Mim Grey, the most beautiful voice to come out of the UK in a very long time, released her long-awaited and highly accomplished debut album, Grey Matters in April 2010. The album evokes the sounds of James Taylor and Joni Mitchell but conjures up a life lived through high-heeled boots, blue jeans, curling tongs, late nights and love lost and found.
Mim’s song writing partner, lyricist Cori Josias, adds to the maturity and emotional depth of their songs and it’s clear there is a unique chemistry between the two, producing truly timeless melodies and lyrics.
Already an accomplished singer/songwriter, Mim has performed with music luminaries such as Paul McCartney, Dave Stewart, Michael Ball and ABC. She has also recorded with the likes of Kylie Minogue and Morcheeba and performed at venues as diverse as Wembley Arena and The London Palladium. Mim has also had a top ten single with Mantronix and a club hit with Lee Cabrera as well as co-writing a Kylie Minogue track, and her cover version of What a Difference A Day Makes spearheaded Thomas Cook‘s Christmas ad campaign.
Shortly after the release of ‘Grey Matters’ and a successful UK theatre tour, Mim hunkered down in her bedroom once again to begin the creative process that would become her second solo album ‘Chasing Tigers’. The collection of beautifully hand crafted songs have a slightly earthier feel to them than on her previous album and Mim seems to feel more comfortable in her own skin as you are drawn into the stories of childhood, life, love and passion.
However, Mim’s journey as a solo artist hasn’t been an easy one. As the saying goes, Mim has truly ‘paid her dues’.
At 13, the Barnet-born teenager was suspended from school for her “dubious haircut” and left school for good aged barely 15. Shortly afterwards, her parent’s marriage crumbled, and she left home to move in with musician brothers, Paul and John Williams.
The house became a “24/7 party” with jam sessions into the small hours. Paul stumbled on an old song Mim had secretly recorded in her bedroom and when he played the tape everyone was up on their feet, dancing and clapping. Paul looked her straight in the eye and said, “Mim, you’ve GOT to sing.”
Mim & Paul went on to be an item for the next 6 years both on and off stage. Tragically, just when Mim’s career started to take off, Paul was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Six months later he died. Mim describes this as, without question, “the worst moment of my life.”
After Paul’s death, Mim’s career took a dive. Although she worked on endless projects, jetting off to America to work with top writers and producers, she couldn’t find the magic formula. Nothing felt quite right.
When she’d all but given up, Mim met someone on a London-bound flight who was to play a big part in her future. As she began chatting with lyricist Cori Josias, she felt a deep connection, setting the stage for a formidable song writing partnership.
Meanwhile Mim fell into a Hampstead lifestyle and a volatile relationship. “I lost the plot for a while,” she admits, “I got involved with drink and drugs and my career suffered.” Fighting her way back to normality, Mim started singing at weddings to pay the bills. At one of these gigs she met the love of her life, drummer Steve Vintner. “Without Steve I wouldn’t be here today,” she says.
Steve totally fell for Mim’s voice, encouraging her to record her own album and to reconnect with her song writing soul-partner Cori Josias. Sitting round a kitchen table with a guitar and a laptop, the songs on Mim’s debut album, Grey Matters began to take shape. Mim was soon“discovered” at London’s 606 Club where she had been singing on and off since her teens and before long she was signed and whisked off to LA to work with producer’s such as Derek Bramble and Rob Chiarelli as well as LA’s finest session musicians who all helped bring Grey Matters to life.
This time around however Mim felt more comfortable keeping things closer to home, hence recording the new album Chasing Tigers at Phoenix Sound, Pinewood Studios. More importantly it made it possible for her to record it with her band from London who Mim dearly loves and who have supported her every step of the way.
Without doubt, Mim Grey is one of the finest voices in the world and her ability to recreate the beauty of her recorded albums live is unsurpassed. The way she manages to turn the intricate details of her personal life into emotional heartfelt songs is something that every music lover should experience.
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