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Elles Bailey Interview

Blending her Bristol roots with a slice of Nashville, blues-Americana sensation Elles Bailey released her highly acclaimed sophomore album ‘The Road I Call Home’ earlier this year. Since then, she’s been touring all over the continent, wowing audiences as she goes. Now back in the UK, Elles is out on her UK tour and will feature a stop at The Bodega on 5th December. We had a chat with her about life on the road and her ‘Blacktop Companion’ release.

Hey Elles! Can’t wait to have you in Nottingham, how excited are you to get on the UK leg of your aptly titled ‘Road I Call Home’ Tour?

This whole year has been such a blast and I’ve toured all over Europe and into the USA, but I am so happy to be finally back on home soil and touring the UK. The shows have gone so well already, and I am loving it.

Your soulful sound is so unique, who were your inspirations growing up and how did music become a part of your life?

I don’t remember music not being a part of my life really, my dad listened to Blues and Country music like The Band, Muddy Waters, Howlin Wolf and The Eagles, whilst my mum listened to gospel music. But growing up wasn’t all about my parents music, I was a product of the 90s so maybe the uniqueness comes because I used to love the Spice Girls too… or maybe not LOL.

Many of your songs are so beautifully personal, do you find it hard sharing them with the world?

I used to, and sometimes it’s really hard on stage to perform some songs. Even in Sheffield last week I cried on stage but as a singer/songwriter it’s what we do. It’s part of the territory and I am just really glad that my music resonates with people, because in the end that’s what you want as a songwriter. You want others to feel it too.

The reaction to ‘Road I Call Home’ was incredible but with these extra deluxe songs on ‘Blacktop Companion’, did you feel like you had more to share from this era?

100%. Blacktop Companion tells more of the story and in fact features three fully produced songs from the ‘Road I Call Home’ Recording session that didn’t make the original record, and a cover of Levon Helms ‘When I Go Away’ which we have been playing on this album tour.

We hear you played 6 different countries in one month recently, that must’ve been a great experience, right? 

Did I? Wow that’s cool – I didn’t even realise – which seems mad right? I see the world through a van window but am very grateful that I get to travel to so many cool places. We spent 12 hours in Sandane in Norway in the Fjords and it totally blew my mind. I decided not to sleep and go star watching at 4am – that was super special!

And finally, what should we look forward to with your upcoming Notts show?

Firstly, my band are on fire so I am so excited to bring this show to Nottingham. I have only ever played as a trio there, so I am excited to introduce the band to The Bodega. What else should you look forward too? Just the show in general – I am excited to share some old favourites from Wildfire that we have resurrected just for this tour but also play a few tracks from Blacktop Companion as well as most of the Road I Call Home record. It’s gonna be a lot of fun!

Elles Bailey will play The Bodega on 5th December, with special guests True Strays. Tickets are on sale here.

Announced this week - 22.11.19

Right then. It’s Friday and it’s time to run through all the Bodega shows announced this week. There’s 5 to get your teeth stuck into so prepare yourselves, your February just got a lot busier…

Having spent 2019 supporting Royal Blood, The Amazons and Sea Girls, Liverpool rock trio The Mysterines will now bring their irresistible blistering riffs for a headline Notts show on 19th February.

She’s just released her debut album 'First Prize Bravery' earlier this month, Irish singer-songwriter Sorcha Richardson will head to The Bodega on 20th February, armed with her tender collection of dreamy indie-rock.

Receiving support from BBC 6 Music and Radio X, infectious rockers The Luka State will bring their epic, distorted riffs and stadium-ready hooks to The Bodega on 13th February.

Nashville-based songstress Olivia Lane will bring her signature country-pop charm to The Bodega on 7th February, following the release of her EP 'The One'.

And finally, following the release of their sophomore album 'Optimal Lifestyles', Toronto punk quartet PKEW PKEW PKEW will bring their energy to our Bodega stage on 10th February.

