Gigs and Such


I promised to be back with the “other stuff” I’ve been up to over the last few weeks and you know, it’s rude to lie. So here I am again attempting to bore you to tears ūüėČ

I have recently had the pleasure of seeing three of my favourite bands in ONE SHOW! on 15th Feb I got the very privileged opportunity to be at the front of Shepherds bush empire, stage right at the barriers to watch Zebrahead, Less Than Jake and Reel Big Fish on the last night of their UK tour. ¬†It was epic. ¬†I have to say, working at an awesome live music venue has it’s perks – the security were ace making sure I wasn’t battered (secretly I was actually really disappointed I didn’t have my usual collection of bruises) and passing me paraphernalia like pics whenever they were dropped, not to mention (but I totally am) getting a hat trick of set lists handed to me! I am such a geek for bands….

Zebrahead kicked off the show playing their synth-punk-pop crazy tunes at supersonic speed with a bar on stage to get the other bands and some random people VERY drunk and happy. I ended up with a signed penguin head… I have no idea why but I will be keeping it FOREVER!

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Less Than Jake played a near perfect run of my favourite songs including The Science of Selling Yourself Short and Plastic Cup Politics and they got two audience members u on stage to star jump through an entire song – poor bastards looked like they were ready to chuck their guts by the end. Brilliant antics from Buddy and a cameo from Matt Appleton on Sax made for some awesome highlights too.

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Reel Big Fish have been my favourite band since ’99. Even though their set is perfectly choreographed, their jokes are the same ¬†every show and Aaron’s shirt collection appears to be rather small, I love them. Their songs, their energy and the fact that they are SUCH LOVELY PEOPLE!! Whenever I have had a chance to interact with any of them they are just very sweet, unassuming people who just love what they do. Side note – the new trombone player stepped up to the mark brilliantly. Proud moment here by the way – RBF used the second picture below for an “insert your caption” post on instagram. This makes me very happy, and VERY smug!

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So what happens when you can’t afford a ticket to see Me First and the Gimme Gimmes? YOU WORK THE NIGHT! I’d actually forgotten it was happening having been caught up with Uni assignments and music projects so when I turned up last Friday to be greeted with a big sign saying that, I lost ¬†my shit. SO EXCITED! Fat Mike wasn’t able to play, but that did not matter at all. I managed to swap bars so I was on stage right with one of the coolest bar ladies ever – Lianne Drewett if you read this I think you are rad – and I skanked out something chronic and drank shooters with punters as they smashed out hit after ska-punk fuelled hit.

Incase you don’t know who they are, The Gimmes are a covers band made up of some of the most awesome people in punk. They turn pop into ska-punk. Check out Wiki’s info on them here:



I’ve written a review or two since my last blog, so I have posted them here for you if you wish to have a read. ¬†One was positive and one wasn’t. ¬†When I first got asked to write a review for The Punk Archive it was for a friends band, The Ghouls. I love them, love their music and their debut album (which comes out 4th April by the way – cheeky plug) so a review was easy.

Here’s the Ghouls review if you haven’t seen it before now:



The second review I have written for The Punk Archive was for Courtesy Drop. Like Garage band gritty sounds? They are awesome:


They have quoted from my review. This is a huge compliment for me.

I then had the pleasure of reviewing The Shell Corporation. They have an awesome Police Cover on their album and it is rich with Pop-Punk glory. Here’s my view:


Being a musician myself I know how important feedback is for your music. I also know how hard it is to receive negative or constructive feedback. Your music is your baby. You nurture it from the ground up. Scrutinise it. Perfect it. Even when you release it you hear every flaw, every skipped beat and gap were you “could have just”.. so to write a review about an EP that I felt was sub standard as a release no matter how much potential and good musicianship I could hear has to have been one of the toughest things I have ever done.

If you’d like to read it, it’s here. My review for Bottler’s debut EP:


I even thought about never reviewing again. I haven’t had any feedback about it. No one has got upset with me – It was just so hard to have to be critical in that way. I will still be reviewing though and I truly hope that what I write constructive or not is useful to whomever I write the review about.

By the way, if you don’t follow The Punk Archive I highly recommend it. I am discovering some awesome music reading other peoples reviews. There is so much new and amazing music out there and if you are a punk fan, well…. What more do you need?


Just as a side note before I sign off, this week has seen two new songs being written and some recording time booked in next week to start a six track acoustic demo I will be GIVING AWAY to anyone who signs up to my mailing list… OoooooooOOOooOOooooohhhhhhh….

See you soon cyber space lovelies….


I’m a student. How am I so busy??

Hello people of WordPress…

My apologies for not updating for a couple of weeks. I never thought being a student would mean I am busier than I was when I was a retail manager! Having said that, I am far happier than I ever was then.

Perhaps I should back that up with some history?

