18.2.15  News Update!


My dear and patient Friends,


I feel terribly guilty for writing to You so rarely but, to be completely honest, I really do not want to waste your time and bore you to death with details of no importance. I know that nowadays many people, in every walk of life, write everyday messages on social media about everything and anything; I find it difficult to get used to this form of constant self-advertising, unless there is really something to talk about.


Talking about guilt - I know that I am very slow at producing new songs … I have no excuse. Maybe only that I try to live my life the only way I know how and that is by dividing my time between my Family and Friends, also by trying to learn as much as possible about our world, by travelling and experiencing things first hand. So I suffer constantly from lack of time. All those serious and pleasurable things in life take time and I wish I had more of it!

For example I am sure that I am not the only one who considers sleeping a complete waste of time. I know I have to do it to be sane and healthy but I wish I did not have to. It is on average 8 hours out of my day - unused, which I could spend doing something more worthwhile. It’s a childish complaint because I do realise that my life is very happy and comfortabIe in comparison to others’, so I am slowly learning to live with my guilt about it also.


Enough of this neurotic stuff because this time I am writing to tell you that two weeks ago Danny and I plus our band returned from six wonderful shows in Japan. The first night I arrived in Tokyo I experienced a short but quite strong earthquake and then another one on the last night in Osaka, this time much longer but gentler. I have to admit that it was a little frightening, as both times I was above the 20th floor of my hotels so the sensation was stronger than on the ground floor.

Now I will try to explain why I love being in Japan (despite any earth tremors :)): there is something about the atmosphere, people’s courtesy, good manners and the respect they show to one another that makes me feel happy and relaxed. It is such a wonderful thing to be invited to play over there and that our Japanese fans keep coming to listen to us. It’s a privilege and I am amazed and thankful for it. I have not played live for a while so the fact that the audiences showed us so much kindness this time - uplifted and inspired me.


Now I am very much looking forward to the Cape Town Festival at the end of March, where we are going to play for the first time! I have never been to South Africa that is why this trip is particularly thrilling for me. Although I have no idea what to expect from the audience and that makes me a little nervous.


As usual we will perform over there with our regular band and here I would like to announce that my backing vocalists - Annick and Veronique Clarisse, together with their sister - Dominique, also a great singer, have recorded their own album as The Clarisse Sisters; the album will be called ‘Kaleidoscope’ and it will be released any day now. The three of them asked me and Danny to join them on one of their songs, called ‘Fire and Ice’, which tells the story of our Mauritian-Polish friendship! I sing with the Sisters and Danny produced this track. From the start we were happy to collaborate, inspired by the beautiful melody and message of the song. There are some lovely songs on this album, gloriously sung by the three Sisters. Check it out when you have a chance.


Just one more thing - last year our album ’Time and Tide’ had a special anniversary re-release and this year ‘London, Warsaw, New York’ will also be released as a special edition. The same will happen with our first Matt Bianco album ‘Whose Side Are You On’, which will be released later this year. We spent some time working on these releases, preparing liners and additional versions of some songs. I think that the next anniversary release will be the ’Sweetest Illusion’ cd.


There are a couple of projects in development, but it is too early to talk about it yet. I will be in touch soon to update you on anything interesting and I hope that indeed it will be!


I thank you for reading this letter, quietly hoping that I have not wasted too much of your time… :)

I am sending lots of mine and Danny’s love to you all -


Basia




22.1.14  Double Polish Honour!


Hello Friends!


I have to share with You a huge event in my life that I experienced only Monday.


As You must know by now I was born in Poland and to my great surprise the President of the Republic of Poland awarded me with one of Poland's highest orders - the Knights Cross of the Order of Polonia Restituta 'for the outstanding achievement in promoting Polish culture in the world' and from the Polish Minister for Culture I received a Decoration for Merit to Polish Culture.

Because I live in England - the ceremony took place in the Polish Embassy in London and I was presented with both awards by the Polish Ambassador in London - Mr Witold Sobków.


I feel a little overwhelmed by this honour and I am not sure if I really deserve it, but I am very thrilled and very grateful.

