The Dovecote Muse journey began at The Epidemic of Art – Konstepidemin, a 130+ art community in Gothenburg, Sweden, where I was writer-in-residence for two years. Whether I was looking out the window, strolling over to the laundry room, or enjoying a kardemmumabullar at the wonderful Blå Huset, there was always something fabulously enticing going on – a living installation of a girl swinging to eerie music under a canopy of leaves, bumping into a painter, a musician, a sculptor, or a jewellery-maker on the way to their ateljé and finding an hour later, you hadn’t even noticed the -15° weather, sauntering over to a friend’s vernissage… every few weeks.
The buzz of creativity and camaraderie grew on me and I itched to bring people together around something beautiful. But I was “just” writing, which didn’t make for any exciting show-and-tells or open-door events. After hosting a ‘Private Public’ screening of Vincent Moon‘s gorgeous film about Danish band Efterklang, An Island, I was hooked on bringing people together around music.
Following my art studio stint, I moved into a palatial apartment for my last year in Sweden. It was stripped zen-bare and echoed terribly, and my first thought was to fill it with music and friends. At the time, Sweet Billy Pilgrim front-man Tim Elsenburg was just finishing up Crown and Treaty and touring front rooms to sound out new songs, so it was just my luck when he came to play in mine.
On a trail of beauty, I reached out to kindred artists from my favourite playlists, inviting them to fill my home with their music. It caught on, and soon, friends, expats and artists were connecting in the Vasastan flat. February was warmed by illustrated indie folk band Uniform Motion, while Eiks‘ delicate tunes wafted on Spring winds.
Starting fresh in England, my craving for the kinship of live music was as strong as ever. Once again, I invited an extended family of musicians and singers to play, this time in a 12th century Cotswold church, fittingly called St Faith’s. Dovecote Muse concerts were a chance to connect as a community to contemporary acoustic, folk, alternative, experimental, electronica, classical…. music. Inspiration, diversity and contrast were kindled, welcoming playful glimpses of what sparks creativity.
Sweet Billy Pilgrim returned as an acoustic trio, along with The May Dolls, Frank Fairfield, and Caitlin Park at a local pub venue, followed by Düsseldorf-based prepared pianist and composer Hauschka, and a mesmerising candle-lit Solstice concert with Jo Hamilton.
Of all the promoters I’ve ever worked with, Gabrielle has been the best. Her clear love for what she does is reflected in unusually fast, flexible responses to requests and queries from the production team, ultimately enabling us to do our jobs with an uncanny lack of roadblocks and holdups. The result was that we could do our own jobs to our fullest, and this really showed in an incredibly special show at Overbury which thrilled fans who had travelled from all over Britain. We can’t wait to do more with her again.
Jon Cotton, Producer and Label Director, Poseidon
Gabrielle has organised some wonderful music events in Overbury – at St Faiths & the Village Hall. She has attracted some excellent acts & has built a great local team to help.
Penelope Bossom, Managing Director at Overbury Communications, Ltd.
Although I no longer organise gigs, my dream for co-creative community is now extending into the most vibrantly amazing PEOPLE adventure!
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