I have been a mature student at LCM/UWL for a year now. Prior to this I have spent the last 14 years in retail management for various companies, the most notable being Schuh. I worked for them on and off for 9 years total in the end!! While Schuh is an amazing company to both their customers and their employees, I have always wanted to be a musician so a year ago on a spur of the moment, I jacked in a very respectable 32k a year job to become a very poor student studying Music Management.

For those of you interested in retail, I do highly recommend Schuh. Brilliant company, lovely people, amazing customer service. Their link is below;


Deciding to become a student again is one of the scariest decisions I have ever made. It meant going from being in a very stable environment in a very stable company and a comfortable wage to being in large amounts of debt over a three year period with no guarantee of a job in my chosen field at the end of it and vastly less money. I had to give up living on my own to live with other people for the first time in years and learn how to budget a lot more affectively.

BEST DECISION EVER! If you are unhappy in your job and you’ve always wanted to do or be something else, just do it!! I cannot recommend it enough. As far as I am concerned, I do not want to be on my death bed with the words “I wish I’d…” forming on my lips. ¬†So far LCM has been briliant in helping me to understand how I should be presenting my music to the World and how I can affectively manage my own career up to a point. ¬†If you are interested in LCM or UWL, the link to their site is below;


Onto my last couple of weeks then. IT HAS BEEN AWESOME!! Since my first gig of the year post I have had another four gigs! First off was a live set broadcast on KrystalRadio.net.  Jonjo Cosgrove has had me on the show a couple of times before Рonce as a Skype interview and once to co host his Wednesday night show with him and promote my charity single last Christmas.

Playing a live set on radio was an awesome experience, and it was at The Underwater Studios! So many cool music videos and film shots have been filmed in the tank there it’s unreal! Check it out here:


If you’d like to hear the live set, it’s on my SoundCloud here:


Next up was a gig at The Matthew Cross Hair Salon in Sevenoaks, Kent. I realise this sounds bizarre. I honestly did not know what to expect when I was invited to play in a closed salon by AVP – Acoustic Valium Project – to raise money for charity. It was awesome! Matthew is lovely, as is Dan Littlechild (the man behind AVP) and the whole night was well run. The salon is GORGEOUS!

I also played at The Bedford in Tunbridge Wells on the 27th March for AVP. It was a fantastic event and I was quite literally overwhelmed with the response from the audience. I only had a few CDs with me but I sold them all and had to fess up to others who wanted to buy one that I didn’t think I would sell that many so hadn’t had the foresight to bring more!

This poster was up in and around the venue – I was incredibly flattered to have been used as a poster girl…


I met some lovely people artists and audience alike and if any of you are young aspiring musicians, I recommend getting in touch with AVP. some of the artists on their rosta are as young as 13 and incredibly talented. They are accommodating and nurturing in the way they deal with their artists, and everything they do is geared towards helping others. Their next big events come in the form of Angel Fest at the end of May, and Demelza Go Dotty week at the end of June, both to help raise funds for recent flood victims. Check out AVP here:


I will be playing both by the way – full band stylee which I am naturally VERY excited about! I was even featured in an online paper to do with it.. *proud* you can read the article here:


I have been up to so much more over the last couple of weeks that I think I am going to have to save it for a different post. Look out for “Gigs and such” up in the next couple of days…. I’ll be talking about gigs I’ve seen rather than played and the reviews I’ve been doing for the Punk Archive.

Happy Monday lovely people…..


First gig of the year…!

Carmarthen-22Last Sunday, 2nd February 2014, I had my first gig of this year. It was also the first time I got to share the same stage with Martin Oliver, Heydon Hohaia and Nakisha Esnard since our Brought To You Tour last summer.

For me, not gigging for over a month is a pretty tough deal, but I was advised to take January out to get back into the right place to go again this year. ¬†Despite my protestations (believe me, I know how to protest!) it was probably the best decision made for me – ever. ¬†I had the hardest gigs of my life emotionally just before Christmas so taking time to recoup meant I could take all that energy and start putting it into new songs – click the link below to see a very rough version of “You’re My Superman” – and generally make sure I wasn’t so tired physically or mentally.

So! I digress! I had a gig at Proud in Camden on Sunday with my tour buddies… IT WAS AWESOME!

Proud was absolutely buzzing… They had big squishy couches down the front and tables at the back serving roasts to hungry revellers, and the live music was BANGING!! Check the links at the bottom of this blog for other shit hot acts I had the pleasure of sharing a stage with. Seriously high quality stuff!!

Martin was first up from the tour buds on Sunday… He told me before he went up that he’d been questioning his music career and hadn’t really done much since the tour, but he was ready to go again. I have to say, his first song was a little shaky. ¬†He was confident, but not as tight as I have come to expect. ¬†This was however the only blip. It was a new song and as such unplayed to an audience. ¬†The rest of his set was slick, his guitarist Rob put some beautiful solo licks in behind him and Martin’s voice carried to the back of the room even when he stepped away from the mic. ¬†Martin Oliver has something very rare – one of those voices that if you know it, you recognise it instantly. A unique sound rising from the hubub. Only a few singers in recent memory can hold to that – Adele and Amy Winehouse for example. He has an EP out. I strongly suggest a listen. His soundcloud is below – get to it.