Tickets for all shows will be available over on Alt Tickets.

Bodega Radio 01

We're very excited to have our own Bodega radio show on City Beat Radio! We'll be live the first Friday of the month from 7pm until 9pm and our first episode is available to listen back to now. This month, we talk our upcoming 20th Anniversary.

Listen below now!

Announced this week - 15.11.19

Happy Friday! Let’s take you through all our new announcements for this week.

Let’s start with the world’s most endeared art-rockers, ...And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead who will bring their blend of beauty and chaos to The Bodega on 2nd March 2020. 25 years into their illustrious career, the band have just announced the release of their tenth album ‘X: The Godless Void and Other Stories’, slated for release in January.

Packing a punch with blistering riffs and addictive hooks, Sheffield's finest SHEAFS will join us as part of a run of intimate shows on 7th March. Their whirlwinds of guitar-led goodness are seeing them become one of the country’s best new bands so catch them in an intimate venue before it’s too late.

If you caught Loyle Carner on tour around the UK this month, hopefully you saw Arlo Parks just before him. Her silky smooth hip-hop/indie hybrid is making her one to watch in 2020 so check out her cinematic tunes when she takes to The Bodega on her first headline tour on 5th March.

And finally, Brooklyn punks Bambara will head to Notts on 16th May, armed with their emotionally charged noise-rock and upcoming fourth album ‘Stray’.

Tickets for all shows will be available over on Alt Tickets.

Mollie Ralph Interview

“Music has never not been a part of my life”

Drawing in audiences with her soulful tone and mesmerising songwriting, Nottingham’s finest singer-songwriter Mollie Ralph has a voice to silence the loudest of crowds. She’s performed all over the city with slots at Splendour Festival, Royal Concert Hall and a packed headline show at Rough Trade. Her next stop? The Bodega on 23rd November where she’ll be playing her biggest headline show to date. We caught up with Mollie ahead of the gig, giving us a glimpse of what to expect from her upcoming show…

 Hey Mollie! Your first ever Bodega headline is fast approaching, how are you feeling about it?

I’m super excited, I’m always at this venue watching other people. So it will be awesome to perform on that stage myself (especially following some of the legends that have played on it in the past).

Your sound is so uniquely soulful, what music inspired you growing up and how did music become a part of your life?

Since I was around 13, I have always been heavily influenced by the likes of Peggy Lee, Etta James, Al Green and so on. I think connecting with their music in such a powerful way created the desire to make soul music myself. Music has never not been a part of my life, after growing up in a very musical family with parents that are musicians, I think it was pretty much inevitable.

‘Give It Up’ ozzes effortless Summer soul, how did that song come about?

This song relates to everyday life of unrequited love but not giving up, which happens in most people’s lives at some point. This one came from the heart and was co-written with one of Notts’ legends, GEORGIE.

You’ve played shows all over Nottingham from the Royal Concert Hall to Splendour, has your approach to live shows changed in that time?

It’s changed immensely, 2 and a half years ago I went to my first open mic only knowing 3 chords on the acoustic guitar. Now having a 9-piece band behind me, I can produce the full sound I desired when I first started out. With a band, comes the confidence and stage presence. My band are amazing, and they do some an awesome job of bringing to life the songs I’ve written.

It’s great to see how your music is progressing from solo acoustic to now with an amazing band behind you, does it feel like a natural progression for your sound?

Absolutely, it was such a relief at that first band practice. The fact we could recreate the sound I’d desperately wanted, since I practically wrote my first song, was awesome!

And finally, what can we look forward to for your show at the end of the month?

It’s gonna be the full shebang, full band, new material. Even a little bit of merch. It’s going to be a fun night, especially with my amazing supports Lady Rose and Tilly Greentree. This is a night you do not want to miss!

Mollie Ralph will play The Bodega on 23rd November, with special guests Lady Rose and Tilly Greentree. Tickets are on sale here.