It is almost a year since my first interview with Grace Knight and a busy year it has been for the Eurogliders’ vocalist. Together with Bernie Lynch, she has been performing shows around the country in ‘two configurations’. “One,” she explains, “is with the full Eurogliders band, and the other is just Bernie and myself and two other musicians which is a sort of an intimate vibe. We’ve been going around the country doing both of these sorts of gigs and having a ball. We’re also in the studio recording a new album now. It’s all very exciting, I’ve got to say.”
It’s great news for the band’s fans that we will soon be listening to new material from the band and with this current run of shows, we should get a taste of that new material and, of course, the songs we have come to know and love, at their live performances. “We’ll certainly be playing our hits,” she assures me. Grace admits that she didn’t realise quite how many there were until she was writing a set list. “And then I thought ‘Oh my God! Do we have to do this?'”, she laughs. “We’re doing the old hits and we’re putting in some of our new stuff off the new album that we are recording.” Grace is looking forward to giving the new material an airing at the shows. As much as she enjoys singing the songs that everyone knows, the singer agrees that it is always nice to have something new and fresh in the repertoire.”All the songs on the album were written by Bernie Lynch,” As Grace points out, “Bernie is the sole songwriter for Eurogliders. He always has been.” Grace concedes that song writing is not her strong point although, she has written some of her own solo material in the past. “I write about things that touch me and inspire me and as long as I feel I am being honest, I believe it’s going to touch the listener as well.”
And there is one writing project in particular that was proof of that philosophy, albeit not a musical one. Grace’s book ‘Pink Suit for a Blue Day’ reveals the singer’s trauma as a result of childhood abuse.”I wrote the book because it was something that had affected me as a person my whole life,” she shares. “And after ever so many years of desperately trying to ‘fix myself’, I finally came to realise that I was the person that was maintaining the legacy. I was the one that kept feeling worthless about myself , which is something that many of those who are abused kind of put on themselves. When I realised that I was the person who kept this going, it actually made it easier for me to understand how to fix it because it meant that I had to change my perception and that was something I knew I could do. Once I understood that, I felt obliged to write my own story to say what did help me in the hope that it would help other people. There is some pretty ugly stuff in there but that’s the nature of childhood abuse. It is ugly. I thought, if I don’t tell the truth, then there’s no point in writing this.”
With a voice that adapts well to a variety of musical genres, Grace has often been referred to as a jazz singer but she balks at the suggestion. “I’ve never called myself a jazz singer,” she insists. “My albums got put in that category because of ‘Come in Spinner‘ and so I was pigeon holed as a jazz singer. I always thought that jazz is something that you have to learn. I didn’t. I would just listen to the musicians. I don’t have any musical qualifications. I don’t play an instrument. I just listen carefully. So to be called a jazz singer is insulting to real jazz singers. I’ve always maintained that I am a singer. That’s all I do. I interpret someone else’s lyrics. I choose songs because of the lyric, because of the story they’re telling so I consider myself a story teller that sings and I tell my stories through song and through my own experiences.
by Sharyn Hamey
Copyright © 2014 Sharyn Hamey. All Rights Reserved
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