Heydon was next up from our Brought To You Tour posse, but before I get to that, there was an artist who got up for just three songs. About to embark on a tour supporting Jack Bruce from Cream was Nik Lowe. Oh my word what a treat. ¬†This guy is pro. His backing band were on point. His songs were catchy, melodic and refined. I have put a link to his website below. If you can get tickets to Jack Bruce’s tour, seriously go. You’ll be seeing a legend supported by a rising star. ¬†Also, he’s lovely. I had the pleasure of having a quick chat with him afterwards and he is an absolute sweetheart. All the more reason to support him!!


Carmarthen-29Hey don then. If you haven’t hear ¬† ¬†d this boy, think Justin Timberlake if he was more alt and from New Zealand. This boy’s voice is the embodiment of soul. He is able to write songs that sound like they’ve come from a Jackson Five album and deliver them with just as much smooth yumminess. ¬†Heydon currently has several music projects on the go, including working with Strike – another emerging talent on the Urban scene. ¬†Check out Heydon’s soundcloud below.


Carmarthen-37I was on next but I want to talk about Nakisha Esnard first. For a start, she headlined the day. This in itself was a wise choice from the promoter (who, by the way, is Zaid. A link to his profile page will be at the bottom of this post). Having toured and kept in contact with Kisha, I have seen many a gig full band and solo. I can honestly say she brought FIRE to the stage at Prous on Sunday. She has carved her own niche musically, dubbing her sound “Reggae-Opera” but actually in incorporates so much more than that. Drum and Bass, Rock, Alt, Folk… all of it can be heard in her well rounded, well rehearsed set. ¬†Her band are quick to change direction on stage and are encouraged to be improvisational. Kisha works the stage and her audience beautifully, and the crowd ate out of the palm of her hand. ¬†I am proud to share a stage with this girl. Big things will happen for her. If you heard it here first, I suggest you get on her hype train now. Soundcloud below but she is also a twitter queen – @KishaMusic and can be found on facebook.


Carmarthen-11I’m not going to go all analytical with my performance or go into too much detail here. Suffice to say I had a huge amount of fun on stage, the crowd were interactive and accommodating (they even laughed at my awful jokes) and I sold a few CD’s and got another gig off the back of it. My favourite compliment was “you had the energy on stage worthy of a festival performance”. That totally made my day.

Other links you might be interested in:

Lauren Rich performed and was seriously good: http://www.reverbnation.com/laurenrich?ref=profile

Zophia performed with her full band. Recently signed as a songwriter to Sony BMG this chick was incredible. Check her here: https://soundcloud.com/zophiamusic

Zaid Zarathustra was the promoter of Sunday’s event. Check out his facebook page here:¬†https://www.facebook.com/zarathustrasliveevents?fref=ts

Pictures are not from Sunday’s event at Proud. Copyright Andy Lambert.


The first of many blog type things to come…

Hello wonderful people of the internet blogging World!

This is my first blog, so bear with me while I try to work out exactly what it is I’m supposed to be doing!

As a student studying a BA in Music Management and as a singer/songwriter I keep getting advised to write a blog. Apparently thats just what we do these days… Is it? So, I ‘m supposed to write what is essentially a diary of stuff that I do/like/care about for all to see online? Well, you asked for it…

For those of you who have no ruddy clue who I am or what I’m about it’s probably best to swing over to my website and have a gander. All my other million and one social networking pages are linked to the front page and there is a pretty video (says me) on there if you fancy a watch. ¬†Go to www.milliemanders.co.uk¬†.

My blurb on my profile will tell you I love Ska Punk. ¬†Just so you don’t get confused and incase you didn’t go to my website I do not sing or song-write in that genre. However if I have the opportunity to go to a live gig or download an album etc, you can bet your bottom dollar my money is going to be spent on it!! Popes of Chilli Town, Imperial Leisure, Ghouls, Beneath The Reef are all amazing unsigned acts and of course I love all the big ones too – Less Than Jake, Reel Big Fish, Gold Finger, Sonic Boom Six etc etc…

I have recently been asked to write a couple of reviews for The Punk Archive, the first of which is for the forthcoming debut effort of Ghouls “Ten Thousand Words On”. Please feel free to check it out here:¬†thepunkarchive.blogspot.co.uk/2014/01/ghouls-ten-thousand-words-on.html¬†I’ve attached a track for you to listen to as well. Enjoy!


The next one will be out shortly and I will naturally post that link too once it is available.

If I didn’t bore you to tears just yet, feel free to come back and read my next blog and I’ll try a little harder… Till next time amigos………………