A common theme in our Lady Heroes pieces has been how difficult it is to write about those you admire. While scouting through my favourite live Anna Calvi videos, I’ve discovered that trying to choose one that you want to use to guide other ears and eyes to an artist you love’s work, comes above that.
Anna Calvi is a London-based musician whose style of playing guitar is like nothing you’ve ever heard before. She is one of my favourite musicians, performers, guitarists, and songwriters.
I’ve noticed in the virus that is YouTube comments, she gets compared a lot to other “chicks with guitars”. Funny given the same shit doesn’t happen to the 800 dudes with guitars. That’s like me walking up to a guy and saying Brian May and Slash might as well be the same people, only Slash is slightly better because that’s my taste and, as a WOMAN, I’m always right. And that if you argue, I shall womansplain to you why you’re wrong.
But I don’t. So, as I was.
Anna Calvi is a London-based musician whose music, skill and talent I admire. Along with her original songs, her take on covers of songs by everyone from FKA Twigs to Christine & the Queens is neat as fuck. If you’ve ever seen Anna Calvi live, you’re not gonna forget her.
Anna performed this cover of Suicide’s Ghost Rider at an intimate gig in a church in Hackney a few years back. Around Christmastime. I saw a fox in the graveyard and got lost on the way there. With musical soulmate, Mally Harpaz at her side on percussion, harmonium, and the legion-but-fraction of instruments she plays and band to back her up, this performance is one that elevates the soul to the place where Alan Vega is up there going, “Yes.”
Here are a few of my favourite Anna songs: