“You’re about to hear an experiment involving me, my bedroom, my guitar, some imagination, a million cups of tea, 45 eggbox trays and some weird recording equipment…”
LizzySpit (aka Elizabeth Knights-Ward) isn’t the first budding troubadouress to make an album in her bedroom, but she’s refreshingly honest about her limited means and ambition to damn well make the most of them. Eggbox couldn’t be more perfect a title for her debut release (out today): ten resolutely gloss-free, pitch shift dodging songs about, well, a young woman from Clapham’s reality and not much else. Reviews thus far seem to be divided between those who think releasing such a raw album is brave and those who think it’s simply naïve. It’s probably a bit of both (think of those early Emmy The Great demos, only less knowingly quirky and self-congratulatory), and it’s hard to escape the nagging feeling that if Lizzy’s songs were less pop-oriented her strong DIY ethic would be praised to the skies. But if Eggbox sounds almost too naked on the first few listens, its appeal grows with every play as Lizzy’s stories draw you in ever closer with their low-key, truth-telling simplicity. “I don’t need a drummer to make this a band,” she sings, “I’m going alone ’cause it’s what I planned.” An admirable mission statement and one you should consider seeing come to life at tonight’s album launch party at London’s famous 12 Bar. Get to know her a bit better first, too, if you like…
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What did you listen to when you were growing up?
Classic rock!! Led Zep, The Doors, The Who, The Kinks, The Eagles, Queen, Guns ‘n’ Roses! Big Country! (awesome use of bagpipes!!)
What did you want to be until you decided to become a musician…if you ever did ‘decide’ that is!
I wanted to be a ballerina or a figure skater. But I have huge feet, am really not very flexible, I suck at dancing and look weird in a leotard.
What would you be if you weren’t a musician?
What would you tell your 18 year old self if you could go back in time?
Beware of people!! Sounds weird, but this year I’ve learnt a lot about people and the things they can do to other people. I’m 23 now and I still feel I’m at school sometimes.
Who was your childhood idol?
Linus from the Peanuts gang…you know, Snoopy and Charlie Brown. I was in love with Linus. Yes, he’s a cartoon character.
What’s your favourite poem and how much of it can you recite from memory?
“Christmas is coming
The geese are getting fat
Please put a penny in the old man’s hat
If you haven’t got a penny
Then a ha’penny will do
If you haven’t got a ha’penny
Then god bless you…”
I don’t know what its called but it reminds me of being round at my Grannies when I was younger, and I loved that feeling.
What was the last good book you read and how did it affect you?
‘AC/DC: Two Sides To Every Glory. A Complete Biography’. Something I didn’t realise is that AC/DC rarely got a good review. They were always slated for releasing the “same album” with a different CD cover. I think this is total rubbish, but the fact that they didn’t conform or change their style just to fit in is legendary. If I ever get a bad review, I like to pretend I’m in AC/DC, it helps me get over it!
How would you describe your new album in 10 words or less?
Raw, honest, truthful, me, emotional, interesting and….miles and miles away from a commercially produced record. [errrmmm, that's way more than 10 young lady! - Ed]
If you had to pick one song from your repertoire to represent your entire body of work, which one would you choose and why?
‘Stars In The Water’. It’s completely different to all my other stuff, but I think it sums up the fact that my music is different!? Well that’s what I hope anyway.
What’s been the best moment of your career so far?
Being played by Steve Lemacq on BBC Radio 2! It actually made my life.
Which artist would you most like to work with – your dream collaboration?
Slash. I’d love Slash to teach me a mean guitar solo. Or just turn my songs into epic rock ballads.
How are you most likely to die and what would you want written on your headstone?
Doing something totally stupid and really embarrassing. Here lies Lizzy, she got hit by a parked car.
What’s your biggest fear?
What’s the biggest problem facing the world today and do you have any ideas on how it could be addressed?
It’s certainly NOT Russell Brand and J-Ross, I think everyone has blown that way out of proportion. I’d say gun and knife crime on the streets of the UK. I think the campaign ‘carry a knife and the consequences will follow’ is excellent but needs to be made bigger.
What’s your tipple?
Vodka and cranberry, or a nice fruit cider. Or a nice cold Corona. Or a nice glass of white wine. Or a nice glass of alcohol.
What’s your top household tip?
Always keep a window open a couple of inches to ensure fresh air can circulate through your room. Nothing worse than stale air.
Do you have a tattoo?
I would like one, but I fear I’ll regret it. I’d like my Lizzyspit logo tattooed on my hand. But I think this is a bit too self-obsessed and I’d feel stupid if I didn’t ‘make it’. Whatever ‘making it’ is.
What are your pet hates?
FEET! I hate feet. Apart from babies’ feet, they are all cute. But as soon as you get older, then feet turn ugly.
What kind of person would have sex to your music?
Errrrmmmm?! Someone who doesn’t get it much!? A lot of my stuff is about the troublesome side of a relationship, I’m pretty sure if anyone had sex to my music it would kill the mood, very quickly.
If you chanced upon Aladdin’s lamp what three things would you wish for?
To hear any song and be able to play it immediately. To have a cherry red or bright yellow VW camper van, and three more wishes.
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