Sharon Lewis relishes Shoreham date for live return

Sharon Lewis and Crack*A*Jack*Crow offer a double header at Shoreham’s Ropetackle on Saturday, June 5 at 8pm, both performing at the venue for the first time.

Wednesday, 2nd June 2021, 7:05 am
Sharon Lewis

Hove-based Sharon said: “I have done a couple of online shows during lockdown, but this is the first live one back. It feels really hard to believe that it is going to happen. I think everyone just goes into their own little bubble and seems a bit detached from each other. It was a very isolating experience even with the online concerts where you still had that feeling of being disconnected.

“People are really looking forward to being back together again, I think,” Sharon says,” and to have that sense of unity and togetherness again. The only nerves I have are that I haven’t performed live for a long time, just nerves about being on stage again really. But I don’t have any nerves about being back out there after the lockdown.”

As for the past year: “You just do what you can. I am a teacher as well. Basically I just do my music when I can. I teach in a couple of primary schools. I teach guitar and piano, and I have been doing that for a long time. I was also running a choir for a while. You just fit together lots of different things.”

Formerly of female duo Pooka, Sharon writes and performs songs on piano, guitar and ukulele. She has released two solo albums: The Hour Lilies and Roses At The Top and an EP entitled Simple Things.

“I was with the duo quite a long time ago when I was in my early 20s, and we got signed quite quickly and it really took off quite quickly. We were signed to Warner Brothers and we were also working for Island Records for a while.

“That was in the early 90s. We were the duo for about ten years. We made four albums and EPs, and being on a major label, you get some really good press reviews and we got to go to America. We toured America quite a lot. We did some great support slots, and we got some excellent press. We had great write-ups but because our music at the time was more folky, we were struggling to get on the radio. We had a cult following, but we didn’t manage to break through to the mainstream. We just couldn’t break through. In those days you had to get onto Radio 1 or else that was your career over. And then in the end things just happen naturally. I have been pursuing my own solo career since and I have also done lots of collaborations.

“There is more freedom as a solo performer to make your own decisions about where you are going to go with your life and where you are going to go musically. But I do enjoy collaborating with lots of people along the way.”

As for the music: “I guess I am just part of the song-writing tradition. I am very much influenced by writers like Leonard Cohen and Paul Simon and Joni Mitchell and Neil Young. It is confessional song-writing. With the music I play, I accompany myself on piano, guitar and ukulele. I swap between the instruments. I would say that it is quite soulful. I try to dig deep with my music. I wouldn’t say it was on-the-surface music.”

Crack*A*Jack*Crow is a storytelling and song-writing duo that has come together from the shores of the United States to Brighton. With a minimalist approach to composition, the duo say they seek to “express experiential storytelling through experimental song-writing.”

Influences include Randy Newman and Leonard Cohen.