In what seems like another lifetime, I was a gigging and touring singer/songwriter who got picked up in limo's and drank champagne.Won awards for it and everything (the song writing, that is, though likely I might have won an award for champagne drinking too, if there had been one. Anyway, sometimes I needed a band to play with and musicians would join me on the road.
One such musician is the very lovely Glenda Pescado, a brilliant bass player from Pembrokeshire.
Obviously the fact that he is quite literally a brilliant bass player is quite handy, but what I remember most about him is that he was such good fun, so easy to get on with and easy going. (and incredibly handsome in a sort of David Essex way, but I'm not really the type to remember details like that). Besides, this is going back ... oooo ... 15 years maybe?
I have written before about how I became very poorly in my forties and how this changed the direction in my life. Glenda and I lost touch.
Then last year a friend and I decided that we would have a night out dancing. Not dancing around a fire or dancing in the New Moon, just a straight forward, dancing our socks off to a great band and she had heard of a great band who were playing in Fishguard.
So off we went with flat shoes on (dancing in heels is not an option these days) and when we got there, who should be standing at the bar, but my old mucker Glenda!! Well, it was like I had only seen him yesterday. And guess what, he was bass player in the band headlining that night!!
The event was fundraising event for Hiraeth, Here's a link to Fred talking about the project...
I digress, the band was called SENDELICA and I knew of their work because they are a very successful band from West Wales, I just didn't realise Glenda was their bass player.
It was a great night and when Sendelica came on, well, I danced like I was in my living room and no-one was watching, it felt AMAZING. Their music reaches right inside you and twangs the very marrow of your bones. Proper, psychedelic, feel- it- all- over at- once groove.
Here's what folk from all around this planet Earth say about Sendelica: -
"Bowie's version charted the career of the first rocker to fall to earth from space from an earthlings viewpoint. This rework by the remarkable Sendelica makes it sound like the same story viewed from a distant planet ..... Churning, ringing, disappearing into the ether like long wave radio transmissions, this is a radiant thing.....You fear exploitation in the wake of Bowie's death, but hear only art and astronomy. Far out; literally" RECORD COLLECTOR
"Forget Lady Gaga’s karaoke at the Grammys and Lorde’s ill‐judged display at the Brits, this single is what a tribute to Bowie should be like: mysterious and bewildering, with scintillating space‐rock swirlings, mildly unhinged female vocals, backwards tape-loop FX and more. You get 15 minutes of music for £7, but hurry – only 600 coloured‐vinyl copies are available. (8/10)" GEOFF BARTON CLASSIC ROCK
"If you can imagine seeing a star-sign version of Bowie as Ziggy Stardust walking through space then I suspect you’ll be on the right track envisioning that and imagining what the soundtrack to this would be like.
While apparently not planned nor conceived as a tribute to a great artist following his passing, Sendelica’s take on Ziggy Stardust does come across as a highly appropriate track to play in such a context. There’s a mournful edge to this cover version, bordering on lament at times in terms of mood and atmosphere, combined with a sensual/erotic vocal presence and the psychedelic, cosmic light toned overlays that gives this piece something of an otherworldly general presence. A tribute to a great artist in the game if not the name, to put it that way, and I doubt if too many others will manage to make their tributes to David Bowie in a manner as compelling as this one for some time. My rating: 100/100" HOUSE OF PROG
"And finally, Sendelica’s take on ‘Ziggy Stardust’ is weirdly slowed down and tripped out, the female lead
voice floating atop layers of liquid guitars and synths, and a muted rhythm section. The B-side features a ‘Ziggy’ remix by Astralasia’s Marc Swordfish, which turns the tune into a lush, ambient soundscape, with a
pizzicato synth sound and the beats reduced to a distant pulse. Beguilingly cosmic and dreamlike, this is not so much a cover as a radical reinvention. The only down side is that this could easily be viewed as a cash-in, even though the release was planned way before Bowie’s demise. Nevertheless, it’s a real pity that the man himself isn’t around to hear this."
"It does not attempt to recreate Ronson's crunchy glammed-up guitar chords that give the original it's pomp and purpose, opting instead for a slower, more ethereal and atmospheric take. The yin to Bowie's yang is provided by the layered female vocal. The B-side is an equally enthralling remix by Astralasia's Marc Swordfish. Both sides honour Bowie's preference for the new and experimental over anything tried and tested. David would no doubt have approved." HARMONIC DISTORTION
"Eclecticism has always been a thing with Sendelica, and now they introduce even more new facets to their sound. Sprawling, shimmering post-rock instrumentation, soulful female vocals, and bursts of laid-back, meandering sax that bridges the gap between psychedelia and jazz come together to create something very, very different from the Bowie original, and which may also surprise Sendelica fans who are expecting something more spacerockish." BLISS / AQUAMARINE
And these are just the reviews on our planet! Likely someone in a parallel Universe is writing a great review about Sendelica as we speak.
So, you can imagine my excitement when Pedro Kaldini, the backbone of the band, contacted me and asked if I would be interested in Sound Healing on one of the band's improvisation projects.
I met up for a cuppa with Pedro. It was so strange because I truthfully felt as though I had known him from way back, though I have not known him from way back, not in this life time, anyway. Maybe a different one.
When we hooked up to talk music and general life musings, well, we had a right giggle and I reckon I sat next to Pedro in school in another lifetime (and we never got any work done for chatting and laughing) Obviously he couldn't sit next to me in school in this lifetime, because I went to an all girls school. Though doubtless he would have enjoyed that, though the beard would have given him away!
And now tomorrow, me, my gongs, Tibetan singing bowls, shruti and other such things that I wrap up from my studio, are going to Sendelica Towers to record Sanskrit Mantra & whatever else pops out.
I'm not going to lie, I am excited! We are making a double vinyl album. I used to dream of such things when flicking through record shops as a teenager.
So, remember folks, life happens in circles and cycles. I would never have thought that I would be Sound Healing with Glenda one day! You just never can tell what is coming next. We shouldn't be surprised by that really, after all, the planet is spinning on its axis so why shouldn't we.