Creative Quarantine: Singer / Songwriter Sally Timms

1. How are you holding up?

It varies, started out ok with the novelty of it all as I’m working from home but now it’s gone into some weird limbo phase that I think everyone is feeling.  Some sad moments; musicians are very free as a rule, lots of travel or change, it’s been an adjustment to get used to nothing exciting on the calendar but those are such first world problems.  I have a job which hasn’t gone away so I haven’t lost my livelihood. Music is my glorified hobby really and it’s never been my full-time occupation.  Jon and I played an outdoor show at Virtue Cider in Michigan last week. We [had] a show at the Hideout [last] Friday [Augut 15] online, no audience, just Jon, me and that room that means so much to us…bittersweet really. I fear for all these small venues and even the larger ones, the arts are severely affected by this will it look in a year’s time?  So I suppose a sense of sadness and loss but I’m still here so that’s good.

It’s been an adjustment to get used to nothing exciting on the calendar but those are such first world problems

2. Has Covid-19 had an effect on your work? If so, in what way?

My music work is affected by not being able to travel.  The Mekons had a recording session booked in Valencia last April, we all had their flights and accommodation booked but of course that didn’t happen. Instead we made a full length record “Exquisite” in isolation, quite an achievement for a band that is scattered across the planet.  We finished the mixing on a Sunday night and it was released on Bandcamp the following Friday..not bad for a bunch of old people!  I don’t really work on music, I just sing when someone tells me to and right now few people are telling me to so Covid has interfered with that I suppose.

3. Is there anything you’ve added to your practice that you’d like to keep after this is over?

There is no practice, I’m supremely lazy, in fact I worry that I’ve forgotten how to sing…maybe I’ll gain a practice by thinking about how lazy I am.

4. Of the artists you follow, who’s handling this particularly well?

There’s a woman called Jane Gilday, a friend of Janet Bean, who lives in an artsy seniors’ community I believe..she makes music every day and posts it on Facebook, her output is amazing: live stuff, she makes videos, art and she gets the other residents to join in with her sometimes. That is the best example of time well-used in an uplifting way that I’ve seen and more power to her.  I’ll add Angel Bat Dawid to that list of two, very inspiring and worth checking out. 

Sally was born in Leeds, England. She grew up in the Yorkshire dales, sang in the church choir and performed in poetry recitals as a child. In 1985 she joined the Mekons as a full-time member and has regretted it ever since. Unfortunately, the only way out of the Mekons is in a box, so she’s still there.

Known as one of the laziest women in show business, she frequently calls in favors from her more talented and successful friends so that she can dedicate more time to watching television and eating bananas. She has blonde hair, grey eyes, and appalling mood swings.