I think my Parents, were they still alive, would be very proud of their daughter, but although they could not be with me yesterday - it was still a very moving experience for me, because my Sister and Brother with their partners, my Son, and my closest Friends were present at the ceremony. Most of them flew in specially for this occasion from Poland. Of course Danny White and his wife were there too, because without my long musical partnership with Danny I would not be getting all this incredible recognition.

  All of us were touched deeply by the hospitality and warmth afforded to us by the Ambassador and the entire Embassy staff. 


I talked to a few journalists afterwards and every one of them asked about our new record; I was happy to tell them that Danny and I are working on new songs for our next album.

Interestingly I recently recorded a duet with a Polish singer living in London, called Monika Lidke. Monika wrote a song, called 'Tum Tum', which I instantly liked after I heard her demo, because of the beautiful lyric (in Polish), Brazilian influenced feel and lovely melody. She is just about to release her new album, where this song will be included, but the legendary Polish radio presenter Marek Niedźwiecki already put this song on his 14th compilation - 'Marek Niedźwiecki's Smooth Cafe'.

Also, at the moment Danny, Mark Reilly (of Matt Bianco) and I are working on a song together, which is developing very nicely :). It should be finished within a week or two. Again it is a duet sung by me and Mark and will most probably be called 'Show time'. We're hoping to include this song as part of a 30 year anniversary rerelease of the first Matt Bianco record - 'Whose side are you on'


This all makes for an exciting start to the New Year, which I hope will be very happy for all of us!

All my love to You all -

Basia


7.3.13  Java Jazz Festival

We have just returned from Indonesia, after a few hot days spent at the 9th Java Jazz Festival.

It was my and Danny's first time in this amazing country, to which we looked forward for a long time; especially that over the years we kept meeting Indonesian fans in other countries and they often told us that people enjoyed our songs over there.

It turned out to be true and everyone we came across was incredibly nice to us.

We played two shows and both were very well received by generous and musical audiences.

The staff of the festival looked after us very well and everything was top notch - the venues, delicious food, very comfortable hotel, etc. All of us were knocked out by the high degree of professionalism of everyone involved, so we really had fun taking part in this prestigious festival, which this year included hundreds of great musicians, from Joss Stone to George Duke and Stanley Clark. Last year Stevie Wonder was one of the main artists, which made us feel even more special to be invited.

Now we hope to come back to Indonesia in the future and maybe perform not only in Jakarta, but also in other towns of this huge country, which I would love to get to know better.


These were the first live shows this year for us, but in the first week of May we are planning to perform in Japan with six shows: 2 in Osaka and 4 in Tokyo.

Danny, our lovely band (Annick, Veronique, Giorgio, Andres, Ian and Mark) and I cannot wait to be in Japan again, where we played last time in October 2009.


17.12.12  Java Jazz Festival

We will be performing at the Java Jazz Festival, Indonesia, on March 2nd and 3rd 2013.

Details of our band on the Tour Dates page

http://www.javajazzfestival.com/2013/artistslist.php



17.5.12  Our US tour..

Sadly we will not be touring the US later this year as we had previously hoped. After much consideration we have decided to concentrate instead on the task in hand, which is writing and recording our next CD. Hopefully we will be out touring again once it is completed.


1.4.12  Live on BBC Radio London..

Looking forward to doing a live interview with Robert Elms this Friday 4th May at around 2.30pm, where I will talk about, among other things, our live CD ‘From Newport to London’


7.12.11  Germany this time..

Off to Cologne tomorrow to perform on Saturday in a charity event called ‘Cover Me’. I will be performing ‘Waters of March’ and ‘Until You Come Back To Me’.

More info on www.cover-me.net


10.11.11  A quick trip..

This weekend sees us in Warsaw, Poland where we will appear on Good Morning TVN on Sunday, as well as doing some other radio and tv recordings.


16.9.11  Hello there!

I often listen to my Friends in our band reminiscing about the previous tours that we have experienced together and I realise that my memories are not as clear or vivid as theirs; I don't remember venues that well, hotels - nothing! I only remember audiences and some kind people I met after shows.


Therefore this time I thought that I will write a few words every now and then, so I can remember these concerts better and also maybe You will be interested in reading them? I have never done this before but there is always a first time.


This USA 2011 tour started in Minneapolis on the 6th of September. We played here before (as Basia and with Matt Bianco in 2005) but because I never have time to sightsee - I did not recognise the town. I only know that this is the town where Prince comes from, whose fan I am until today! Being on stage I fantasised that I was singing to Him, while he sat somewhere at the back, trying not to be recognised :-).

We performed 4 shows in Dakota Jazz Club - a great place with delicious cuisine, in a beautiful part of town. The audience was lovely! Every time.


Then we drove to Milwaukee, where we were invited to take part in the Kettle Moraine Jazz Festival. It is very interesting playing at festivals because we have a chance to be heard by people who are not necessarily our fans. It's a challenge to get them 'on our side', but I like to be challenged :-).

This time the task was easier because we asked Peter White (Danny's Brother) to play with us on 5 songs; Peter's show was scheduled for the next day, but he recorded almost every guitar part on our albums, so without any rehearsal he was happy to join us and of course we love having him on stage!


From Milwaukee we played in Chicago's House of Blues. What an amazing building! I have never seen such fantastic decor anywhere else in the world; so much art - paintings and sculptures everywhere, also every wall and ceiling was treated like a canvas. Each room with its own atmosphere and climate; sometimes very South American, another time - Far Eastern. Truly beautifully designed! I would love to meet the person/persons whose idea it was to make it such an inspiring venue.

I felt very special performing there and maybe the audiences felt it too because the reception was tremendous. I love performing in Chicago - such a musical town, not to mention the fact that there is a very big Polish community, who showed their enthusiasm each time I said something in Polish :-)).


On the way to Atlanta we had a bit of an adventure, which never happened before: our bus broke down around 1.30 am and we waited on the side of the motorway for another bus coming from Nashville to rescue us. We nervously waited for 9 hours; I slept badly that night listening to the fast cars, passing us by and lorries rocking our bus.

We could not check in to a hotel, as planned, to have more sleep and wash etc. Instead, after changing busses, we sped straight to the venue.

We almost missed the show! But although we were one hour late - the audience was very understanding and so loving, that I was twice reduced to little tears on stage. Why don't we play in Atlanta more often (I ask myself)?


I will always remember that day, because again after this show we had to go straight to the bus to drive overnight to Washington, where around noon in the radio station Sirius we recorded two songs live and I was also interviewed. The staff in Sirius could not be more welcoming and kind to us, so I feel a little bad because we reached the station tired and in very miserable moods (no hotel for 2 days and hardly any food). But after successful recording (From Now On & Drunk On Love) we got into much better frame of mind and made great Friends with the beautiful ladies at Sirius!

And when after that we finally had some delicious Chinese supper in central Washington we were completely restored to life and good moods :-).

A hotel afterwards seemed like the most beautiful, magical place....

Since yesterday we have been back on our original bus - they found debris in the fuel tank, flushed it clean and it is as good as new!


Last night we played in the famous Birchmere in Washington (exactly - in Alexandria) in front of a very musically knowledgable crowd who listened carefully to every nuance of our show and judging from their reaction - I think we passed the scrutiny! :-)

The Birchmere is one of those rare venues where the management very well understands the problems the touring musicians face and provide lots of space, comfortable dressing rooms, dining room even, excellent facilities - it all helps enormously to cope with the unglamorous side of our work.


I'm writing this from New York, where we perform today and tomorrow. My boyfriend Kevin flew in last night and he will play trumpet with us for two nights only! It's so good to have him again in our band, albeit so short.

I will give You my impressions from New York soon.

Until then!

B.


12.8.11  Yesterday was our last day in the studio - our work on the new album is finished and now seems like a good time to reflect.


Since the release of our last studio album ('It's That Girl Again') Danny and I have spent a lot of time playing concerts, but we also had some time to write a few new songs.

The result of it is: a tight, experienced band, which deserved to be documented by recording one of our live shows and new songs, which we could not wait to show to our fans. Hence this new album. It contains 15 songs recorded live but also 2 completely new studio tracks and an acoustic version of a song from the last album ('There's a Tear'), which we thought gained in emotion in the new arrangement.


It was not easy to choose the songs for the live show but we tried to include songs from every album we have made so far.

Our previous live album was recorded in 1994 in New York ('Basia on Broadway') so it was time to register the latest versions (a little different from the original), where we could highlight the great talents of our band members. Every one of them had their spot where they could shine and shine they did! 

Danny and I are very proud of our band - wonderful singers and musicians, but also lovely people to work with, which is important while touring and I think it comes across from the stage. 


It has been always important to me to create an informal and relaxed atmosphere during our live shows.

In order to do this I have lovely helpers in my backing vocalists, who are fabulous singers, entertaining characters and beautiful women to boot. They come from Mauritius and are twin Sisters: Veronique Clarisse and Annick Clarisse-Willequet.

Danny and I never thought we could find a replacement for Danny's Brother - guitarist Peter White, now busy with his own career, who performed and recorded with us every album so far. Luckily we met Giorgio Serci - great guitarist from Sardinia in Italy, whose talent is very appreciated by us and our audiences. 

We have been recently reunited with the bass player - Andres Lafone, who added an authentic feel, especially to our South American inspired songs (he comes from Uruguay) but not only. We are overjoyed to work with this great musician again.

Marc Parnell is one of the best drummers in the UK and it is a pleasure and a privilege to have him in our band.

Our brass section is legendary: trumpeter Kevin Robinson, who in his career has played with some of the biggest artists on the planet and also performed on all our albums so far; and Paul Booth, also a recording artist, composer, arranger and especially fantastic saxophonist! 


The concert featured on "From Newport to London" was recorded in June 2011 in Łódź, in Poland in front of a very musical and enthusiastic audience, which helped us perform to our best. Being Polish, it was time for me to record a show in Poland!

We invited on stage a young singer Ada Szulc, who was a finalist of the Polish X-Factor, to sing one of our songs 'A Gift', which she performed in the TV show. She did a beautiful job singing it with us in Łódź. As we speak she is making her first album, which I am sure will be a great success.


There are two new songs on our new album, recorded in the studio. 

The title track is an expression of our love for European film music and the world of art - a story of infatuation with a stranger on a train, who is in himself a 'work of art'. It will become clearer what I am talking about when You hear the track.


The other song is called 'Wandering'; it talks about 'travelling' through life with someone we love; through problems, mistakes, silliness but always surviving the worst and looking forward to new adventures together.

I sing this song here with another Polish singer, who is an established and well known artist in Poland, Mietek Szcześniak, whose fan I have been for a long time.

Recently I was honoured to be asked by him to duet on 'Save the Best for Last' for his new album, soon to be released. One of the writers of this fantastic song is Mietek's co-writer and producer - Wendy Waldman. I was thrilled to sing this song, one of my all time favourites, made famous by Vanessa Williams, of course. I only hope I did it justice, although I approached this task with great trepidation.


The new studio tracks were mixed by our great friend (since 'The Sweetest Illusion' album) - David Bascombe, whose work is always outstanding.

We mixed all the live tracks with another huge talent - engineer Richard Bull. Danny and I cannot express how grateful we are for his expertise in the editing, mixing and mastering of this album.

Both men have great musical sensitivity and skill, which helped us to deliver an album that we are proud of.

We truly hope that the listeners will enjoy it as much as we did making it.


3.7.11  Just back from Poland where we were delighted to perform with guests, Ada (Polish X Factor finalist) and Mietek Szczesniak, in our final show in Lodz - a show which was recorded for our new Live Album, which we hope to release in time for the American tour in September. We will spend our time in the next month, mixing the album, and preparing for the US. It’s all go!


18.2.11 2011 - We are working on some Polish dates to happen in June this year, where we still might record our planned live CD/DVD. And a US tour in September.


18.2.11  Poland - We are very sad to announce that our Polish dates at the end of this month have been canceled.

We apologise for the inconvenience this creates for those of you who have already bought tickets. This is a big blow to us because we had put in a lot of preparation and particularly because we were planning to record and film the show for a Live CD/DVD. We found out this week from our promoter in Poland that he was no longer able to put the shows on because he had run into financial difficulties. We hope later this year that we will be back performing and that we'll find another opportunity to record and film one of our concerts.


13.11.10  Half-way through our US tour - and things are going really well. We have been delighted to have such enthusiastic receptions at our gigs so far - long may it continue! We are already talking about coming back to the US next summer and will maybe go to some of the places we have missed this time around. Meantime, we have just confirmed some new dates for Poland in January /February.


11.05.10  Due to unforeseen circumstances - one of our Polish promoters has informed us of his intention to reschedule three Polish shows (Katowice, Gdansk and Warsaw). We were looking forward to playing these shows and were very disappointed to be told that they were not happening. We do not want to disappoint our Polish fans and are sorry for the late notice. The shows in Krakow, Posnan and Wrocslaw went very well and we are now looking forward to our American tour and beyond.


19.04.10  Tour date just added - Cleveland on the 6th June


30.03.10  We are delighted - to at last, be able to add USA dates to our upcoming European dates in May / June. There may be an additional one or two more in America. We will keep you posted.


10.11.09  We had a fantastic tour - thanks to all of you who were able to join us. We're now planning another tour in the Spring 2010, hopefully making it to the US this time. In the meantime we'll try and write a new song or two!


15.10.09  We've completed the European leg of our tour and had a great time in London, Poland and Italy. Thanks to everyone for the warm receptions we received.

Whilst in Poland 'It's that Girl again" went Platinum (another 1st for us). It has just been released there as a 15 track CD with a DVD of many of our videos. We're now in Japan looking forward to starting a 5 day run in Tokyo.

Leading up to the London shows I did an interview for a UK radio station-you can listen to it now by following this link;

http://markwatkinsblog.blogspot.com/2009_10_01_archive.html


14.9.09  Unfortunately we won’t be making it to the US this year for any shows, but we’re hoping for an American tour in the spring of 2010. We’ll keep you informed.


7.8.09  New Tour Dates page Just added!


22.7.09  Tour Dates at last! The first part of our tour is finally confirmed. Details of how and when to book later, but for a start here are the dates. We’re hoping to tour America after Japan, but no dates for that yet. Unlike the shows we’ve done before, there will be six of us onstage (keyboards, guitar, trumpet, 2 backing vocalists and Basia) so it will be very much an ‘accoustic evening with...’ type of show.


England

London: Pizza on the Park 28th Sep - 2 Oct 2009


Poland

Katowice/Zabrze: Dom Muzyki 5 Oct 2009

Warsaw: Sala Kongresowa 6 Oct 2009

Poznan: Aula UAM 7 Oct 2009

 

Italy

Milan: Blue Note 9 Oct 2009


Japan

Nagoya: Blue Note 13 Oct 2009

Tokyo: Blue Note 15-19 Oct 2009


22.6.09 ‘It’s That Girl Again’ has just become available by mail order. It features 15 tracks, including two bonus tracks, ‘Oh Mama’ and a new version of ‘Clear Horizon’. It costs £9.99 +P&P and the first 50 CD’s ordered will be signed by Basia.

Follow the link below to order.

http://www.townsend-records.co.uk/artist.php?artist=Basia


26.5.09  We are just back from our travels in Poland and America and are having a few days of well-earned rest.

Thanks to Leslie and the fans for keeping everyone posted and up to date on BasiaWeb. And Eva, a special thanks for the wonderful walnut muffins in Warsaw!

We now have a release date in Thailand for 23rd June and a release for Indonesia is in the pipeline.


9.5.09  We now have details of our promo trip to US

New York (Tue/Wed May 12/13):Interviews for ABC News Now (Live 1pm May 12), Reuters TV and XM/Sirius Radio.

LA (Thu May 14): Interview at The WAVE and at Broadcast Architecture/SmoothJazz.com

San Diego (Fri May 15):Interviews for KIFM and NBC News (to be shown on the 4.30 Newscast) and at 7.30pm an instore appearance at Borders, 668 6th Avenue San Diego.

San Francisco (Sat May 16): Interview with KKSF and

an instore appearance at Borders, 588 Francisco Blvd,

West San Rafael 4pm.


7.5.09  Dear All! Things are moving along nicely in America. ‘Blame It On The Summer’ is creeping up the smooth jazz charts and ‘It’s That Girl Again’ (the CD) is number 5 on the Billboard Contemporary Jazz Chart.

In Poland, the CD has just gone Gold (a first for us!) and ‘A Gift’ is getting plenty of airplay.

We’re leaving for America on Monday for a week’s promo.

Watch this space for details.


23.4.09 New Release Dates

Singapore 24th April and Malaysia 1st May.


‘Smooth Operator’ A couple of years ago I was asked to sing on a Nissan commercial in Japan. They supplied the music and I supplied the vocals. Some of you have expressed an interest in hearing the full length recording, so we have added it to our MySpace songs. http://www.myspace.com/basiasongs




6.4.09  Basia Live on Radio ORLA  This Wednesday 8th April from 9-10pm, Basia and Danny will be doing a live interview, and accepting callers’ questions. See the below link for more info.

http://www.orla.fm/polecamy/5-polecamy/4060-its-that-girl-again-basia-and-danny-in-studio

The show will be repeated on Saturday 11th on Hayes FM 91.8 and will also be available from Thursday 9th on

www.orla.fm/replay as a "Special Broadcast".


23.3.09  17th April will be the Polish release date.


4.3.09  It’s That Girl Again will be available in Europe on iTunes from March 30th. And we’re in the process of signing a deal for it’s release in Poland, but no date yet.


16.2.09  The first single  in America will now be ‘Blame It On The Summer’ and will go to radio at the beginning of March


11.2.09  Just received!  We have just today heard that the Japanese release date will be the 11th March.


7.2.09  We are happy to announce a release date of 24th March for our album 'It's That Girl Again' in the US with Koch Records. A Japanese deal with WHD has just been completed and the CD will be released there a week or two ahead of America. We are still working on securing a release in other territories and will let you know as soon as we do. Meanwhile, to our myspace songs we have just added a version of 'An Olive Tree' which was recorded live at the Neil Simon Theatre NY in '94. but never made it to our Broadway album. We are getting very excited as the time is getting near!


21.12.08  Almost there! With a sigh of satisfaction, we pronounce the new CD finished at last. There will be 13 tracks on it. The first single, which happened to be the last one recorded, is called 'A Gift'. It's a song about not taking your loved one for granted, a reminder for us all perhaps!

We're also happy to have secured a Japanese release, to add to our American one.

And to those of you who have joined our mailing list, thank you, and we hope to be sending the first mail out in the New Year just as soon as we have confirmed dates.


2.10.08  Contract signed at last! Our deal with Koch Records has at last been finalized for the release of our CD in North America. We're still working on the rest of the world! The schedule at the moment is for a single release in late January and then the album will follow in late February. We would then, all going well, tour some time around April/May/June time. Where exactly, we just don't know yet.

To celebrate we have added a new taster  'There's a Tear'.


23.8.08  Myspace news! Finally we have gotten around to having a page on Myspace! On there so far we have a new version of ‘Clear Horizon’ (without vocals). You can find it on our links page.


Mixing. We have just finished mixing another song called ‘Oh Mama’ which is a duet with a young relative of mine (also called Basia). It’s not the first time we’ve kept it in the family, Eva, my sister, sang with us on the Matt Bianco tour in 2005.

And of course Peter, Danny’s brother, has played guitar on many of our songs.


Happy days! Danny and I are nearing completion of our new album at last. We’re looking forward to sharing it with you. We are back to working as a duo after a re-union with our friend Mark Reilly, as Matt Bianco, when we recorded ‘Matt’s Mood’ (2004).


Latest news on our new recording contract is that we are just about to sign a North American deal with Koch Records, an exciting new company to us, that has, in it’s nine years existence, quickly grown to become America’s largest independently-distributed record company and is the fastest-growing independent record label in the US.

We are aiming to release our album with them in early Spring 2009 and as for it's title, that’s going to be rather fittingly,

‘It’s that Girl Again’.

“When I look around

it makes me wonder,

am I worthy of the most amazing life that I’ve been given?”


from ‘The Prayer of a Happy Housewife’