Abbe May re­veals Fruit at Perth Fes­ti­val

Southern Gazette (Victoria Park) - - Front Page - Tanya MacNaughton

PERTH singer-song­writer Abbe May’s new al­bum Fruit has been five years in the mak­ing and so much has hap­pened in her life dur­ing that time.

“In 2015 I had a seizure that was then fol­lowed by a few years of tremen­dous men­tal in­sta­bil­ity,” May said.

“I went from a very sturdy and high-func­tion­ing woman in stress­ful sit­u­a­tions to not be­ing able to leave my house for a long time. I was wak­ing up with my hands in fists and was re­ally strung-out, de­pressed and anx­ious.

“I got through that with the help of a great doc­tor. My fam­ily were in­cred­i­ble and I had a re­ally good girl­friend at the time who helped me get through a lot of it.”

Ev­ery­thing was start­ing to look more pos­i­tive and May re­leased the first sin­gle off Fruit, Are We Flirt­ing? in 2016 and then her 10month-old nephew got sick.

“He was so sick we thought he might not make it through but luck­ily he’s re­ally healthy now and the ab­so­lute love of my life,” she said. “At the same time my best friend got can­cer, beat it in that year and then the can­cer came back with a vengeance; so there’s been a lot of ups and downs and in­ten­sity.

“What I’ve learned, par­tic­u­larly from my best friend and nephew, is that we’re in­cred­i­bly for­tu­nate to be alive and be­ing able to say to some­one that you love them is in­cred­i­bly im­por­tant. It feels like I’ve come through a very dif­fi­cult era and man­aged to be cre­ative in­stead of de­struc­tive in this time.

“I feel pleased with how I’ve han­dled the tri­als and tribu­la­tions of the past five years and I’m re­ally ex­cited about what’s com­ing now.”

May re­leased Fruit on Fe­bru­ary 2 and will of­fi­cially launch the elec­tro-soul al­bum at Perth Fes­ti­val’s Chevron Gar­dens Valen­tine’s Day event Abbe May and Clam Jam on Wed­nes­day, Fe­bru­ary 14.

The evening will cel­e­brate Aus­tralian women in mu­sic with a line-up that in­cludes Thelma Plum and the ref­or­ma­tion of Perth in­die punkers Sex Pan­ther.

May said she felt ready to jump back into the in­ten­sity of re­leas­ing some­thing so per­sonal, so pub­licly.

“I think it’s im­por­tant to ex­press your­self and to be gen­uine be­cause the role of the artist is to re­flect,” May said.

“It’s an openly gay record; I’ve never hid­den my sex­u­al­ity but I’m very ex­plicit about it now.

“A lot of what’s hap­pened over the past few years has made me feel dis­con­nected to the per­son that I had been prior to all of this.

“I like that through this record I can see glimpses of for­mer selves and sit­u­a­tions, and feel com­fort­able and proud of who I’ve be­come while still hon­our­ing where I’ve come from.”

Pic­ture: An­drew Ritchie­mu­ni­ d478812

“I think it’s my best work yet,” Abbe May (cen­tre) said of new al­bum Fruit, pic­tured with Strom Wy­ness and Alex Holt from Sex Pan­ther.

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