was Kate Tempest ‘in conversation’ about her new book  ‘The Bricks That Built The Houses’ with Miranda Sawyer. Not only did she come across as wise and talented.. the confidence Kate exuded in front of a room packed full of people – of all ages was inspirational. She came across as the sort of person I’d like to be friends with. Down to earth, real, creative and thoughtful. 

Kate Tempest

Kate Tempest Caught By The River – photography Becki Burrows

She had some good advice for the room… well. For me anyway… 1) “finish your ideas!”. And 2) “Be more fucking empathetic!”. She touched on various topics such as ‘female artists expected to be young, beautiful and engaged with broken hearts and shoes’. And whilst I love shoes.. I agree there is only a short amount of time one can spend admiring them before it can get boring. Very… boring. She also touched on that creative process. Well I am writing this as if you may know about it. That feeling that you aren’t quite where you want to be and it’s not quite going the way you want. But something she said that was quite interesting was ‘the minute you get it right. It’s the end… right?’.

Kate Tempest

Kate Tempest Caught By The River – Photography Becki Burrows

And how important it is to ‘get out of tunnel vision’. To remember that it’s not just you that is going through whatever it is you’re going through. I believe it’s so important… to try to enjoy life and the imperfect journey placed at our feet. And hearing Kate Tempest reminded me of that. Another inspirational talker at the festival was Chris Packham who spoke about ‘winning being about not giving up.. no matter what happens.. that it’s not always about the finish line… it’s about focusing that anger and doing something creative with it’. So yes. I wasn’t expecting to come away so thoughtful from a festival. And whilst I craved some electro dance music….something I’m not too good at… is relaxing and just being. And remembering the importance of just sitting. And listening.

Rhys Ifans

Rhys Ifans Super Furry Animals – photography Becki Burrows

 

 

The Caught by the River Festival exuded a different energy than the burning fast paced rush and the now now NOW culture of festivals that I’m probably more used to. I’m not sure if this festival is running next year.. but I found it a relaxing cultural experience. And worth heading to if you have free time. And here are some short one minute interviews: Oh Ryley Walker… 🙂

 

THE VERY CHARMING RYLEY WALKER:

https://www.instagram.com/p/BIxi_hAh6hr/?taken-by=ohdearymetv

A MAN CALLED DARYL OFFERS HIS THOUGHTS ON THE FESTIVAL:

Review of the #caughtbytheriver #festival #fulhampalace by a #random called #darrel

A video posted by Becki Burrows (@ohdearymetv) on

BUNF SUPER FURRY ANIMALS – WELSH LESSON:

https://www.instagram.com/p/BI0ErvQB73X/?taken-by=ohdearymetv

GWENNO SAUNDERS:

https://www.instagram.com/p/BI0HuV9hK-m/?taken-by=ohdearymetv

 

I could probably write more. I could probably do more. I could probably BE more. But I need to do something else right now..

Becki Xx Follow me on Instagram!

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The first festival of the summer (god, us Brits just love sitting in fields) – cue torrential rain, lightening, mud swamps, floods and traffic jams. You leave the house in wellies but the sun puts his hat on and has a little chuckle as he burns red hot at your expense. And feeling the plastic melt into your calves and your winter socks boiling (they were the only thing one could find to pad out the wellie space) you change into your summertime Havianas! YES!!! SUNSHEEEEINE!!!!

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But. Not for long. As soon as you put your summer dancing feet on, the sun grins and just as quickly as he appeared, sadistically decides to do his well practiced disappearing act and jumps behind the darkest cloud in sight (yes, I just decided the sun is of male gender). Drenching your singular summer outfit. Cos seriously. What’s the point in owning shorts if it’s going to rain. Ah yes… good ole British Summer time..

Cue: Camp Wildfire Festival – for ‘only the curious’ apparently. An adult only quaint festival set in the bushy woods of St Clere Estate in Kent. It’s run by Bromley-based Lee Denny who is also the organizer of Lee Fest(I know this cos his Mum kindly gave me a lift to the station as I was leaving prematurely on the Saturday afternoon… Lee your Mum’s lovely!)… 

girl

The festival bases its concept around a 1950’s style adventure theme, which proved to be pleasing to the eye and wonderfully imaginative. One might have felt as if one had fallen through an Alice in Wonderland inspired hole, straight into an enchanting village… littered with a few drunks.. of course! (But isn’t everywhere these days?) But falling into a rather jolly atmosphere where learning such skills as sword fighting are still on the curriculum. Hmm. Sounds good right? It is thus a shame that one must wait for Adventure Parks such as this to open to learn such skills.

mo

Above band Montrell impress with new material

Whilst the rain had enforced a chaotic start to the festival and supplies were lacking…  I can only see that this festival has hit a niche in the market that will gain strength as it irons out some of its issues.. (Arran: “dont write about handwash Becki…” …. Me: “But why not? I actually need to wash my hands.. Where can I wash my hands?!” sobs in to handerchief)…

Or maybe that’s just my issue.

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      Man in woods giving a butcher workshop.

I was rather glad that the festival was not as hedonistic as it’s website perhaps hinted at with terms such as ‘Adult Only’ and ‘Only the Curious’ I didn’t really know what to expect. Maybe lots of naked people perhaps. But thankfully, I witnessed nothing untoward.. just a lot of creatively curious individuals learning how to tie die.. or screen print.. or sword fight. Phew. Because after all. You can’t unsee what you see. As far as I know.

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Adventure Film Travel Club meets bushcraft butchering..

The highlight of my weekend, had to be Paddleboarding with the company supkiko.com. This was such an incredibly relaxing and rewarding way to spend an hour… and my first experience of the activity. I will definitely be trying this again. And the good news is with paddleboarding – you don’t even have to get wet!

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The beauty of the Wildfire Festival is the range of activities on hand..

It was sold out this year and attracts a loyal crowd. This is a small and compact festival so getting around the site is easy. So definitely keep an eye out for it next.. and if you should go. Do take supplies! Apparently one guy had taken his bedside table. Ah.

Becki Bx

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All photos owned and taken by Becki Burrows, photo on front owned and taken by Arran Barensché

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Today.. the sun’s not shining.. the weather’s not sweet.. but tip tap tappy thump the feet… i.e. the rain cloud is passing over.. and whilst it does..

Here is an ohDearyme May 2016 PLayLisT I collated.. just for YOU…. let me know if you want to add any tunes in… 

Enjoy! 

Becki Bx

@ohDearyme #music #nowplaying

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