Posts tagged Born This Way
Posts tagged Born This Way
Elouise - The Little Belter
A little while ago my buddy Paul of My Fizzy Pop informed me of a cover that had been done of Lady Gaga’s 'Born This Way.' It was by a singer from the UK that I had never heard of before by the name of Elouise. After one listen I had fallen in love with her voice. The vocal delivery that Elouise commands is a rare thing, with her petite stature and big voice she was dubbed the ‘Little Belter’ at an early stage in her career. Last year she had a monthly residency performing at Madame Jojo’s in London, and has now taken her spectacular show on the road.
I haven’t been able to make it out to the UK for a couple years and haven’t seen the show, so imagine my delight when I discovered she had recorded an album featuring many of the covers she has been performing. The 'Little Belter' album features everything from her cover of Gaga’s 'Born This Way' to Abba’s 'The Winner Takes it All.' Gloriously produced by Steve Anderson (Kylie Minogue’s musical tour director) the album is a stunning collection of cover songs, which showcases Elouise’s breathtaking voice perfectly.
Check out the trailer for the show:
I had the chance to ask Elouise a few questions a while ago:
Greg: Hi Elouise! A while back, when I first heard about you, I stayed up to hear your performance on BBC Radio London. You performed the “Born This Way” cover as well as some others. It was at about 1:00am my time, but I believe it was 9:00ish your time? Did you find that challenging? Sounding so fresh and gorgeous so early? I know I would!
Elouise: Thanks for staying up to listen! Yes, it was extremely early my time, and a little daunting to be honest! I’ve never sung that early before, so having to belt out ‘Born This Way’ at 9am live on air was indeed a challenge, but I just made sure I drank lots of tea, warmed up properly and went for it! Luckily the radio interview went really well, and the listeners response to my version of ‘Born This Way’ was really lovely.
Greg: What inspired you to cover that song?
Elouise: Well, I wanted to do a modern live lounge style cover in the show, and I wanted something that was big at the time and this song was at number 1 and never off the radio, and I just love the song. Also the lyrics just seemed so perfect for me and right for ‘Little Belter’ as I was born to sing! So I put my twist on it, and gave it a whirl on the night, and luckily the audience absolutely loved it! The response to my version was so great that I offered a free download of the song on my website - Little Belter Show - if anyone would like a copy!
Greg: Your incredible voice has earned you the nickname ‘Little Belter’ which is also the name of your fantastic show. Have you always loved singing? What kind of vocal background/training have you had?
Elouise: I have always loved singing!! In fact I was probably singing before I could properly talk! I haven’t actually had any training as a singer. I trained as a dancer and my voice was something that I just discovered I had, and through my love of singing it developed on it’s own in many ways. I’ve performed in many shows so I have a great musical background and I think this is where I learnt my trade, just from watching others and from performing myself. I used to sing to all my idols growing up which were the likes of Barbra Streisand, Dusty Springfield and Shirley Bassey, and it was from singing all these huge songs that I discovered my own little belter of a voice!
Greg: The ‘Little Belter Show’ is currently on tour, how has it been going?
Elouise: The shows so far have had an incredible response from the audience so I’m really happy. The show is a celebration of some of the greatest show-stopping songs of all time. Songs from the artists I was inspired by and felt that I was destined to sing. I tell the audience funny tales throughout the show and why ultimately I couldn’t do anything else but sing! The set list contains 22 massive belters including ‘The Winner Takes It All’, ’You Don’t Have To Say You Love Me’ and You’ll Never Walk Alone’. It’s one hell of a sing!!!
Greg: I bet! You’ve worked closely with Steve Anderson on show. He’s quite well known for his work on Kylie Mingoue’s tours. What is it like working with him?
Elouise: Yes Steve Anderson is the backbone of ‘Little Belter’ - the show and the album. I’m very lucky to have such a wonderful man and producer behind this. I feel like I’ve met my match in Steve in many ways, and working with him is a dream come true. The songs that we record together are always huge and extremely dramatic and yet the process is very easy. I think when you’re on the same wavelength musically it all falls into place. Steve challenges me with his arrangements but I love a challenge and I always rise to it! It’s what makes me the artist that I am.
Greg: What kind of music do you like? What would we find under “recently played” on your iPod right now?
Elouise: A bit of everything to be honest! I have a wide taste in music, and it usually depends what mood I’m in. In my recently played list at the moment you’d probably find a bit of Adele, some Gaga, some Streisand & Bassey, a few Dusty tracks, some disco, usually Donna Summer, a bit of Barry White maybe, and always a bit of Judy!
Greg: Vocally, who are some of your biggest inspirations?
Elouise: Vocally, I’d probably have to say Barbra Streisand. Some of the songs she performed were just vocal masterpieces and her performances always breathtaking. As someone who really likes to belt out a great tune I was instantly attracted to the big diva’s and I still love these singers and their songs as much as I did when I was younger.
Greg: Did you have a favorite Spice Girl? If so, who and why? ;D
Elouise: Who didn’t?!? My favorite spice girl used to swap depending on who I wanted to be at the time or what mood I was in. Sometimes I would be in a Sporty Spice mood as I could do all the moves and cartwheels being a dancer, but sometimes I liked to be Baby Spice as I loved the cute dresses and usually all the lines she sung, so I would often be her. Also as I was always the smallest amongst my group of friends and liked pink a lot, I guess I was more suited to Baby Spice!
