With her striking red hair matched with a poetically charming voice, it’s almost as if we have seen someone like Vera Blue before.
And no, it’s not Sansa Stark or Florence Welch.
Truth is Vera Blue has been around the music scene for sometime under her real name, Celia Pavey.
A YouTube singing sensation, Pavey entered the second season of The Voice Australia and came third representing Team Delta. The time on the show rocketed the Sydney based folk singer into the mainstream spotlight. For many reality show singers, the instant level of fame is too much (see: Casey Donovan). For Pavey, it provided the perfect learning platform for how the inner sanctums of the entertainment industry worked.
‘I learnt so much about what the music industry and television are all about. I learnt a lot about myself, and what I can and can’t handle.’ Pavey says.
Matt Corby, a fellow reality-to-indie artist, recently spoke out against his time on Australian Idol. However, Pavey couldn’t speak more highly of her time in reality TV.
‘I don’t regret anything’ Pavey says, ‘I loved the experience – it gave me what I have now. The label, the management, and the people I needed to help me soar. I’ve taken that and gone with it. I loved it; it helped me grow as an artist and with my own discovery’
2 years after The Voice finished, Pavey has re-emerged onto the indie music scene under the name Vera Blue with a new debut EP, which shows a step in a different direction from her folk background. For Pavey, the name change wasn’t part of any break of her reality TV past, but more as a result of the different style of production-based music that came with Vera Blue.
‘I didn’t want to sound like a specific artist, but I loved those ideas. Once we put it with a folk song, it was so different and I loved it. I was just ready for something else.’ Pavey says.
Heavily inspired by artists such as Joni Mitchell and Simon & Garfunkel, Pavey maintains her folk element through her organic acoustic instrumentation and through her lyrics. Nevertheless, Pavey recognises that during her time between The Voice and the Vera Blue EP, she underwent a considerable amount of personal and artistic growth.
‘I think in time I’ve opened my mind to sounds and I’ve developed as an artist. Back then I didn’t know who I was as an artist. I was doing covers, and doing them similar to the way the artist sang it,’ Pavey explains.
‘I quickly realised this is what I wanted to do, that’s when I took a massive step to just putting everything you do in life into your music. It’s like your writing a book.’
Pavey credits her change in approach to artistic collaboration as one of the most significant steps in her career.
‘That’s been one of the biggest things for me. I used to never want to do that, I just wanted to write my own music. Now I’m not looking back – I love writing with new people. There are so many more ideas.’
Recently, Vera Blue opened for Matt Corby on his national tour and this provided Pavey with an intimate learning experience with one of the nation’s top hybrid-folk artists.
‘The way the band work together, that just got me,’ Pavey says, ‘the way they’re looking at each other during the songs. The way Matt just lets go when he performs. Vocally, he just does whatever he wants. He just slays. Just the vibe, it’s incredible.’
For the moment, everything is coming up for Vera Blue. Following the recent tour with Matt Corby, the release of her debut EP and now a sold out national headline tour, Pavey is just trying to let it all soak in.
‘There’s always going to be pressure. It’s such an exciting step to be taking. I just can’t believe I’m doing a tour that sold out’ Pavey exclaims
‘I think the fact that the vibe is already rubbing off on people is a really good start.’
I’m sure Delta would be proud.
Vera Blue's debut EP, Fingertips, is out on Friday May 13th
Vera Blue National Tour Dates
Saturday May 14 - Jimmy's Den - Perth, WA (Sold Out)
Sunday May 15 - Aviary Rooftop Sessions - Perth, WA (Sold Out)
Tuesday, May 17 - Shebeen Bandroom - Melbourne, VIC (Sold Out)
Wednesday May 18 - Shebeen Bandroom - Melbourne, VIC (Sold Out)
Thursday May 19- Shebeen Bandroom - Melbourne, VIC (Sold Out)
Friday May 20 - Blackbear Lodge - Brisbane, QLD (Sold Out)
Saturday May 21 - Plan B Small Club - Sydney, NSW (Sold Out)
Tuesday May 31 - Newton Social Club - Newtown, NSW (Sold Out)
Alex Capper, once affectionally called by Ross & John of 3AW as the '7 foot fucker', loves the Essendon Football Club, stalking reddit and dabbing. He thinks he can speak French, but he can't.