Bethia spent her childhood in the darkness of a vaulted basement in Bath. Years later, she was a sound assistant on Nigel Godrich’s From the Basement sessions. It felt like home. Watching live performances by the likes of PJ Harvey and The Stooges, she knew this is what she had to do – as if she didn’t know already.
On the lookout for a backing band, she left flyers all over the London underground. By a twist of fate, one found its way into the hands of Courtney Love. Bethia didn’t find her backing band – but she was recruited into Hole. Days after meeting Courtney, Bethia was in LA, rehearsing fora world tour, living on the Phil Spector estate, in the house where John Lennon spent his lost weekend.
It wasn’t the first time she’d escaped to California. University in England was so gloomy, she went to revise for her Sanskrit finals on Sunset Boulevard. North America had always called to her. Bethia is never anything but British, but her superlative songwriting recalls her idols Fleetwood Mac, Neil Young and Leonard Cohen. Following her time with Hole, she joined a waterfall tour of Cornwall with cult psychedelic band Circulus, but fell out with Michael when he forced her to wear a tunic.
Intimate and confessional, the songs emerge from a violent energy. Music can sweep you away, make you make bad decisions. Like the best artists, all Bethia’s life experiences have ended up in her voice – languid, velvety, with a resonant cloak of darkness.
On her most recent release, Bethia is delighted to be joined on keys and backing vocals by Mike Mills from REM.
“Her music eclipses her backstory. One of the best unsung artists around.” – John Kennedy, Dazed and Confused
“Shines home like a lantern” – Rolling Stone Magazine
“Her story is the stuff that film scripts are made of. PJ Harvey meets Scott Walker” Fiona Sturges, UNCUT
“True talent… feral and elemental. A rarity, an original, influenced chiefly by her own psyche.” – Chris Roberts, The Quietus
“One to watch” – Paul Lester, The Guardian
“Insanely talented. A cross between Cat Power, Nick Drake and Scott Walker” – Amanda Palmer
“Cinematic, windswept and intimate… like the soundtrack to a David Lynch road movie” – Chris Vinnicombe, Guitarist
“Diamanda Gala-esque… Achingly fine.” – Yasmin S. Butt, E-Gigs
“Bethia manages to contain many archetypes in her voice, the sorceress, the crone, the virgin, the downtrodden, royalty and nobleness, all at once” – Mason Jar, artist
“Raw power… Oozes a powerful, spiritual modern blues” – John Robb, Louder than War
* Airplay: Janice Long, Radio 2, Live session with Robert Elms, BBC London, John Kennedy, XFM, Simon Raymonde and Ruth Barnes, Amazing Radio
* Union Chapel show voted 2nd Favourite Gig of 2014 out of 220 concerts, pipped to the post by Ray Davies.