Monday, 2 June 2014


 So as I said in my last blog

 Mr P and I have had some major criticism thrown our way lately in the lines of doing our job and trying to entertain. It’s been tough, and last week I had a point where I felt very sorry for myself. I felt like no matter how hard I tried I was doomed to fail, I felt alone and unsupported and utterly low.

So, as you often do, I went on facebook!

And at the top of my news feed I found this woman.

Her name is Jodie Barden. She has a daughter called Ella who was diagnosed with Cockayne syndrome. Cockayne syndrome is a rare genetic syndrome characterised by poor growth, premature ageing and learning delays among others.

Cockayne syndrome is fatal, the average life expectancy of a child with this syndrome is 12 years old.

After having Ella, Jodie fell pregnant with another little girl, called Chloe. Chloe has also been born with this condition and was diagnosed in the womb at 27 weeks.

I have never felt so humbled. There was I feeling sorry for myself because I’d had a couple of bad reviews on the internet while doing a job I love in a sunny country with my amazing husband. At the same time Jodie Barden was waking up each morning with the worst knowledge a mother can have, and every day she comes out fighting.

While I was moping that people didn’t like me, Jodie Barden was literally dragging herself through the mud for her little girls.

So I’d just like to say thank you to Jodie for giving me some much needed perspective. Because if Jodie can get up every morning and face the day with strength and determination then how the hell can I ever feel sorry for myself.

Mrs P

X x x x x x x x

P.S. If you would like to donate any money towards research into Cockayne syndrome you can sponsor Jodie at for running the Maldon Mud Race.

Sunday, 18 May 2014

Bravery and the Red Lipstick Girl

You have to brave in this job.

Working as a musician/entertainer/performer you invariably put yourself in the line of fire for a lot of criticism. Sooner or later everyone in this line of work will experience it, if you are lucky it will be mild – and maybe even help you to improve once the initial hurt has died down. But sometimes you encounter the kind of criticism that is sadly becoming more and more common, deeply personal and hurtful criticism with no basis in anything remotely constructive.

Unfortunately there are people out there that seem to think that it is their life’s mission to inform people that they are not as good as they think they are. Personally I blame X Factor, Britain’s Got Talent, The Voice and every other show like them out there at the moment. Audiences are being taught to attack performers – often young performers – in ever more hurtful and cruel ways, just for the crime of thinking they might have a talent.

It’s not just X Factor either, magazines and newspapers are also to blame. Somehow it has become socially acceptable to say the harshest cruelest things about a person just because of their job.

In life, sooner or later, we all face criticism. This comes doubly if you are the kind of person who throws yourself into life, grabbing at each and every opportunity (especially if you are the kind of person to always be wearing your red lipstick)

Imagine that every single day when you go into work you run the risk of being heavily criticised. Imagine that every time you try and do your job to the highest possible standard you run the risk of incurring deeply personal attacks on everything about you, from your tastes to your appearance. Imagine it being acceptable for people to label you “terrible” “boring” or even “ugly” just because of your job…

It’s tough.

We do this work because we love it, because we enjoy sharing our music with other people, and – yes – because we do believe that we’re actually quite good at it. At least we must be doing OK otherwise we wouldn’t have reached the level we have.

So as you’ve probably guessed, Mr P and I have been coming under fire lately. Who knows the reason – chances are it’s a whole host of reasons culminating in one big attack. But it’s not been fun, it does hurt when you try and work as hard as you possibly can and get nothing back. The worst one is when you think you’ve done a good job – people have seemed to enjoy what you’ve done and even come to compliment you – but then as soon as they get a chance to put pen to paper (or hand to keyboard) they write nothing but hurtful comments.

But we are not going to let it drag us down.

I refuse to give up on being me because some people took it unto themselves to tell me how terrible they think I am. I will keep on smiling and performing and laughing and enjoying every single second of every single opportunity I get until the time it all comes to an end. And when it does come to an end – which I’m sure it will one day for whatever reason – I will be nothing but grateful for the chances I’ve had in life.

So I’m being brave. I will not hide away because I’m being criticised, instead I am going to put on my red lipstick and my most fabulous dress and I am going to walk back into the firing line with my head held high. Because at least if it does all goes tits up at least I know I had the balls to try.

And that’s what really counts.

Mrs P xxxxx

P.S. So I’ve been feeling rubbish for a few weeks now, went to the doctors and it turns out I have bronchitis! The plus side? Antibiotics are amazing! Nothing can stop me now….

P.P.S If you are ever feeling down or undermined then take one tip from me. Lock yourself away in your bedroom, put on a bit of Aretha Franklin and Etta James as loud as you can go, have a good cry if you need one, then take a good long look in the mirror and make yourself look as fabulous as you can. It might not cure your problems but I guarantee you will feel ready for anything.

Sunday, 11 May 2014

What a difference a year makes

So.... How do you pick up on the story of a life after over a year has passed?

Back in 2012 I was newly married, newly unemployed and struggling to figure out who I was, what I wanted from my life and where I was going to go. Simply put I was lost, spending most of my time in a washed out grey state of mind. I had too much time on my hands and no clue how I was going to fill it.

So I gave myself a task, just one. I was going to get up each morning and wear red lipstick. That was all. From then on every day I would get up and put on my lipstick.

Suddenly things started changing, I started to get involved with the vintage scene in Essex. I started gigging and managed to land a regular gig as Connie Francis. I landed my own retro radio show. Slowly my days filled and the sense of purpose that had been eluding me became in reach.

Then one day, the day that changed everything, Mr Player and I drove to Brighton to audition for a company promising an amazing summer. I was sceptical, we had been knocked so many times I found it hard to believe that our fortunes could change that easily.

I was wrong.

We passed the audition and landed a contract. Three weeks later we flew to Madeira to start a new life in the sun. Since then we have done some amazing things, too many to count so I'll try and be brief:

- watched award winning fireworks on a hotel roof with champagne at New Years
- seen dolphins, seals and whales
- swam with sea turtles older than our grandparents
- seen the northern lights
- drunk with comedians, musicians, west end singers and more

This is just a taster list, one we're hoping to add to! Long story short, life has been - and still is - amazing. And truthfully? I put it all down to that one tiny decision to put on red lipstick. One thing I have learnt, and am continuing to learn every day, is the power we can have over our own lives. I've met a lot of people in the past year, most of whom I will never meet again but some of them will stay with me forever. The most inspirational people are the ones who keep on going no matter what, and some of them have dealt with some serious sh*t!

People are amazing, that's one thing I'm learning more and more. Especially women (sorry guys!), we are strong and powerful and in control. Long story short - we got this.

So I'm back. A bit older, hopefully a bit wiser, simultaneously surer and less certain about everything. We're currently beginning a new season in Turkey, we've survived our first year as full time musicians. Now it's time to face a whole new set of challenges.

I've still got my lipstick on, and I am ready for anything!

Mrs P xxx