Inspired by artists including Tracy Chapman and Eva Cassidy, Tessa Bickers went out and bought a guitar between two lectures at Bournemouth University and taught herself to play.
Signing up to indie record label Smalldog, owned by fellow singer/songwriter from Bristol, Caroline Martin, Tessa released her debut album Pot Luck, which has received rave reviews from fans and magazines alike. NME Magazine said it “would bring a tear to a glass eye”, while PartinKingston.com said it was their “favourite CD by a female singer/songwriter in many, many moons.” She’s also building up quite a following on the live music scene having spent the past year gigging in every available venue from churches to children’s parties, with a few festivals in between.
Tessa’s already had the honour of supporting artists including Nick Harper, Judie Tsuke and The Inspiral Carpets and was one of a few UK artists to be flown out for Holland’s Acoustic Music Festival in April. She was voted one of the top 15 Unsigned Aritsts of 2006 by listeners of 'From the Underground' and her song 'Chasing Shadows' was one of the most requested on their radio station. Her song 'Under the Skies' reached the final ten of the folk section in O2 Unsigned. Her anti war song 'In the Dark' was used by George Galloway’s political party, Respect, for its campaign.
Tessa is the granddaughter of World War II Fighter Ace Sir Douglas Bader made famous by the film based on his life, "Reach For the Sky". When she’s not gigging you can normally find her at the bar drinking cider, the results of which can be heard on her self-released EP The Hangover Sessions.
Tessa Bickers - Guitar/Vocals
"Pot Luck" Album released 2006
"The Hangover Sessions" EP released 2007
"Al O'Kane and Tessa Bickers" EP released 2007
"Chasing Shadows" on 3TR FM playlist.
"Live Sessions" on Brisol Uni Radio.
"In The Dark would bring a tear to a glass eye..".
Tessa Bickers - Pot Luck
[+ Show ]
Pot Luck is a warm, cozy blanket of guitar ballads, interspersed with piano, synth and bass, and wov...Pot Luck is a warm, cozy blanket of guitar ballads, interspersed with piano, synth and bass, and woven with passionate, lush, soothing vocals by a young woman who’s not afraid to look within and ask herself the tough questions about life. This haunting, ethereal collection of songs with surprisingly mature, thoughtful lyrics is my favourite CD by a female singer/songwriter in many, many moons. Southwest England’s Tessa Bickers is competition for Tori Amos, Damien Rice and has been obviously influenced by Sarah McLachlan and Natalie Merchant as well as the lesser obvious Eva Cassidy, Chrissie Hynde, Annie Lennox and Ani DiFranco.
It’s hard to choose a favourite track because they are all exceptional and each song effortlessly weaves itself into the grand tapestry of the album. Carole King would be proud. This is a compilation of thoughts and experiences from a woman who is trying to find her way on the road less traveled and is willing to be honest about what she feels and experiences along the way. This woman, who’s not quite sure if she wants to risk her heart for love’s sake and wants a guarantee from her lover but knows that’s a futile thing to ask for, is a woman I identify with on so many levels. I honestly cannot wait to see how Tessa continues to evolve as an artist. She has made a fan and a friend in me, for life.
“It ain’t easy all this living
It can get me down
I’d think of leaving if I was given
A ticket out of town
Cos I don’t want to be chasing shadows like you
I want to be on to something new
I don’t want to be walking in someone else’s shoes
Because life is there to use
It’s so much harder when you’re older
You have to know what to do
I think I’d rather take the shoulder
Of someone guiding me through
But I don’t want to be chasing shadows like you”
Tessa Bickers has a level of wisdom at 24 that I never realized until I was 40. She’s the genuine article and is permeated by a grace and wit that most women of her age wouldn’t even recognize. If she continues to stay true to herself she will most certainly have to quit her day job soon because international music success will be knocking very loudly on her door!
Listen to Tessa’s brilliant songs at www.myspace.com/tessabickers. She’ll be delighted if you leave her a comment. Oh, and ask her about her cunnilingus story!
Cambridge And Beyond
[+ Show ]
This year has already been a fantastic year for bringing new singer/songwriters to my attention. It'...This year has already been a fantastic year for bringing new singer/songwriters to my attention. It's amazing just what talent there is out there. A case in point is Tessa Bickers' new album.
Tessa is a consumate writer performer who I'm realy looking forward to catching live later in the year. There are eleven good reasons for that and I'm listening to them again as I write this. Hopefully it will unlock the door to the club circuit as well as support slots.
Bickers seems to draw her from life's wide experience, equally at home focusing on the big issues that affect pretty much all of us and with macro level songs that can pull and tug at the individual level. There's many a song writer that can provoke a reaction with the serious life changing steps. It takes a special talent to make you care about the smaller stuff that on the surface doesn't seem important, but to the individual affected it's vitally important.
It's not just about the body of the song, the positions can be fond in a song. "In The Dark" Tessa's song about Gulf War Two works on so many levels. It's about society, it's about the right and wrongs and it's about how it affects the individual. It's not difficult to see why George Galloway's Respect party used the song to emphasise the injustice of that action
Tessa Bickers can be many things. She can be delicate, almost brittle, I think that if she want to she could make a song about spilt milk seem like a genuine tradgedy.
Alternatively, she can be strong and assertive, this is not a songwriter that's going to let something slip off the hook for fear of offending people. Truth is a double edged sword and when she wants to use it, Bicker's is more than capable of using her words and music, to slide it neatly between the ribs. It's harsh, but fair. I even found myself wanting to shout out 'are you listening Tony Blair?'.
There are many singer/songwriters that are highly entertaining, there are a good number that can move me. There are signifcantly less that are capable of doing both to a high degree. Tessa Bickers is in that small number.
Tessa Bicker's is a rising star. If you're a booker for a club or have any spots available, get in touch with her. Tessa will also be one of the first artists that will be doing an exclusive interview for "Cambridge And Beyond" more news on that when it becomes available.
"Heartache and wonder are the themes running through Tessa Bickers' debut album..".