Greg: I heard you attended Boy George’s birthday a while back and some of the outfits there were quite the rage. What did you wear?
Elouise: I did indeed! What an eye opener! I’m not sure I’d say some of the outfits were all the rage…. hehe.. one guy wore a birdcage on his head!!!!! Each to their own I suppose! Naturally I wore a gorgeous long black sequin dress! :)
Greg: Thanks Elouise, make sure you keep us posted as to what’s going on!
Elouise: I will do! It’s been lovely chatting with you. Make sure you keep a look out on Elouise.co and the show website LittleBelter.com for all the news and all new songs, and if you haven’t already get your free download of ‘Born This Way’!!! :) X
Check out her ‘Born This Way’ cover:
If you’re in the UK, make sure to check out Elouise on these tour stops:
25th MARCH 2012
ST ALBANS: Alban Arena
29th MARCH 2012
DARTFORD: Orchard Theatre
31st MARCH 2012
CROMER: Pavillion Theatre
13th APRIL 2012
SOUTHEND: Palace Theatre
20th APRIL 2012
DUNSTABLE: Grove Theatre
27th APRIL 2012
SKEGNESS: Embassy Theatre
The 'Little Belter' album is currently available at the show, and will be released worldwide this spring.
1. Something Tells Me
2. Tainted Love
3. I’d Like to Hate Myself in the Morning
4. If Love Were All
5. Could It Be Magic
7. Born This Way
8. Live and Let Die
9. Another Day
10. The Winner Takes It All
12. You Don’t Own me
13. The Fireman of my Dreams
14. As Long As He Needs Me
Thanks for the question GimmieAllTheMusic. This is the fifth Gaga/Judas/Born This Way question I’ve received in the last two days, so I’ve decided to break my Gaga silence and offer up a couple of my thoughts.
Let me start by clarifying that I do love Lady Gaga. I’m in 20s, so I don’t really consider myself a “Little Monster,” but I am most definitely a Gaga enthusiast. My favorite moments so far in her career are the Bad Romance video, the VMA “Paparazzi” performance, and the Monsterball Tour, which was honestly one of the best nights of my life (<3 u Mark).
I enjoy hearing other people’s (intelligent) views concerning pop music. Whether or not they share the same opinion as me, I love a good musical debate. At the end of the day, if we have to agree to disagree, that’s great. All good art of any medium, even pop music, should always provoke some debate.
Lately however, I haven’t really enjoyed hearing other people’s opinions about Lady Gaga, whether they be good or bad. That’s why I haven’t been pushing my own opinion out there too much. Frankly, the last thing that the internet needs is one more douche with something to say about Lady Gaga.
That said, there is a huge difference between an interesting opinion, and a brainless battle between fans of various artists. I find these “stan wars” that younger fans participate in these days to be incredibly sad. Dance music used to be an underground phenomenon. It is something that the gay/dance/pop community has been fighting for since the 60s. I think it’s sad that Britney Spears and Lady Gaga fans insist on highlighting their differences, instead of celebrating their similarities. I am guilty for having done the same in the past.
Up until the song "Born This Way" was released, all of Gaga’s material had been extremely modern, radio-friendly, fast-catching and broadly appealing. Deep down, I think even the truest Gaga fan would ultimately admit that upon hearing "Born This Way" for the first time, they were disappointed. I have just recently begun to adore the song, and I adore it HARD now. Just ask any of the people who saw me driving to work this morning.
I’m completely finished comparing artists to each other. When describing an artist, it can be handy to say “oh they sound a bit like _____.” That’s a very different thing than endlessly accusing an artist of copyright infringement. Yes, obviously some inspiration behind "Born This Way" came from Madonna’s "Express Yourself." However, Madonna drew inspiration from a 1972 hit by the Staple Singers called "Respect Yourself." If you consider yourself a pop fan, you HAVE to come to terms with the fact that pop is a constant cycle of the same themes/sounds over and over again. If a great pop song sounds like another great pop song, it’s a great thing, because there’s a “new” great song! There’s only seven basic musical notes you know, A B C D E F G. That’s it. Seven notes, for all musicians, of all genres, of all times, to draw from.
Now, with the release of "Judas" and the reveal of the album’s motorbike cover, people are jumping ship even more quickly. It has become clear that Gaga’s new album is not going to be the uplifting, broadly-appealing, feel-good dance party we all thought it was going to be. YAY! Gaga is taking us into darker territory, and not everyone is going to want to come along for the ride, and that’s just fine.
NOW…JUDAS? I love it. I love it for being twisted, dark, sacrilegious, numerical, tribal, and downright screamy. It played at the club this weekend, and it sounded massive. The crowd went absolutely nuts, and isn’t that really the most important thing? That people fucking move to it, and enjoy it? I especially love the middle eight, everything from the pounding beats leading up to the "EW" to the final shout of “I CLING TO” is just epic.
I also love the cover artwork for the album, it’s ridiculous and funny. I’m sure Gaga had a chuckle while going over it, I doubt she was thinking "fuck yeah, I’m a motorcycle, I’m so hard-core." I love that the cover got the strong reaction it did. Did Madonna teach us nothing? Madonna never cared if people loved her or hated her, she just cared that she got a reaction, which she always did. No matter what you say about Madonna now, if you look back at her catalog of music, it is one of the finest collections of pop in history, even though it wasn’t always thought so at the time.
Pop music is not rocket science, and if you love it, you should love it a lot, but you shouldn’t take it *too* seriously.