live: Cel­e­brat­ing song, the Lil’ Fi way ......................

The Gold Coast Bulletin - Play Magazine - - LIVE ’N’ LOUD -

WHETHER she’s cel­e­brat­ing her volup­tuous fig­ure or pon­der­ing if it’s kosher to tell some­one there’s toi­let pa­per hang­ing out of their knick­ers, Lil’ Fi’s lyri­cal con­tent is pos­i­tively hu­mor­ous.

The north­ern NSW-based com­i­cal-songstress, aka Fiona Hunter, says mu­si­cians are ‘‘the an­ten­nas of so­ci­ety’’ and have a duty to sing about the un­speak­able. ‘‘I love so­cially awkward mo­ments,’’ she says. ‘‘One of my songs is called Cel­e­brate The Curves. Peo­ple ask if I am preg­nant all the time ’cause I have my mother’s body. I have curves and a big ol’ arse. I want to cel­e­brate who we are. Bo­tox is up there with foot bind­ing. We do all sorts of things to our­selves – cl­i­toridec­tomy, labi­aplasty – we get a Brazil­ian wax and re­alise it looks like a goat down there.’’

Com­bin­ing her tongue-in-cheek song­writ­ing style with her own blend of Aus­tralian-blues, Lil’ Fi sings from the heart.

‘‘I am a white girl from Queens­land not a black Amer­i­can from the deep south,’’ she says.

‘‘I made a con­scious de­ci­sion to sing with an Aussie twang. When I was 19 and started singing pro­fes­sion­ally, I de­cided I wanted my own sound. All other mu­si­cians sounded the same ex­cept the pop­u­lar ones that are re­ally good – they have their own sound. When I de­cided I wanted to sing blues, I didn’t want it with an Amer­i­can ac­cent. That was un­heard of here in the ’90s. I was one of the first to do it.’’

Lil’ Fi’s mu­si­cal per­sona is most alive on stage with her seven-piece band, Lil’ Fi & The Dirty Ras­cals.

Known on the fes­ti­val-cir­cuit for throw­ing high-en­ergy, feel-good gigs with a barrel of laughs, Lil’ Fi is ‘‘very cheeky’’ on stage.

‘‘I make peo­ple feel like they are in my lounge room. They feel safe know­ing they are go­ing to have a good time,’’ she says.

With her per­form­ing ca­reer span­ning more than two decades, Lil’ Fi says no two shows are ever the same.

‘‘I al­ways do some­thing dif­fer­ent. The beauty of blues is you can’t re­hearse it. It keeps me on my toes. Af­ter 23 years I have a few gigs up my sleeves. With blues, you don’t get older, you get bet­ter. A cou­ple of songs I have been singing for 20 years, but I sing them in a dif­fer­ent key to keep my­self in­ter­ested.’’

The feel-good as­pect of Lil’ Fi’s shows stems from her be­lief mu­sic has the power to heal. She ap­proaches heal­ing with a ‘‘feet on the ground’’ at­ti­tude.

‘‘I don’t think that just be­cause you talk deep, you are a healer,’’ she says. ‘‘You get heal­ing through hav­ing a nice time. You don’t need to have a gong and white out­fit that floats in the breeze to be spir­i­tual. You can wear cow­boy hats and cuban heels if you want.’’

Lil’ Fi did her masters in Reiki, a tech­nique for re­lax­ation and heal­ing, when she was 26 and says it helps her un­der­stand the power of vi­bra­tion.

‘‘Beau­ti­ful mu­sic played with beau­ti­ful in­tent makes you feel good. Mu­si­cians are the heart and soul of a com­mu­nity,’’ she says.


Lil’ Fi & The Dirty Ras­cals play Live at Bond, at Bond Univer­sity’s ADCO Am­phithe­atre, on Sun­day from 3pm and four shows at the Blues on Broadbeach fes­ti­val, from May 23 to May 26.

– Pic­ture: LUKE MARS­DEN.

Singer, song­writer and mu­si­cian Lil’ Fi.

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