Covid 19 and the necessary restrictions surrounding it have brought about a number of cancellations of music events, including what would have been Get In Her Ears’ very first festival. Taking place tomorrow, Saturday 18th July, it was set to be a pretty special day, filled with some of our favourite female and non binary artists. Fingers crossed we can finally make it happen next year…
One of the bands set to play was Brighton’s LibraLibra. Creating immense, energy-fuelled cacophonies with a gritty magnetism, they’ve become firm favourites of ours over the last few years, having blown us away at our gig at The Finsbury last December with their seething, riotous charisma.
In the absence of the festival, and any gigs, at the moment, LibraLibra front-woman Beth Cannon has shared an insightful guest blog for us, as well as an epic playlist… Have a read, listen and then be sure to watch the video for the band’s incredible new single ‘Lonely Girl’ at the bottom of this article!
The realities of being a woman in a band in your early 30s…
Yes, I’m 32 and wish I could say I was confident and proud of it, yet most days I’m not. I’m an insecure wreck seconding guessing every move I make. Sorry I’m not starting with an emboldened, empowering statement, but in what I do at the level I’m at there is no glamour; there may be a thread of security (my band & my manager), but also a whole world of fear.
Firstly, you can’t be in a band and not work, unless you have lucked out and struck a deal, but even then most deals don’t amount to much. So, you are essentially working two full time jobs – one you hate and one you love; the love bit is great, but the reality is you’re in a 9-5 most days questioning your whole existence. This isn’t news, this isn’t an eye opener, it’s our reality. And it’s ok to hold your hands up and burn out sometimes. It happens to me a lot: I think this living two lives, this parallel universe shift, tugs at our mental health more so than we care to admit. It’s exhausting, it’s anxiety driven, I cry almost every other day.
So, why the fuck do I do this? Because I fucking love it so much. That’s the sad truth; I’m addicted to music. It’s in my head 24/7 – melodies, orchestras, choirs, jingles, it’s never ending. The only way I can truly be silent in my head is being on stage. It’s the most terrifying experience, but also the most exhilarating – I go from throwing up backstage to forgetting my name and my existence within 3 minutes of being on that stage. So, what I’m trying to say in my usual long-winded way (I’m dyslexic, so being concise and structured is not happening!) is we do this because of love and love alone, and that burning raging passion that is flooding our veins. And that’s not OTT for any musician, anyone with a passion will feel it, and there’s almost no words, there is a silent understanding deep within. I won’t stop, I can’t stop, stopping is not an option. No matter how many times I have that daily meltdown – I should be earning x amount, I should be settling down, it’s time to give up the dream you’re far too old. Who’s to say I’m too old?
My main tip on how to get through this? Don’t listen to the mainstream media whose voice has been instilled in us since birth. Make it your mantra – fuck the media. Go with your gut, your instinct and your truth. If you can manage to hold on to it even on the darkest of days, you’ve got it and perseverance is key. Maybe I could have been something much younger than I am now, but I was severely mentally unwell: I had PTSD from experiences in my teens that I wish to forget but I was running for a long time, and in turn getting myself into even worse situations. So, why can’t my time be now, at a time in my life where I’m ready to look after myself, I’m ready to acknowledge the bad and embrace the good in me? Why do we place timelines on women? It’s wrong. There isn’t a shelf for us to retire too, we should be loud, proud and beautiful at any age. Hold on to your fire, to anyone having a day of doubts and despair: hold it, embrace it and then tell it to fuck off, don’t let the negative voices win. And that is the only advice I can give, ride this motherfucking mighty wave and go against the curve.
This playlist is called ‘No Humps’; it gets me going, it gets me inspired, it gets my blood pumping, the lows, the highs, the technical thrills that I can only hope to achieve… It’s full of badass artists that have given me hope along the way.
LibraLibra’s upcoming EP Hail Mary is out 14th August. Watch the new video for the band’s latest single ‘Lonely Girl’ and download/stream here: