3 p.m., Dec. 6
Normandie Wilson Is Painting Memories of August Tour
"All through August, I'm going on a U.S. tour with Since Our First Guitar, an indie pop band from Sweden, and Biggles Flys Again, an indie pop from Ireland," says singer/songwriter Normandie Wilson.
During the tour, "I'm creating a 30" x 40" painting with the help of my audience members, and donating the painting to Nebraska Audubon at the end of the tour."
In addition to music, Wilson is a visual artist who is endeavoring to paint or draw every known living species of bird. Her quest can be followed at everysinglebird.com. The project evolved from her association with a local wildlife conservation committee.
"I work part-time as an Art Educator with the San Diego Audubon Society, and birds are my number one passion beside music."
Video updates of the tour painting can be viewed at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-fjVuR-GKQo
Wilson is a self-taught pianist who worked as an accompanist in her small West Virginia town from middle school through high school.
“I grew up listening to 1960s music — Burt Bacharach, the Beach Boys, Motown — and watching birds with my grandma.”
She studied dance while attending Oberlin College, though she managed to learn a few skills that would come in handy for her future music career. “My dance-major mentor, Elesa Rosasco, said to me, ‘Everything takes longer than you think.’ At first I felt really defeated that she said that. Then I got into the real world and saw this is often true. It helped me gain a lot of patience and to remain calm when things are taking longer than I want them to, whether it’s getting traction in my career or getting a bagel for breakfast.”
After college, Wilson headed to New York City, where cold winters and bleary-eyed loneliness informed the songs she composed on an old Yamaha keyboard and her laptop.
“I make DIY vintage 1960s pop music in the vein of Dusty Springfield and Dionne Warwick, and I also throw in a little bit of funk. I think if you placed Prince, Ben Folds, and the Carpenters in a blender, that might describe what I do. I also write a lot of instrumental pieces for unusual instruments, like the soundtracks done by Ennio Morricone.”
She delights in playing as many different instruments as possible, usually sticking with piano, percussion, and trumpet. Normandie says she hears songs in dreams and is sometimes able to wake up and catch them.
She released two independent EPs in 2007, which were later combined into one 2010 CD called Early Birds: Songs From 2007. In 2009, she released a joint record with fellow songwriter Sebastian Clark, Music for Smart People.
Wilson released her album The Flower Box in July 2010. She’d been living in L.A., a member of the indie-pop collective Red Pony Clock since 2006, though she moved back to San Diego in 2010. “I was coming down [to San Diego] for shows and recording and everything. I moved here for good after a European tour with my last CD, which I released with Sebastian Clark. Here in San Diego I’ve been putting my focus on recording some new indie-pop material.”
Her new Summers Are For Lovers EP was released last month, with its first single “Just A Little Time” now available.
August 7 - Kenny’s Castaways - New York, NY
August 9 - Underdog’s Sports Bar - Lexington, KY
August 10 - Casa Donde - Chicago, IL
August 11 - JD’s Pub - Marshalltown, IA
August 12 - Nebraska Pop Festival - Barley Street Tavern - Omaha, NE
August 14 - Duffy’s Tavern - Lincoln, NE
August 18 - EP release show at Eleven, San Diego, CA
August 21 - The Redwood Bar & Grill, Los Angeles, CA
Full updated schedule: http://www.normandiewilson.com/live