Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

NEW MUSIC Macari Magic; Beth Macari Is Only 19, but She's Already Got Five Years of Gigging Behind Her. the Nonstop Soul Singer Talks to Sam Wonfor about Finding Her (Massive) Voice, Loving Her Band and Learning to Wear Shoes

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

NEW MUSIC Macari Magic; Beth Macari Is Only 19, but She's Already Got Five Years of Gigging Behind Her. the Nonstop Soul Singer Talks to Sam Wonfor about Finding Her (Massive) Voice, Loving Her Band and Learning to Wear Shoes

Article excerpt

Young people these days think anything is possible. Take Beth Macari as a tuneful case in point. I've just asked the chirpy 19-year-old to give me a rundown of her average week, and by my reckoning, she's working on an entirely different calendar to the rest of the world - one which crowbars nine or 10 days-worth of doings into the space usually occupied by seven.

That's the only way I can make the full-time admin job, the rehearsals, the live gigs, the fitness sessions and the writing of new material fit into a weekly diary. There is the other possibility, of course that she's simply super-committed to her craft - belting out a combination of original and covered material all over the shop, founded in a deep need to simply sing.

"Over the past couple of years, I've discovered that it's not about where I think I need to be, or hitting targets," says Beth, demonstrating wisdom beyond her birth certificate - which incidentally falls in line with the glamorous 1940s styling she favours.

"It's about people enjoying my music and if possible, me making a living out of my original music but if not, then as long as I'm singing, I'm happy."

There's a brief pause before she adds: "Don't get me wrong though ... I want as many people to hear me as possible and I'd love to do music full time."

With this in mind Gateshead-based Beth, a former pupil of Heaton Manor school in Newcastle, has booked an evening at Newcastle venue Hoochie Coochie to launch her debut EP on February 17.

"I'm so pleased about that," she says. "They'd offered me a gig anyway which was nice, but knowing we wanted to launch the CD, I thought we may as well put the two things together.

"I love that we're doing it there because it's a predominantly soul venue and that's what I'm all about."

Following a succession of dabblings in a number of music genres, including toedips into folk, rock and musical theatre, Beth, who recently worked with DJ Dom-P after being selected for a collaboration project by music development agency Generator, is now firmly standing in the soul camp alongside her main influences: Aretha Franklin, Janis Joplin and Joss Stone - who seems to have passed on her penchant for performing in bare feet. …

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