Tag Archives: anna secret poet

As long as there are biscuits!

Hours after sharing my last post I received a phone call to tell me my father had passed away. Something I knew I would have to face at some point but I wish it had been much further in the future. 59 is too young! I know he would have enjoyed playing at being the grumpy old man shouting at children and waving a stick. Me and the family were fortunate to have spent a nice afternoon with him the day before in his bowling club. It was their opening day and we’d been invited as we was vice president this year. Tea, sandwiches, cakes and affordably priced alcohol aplenty. At the time I was thinking I might not go but ultimately I’m glad I did. My last memory of him is giving him a big hug before we left. And so it ends. This would be the chief reason for not attending a viewing the day before his funeral. I prefer to remember him laughing than in a coffin in a place of grief. I would have to get up close and personal with the coffin anyway the following day as myself and 5 other men carried his remains into the crematorium for his send off. I was heartened that he had such an amazing turn out. They reckoned it was somewhere in the region of 250 people. A squad of folk from his work had hired a coach so they could all attend!

I’m nowhere near over this but I’m hoping that talking about it helps. My wife has been brilliant and so has everyone else. Also I’ve been attempting to keep myself busy these past few weeks. During this time I managed to complete the recording for a mini-album/E.P. that I’d planning for a little while. I’ve also finished the artwork and set a release date. It should go live on Monday the 6th of May across all the digital and streaming platforms. As usual I shall make a limited quantity of physical CDs just incase some people are interested in taking a copy home.

I elected to dedicate it to my father as I think he would have liked it – especially track 2 which is a ska song about biscuits πŸ˜‰

Fortunately I’ve had no shows this month and it has enabled me to sort out some new material so that when I do start up again I’ve got new songs to get excited about. It keeps me on my toes as learning new songs for me can be quite stressful as I have such a wandering mind! Next month in May I have 4 lined up so far…

Without shows there technically wouldn’t be a reason to get all dolled up but this month I have managed a couple of brief sessions. Both were justified I feel as I didn’t want to get rusty and I had some new clothes to try out (a corset and a dress). Here follows some home posing which I do miss. Getting dressed in work toilets and so forth isn’t as relaxing πŸ˜„

The corset worked out very well. Once I’d managed to squeeze it on it was very comfy and kept my lumps and bumps in place haha! Burvogue I think it is, I got it from Amazon πŸ˜‰ This yellow dress is from TK Maxx. It’s longer than I would normally wear but I’m excited to don it when it’s properly summer.

After that I dusted off my curls for another outing. I think I’ve fallen in love with them again, especially when teamed with this jacket 😍

And yes…it was warm in here!

The reason for the bra is that I had been trying to simulate a cleavage effect. You can see it in the first yellow dress photo but not so much in the others. Plus it was warm! πŸ˜„

Follow this link to Anna’s Soundcloud to have a little listen to some of the tracks from my new CD. I’ve been putting one out every few days to hopefully build up a sort of interest for it. When it comes out proper I’ll no doubt bang on about it on here.

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Marquez Studios Photoshoot, Feb 2019

In the Glasgow cabaret world, one of its finest documentors is a lady called Amy Irene Marquez and I’d been dying to work with her for ages. She has been responsible for some of the coolest portraits I’ve seen these past few years and I finally got the chance to work with her in February. I confess I was a bit shy, as I still am around photographers. I guess I’m so used to taking photos by myself. It is different on my own especially as I hold back less. We got on very well though and we managed to get some really nice photos in such a short space of time. I hadn’t really thought of a concept as such but I had brought along a few things in my bag, namely my ukulele, a replica human brain and my portable cassette player with headphones and a couple of tapes. Sadly we didn’t factor in the brain but if there is ever another time I get some photos done I plan to include it.

You can check out her work on Facebook and Instagram πŸ˜‰

Anna Claus

This week has seen possibly the best 2 shows I’ve done in a long time if ever. I’m my own harshest critic so I rarely think I’ve done well but I got lucky with audiences on Monday at Spangled Cabaret and Saturday at the 13th Note.

Monday was very special indeed as after a few songs people started dancing and by the end the words were being shouted back at me! Awesomely exciting stuff. It was videoed as well by a friend called Jon the Hat of Haufcut Video Productions. The full set can be viewed on Youtube via this link –

Anna Secret Poet Live at Spangled Cabaret 3/12/18

Action shot by Ruth Booth

I got to wear one of my newest purchases which is a lovely wool-effect Mrs Claus dress from Primark. I coveted it last year so leapt at the chance to own it this time round. Yes I fully realise I’ll only get to wear it a few times a year but it was so worth it. In a few spare moments today I posed for a few pics in the house. It got a bit cheeky πŸ˜‰

An early Christmas treat for you 😘

I also videod myself singing a Christmas song I wrote at the beginning of this year specifically dealing with the aftermath. I call it ‘Coming Down From Christmas’ ❀

The gig last night was even better. I was invited by The Red Lite District to join a bill at the 13th Note – my oldest surviving stomping ground. It’s a lovely big vegan cafe in Glasgow’s Merchant City. One of my favourite places, especially when it’s busy! The first time I was there was in April 1999 to see Biffy Clyro and Aereogramme. To have seen them in such a tiny venue was amazing in fact they impressed me so much that I felt like giving up music all together. When I got home I wrote a song inspired by their ‘Hope for an Angel’ which included the same quiet/loud bursts, gentle riffs and high singing voice. I called it ‘Hollow’ and it became a live staple for my teenage band at the time called ‘Guavara’.

