Headlining the Classical Uproar event on Friday August 25th and how excited are you to be performing at it, especially since it’s taking place at The Gorton Monastery in Manchester?
I’m very excited…in fact I’m always excited when I perform, its why we performers do what we do. We love it. A spectacular setting adds to the thrill.
Is this the first time you’ve sung at a ‘classical dance music’ style event and why do you think these type of events have become popular?
You could blame Radio 1’s Pete Tong for sparking the interest I guess…and who does not like a bit of ‘epic-ness’ in their music. I, however, do not know why it has taken off in the way that it has but I’m pleased to have this opportunity (my first) to get up close and personal with the new flavour of the season.
What can people expect from your show?
I wish I could call it my show – I am merely a willing guest participant in the proceedings. I will be performing one song with the orchestra, although I would have loved to do more.
When you recorded your ‘Where Love Lives’ anthem and National hit, did you know it was special and did you think it would still be going strong all these years down the line?
I would say I recorded a song, I didn’t record an ‘Anthem’ . The song was written for me by a young man who had sought me out and who insisted we worked together. Thanks Lati :-)…he was very persistent and we are now great friends and collaborators! And no, do not let anyone tell you that we knew – that anyone knew – ‘Where Love Lives’ was going to have the life it has had. I don’t think anyone at the time could have predicted the ‘sea change’ that was going to happen in the dance music industry, not back in 1990. The song has ridden the wave of that change, from underground subculture to mainstream, in your face ubiquitousness and I am very grateful for and humbled by it.
Why do you think ’House music’ has been so popular over the last 30 years and what makes it so special and still so current to new fans of the sound?
Now there’s a question.
How did you get your start as a singer and when did you get the desire to give it a try?
My mother used to tell a story to all her friends, it goes like this: Alison is five and she is off to infant school. A teacher rocks up and for some reason asks what she wants to be when she grows up (do these things happen – at FIVE!). Quick as you like and without any hesitation the fledgling child say – and I am quoting my mother now – “I am going to be a singer”. I do not recall that moment at all but my mother told that tale till the day she died and she was never one for hyperbole. It took me a lot longer to come around the the idea that I could actually do the thing my younger self had predicted. I was already a trained dancer before it occurred to me that I could make a career using my voice. I never really looked back from that point on, although the path of my career has been as convoluted as any ‘bodice ripper’ of a fictional tale.
What’s been your motivation as a singer and what still drives you? And how would you describe your vocal style?
You don’t need much motivation to do the thing you love to do. It would be harder not to sing. Yes the early flights and the late nights can be tiring, the seven hour drives up the country for a single show (and the seven hour schlepp back the next morning) can be less than enjoyable. The fact that I have been all over the world and have seen very little of that world, other than the inside of hotel rooms and inside venues and the occasional restaurant – if I’m lucky – could be a disappointment for some but I get to do what I love to do so its all worth it.
I never try to describe my vocal style. I started out in theatre where my ‘style’ had to be adaptable, it has remained so. I also don’t only sing over big house grooves. I am a vocalist who gets equal enjoyment from singing jazz and pop and soul and funk. Even the smattering of classical pieces I have been involved in were a delight for me. I have a sound maybe, more than a style – a fat tone or I am am told (and I can sometime be a bit loud).
Of all the accolades/accomplishments you’ve achieved over the years – what would you say has been your proudest moment?
I am proud every time I get up on a stage in front of an audience that knows my stuff well enough to sing along. I am humbled every time a full venue of peeps (often those younger than songs like ‘Where Love Lives’) sing my song back at me. I love that.
You’ve worked with some of the world’s biggest producers, and can you tell us about your highlight. Is there something about certain artists in particular that inspires you?
I have to mention Frankie Knuckle of course. Not just because he (and David Morales) did an amazing mix on my first release at Arista Records but because I got to work with him on my second album, in New York, where we became friends. Such a generous, wonderful man. . . .and a great cook too.
What’s the best thing about your life at the moment?
Same as it ever was. I’m doing what I love to do. I’m singing Old Skool House for the retro heads . . . . and Nu Skool jazz and Funk for the rest. What’s not to like.
What’s next for you in terms of releases, shows etc?
The Brooklyn Funk Essentials are still touring and we have shows coming up in France and Italy. I have already recorded a couple of tracks with them which should be heading towards mastering very soon and more tracks are in the pipeline. Right on the back of the orchestral show in Manchester I shall be off to Ireland then straight back home for more House happenings (not with the orchestra unfortunately). I am currently recording with Eat Logic and with Algorisms (got to have my jazz head on for them) and of course there is a production with Lenny Fontana (to please the dance fans – hopefully) in the offing.
Tell us something we don’t know about you?
How can I know what you don’t know? I am a ‘collector’. I have collections of many things; lots of glass. marbles, glass sweets, bottles . . and tins, I can’t resist a comely tin . . . and I am writing a children’s story.
Describe yourself in one word?
Alison Limerick headlines Classical Uproar on Friday 25th August 2017 and a 25 piece orchestra & Live Guests Luke Neptune and Bekka (Nightgeist) at The Church and Friary of St Francis (Gorton Monastery Manchester), Gorton Lane, Manchester, M12 5WF. Conducted by Simon Robertshaw (BBC Philharmonic Orchestra), the event will also features DJ sets from Phil Rose (Jaegerossa/Northern Edits), Mark XTC and Richard Moonboots & Jason Boardman (Aficionado Records).
Tickets are £30 in advance from:
and more info at: