Over the past few years, Bristol-based, multi-award-winning singer/songwriter Elles Bailey has climbed to the very peak of the mountain in the British blues and roots scene and confidently crossed genre borders into wider territory.
This year alone, she’s picked up two awards from the prestigious UK Americana 2023 Awards (the highly coveted Artist of the Year Award and the very first Live Act of the Year Award). She’s also been shortlisted for 3 awards at the forthcoming UK Blues Awards 2023 (UK Blues Artist of the Year; UK Blues Vocalist of The Year’ and UK Blues Album Of The Year).
It’s from this hard-earned vantage point that Elles is continuing to move onward. upward and forward, releasing fresh new material, such as her latest single and its accompanying video: ‘Over the Hill’ — a track that will be included on the new Deluxe Edition of her critically acclaimed album ‘Shining In The Half Light’.
‘Over the Hill’.is a cover of John Martyn’s 1973 classic. John Martyn wrote this song of homecoming on an early morning train, returning home from London, seeing his house appear behind the East Hill at Hastings. He included the track on his 1973 album ‘Solid Air’. It’s a poignant and honest song of homecoming, which explores the conflicts between freewheeling, carousing, rebellious travelling life, a common theme in folk music, and the commitments and values of the hearth and home, particularly one’s family.
Showing Elles’ genre-crossing talents, her take on ‘Over the Hill’ is a foot-tapping, peddle to the floor, drive faster kind of a twist on John Martyn’s classic original. There’s a more-driving electric guitar lead, plus Elles’ trademark deep vocal timbre, with rich backing vocals, haunting keys and lively percussion. These work together to make the song more upbeat than Martyn’s reflective acoustic original.
The track was co-produced by Elles Bailey, Peter Miles and Elles’ touring band: Joe Wilkins on Guitar, Jonny Henderson on Ivories, Matthew Waer on Bass duties and Matthew Jones on drums and Grace Lightman, Elio Evangelou and Kat Marsh on backing vocals.
The video for ‘Over the Hill’ — directed by multi-talented Kriss Barras — shows the track being recorded live to tape at Middle Farm Studios in Devon in the U.K.
“Reflecting on the choices of covers for the deluxe release,” says Elles, “they’re two of my favourite songs, by artists who have played significant roles in my musical inspiration. It’s interesting to note that the lyrical content of both is about travelling home: something I hadn’t noticed until I was listening back to the masters. I hope you enjoy our interpretation of each of them.”
Check out Elles’ take on ‘Over the Hill’: out now on all digital platforms.
‘Shining In The Half Light Deluxe Edition’ will be released and available on all digital platforms and on CD on 17th March, 2023
The album is now available to pre-order: www.ellesbaileypreorder.com
9th – O2 Academy 2, Liverpool
10th – The Social, Hull
11th – The Firestation, Sunderland
14th – KK’s Steel Mill, Wolverhampton
15th – The Crescent Arts Centre, York
16th – The Caves, Edinburgh
17th – The Brudenell Social Club, Leeds (co-headline with Chantel McGregor)
21st – Komedia, Brighton
22nd – Junction 2, Cambridge
23rd – 1865, Southampton
1st – Lafayette, London
14th – Arlington Arts, Newbury
15th – Trinity Centre, Bristol
18th – Rescue Room, Nottingham
19th – Sheffield, Corporation