Jenny Biddle Shop Closed for October 2021

Jenny’s taking time off and won’t be posting orders from her online shop for the month of October 2021. You are still able to put in orders for Christmas, but please bear in mind these will be posted in November. Best wishes from Jenny, and thanks for supporting independent music!

BLOG: From Gigs to Groceries, Music to Motherhood

18 months ago, I was flying back from Australia after a 6-week tour around East Coast Oz. I was playing my own songs to new audiences and long-time fans, earning enough to pay my way around the country, record a new album, and head back to Scotland. COVID hit days after I got returned, and the globe plummeted into lockdown.

[Photo before the world went madder; taken by D.Clarke Photography at Selby Folk Club!]

 

A lot has changed for many of us since the pandemic hit. I heard the saying “We are all in the same storm, but not in the same boat”. I wonder how these last 18 months have been for you…

 

I have found good things and… hard things. Like every musician, my entire year of gigs vanished before my eyes, and with it, my income, purpose, and identity. But as I wondered what to do, I suddenly felt relief in what became a forced break from hectic and unpredictable international touring life. I was no longer hopping from country to country, sleeping (or trying to) in unfamiliar spaces, wearing my extroverted hat (when I’m really an introvert), being away from my wife, with long drives, poor diet, imposter syndrome, unstable income and anxiety (I’m really not sure what I thought was so glamorous about the rockstar life). COVID forced me to stop, take stock, and to try something else for while…

 

And that’s partly why you’ve not heard from me so much. Perhaps more will be revealed to you in the coming paragraphs…

 

JENNY BIDDLE, CHECK-OUT CHICK:
At the start of the pandemic, I got a job at a supermarket online groceries for online orders. Curve ball! It’s chalk and cheese from a music career, but there was something really grounding about doing a non-creative job that asked nothing of my soul, and being a key worker during an unprecedented time. Employees are given a mobile device with a list of items to pick, and the expectation is that you will maintain a certain “pick rate” (i.e. pick and pack X number of grocery items per hour). To liven things up, I turned “pick rate” into a real-life Candy Crush scenario, chasing speed and high scores… until my manager suggested maybe I should focus on picking the right items…
Rumour has it, a colleague substituted a Victoria sponge for a wash cloth… Awkward…
From there, I became a checkout chick, where I practised my “stage banter” in the hopes of one day returning to the stage…

WORKING FOR ARTIST, HANNAH LONGMUIR:
I’ve also been working for a talented artist, Hannah Longmuir, who draws nature-inspired art. I assemble her products and pack orders, and it feels inspiring and meaningful to be working for a independent artist/entrepreneur who is passionate about nature, all the while raising her two-year-old son! You can check out her stuff here, and if you order from her, leave me a hello note, as I’ll be packing your order with love.

 

GUITAR LESSONS:
The pandemic opened other interesting doors! Thanks to the wonders of technology allowing us to keep in touch with  people, I’ve been teaching music online to students in Australia, Germany and UK. If 2021 is your year for music and you fancy lessons, I have availabilities for regular guitar lessons for all abilities, one-off lessons, songwriting sessions, beginner ukulele, and piano improvisation! The best part is, you and I can both stay in our pyjamas and jam across the globe, anywhere in the world via video!

Email me for prices: [email protected]

[Photo by Charlie Brown/Mountainside Photography when I used to have short hair…]

 

ALBUM: HOPING FOR A HERO
Somewhere amidst the pandemic, I released a new album called Hoping for a Hero (how apt for a title, as I currently sit in quarantine, yet again waiting for some sort of saviour…). As I discovered, a pandemic is perhaps not the best time to release an album, and most awkwardly, the word “mask” appears in my opening track (a pre-COVID lack of foresight…). Even if we are all held at a distance, I hugely appreciate your support and love for this album, and hope these songs have found a way to reach you. The songs came slow, over years of observing how we attempt to find happiness in our various, yet futile ways (eg. money, relationships, possessions, fame, Candy Crush, salted caramel popcorn etc). From my own experience, many  pursuits lead to more pain and longing. This album attempts to find another answer, or another path. Whether the songs reveal that answer, I’ll leave that up to your interpretation. You can listen to the album on Spotify, Apple, and buy the CD with beautiful artwork by Ruth Thorp.

