It has been 10 years since Belinda O’Hooley and Heidi Tidow began writing songs and singing together as O’Hooley & Tidow. And what a decade! This album; recorded live just before lockdown at the beautiful St George’s Bristol, showcases a clutch of songs that tell stories about something or someone that has affected the duo in a deep and moving way. They feel intensely privileged to be able to sing about interesting and inspiring characters such as Beryl Burton, Anne Lister, Ronnie and many others who have given them, and hopefully their listeners, inspiration. Each song has been their baby at some point, carefully nurtured through the gentle process of contemplating, writing words, coming up with melodies and chords, and working on an arrangement.
They have all over the years taken on new life and meaning with the many and varied audiences the duo shared them with along the way. There is also the song ‘Small, Big Love’ handwritten for the couple’s wedding day by Mercury nominated artist Kathryn Williams and Belinda and Heidi’s interpretation of the late Elliott Smith’s ‘Between the Bars’. The album is dedicated to their little boy, Flynn, who grew in Heidi’s belly listening to these songs, and who is very much a central part of this and every tour and also to the audiences that have loyally supported the duo over the years.
Says Belinda: “We were fortunate enough to be able to perform our #GentlemanJack Tour, just before the pandemic and lockdown began, and for many of our audiences, it was their last gig of this uncertain time too. Our concert at St George’s in Bristol was one of the most memorable of our career, playing their gorgeous Steinway Model D piano to a completely sold out audience. The atmosphere that night was incredible and one that will stay in our hearts forever. We are so glad we recorded it!”
‘Boundless songwriting and exquisite harmonies that truly shine’ ***** The Guardian
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