Ivy Ash at Warwickshire PrideReview
As I indicated in last week's report on "Art in the Park" in Leamington, I was delighted, after reviewing a string of fine singles by her, not only to catch Ivy Ash playing live, but her debut gig to boot.
It was a review of two contrasting parts: regret that the hot weather & other circumstances limited the possible responses from the audience that her energetic performances & material clearly merited but noting the very positive response from the crowd even though dancing was pretty much off the agenda.
To my considerable surprise & delight therefore, within a week I found myself at her second gig as that appreciation had led the organisers of the music at Warwickshire Pride to instantly grasp how suitable her music was for their audience & add her to their event.
And indeed it was a great match with the short but sweet set they managed to squeeze in amongst the acts they had already booked 100% killer material comprising previous & future singles : "You, Not Me", "Oops", "Third Degree", "Rain Again" and the hopefully soon to come "Stop, Rewind". The eminently danceable songs conveyed by another high energy, zestful performance imbued with clear pleasure in sharing it was another hit with another crowd: and it was a bit of icing on the cake that one of the team on the stage helping her sound so great was fellow "Hot Music Live Presents" artist Faith Meades.
Sometimes you need luck to progress with musical careers, even if you have splendid songs & a talent to put them across: being spotted on your first gig & offered a second sort of falls into that category but it mustn't be allowed to distract from the fact that Ivy has worked so hard (with Arts Council England support) to craft this material and deserves to constantly build on each success and share this high quality dance music: which nevertheless also possesses hidden depths, addressing as it frequently does, her concerns for people's good mental health.
If Ivy's career is to resemble a virtuous spiral, constantly moving forwards and upwards with each release & gig leading to further opportunities, then so be it. It's no less than she merits.