IT FEELS UNSEEMLY… IT’S 7.30 IN THE MORNING, U.S. TIME, WHEN TANYA DONELLY ANSWERS THE TELEPHONE AT HER HOME IN BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS. HOWEVER, SHE HAD TOLD ME DURING AN E-MAIL FLURRY LAST WEEK “DON’T WORRY – I’M A MORNING PERSON, 100%” AND SHE IS AS GOOD AS HER WORD; BRIGHT AND FULL OF CONVERSATION. THE FIRST MINUTE OF OUR ‘PHONE CALL IS AFFLICTED BY DIGITAL INTERFERENCE, WHATEVER WEATHER SYSTEMS LIE BETWEEN AMERICA AND THE UK AN OCCASIONAL HAZARD FOR TRANSATLANTIC CALLS. SHE SAYS, AFTER I HANG UP AND RING BACK A SHORT WHILE LATER, “WELL, THERE’S BEEN SOMETHING OF A STORM BREWING”…
Over the course of the last three years Tanya has released a series of collaborative EPs (THE SWAN SONG SERIES) on which she’s stretched her songwriting in familiar and all new ways alongside the contributions of friends and key musical players from her life – including Robyn Hitchcock and John Wesley Harding. Crucially, both Tom Gorman and Gail Greenwood, her former songwriting partners in favoured early 1990s band Belly, have been involved. It was these new creative moments with her old friends, perhaps, which were the beginning of where we find ourselves today – talking about the promise of new Belly material and the band on the verge of a major tour (including a week of UK dates in July).
In this new edition of The Mouthcast Tanya talks to us for a second time; back in 2013 we spoke at length about her solo work. Here, we look back at Belly’s global hit single FEED THE TREE and both albums (STAR from 1993 and KING from 1995), and we also talk about the quartet’s intoxicating penchant for casting the dark and the sweet into the same pot. Tanya reveals how Belly reforming came about, and what it was like to step into the rehearsal room for the first time twenty years after the band’s troubled 1996 demise. She also talks a little about her recently issued solo album SWAN SONG SERIES, which compiles most of the tracks released independently over the last three years…
Buy 4AD’s limited edition vinyl reissue of STAR here
Visit Belly’s website here, follow on Facebook here and Twitter here
Buy Tanya’s new solo release SWAN SONG SERIES on CD or vinyl here
Friday 15th July GLASGOW Garage Tickets
Saturday 16th July LEEDS Stylus Tickets
Sunday 17th July MANCHESTER Ritz Tickets
Monday 18th July NORWICH Waterfront Tickets
Tuesday 19th July NOTTINGHAM Rock City Tickets
Wednesday 20th July BRISTOL Academy Tickets
Thursday 21st July LONDON Kentish Town Forum Tickets
Saturday 23rd July DUBLIN Academy Tickets
Portrait by Stephen Dirado from the KING shoot (1995). Website here
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