 

BABY BIDDLE:
In other news…
If you watched my stop-motion video for Five Foot Tall and uncovered the surprise ending, you will know my wife and I were expecting a wee arrival this year…

Yes! My wife and I had a baby! We’ve kept a low profile on social media while we get to know our newest member of the family, and delight in her delighting in the world!

She’s even mastered the D minor chord!!

Our wee daughter, Willow

We named our daughter Willow! She is almost 5 months old now, and likes walks in the forest, blowing bubbles, and my improvised ukulele songs about poo. She teaches me gratitude,  youthfulness, patience, and a whole new side to “creativity”. She fills my heart with a joy I’ve never known. Her smile is the best thing I’ve ever seen! Ever! While we don’t wish to share her face on social media (until she can make that decision for herself), I wanted to share a couple sweet moments with you.

 

And now, as parts of the world open up, gigs are on the horizon! After 545 days of no gigs, this September I will be doing my first shows in front of live audiences… Needless to say, I am terrified, but people keep saying “It’ll be like riding a bike…”. I can’t wait to share songs from the new album, to people in the same room!

 

Sending my fellow Aussie strength as they currently endure some of the toughest lockdown restrictions….

See you on the other side!

x

Jenny Biddle

Jenny Wins Blues & Roots Radio International Song Contest 2020

Blues & Roots Radio have announced the winners of their 3rd Annual International Song Contest. This year’s contest saw a record number of entries from around the world, an impressive calibre of songwriters, composing a wide variety of styles from Americana, to Contemporary Folk, Celtic Music, Blues, Country and more. Ten jurors, all well-respected radio hosts of the show, based in Canada, USA, Scotland, England, Wales and Italy, gathered together to judge hours’ worth of listening to declare this year’s winners.

The sequel to Jenny’s popular coming out song Hero in Me from her new album Hoping for a Hero, won the female category for the International Song Contest 2020. Kate Lush Band’s song Jackson won the Duo/Trio/Band category, and Colin Clyne’s Where the Ships Go to Die took out the Male Category and Overall Winner. A huge congratulations to Jenny, Colin, Kate and the finalists of this year’s International Song Contest.

You can enjoy a Spotify playlist of the tastefully hand-picked winning songs here: Blues & Roots Radio Finalists 2020 Playlist

President of Blues & Roots Radio, Anne Connor, said “We would like to thank the jurors for the hours of listening that has gone into this year’s contest, it was not an easy task with so many fabulous entries, they were chosen because of their dedication and love of the independent artists that they promote on their shows each week, they are all extremely knowledgeable and respected members of the music communities in the countries in which they live and further afield. I’d also like to take this opportunity to thank the sponsors of this year’s contest, in a year that has been so challenging for artists around the world, it meant we could offer cash prizes for the first time, the winners, I’m sure, will appreciate the prize money at this very difficult time.”

 

For full details go to www.bluesandrootsradio.com

Sponsored by Willow Sound Records, Global Learning Solutions, Cooper Mediation and The Sound Cafe Magazine.

 

Jenny’s 8th Album “Hoping for a Hero” AVAILABLE NOW!

It’s here! Ready for your ears! Introducing Jenny Biddle’s 8th independent album “Hoping for a Hero”! Explore thirteen exquisitely crafted compositions, as Jenny candidly surveys the ups and downs of life using her diverse palette of blues, folk, alt-country, rock and roots flavours.

Several years in the making, and playing a dozen instruments on this album herself, you’ll hear her memorable acoustic guitar style that marries melody, bass and percussion amidst her dependable guitar hooks. Joined by talented session musicians for a lush, full band vibe, enjoy raunchier roots, gentle folk tunes, poignant piano ballads, blues grooves, sweet country flavours, and in “Mountains & Molehills” she immerses us for the first time with the meandering sounds of a Weissenborn slide guitar, hand made by her father. With a lush sonic experience, producer Sean Carey adds the icing to the cake with his atmospheric, electric guitar melodies that tie in beautifully with Jenny’s reflective lyrical sentiment.

