Scarlette Fever: on song at RAH

UK songstress Scarlette Fever has come a long way since PSNe-Live covered her intimate gig at London's 100 Club earlier in the year. An album and several dance hits later, she's now on a major UK tour with Mike & The Mechanics. Paul Watson catches up with her at the legendary Royal Albert Hall...
Publish date:
Updated on

28-year-old Hertfordshire-based singer-songwriter Scarlette Fever has come on leaps and bounds since PSNe-Live last caught up with her at her intimate gig at London’s 100 Club earlier this year. She has since completed an album which was recorded at Angel Studios and mastered at Metropolis, and has been working with acclaimed engineers including Cenzo Townshend (Snow Patrol). Next, she shot to number two on the Music Week Commercial Pop Club Chart with her single Crash & Burn; and on top of that, she’s now opening for Mike & The Mechanics, who are using Outline’s much talked about GTO line array system on their current UK tour. Paul Watson catches up with her after last night’s show at the legendary Royal Albert Hall… Things seem to be moving very quickly for you since we last featured you in PSNE magazine; how did the Mike & The Mechanics tour come about, and how many dates are you playing together?  We’re playing 19 dates in total on this tour, which is fantastic. We were booked on the tour by a promoter, but I had also previously toured with [Mike & The Mechanics’ frontman] Andrew Roachford in 2010; he is absolutely awesome. You played the Royal Albert Hall last night, which must have been a career highlight; how did the nerves hold up, and more importantly, what was on your rider? [Laughs] Well, let’s put it this way; backstage, about five minutes before I went on, I nearly passed out! We don’t actually request a rider as such, so the rather fabulous Popcorn caterers leave us a selection of bottled beers, tulips and red wine, which was very nice. I know you’ve always been a fan of Shure; do you have a trusted microphone that you use on stage at the moment? A Shure Beta 87C cardioid condenser has always been my personal preference; I find it comfortable to use, and it has such a big, warm sound. But I always listen to my sound engineer’s recommendation, so it can depend. You can’t go too far wrong with a Shure microphone – I’m also a big fan of the SM57. Do you wear in-ear-monitors, or rely on wedges when singing on stage? I do have a set of in-ears, but really I prefer to use wedges because I love to feel the atmosphere in the room; that’s really important to me as a performer. I find that in-ear monitors can make you feel really cut off from the crowd, which isn’t what I’m about at all. What’s your set-up on stage? As a lead vocalist, what kind of monitor mix do you tend to go for? I like a very dry sound with no reverb at all on the vocal. My mix on stage is extremely vocal heavy, with the keyboards the only really prominent instrument. How do you warm up your voice pre-gig? Do you have a routine that you stick to?

My warm up routine starts with a vocal warm up in the morning followed by exercises in the dressing room whilst I get ready to hit the stage. It’s important to look after your voice! Vocally, how does your approach to a big live gig differ to a major recording session?  To be honest, I treat both fairly differently. I find there’s more pressure playing a big gig, which seems to lead to much more stress on my voice, which is why I love recording a session as I don’t have to contend with nerves. You’ve had some good successes already on some of the dance charts; what’s the goal for 2011 and beyond? Well, we are currently number eight on the Music Week Commercial Pop Club Chart with the latest single Black and White, and number two on the Billboard Breakout Dance Charts with Crash & Burn. The States is definitely high on my target list, and we are currently in talks with writers over in Los Angeles for later in the year. I’d love to do something significant over there.


Bryony October: riding the faders for Noisettes

Bryony October, 30, has already been working in the music industry for fifteen years; and now she's mixing FOH full time for UK pop act Noisettes. October talks to Paul Watson about her route into live sound; and how some engineers struggle to understand why ‘a girl’ is doing their job…

Natasha’s doing it for the kids at NAMM

British singer-songwriter Natasha Bedingfield shot to pop stardom back in 2004 when her debut album Unwritten sold 2.3 million copies worldwide. Last week, she spoke to Paul Watson at the NAMM show in Anaheim about her latest passion…


Dickerson's the real deal at FOH

After accidentally landing a gig whilst making some sandwiches, Richard Dickerson soon discovered he could mix live sound. Thirty years later, Dickerson reveals to Paul Watson why he's still in the game...


Bianca Nicholas: Starlight in the making

Bianca Nicholas is an extraordinary talent. The 22-year-old singer, who suffers from cystic fibrosis, has not let her condition get in the way of her dreams, and is already paving her way in the music industry both in the UK and across the pond, writes Paul Watson.


Bell & Williams: mixing Tinie Tempah

Nikoma Bell and Rafael Williams mix FOH and MON respectively for Tinie Tempah. Paul Watson catches up with both engineers during the Brighton leg of Tempah's current headline UK tour to see what's going on behind the consoles...