I’m Lizzyspit. You may have heard of me, but I’m guessing not. I’m a London-based singer/songwriter – on my quest to be heard, I’ve seen a lot of things. In fact, I think I’ve just about seen it all.
Terrifying teenage rap crews at the Enterprise, Camden, a ukelele playing Bee Gee impersonator at the Spice of Life, and and a guy I can only describe as ‘Euro-Porn’ at 229, Great Portland Street. It’s safe to say that my musical journey has had it’s ups, it’s downs, and it’s ‘I’m really not prepared to talk about that’ kind of situations… but here’s a little snapshot…
The greatest thing about being a performer in London is the armful of venues, offering people like me a stage. And let’s face it, that’s all us musos really want – a platform to climb onto, guitar in hand, and an attentive audience.
Not much to ask? Not really – except when you’re put on a bill next to a S&M Punk Metal band, whose legion of drunken fans chant ‘Kill Kill Kill’ throughout your whole, delicate, acoustic set – a soul destroying experience to say the least.
The truth is, wherever you gig, you’re rarely prepared for what’s coming your way from those on the bill, not to mention the audience, but that’s the glorious beauty of it – every gig is different.
However you can always take something away with you, and sleep safe in the knowledge that you’re actually ‘living the dream’.
Now, I have to be honest – the encounters I’ve listed above all happened relatively early on in my gigging career. These were the days when I was flinging out emails left right and center, trying to get on any stage, anywhere, for anyone who’d have me. I’m now at a standard where I’ve got a good reputation ( I hope – eek! ) with promoters who vet their venues, their bills, and really think about who they put together.
Late summer last year, I logged onto my computer, opened up my emails to find an offer to play at The Troubadour, Earl’s Court. Like the venue in LA with the same name, The Troubadour is steeped in musical history, Bob Dylan played his first gig in London here, Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin and Elvis Costello all used to perform here so needless to say I was sky high.
The first time I stepped up for sound check, I had to fight every urge in my body to get down on the floor and start sniffing it… seriously.
The artists I worship, day in, day out, have walked those floors, breathed that air – felt the hot, burning lights on their faces. Just as I have and I will never forget the first time.… A year later, I’m pleased to say, I’m now a bit of a regular, it’s my favourite place – whichever night you play, the audience are always there, ready to listen and sing along with you.
When I sing there, I can’t truly explain how I feel. I feel special, wanted and dare I use the cliche? Yes, I dare – I feel at home.
I graced the stage once more last Friday, and half way through my set I realised something. Those bright lights have burnt a little mark on my heart, and one that’ll stay there forever.
It reminds me of what I want to do with my life, and how important music is to me. I’m pretty sure that all the other acts feel this way too – I can usually see a glint in their eyes as they roar, float, and sing their way through their sets – we all think the same thing ‘this is where I want to be…this is truly me’.