From the depths of lockdown, Jenny describes the album concept: “I was struck by the undertone of a longing for some kind of hero throughout these songs. In the past I’ve channelled my quest for happiness in futile directions, whether it be dreams, fame and fortune, romance, approval, or a binge-eating sesh at midnight, and you can very much sense the theme of chasing happiness or some kind of saviour throughout this album. If COVID has taught us anything, it’s that our priorities need a good shake up, and in fact some things we chase and value aren’t nearly as essential as we think.” But who’s the hero in the story? That’s for you to determine…

Jenny boldly confronts her battles with depression in “Long Winter’s Day”, and talks about befriending her anxiety in “Worrying Mind”, and uplifts the listener in her heart-warming alt-country finale, “Five Foot Tall”. Added to this collection of new songs, she’s also included a new orchestral version of “Village by the Sea”, and the sequel to her popular coming-out song, “Hero in Me” with its added verse celebrating marriage equality in Australia.

With beautiful cover art by Ruth Thorp, lyrics booklet and guitar tunings included with the CD, you can buy your very own copy now, or listen on your favourite streaming platform.

Buy CD

Browse Merch

Spotify

Apple Music

Bandcamp

 

TRACK LISTING:

  1. Too Much Too Ask
  2. Mountains & Molehills
  3. Worrying Mind
  4. Too Little Too Late
  5. Kintsugi
  6. Stories We Tell
  7. One and the Same
  8. Believe in Yourself
  9. Loaded Gun
  10. Long Winter’s Day
  11. Hero in Me (Hero in You Sequel)
  12. Village by the Sea
  13. Five Foot Tall

 

CREDITS:

Produced, recorded and mixed by Sean Carey at Church Street Studios, Sydney, NSW, Australia in 2019 and 2020
Mastered by Kathy Naunton – dB Mastering
Cover art by Ruth Thorp

Jenny Biddle: vocals, acoustic & electric guitars, Weissenborn slide guitar, piano, synth keys, banjo, mandolin, ukulele, harmonica, percussion
Sean Carey: bass guitar, electric guitars, backing vocals, percussion
Matt Druery: drums, percussion, backing vocals
Damien de Boos-Smith: cello

 

POSTAGE & SHIPPING: Local postage is available in both UK & Australia. International shipping to the rest of the world. Free postage for orders over AUD$90! Please note, due to COVID-19 deliveries may be delayed.

Blog: Deciding on an Album Cover!

Deciding on an album cover for “Hoping for a Hero” felt like a daunting endeavour. I enjoy expressing the rollercoaster that is life in a wide range of musical genres. This album features sweet folk, raunchier rock vibes, easy listening country melodies, dirty blues grooves, poignant piano ballads, as well as fusion with reggae and atmospheric notions and orchestral swells. This made it impossible to sum up the album with one graphic. What I did notice was that although the music is varied, there was an overall theme that could be summed up by one lyric in a song called Pedestal. That line was “Hoping for a hero”. I’ve gone through life with “the grass is always greener” mentality, thinking that contentment is just around the corner “if only this” and “if only that”. I’ve been drawn to certain goalposts of success, material things, some ideal body image, an over-indulgence of sugar & caffeine, or the quest a romantic fantasy, envying this person, envying that, thinking something, someone, some place will bring me out of the pain of now, and that I’d eventually find myself in some everlasting state of blissed-out utopia. Of course… utopia is unrealistic; life is full of ups and downs for everyone. This album reflects that as I sing about my battle with depression and anxiety, changing friendships, the yearning for deeper connection.

After discarding several attempts to create an album cover myself, I stumbled upon the work of Ruth Thorp. Her graphics took me into another world and I felt a sense of peace when viewing them. Based in the UK, with a degree in architecture, artist Ruth Thorp draws inspiration from her surroundings and likes to explore new ways of looking at things. She starts off hand-drawing black pen markings, scans the image in, converts it to a vector-based file where she can edit, colour digitally and combine with photographic textures. There’s a sense of energy and peace in her artwork, and when I discovered her work I knew she was perfect for encapsulating album concept, and I swiftly sent her the songs for incentive. With “seeking some kind saviour” as the concept of the album combined with a lyric in my song about a depression: “on a sea of endless vague… I hoped I’d be the one you find”; an image came to mind of a lost boat at sea. And Ruth came up with this:

 

When I saw her interpretation I loved it. There’s a stillness. A mindfulness. A watching and waiting… amd letting be. There’s this impression of opening our senses to the moment, and being enamoured with the world and our life, even if we can’t see a clear path ahead. Whether or not the person in the canoe is aware of it, there is the abundant sense of hope. And this concept reflects my awakening through creating this music on this album. Music and art, for me, create hope in a world where we can feel so lost. Perhaps music and art, are, in fact the hero in this story… and in our current global situation, I feel it’s pivotal to keep our world alive with art and music, and not take it for granted in the slightest.

