ANNOUNCE - Liverpool Acoustic Songwriting Challenge 2017 open until 29th October
Manchester-based rising star Little Sparrow will be headlining Liverpool Acoustic Live’s 7th birthday show on Friday 26th February 2016 at Mathew Street’s View Two Gallery.
Little Sparrow (Katie Ware), whose name was inspired by Elbow frontman Guy Garvey who referred to Katie as a ‘Cockney Sparrow’, self-released her beautiful debut album ‘Wishing Tree’ in 2014. Her songs have been featured on BBC Radio 2, BBC6 Music, BBC Introducing Manchester and Merseyside, along with regular regional and international play, with Janice Long describing the Little Sparrow sound as ‘gorgeous’.
Supporting Little Sparrow will be Maria Silker, winner of the Liverpool Acoustic Songwriting Challenge 2015. Maria will be using the occasion to launch her brand new album Little Did I Know, produced by Clive Gregson and John Wood.
Completing the lineup is Swiss singer-songwriter Miriam Crespo who’ll be playing at the View Two as part of her European tour. With her Spanish roots, Miriam doesn?t need any autotune effects or bare skin. Instead, she wins people over with talent, wit and natural charm.
Doors open at 7.45pm and the music kicks off at 8.15pm. Entry is by £5 advance ticket or £6 on the door and as always the money raised goes to the artists.
To play click the player above or right click Spotlight 145 to download for free.
1. Little Sparrow – Garden
Taken from the album Wishing Tree available from Little Sparrow’s website
2. Maria Silker – The Only Words
Taken from new album Little Did I Know available to buy from Maria’s website
4. Black – Beautiful
Taken from the album Blind Faith available from Colin’s website.
Theme: King of the Faeries by Andrew Ellis from his CD Midnight On The Water
Little Sparrow is singer/songwriter Katie Ware.
With a love for music reaching back to her childhood, Katie was involved in a variety of projects before deciding in 2010 to take her music in a new direction at which time she launched herself as Little Sparrow – a title that came about in conversation with Elbow front man Guy Garvey whom she had come to know following her relocation to Manchester. He used to affectionately refer to her as ‘Cockney Sparrow’ and when she decided to adopt a stage name he suggested this title which she decided to soften to the more gentle name that she uses today – feeling it more sympathetic to her sound and song writing style.
Since then she has performed with growing regularity – sometimes solo – on other occasions accompanied by a varying number of talented musicians that provide a mix of harmonies, strings, guitars, pedal steel and percussion which is part of the sound that she feels she has now truly made her own.
She continues to play regular live performances, both headlining and as support, reaching out to growing audiences and creating what is now a loyal and constantly increasing fan base. She is developing into a uniquely talented artist through her imaginative song writing and her captivating delivery.
The self release of her beautiful debut album ‘Wishing Tree’ in 2014 was her greatest achievement to date and she is thrilled to have been featured on BBC Radio 2, BBC 6 Music, BBC Introducing Manchester & Merseyside along with regular regional and international play.
2015 proved to be another great year for her with more exciting live appearances which included Manchester International Festival, Liverpool International Music Festival & Blackthorn Festival. Prestigious supports to Kathryn Roberts & Sean Lakeman, Blue Rose Code, The Cadbury Sisters and Beth Rowley for her sell out London date at St Pancras Old Church, London continued her introduction to new admirers of her captivating sound.
Due to a growing swell of interest in her music she also released the title track of her album ‘Wishing Tree’ last year along with a charmingly quirky video and also a beautiful new track entitled ‘Garden’ to offer something to both delight her current followers and also attract further new admirers towards her captivating sound. The track ‘Garden‘ gained consistent airplay including several plays on Radio 2 from Janice Long who described it as ‘gorgeous’.
She has started work in 2016 by filming a live video with her band – using new state of the art 360 degree technology and significantly, she has begun the process of writing towards her second album. With plans for further video and photographic projects plus a select series of live appearances 2016 promises to be another exciting year for Little Sparrow.
Maria Silker is a singer-songwriter from Liverpool whose influences include The Beatles, Simon & Garfunkel, Carole King, James Taylor, The Eagles, Mama’s and Papa’s. Her background is in the folk world and she spent her teenage years gigging with friends around the folk clubs in Liverpool. They were lucky to be encouraged by the Spinners and to support the Dubliners, Planxty and Christie Moore. Since there were limited opportunities in the folk scene Maria decided to go to university and after that became an accountant and followed a career in industry….. the safe option!
