Under The Influence
Nadine Shah’s musical heroes
Shah fell for the jazz legend as a teen, galvanised by both her low, androgynous vocal and her demeanour. “She’d get on a stage, take out her chewing gum and slap it on the side [ of the piano]. I loved her attitude.”
Wonder’s knack for making “political music that’s sonically upbeat and uplifting” was a major reference point for Holiday Destination, explains Shah, who cites the songs Higher Ground and Living For The City as particular influences.
Brix Smith Start
The one-time Fall member has “become a buddy. She’s looking after me – she’s amazing. She’s bonkers but she’s always pushing back.”
“I love Uncle Billy,” grins Shah. “He’s taken me under his wing – he’s a really great mentor. He’s always keeping his eye out for musicians that are making political music.”
“Her poetry and her political activism are really inspiring – but also her musicality.” Shah believes 71- year-old Smith is at the top of her game. “I saw her at All Points East – it was the best I’ve ever seen her, more energy than ever, more visceral.”