A letter from Clare:
One Tuesday night back in 2014, I went out with my girlfriends for a shandy.
Such a rare treat – being out like that on a school night – but I needed it. I’d been juggling three jobs, three small kids, and so much anxiety I could feel it in the front my neck.
When my husband Marty came home from work, I said “Mummy’s going to see her friends. Don’t wait up!” and walked (don’t skip!) out the front door.
God it was good to see them; my girls. This feeing – the relief of being in the company of other women, of being able to tell the truth, of speaking all those pieces of ourselves we tuck in during our normal working week – this has been my saviour for as long as I can remember.
Giddy with the adult company, I said way too much, and so did they. What began as a chat about eye-brow threading soon morphed into a rollicking conversation on guilt and hope and politics and periods and our secret self-doubt: that niggling inner-critic who promises to keep us safe but ends up robbing us of our chutzpah.
“No more!’ we said, charging our glasses like lunatics.
On the way home, I noticed that the anxiety that had been stuck in my throat for weeks… was gone. In its place, a song appeared, a rhythm –
“We spend our whole lives trying to fit in, trying to get thin, trying to be enough… for who?”
In our girlhood, we can’t help but swallow the stories the world tells us – the ones about why we matter, and who we need to be in order to “belong”. But in our womanhood, we have a chance to sing a different song, to tell a bigger story for ourselves and for the girls and women who don’t yet have that privilege. This work is not comfortable or safe, but in its wake comes all the feelings we’ve been longing to feel; a sisterhood, a world where we care for each other, and that caring is recognised as the super-power it is.
Once home, I tip-toed to the piano, put on the mute-pedal (so as not to wake the kids), and sang with all the courage I could muster. I sang out all the parts of myself I’d tucked away, all the times in my life I’d told myself I was too big, too ambitious, too angry, too much, not enough. I sang for my daughter, and my girlfriends, and the woman and men who show up at my shows. I sang the words my girlfriends sung to me every time the feeling in my neck got too much.
This is “Woman”.
It took a long time to get here, because I was waiting to feel ready, and I’m still not ready, but I’m not waiting any more. Life’s too short. We got too much shit to do.
Clare Bowditch today releases ‘Woman’ her first single from her forthcoming solo studio album. To support the release, Clare will also be playing shows in Melbourne, Newcastle and Sydney.
Clare promises a rare night of her trademark humour, empathy and beautiful music in a night where you can get to meet the rest of the tribe and come away feeling better than when you walked in. The wonderful Alice Skye will be supporting at all shows except Newcastle.
Since the release of her 2012 album The Winter I Chose Happiness, the ARIA Award winning singer-songwriter has been extremely busy. She hosted Afternoons on ABC Melbourne (2016 – 17), founded the creative social enterprise Big Hearted Business (2013) and Sing Song Showtime, appeared on hit show Offspring and most recently she has been preparing for the release of her debut book as well as writing songs for her upcoming sixth studio album
Clare has achieved Top Ten albums, been named Rolling Stone Woman of the Year (Contribution to Culture), Yen Young Woman of the Year (Music), co-written with Gotye, toured with Leonard Cohen, written for Harpers Bazaar and the Drum, and played in every venue in Australia at least two hundred times each.
‘WOMAN’ LAUNCH TOUR
Tickets On Sale Now from www.ClareBowditch.com
Fri May 24th – Sooki Lounge – Belgrave VIC
Sat May 25th – Corner Hotel – Melbourne, VIC
Weds 29th May – Lizottes, Newcastle -NSW (with Xani Kolac)
Thur 30th May – Factory Theatre – Sydney, NSW