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My life has been very varied and dynamic and always functioned best when
exploring new territories and taking on new projects....
I never really fitted in to the "corporate" structure - always a square peg in a round
hole - way too restrictive for me!
So having started out as a "boutique" manager in my teens - back when we had
small independent stores - due to my love of clothes, designing and making them -
Isoon left to set up my own company making unique suits for men and 40's style
garms for the ladies - style of the day in the wonderful 70's - we dressed to impress!
I quickly out grew my hometown and packed up my little Ford Escort MkII and took
off to the bright lights of London! Wow - everything I ever dreamed of fashion, music,
creativity and awe inspiring architecture everywhere - I very quickly was surrounded
by loads of like minded people creating my London family - I felt very at home! Of
course it was not all plain sailing but opportunities were in abundance! Fashion and
music became my main focus - working in Oxford Circus selling trendy clothes to
cool clients by day and clubbing by night - every night! Plus of course the Friday
lunchtime session at Crackers and Saturdays at 100 Club - halcyon days!
I would rush home from work – which was more fun than work – to my trusty sewing
machine to “run-up” my outfit for the night – had to be unique every time!
Off we’d go in the little Escort to meet more and more friends to add to the ever
growing soul family to listen to the amazing music of that time played by the likes of
George Power, Chris Hill, Greg Edwards, Froggy and many more at venues all over
London and in the Home Counties… anywhere to hear the latest sounds!
During this period I had an urge to travel and set off for 6 weeks to explore Europe.
On my return to my adopted home City I started styling some music artists of the
time including David Grant, Jaki Graham and more, I also set up my own fashion
label - Threads London Ltd which had some success selling to Macys in New York
and other chains!
With the music styling I found myself getting more involved in the music industry -
and it was to be the theme for many more years - firstly I was in PR for Streetsounds
Records - a now cult label and then moved into Artist Management - great fun -
styling, booking gigs, working with design companies, marketing, negotiating
contracts - the whole thing!
I moved on to Serious Records to do PR & Marketing with a great team of people -
many a great tale from that period that will not be uttered here!
In 1986 I was asked to join the now infamous Gordon Mac at Kiss FM (the Pirate
radio station) - what a fab adventure I was on - initially just me & Mr Mac in the office
but soon joined by Lindsay Wesker and Rosee Ufot Lawrence - we became the
office team supporting everything for the station to function. Over the next 3 years
we kept everything running and I even became the stations first and only female
presenter - leading to all sorts of fun! From playing in clubs, arranging club nights
and record fairs - Heddi in heaven!
We created a magazine too which started out as an 8 pager entitled the Written
Word then Free! and eventually evolved into Touch Magazine - this helped especially
while we were off air securing the legal licence, to stay connected to our huge
audience - no internet in those days! To help in financing all of this we sold adverts
on the radio and in the magazine and also launched a record label - formerly Kiss
Records then Graphic Records! Responsible for Salsoul Vol I, Boogie Tunes Vol 1 &
2, and other singles. Plus of course our many club nights. A truly magical time - a
huge family pulling together - focused on one goal - legality!
Then we got our licence - what a great sense of achievement but to do it
compromises were made - investors were brought in and the suits arrived - oh dear...
"corporate" - the square peg no longer fitted - it didn't take long - within 6 months I
was out of there - it was a must for my sanity but a very sad time for me!
In 1994 I set up a record label with a friend Everton Webb - Sidestep Records - it
was fun and we signed some seriously talented artists including Beverlei Brown,
Blacknuss and US Together and a whole lot more! No great successes but a great
thing to be doing everyday - blessed.
When my mum became ill - in Spain - and my dad was struggling, I took the decision
to go and help and spent one and half years with my lovely mum before we lost her
in 2010. However dad still needed support so I stayed on and am still here! Miss the
night life and friends but the sun helps plus returning to radio finally after 20 years!
Nearly 3 years ago I was fortunate enough to start my new radio show Jazz Not
Jazz on a local station Lick FM on 103.5 FM - initially just compiling music but more
recently presenting it live from our studio every Tuesday evening at 8pm UTC +2 -
and it also goes out on Likwid in the UK and Magic Moments in Italy. Plus I get to do
the odd DJ set on the beach and in some venues! Music returns to my life!
Happy Happy Happy!