But the music never left her; about five years ago she started to write her own songs and knew she had to re-find her place in the world of music. Maria had played the piano and guitar from the age of nine so that was the base for what she was going to do. From her years in the folk clubs her singer-songwriting influences were Clive Gregson, Mike Silver, Paul Brady and Kirsty McColl so she had a great canon of work to inspire her. The female vocalists that most inspired her to get up and sing were Karen Carpenter, Crystal Gayle, Barbara Dickson and Mary Black.
After spending some time in London singing in the singer-songwriter clubs Maria recorded her first album “Tearing at the Surface”, produced by Gareth Young. More songs followed and whe was thrilled to meet up with Clive Gregson (Any Trouble, Richard Thompson, Nanci Griffiths) after having been a fan of his for decades.
Maria recorded her second album “Little Did I Know” with Clive as producer. This album, like her first, is a collection of her own songs. Supporting her on the album was John Wood (Squeeze, Pink Floyd, Nick Drake, Sandy Denny), Mark Griffiths (The Shadows), Martin Hughes (Any Trouble) and Kate St John (Van Morrison, Marianne Faithful). Maria was thrilled to be working with such experienced and talented musicians.
The album, to be launched at the Liverpool Acoustic Live gig, is dedicated to Maria’s Dad, Edward Feeney, who passed away in February 2014.
Her voice is warm and soft, her songs are a blend of folk-pop and Americana: sometimes quiet, vulnerable and melancholically dreamy, sometimes powerful and rough, but always authentic, like the singer herself – this is Miriam Crespo, a Basel based singer-songwriter with Spanish roots. She doesn?t need any autotune effects or bare skin. Instead, she?ll win you over with talent, wit and natural charm.
Miriam Crespo composes all her songs and writes her lyrics herself, without exception – she has more than enough ideas. At the center of them all are powerful stories whose truths will get under your skin. She also has a knack for catchy melodies and ballads that are thought-provoking, but always bear a spirit of optimism.
Miriam Crespo only needed a nudge to take the decisive step out of the practice room. A fellow guitarist gave the singer the metaphorical kick up the *** and the necessary encouragement to present her songs to a wider public. She has been playing live on the road since mid-2012, and has performed at the Utica Music and Arts Festival in New York. She gained the attention of the media for the first time with her first EP («this is not a demo – this is an EP») in 2013.
Miriam Crespo?s debut album «In the bones all along» (release date March 27, 2015) was produced by Luk Zimmermann (Lunik) and Dave Muther (Anna Känzig, Bliss) and contains twelve predominantly acoustic, personal indie folk songs written by Miriam Crespo herself. With three songs in the semifinals of the UK Songwriting Contest and very positive reviews, «In the bones all along» presents itself as an opulent lyrical work with a rich musical imagery, showing the artistry, maturity and sensitivity of the singer-songwriter.
«Untitled/Self-Portrait» is the name of the first single which was released on February 13, 2015. The song with no title is an ironic wink, a play on words and her first calling card, all at the same time. «Some of the things mentioned in the song are true and describe me and my idiosyncrasies pretty accurately. But, I will refrain, of course, from revealing what they are!» The optimistic portrait of a girl somewhere in a bar that will not get very far wearing high heels provides a snapshot and an impression of Miriam Crespo – but doesn’t impose any labels on her.
If you get the chance, please support your local artists by joining their mailing lists, liking their facebook pages, following them on twitter, leaving them comments, going to their gigs, and buying their music direct from them where possible. The Liverpool Acoustic Spotlight is produced and presented by Graham Holland and Stuart Todd on behalf of the Liverpool Acoustic website, and is a proud member of the Association of Music Podcasting. The theme music alternates between King of the Faeries by Andrew Ellis from his CD Midnight On The Water, and Solid Ground by Neil Campbell.
Preview: Liverpool Acoustic Live – Friday 26th February 2016
Graham Holland is the owner and editor of the Liverpool Acoustic website, and runs Liverpool Acoustic’s award-winning live music events with local musician Stuart Todd. In real life he’s a Web Development Officer, has been producing podcasts on a regular basis since July 2006, and runs a number of websites for other organisations. He lives in Wavertree with his husband and their cat Xiao Hei.
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