What does the artwork evoke for you?

Check out more of Ruth Thorp’s art here: www.ruththorpstudio.co.uk

Hoping for a Hero comes out Friday 13th November 2020!
You can pre-order the album and buy merch from the Online Shop. Your support helps the creation of more music and art to be enjoyed for years to come!

“Five Foot Tall” Stop Motion Video Out Now!

Brand New Merch and a Brand New Album!

Jenny’s album “Hoping for a Hero” hits the world 13 November 2020. You can pre-order this on CD now from Jenny’s online shop. There are also some new treats to tickle your fancy, including deluxe specials, USBs, and coasters and postcards from the hit single “Five Foot Tall” to add splashes of colour to your life. Head to the Online Shop

Fiery New Song for an Apocalyptic World: Too Little Too Late

Jenny’s brand new apocalyptic song “Too Little Too Late” has just dropped onto digital platforms. It’s not pretty. It’s not nice. It’s 2020. Inspired by the Australian bushfires and the lack of action on climate change, this apocalyptic sentiment echoes on in our unprecedented global emergency of today, with a monumental message and a touch of controversy as JB “goes electric” to thrash out her first political song

This song is the first single off Jenny’s upcoming 8th album, which will be released later in 2020. You can enjoy the track now on your digital platform of choice. Does it strike a chord in you?

LISTEN ON:

Spotify  |   Apple Music   |   YouTube

 

Credits:
Composer: Jenny Biddle
Producer: Sean Carey
Vocals, electric guitar, keys: Jenny Biddle
Bass: Sean Carey
Drums: Matt Druery

Donate:
During these COVID times when touring isn’t possible, if you’d like to support Jenny and the making of her new album you can donate here in any currency: www.paypal.me/jennybiddle

Lyrics: 

TOO LITTLE TOO LATE
[Guitar tuning: DADFAD, Capo 6]

Late December
Apocalyptic wind
Can you hear the bells of hell
Ring ring ring

9 am
They blackened the sun
If there’s a god
I think your god has run

And it’s too little too late
Too little too late

Do I interrupt you
Happy holiday
Is the sound of a whining girl
Getting in your way

Happy New Year
There’s a party down town
I was looking for the meaning
But the town burned down

It’s too little too late
Too little too late

Would you trade your coal
Or your Mercedes Benz
If the price of air goes up
Before the world ends

Why do the greedy bastards
Always get to be king
Until hell is on their door
They won’t change a thing

It’s too little too late
Too little too late

Late December
Apocalyptic wind
Can you hear the bells of hell
Ring ring ring

 

 

 

The Sequel is Here!

The SEQUEL to Jenny’s popular track “Hero in Me” has just been release online!

In 2017 Australia held a plebiscite, asking the nation to decide whether same-sex marriage should be legalised in Australia. The vote saw 62% of people saying YES to marriage equality, and as of January 2018 the first same-sex marriages were celebrated.

Since her own marriage is now legally recognised in her home country, Jenny added a new verse to her crowd favourite coming out song “Hero in Me”. She has re-recorded a tasty, acousticy version of the song with her new added verse!

You can listen right here, on Spotify!

For now the track won’t be pressed to CD, but it’s currently available for your streaming pleasure on Spotify and mp3 download Cd Baby. It will soon be available on YouTube, iTunes, Apple music and more.

Which is your favourite version?

Original (2013): Hero in Me

New Sequel (2019): Hero in Me (Hero in You Remix)

 

 

Brand New in Stock: Any-Purpose GIFT CARDS

Painted by Jenny herself, this card features a print of the original watercolour from her “Wild & Free” album cover. Suitable for all occasions; birthdays, thank yous, Christmas and more. Let someone know you’re thinking of them with this lovely linen paper gift card.

Features:

– 182 x 117 mm
– blank inside
– white envelope included

Buy 3 for the special sale price listed.
Visit the online shop in the link below.

SHOP NOW

 

NOTE: After the 20th December, Jenny will be away and all shipping will be sent from Australia.
Jenny’s shop now accepts 5 different currencies. Transactions are secure through paypal. No credit card details are stored. You do not need a paypal account to make your purchase.