‘Hollow’ by Guavara

There were 4 bands in total. The Limbo Scene, myself, The Red Lite District and The Performance Enhancing Suppositories. I was on second which turned out to be the optimum time to go on and I probably had the densest crowd. That made it magical. I reckon I played pretty well. Possibly I played it too safe with my set but I’ve not had much chance to practice recently. I’ve been hoping to add a few new tracks into the set but hopefully I will next year.

Action shot by Pat McGuire @ PMG Photog

I’m still peddling my new album. You can also now stream it in its entirety on Youtube from the following handy link…

Anna Secret Poet – Party on, Papillon! (Full Album on Youtube)

I’m also hoping to do a few more Christmas shots next week when I have my last show of the year. Drag-Opticon at the Britannia Panopticon – I cannot wait! I may even bring 2 costumes this time πŸ˜„

The Party Continues…

My new album has been out in the world for a month now and so farΒ it’s been received well by those who have heard itΒ but I admit to being a little underwhelmed by how it’s performing. Part of this is to do with the blow I was dealt when I got the news that it couldn’t be released in Germany, Austria or Switzerland without cutting a certain track. The song in question being ‘Aunty Semetic & Uncle Adolf’. Apparently there is a ruling in these countries prohibiting material that even remotely resembles pro-Nazi propaganda/symbolism (Strafgesetzbuch section 86a). The wording is so vague and the penalty for contravening it are pretty severe I’m led to understand so I’ve had to leave out those countries 😦 For anyone who comes from Germany et al they can still get to it through my Bandcamp which as far as I’m aware is universal. I didn’t feel like I should have to cut the song as I mean no offence in it and am certainly not promoting Nazism. If anything the song is vehemently anti-Nazi and everything far-right.

Further links for the other major online music retailers can be found here;

Party on, Papillon! – Apple Music

Party on, Papillon! – Spotify

Party on, Papillon! – Amazon Music (UK)Β (I’m sure it’ll show up on all other variations)

It’s also available on Google Play Music, Tidal and several other services I’ve never heard of haha!

I’ve had a couple of lovely reviews of it as well, one by a good WordPress friend Eleanor Burns over at A Belated Existence πŸ™‚ I’m hoping to get a couple more by the end of the year.

Eleanor’s Review of ‘Party on, Papillon!’

This past year I haven’t really been spending much time on this page. I feel I’m on the wind down and don’t really have much more to talk about as far as Anna is concerned. She’ still gigging regularly in a variety of different venues and continues to make new friends and fans. The gig count will have risen to 100 come the end of November which is a number I would not have guessed I could manage. Who knows what next year holds – another album? That would surprise me. That last one done me in, I wish I knew how to promote myself. So far I only have it in one shop namely the New Hellfire Club in Partick. Other shops usually require you to have a barcode and I can’t really afford one of them (yup, you have to buy a barcode). I should say as well that it was my 5th anniversary of being on WordPress. I celebrated the other day with starting a new blog on a different subject. My love of horror films! I called it ‘Gory Gary’ and have so far only done 1 post and that was on ‘Zombie Flesh Eaters’. If you like gruesome horror films you can follow me over there if you like…

Gory Gary

gory gary header 1

Party on, Papillon!

My new album ‘Party on, Papillon!’ is finally out!

I got an itchy finger and published it to my Bandcamp on Sunday morning. A few folk have purchased it so far but mostly it’s been streamed but that is the 21st century way I guess. Hopefully it will be up on iTunes/Spotify/Deezer etc in the coming weeks if I can scrape some cash together.

Link to it is here – ‘Party on, Papillon!’ by Anna Secret Poet

https://bandcamp.com/EmbeddedPlayer/album=1890023517/size=large/bgcol=ffffff/linkcol=0687f5/tracklist=false/transparent=true/

Although it has taken a year from start to finish in truth it has only been a few actual recording sessions which I held mainly in the comfort of my bedroom. It’s my favourite place to do it – folk are often surprised when I tell them how I do it.

