Mermaid Overseas: Tucson to Mesa

The soundtrack to a Mermaid making music across three continents.

Where: Tucson to Mesa

When: 14/4/2015 – 17/4/2015

Lesson: Never turn down a threesome

Achievement: Open mic at Sky Bar & recording at chez Fair

Lyric: It’s not about the place, it is all about the people

Quote: “Are you Dobby’s mom?!”

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1. Alanis Morisette – You Oughta Know

“It was a slap in the face how quickly I was replaced. Are you thinking of me when you fuck her?”

My friend Mimi who lived in the same block in Halls at Goldsmiths put me in touch with Ashley who lives in Tucson, Arizona who offered me a place to stay during my trip! Ashley is the kindest and most welcoming lady. She told me to let myself in to her home and I chilled in her bohemian apartment with her amazing pooch Dobby! Dobby and I became best friends in a flash.

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When Ashley arrived home from work she made me delicious grub and we got dolled up as she told me of her kareoke go-to which is this Alanis track. It takes me back to car albums from long family holiday journies with me and Loz belting out the aggressive slur. Ashley and I danced and recreated this.

We went to a great gig downtown with a band whose lead singer looked like Harry Potter and I believe were called Halcyonaire. I met her friends Alex, Emy, Lauren and Lexy who are all equally as incredible as Ashley is! It’s amusing to switch from being one of the lads for a week to a group of girls where the conversation more often than not diverges to sex, relationships and the menstrual cycle.

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A guy approached us trying it on and was told he hadn’t got a chance with any of us. He mistook my stupid English politeness to my being interested as he stated he had a chance with me. Need to be a bit more of a bitch.

2. Ezra Furman – My Zero

“I’ve gone away forever, the wrong side of the tracks”

Ashley told me many incredible stories and one was when she went o a small concert and met the musician playing and ended up spending some time with him which resulted in her calling in sick to work the next day and spontaneously going on a road trip to LA and having an incredible adventure with him. This musician was Ezra Furman who I went to see a couple of years ago in London with Gub! This story very much impressed me and she also had the most wonderful postcard he sent her from Oakland talking of their hopes of being successful artists, or at least happy ones.

Ashley and I spoke about different artist’s methods and how they can translate into any medium of art. Ashley is art director for the installations in the shop Anthropologie which sounds like a great job and she oozes creativity and style. Here she is in a Snapchat I sent to Gub to make him jealous.

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3. Mumford & Sons – Awake My Soul

“Lend me your eyes I can change what you see but your soul you must keep totally free”

When Ashley was at work I went on walks around Tucson, downtown for a Margherita in the sun and some nachos when taking Dobby for walkies. When Ashley got home we headed for some delicious grub of chowder in a bread bowl and croissant sarnies. We made happy hour by 1 minute and the second I got my G&T I managed to launch it all over myself which was embarassing but I was replenished immediately, which I feel would not happen in England.

I also cannot think of many groups I know in England who would take in a complete stranger as warm and welcoming as Ashley and her friends did! I am so grateful and appreciated being involved in their everyday lives in Arizona.

I played at an open mic night at Sky Bar which was a cool venue with delicious whiskey gingers and all the girls came to see.

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We went to a couple of other bars and I met more of their group of friends and spilt more drinks. I spent a long time in a heated discussion with one gent about his adoration for Mumford & Sons and my observation of their distinctly average music. This same gent and his girlfriend gave me a lift back to Ashley’s house later on which resulted in me being 99% sure that I was invited to their house for a threesome in their pool. Naive little me hopped out the car to snuggle with Dobby only quite clicking what they had meant a moment later.

4. Tame Impala – ‘Cause I’m a Man

“Lost in the moment for a second time, each fucking doubt I make and cry. I’m just pathetic, that’s the reason why In desperation, all that you can do is ask me why?”

This is a band I keep hearing about and their music is growing on me more and more. Emy played them in her car as she drove us for lunch with Ashley in a posh shopping plaza where she works. We ate burgers and discussed periods. Here they are, I am particularly jealous of Emy’s fabulous mermaid hair! She bought me some delicious gelato which was real good.

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Emy is a pet sitter which added to my dog filled days in Tucson. Here are a few of the fabulous animals I met.

_DSC8517Dobby & Chunk in Ashley & Alex’s yard

_DSC8518Homeless Beyonce on the streets of Tucson

_DSC8542The biggest dog I have ever seen

_DSC8520Gross homeless & hairless chihuahua

photo (5)One of the many family pooches in Mesa

5. Ryan Adams – Wonderwall

“Maybe you’re gonna be the one that saves me”

Not only did Ashley take me in, she then found me a home for the night with her family in Mesa as my flight was early in the morning, transport was expensive and they live near the airport I was flying from. I am still overwhelmed with the generosity people have shown me. One of Ashley’s sisters Megan (they’re triplets!) made a delicious dinner and I was filled to the brim with wine, Megan’s boyfriend James gave me a guitar tuner as I lost mine in Tucson and Ardeth (mum) gave me a fabulous vintage poncho for the snow and rain in Denver as I had no coat!

Megan and James work for a music promotion company and James is a musician himself. I told them of how every person I’ve played to in hostels has requested I played Wonderwall which I do not know on guitar as it makes me think of 3am club closings between sweaty beery Yorkshire boys yelling out “YOU’RE MY WONDERWALL”. If I did learn this cover I would do it like this version by my love Ryan Adams.

James and I played some of our songs to each other which led to some late night recording in their studio in the basement. I’m really looking forward to hearing the outcome as they are adding some extra layers to the guitars and vocals we laid down. I felt on a similar music plain to James and enjoyed our conversations about our intentions and influences. Here’s a video of us recording Dancing In The Dark.

Not only was I transported, fed, watered and treated like a queen by Ardeth that evening, she woke up at the crack of dawn to take me to the airport and I am just filled with joy with how incredible people can be.

Flying from Mesa, Arizona to Colorado Springs…

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