Celia Pavey

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Celia Pavey

It’s a long way from the sleepy town of Forbes, NSW (population: 7000) to the stage of TV talent show The Voice, but it’s a psychological leap Celia Pavey has seemingly taken in her stride. Having won over a national TV audience and judge Delta Goodrem, the 19-year-old folkie is now embarking on a national tour in support of her new EP, Bodies.
“I’m very excited and a little bit curious and nervous as to what people will think of it,” she says. “It’s good that it’s finally out there. I came off the show and I sort of knew who I was as an artist, but it was good to get down to writing the EP and realising what it was going to sound like and what the vibe was going to be.”
Having some songs already part-written, the singer-songwriter has been able to count on some pretty solid collaborators to help finish them off.
“I did a bit of co-writing with Tim Hart [Boy & Bear] on a song called ‘Shadow’,” she says. “It was lots of fun and it was great to work with him; he’s very down-to-earth. I also worked with Jake Stone of Bluejuice on ‘Bodies’, which is the main feature of the EP. Everyone I worked with had really open minds about the style of music and what the songs were about.”
Pavey’s rendition of Simon & Garfunkel’s ‘Scarborough Fair/Canticle’ immediately won over The Voice judge Delta Goodrem, with whom she teamed up.
“She’s incredible; such a wonderful person,” she says. “She has guided me and helped me overcome my fears of being on stage. She said to me I just have to be myself and know who I am as an artist, just perform and be myself. It’s all about realising you’re up there because you want to be and you’re there for a reason.”
While she has found an audience and built a fan base on the back of her appearance on The Voice, Pavey is ready to move on and be regarded as an artist in her own right.
“It’s more about finding myself as a folk artist and keeping myself down-to-earth,” she says. “Not just launching into the pop world because that’s what most artists feel like they should be doing to make a career or something. Television shows can be a little full-on. I’m not quite sure how to explain it as I’m still thinking about all that, but they can exploit artists.
“It really did help me positively, although there were some negative parts that I guess will help me positively in the future and help me grow. You just have to give things a go and see what happens.”
She may only be 19, but Pavey probably would rather have been born around 1950, such is her affinity to the hippy/folk movement of the late sixties – something that will be evident by her song choices on her national tour.
“I’ve got four songs on the EP, but I’ve got a band and we perform for an hour,” she says. “I’ve brought some more originals into the set – some of which will be on the album coming up. We’ve got a couple of fun covers – ‘White Rabbit’ by Jefferson Airplane and some groovy sixties songs.
“I love Joni Mitchell, so I do a couple of her covers; I like to do ‘Big Yellow Taxi’ and ‘Woodstock’. They really take people on a journey … the music back then was just incredible.”
When&Where: The Toff, Melbourne – September 11; Spirit Bar, Traralgon – September 12; The Karova, Ballarat – September 13; and Torquay Hotel, Torquay – September 14
By Paul McBride