It’s priced at Β£5 (not including VAT) on Bandcamp so grab it while you can as it will probably be around Β£7.99 from the other retailers. I plan to get 100 CD’s made up which I will sell through Bandcamp and possibly eBay so if there are any interested parties do contact me for more information πŸ™‚

Album Excitement!

I have been very busy these past few months and I am now ready to release my new album! My third under the name Anna Secret Poet, it is entitled ‘Party on, Papillon!’

The front cover is a photograph taken by my friend Debbie McCall on a shoot we did in Glasgow Green at the start of the summer. I’m still not used to other folk photographing Anna but Debbie is brilliant and I did relax after an initial bashfulness. The full shoot can be viewed in HD from this link Galactic Carnival Photoshoot 26/6/18. This is what the back cover looks like, also includes full tracklisting.

I have since remade it for the text to be sharper. I expect to have it up on Bandcamp next week followed by a limited run of CDs (100 projected) and by the end of the month it should be on iTunes, Spotify etc. Expect another post sharing and celebrating this occurence.

I am rather excited about this, so much so I’m already planning my next project. ‘Anna and the Secrets’ – a 3-piece garage band that will release a surf/garage/psychobilly style EP in the new year…hopefully! During the sessions for the album I recorded a couple of songs that I’ve put up as a separate non-album single on Bandcamp and Soundcloud respectively. My Halloween song ‘Annaween’ backed up with an old song called ‘Boobies’ πŸ˜‰

‘Annaween’ on Soundcloud

‘Boobies’ on Soundcloud

‘Annaween’ on Bandcamp

Excuse the cover it was done in a hurry. Actually it was a rejected photocopy of a self portrait I did a while back. I was using it as scrap paper but I ended up liking the half face and coloured it in πŸ˜„

Another thing I’ve been getting into recently is Deezer the streaming service. I never envisaged using something like that but it has opened up these dusty old ears to a whole world of music I’ve never before heard. I prefer it to Spotify I have to say which I do have too but only the free version with adverts. Because my last album ‘Tits of Steel’ is up there I began to seek out other people I know or have played with over the years. I found I decent amount of them on Spotify and Deezer and was moved to make playlists including them as a supportive gesture. I made 2 in September and here are links to them if you’re sufficiently intrigued.

Anna Secret Poet and Friends (Spotify)

Anna Secret Poet and Friends (Deezer)

Anna Secret Poet and Friends Vol. 2 (Spotify)

Anna Secret Poet and Friends Vol. 2 (Deezer)

It was really exciting for me to group all these folk together in the one place. Apart from playing with and seeing them live this is often the first time I’ve heard recordings of them. Obviously I’m in the playlists too! First track on each haha. I’m still proud of ‘Tits of Steel’, out of all the music I’ve made in the last quarter century it has reached the largest amount of people. Performing songs from it is a constant joy too. Invariably audiences know some of the songs and cheer when I mention the titles (‘Eyebrows!’ in particular gets the most excited response – I’d probably be lynched if I don’t sing that). I really can’t wait to unleash the new stuff! Watch this space…

Still Anna after all these years

I’m still performing a few times a month…

I’m still dressing for leisure every now and again…

And I’m still mostly loving life!

But underneath there are still doubts and niggles and dissatisfactions and situations to overthink. Too many to mention but cheifly amongst them was what happened on Thursday. I had to wrestle with a draft tracklisting of my new album. On paper it seemed great but the reality was not so great. Something wasn’t right and it put me in a massively awful mood for hours. It even prompted a poem…

But amusingly a couple of folk added 2 more verses to it that cheered me up a little πŸ˜„

In the end I was able to spot the problems which culminated in a slight reshuffle and the removal of a song. One other is coming off if I finish another couple of songs I’m currently toying with – a rap and a song called ‘Rum and Cheese’. It’s not like I haaaaave to finish it this week. I can afford to let it gestate but it’s just my artistic nature to want to launch stuff out constantly!

I’ve got a few more shows on the horizon in the next wee while. I’m playing Solfest again at the end of August, a new comedy night in town next month (I should probably nip those in the bud soon), a loca LGBT youth group have asked me to perform and do a talk in November, a possible birthday party around the same time and I’ve been invited to play at a friend’s wedding in May. A mixed bag to be sure! I played a normal rock gig during the week which is a rare occurance indeed and the kind of show I enjoy most. I didn’t look very good for it though…

I shouldn’t have teamed that hair with the outfit. It just looked awful – luckily there weren’t any photos taken by other people that night!

The last couple of weekends have gifted me a few hours to try on outfits at home which is nice. Here are a few of the better pics from last Sunday.

This very morning I was able to do it again so I elected to try out a new green skirt that my wife gave me. Initially it was difficult to decide on a top to go with it so I elected to team it with a grey jumper I haven’t worn very much.

Amusingly at one point I was photobombed by my cat Gozer!

I have many more photos from the last month that I still need to remember and share. Hopefully I can work them into other posts over thr next while 😘