Mara Simpson is a British musician and story-teller, currently based in Brighton. Her upcoming album, ‘285 Days’ features string arrangements by Poppy Ackroyd and illustrations by Becky Lu.
Growing up on a Hertfordshire cul-de-sac then flying back ‘home’ to Kenya where her parents were born, shaped in Mara the traveller, the outsider and the romantic, that have become hallmarks of her music. Mara performs with her band (Poppy Ackroyd, Fiddes Smith, Jools Owen, Jamie Patterson) as well as solo.
Mara is classically trained in composition, piano and guitar as well as fine art. She has performed over 300 shows, both on festival stages and intimate concerts, most recent stages include Fusion (Germany), Kaltern Pop (Italy), Together the People (UK) and Sazavafest (Czech). Mara’s music has taken her across Europe, to New Zealand, Australia, the US and around home shores in England, performing in venues small and large, some conventional, some extraordinary (including canal boats, caves, and a hospital!). She’s become known for captivating audiences with her soulful melodies, rich lyricism, captivating voice, unassuming charm and wicked laugh.
A born storyteller, Mara’s music will resonate with fans of Patti Smith, Laurie Lee, Patrick Watson and This is The Kit. Mara paints a beautifully rich soundscape, setting the scene as she takes her audience on a journey with her, through the beauty of every day to the magic of remarkable.
The Gurt Lush Choir was founded in October 2009.Within 2 years it grew to be one of the largest & most remarkable open-access choirs in the country.
The choir sings all styles of music, & performs regularly to sell-out crowds at the Colston Hall with collaborators such as Bristol Schools Philharmonia, Andy Sheppard, Project Zulu, Opera Anywhere, The Fantasy Orchestra, UWE Big Band, Bristol Youth Choir, The Gypsy Stars….
They regularly champion new works, particularly by local composers, & have a reputation for sourcing extreme & exotic accapella world music. They also indulge in street busking, carol singing & charity performances of all kinds.
The choir still has room for more members. No Audition. 3 Free Taster sessions.
You could be forgiven for thinking you’ve heard Our Man The Field somewhere before. He records live with his band just like the best of his influences; Neil Young, Van Morrison, Credence Clearwater Revival, Ryan Adams and Wilco. His own sound is undefinable but familiar and has been compared to modern day artists such as Ray LaMontagne, Damien Rice, Foy Vance and Joe Purdy.
Think of Our Man In The Field – AKA Alexander Ellis – as an independent correspondent and his songs as dispatches from his travels. He has assembled a band of the finest players and together they give a deeply personal yet wholly cathartic performance, like an off the record admission from you to yourself.