Putting Gabby Young in a black and white newspaper is a bit like switching off the colour on a rainbow; it’s just not the same show. Thankfully audiences will get to experience the full colour extravaganza when she and her band tour Australia this year. Their album, We’re All In This Together , has already got off to a good start in OZ, with the title track featuring as iTtunes single of the week last December.
“Yeah, that was amazing. I couldn’t believe it,” says Young. “I got told by my cousin who lives in Australia. We were so excited. We just had no idea it was going that well over there.”
Besides the flamboyant numbers in keeping with the free spirited nature she is known for, there are also more subdued personal entrees like, Too Young To Die; the song Young penned about her brush with thyroid cancer a few years ago.
She admits the memory still cuts deep, when performing. “Each time I sing it live, I find it really emotional. I’ve got the all clear now and I’m fine but it was a really horrible year of my life.
“Everything had to stop and health took over. It was terrifying.”
Did she think her career was over? “Yes, the operation for having your thyroid out is very close to your voice box. As a singer, your voicebox is your life. It was really, really hard, but a lot of good things have come from it. In a way I’m pleased it happened.”
The good Young refers too is the part this health crisis played in guiding her to the next phase in her life. She was encouraged to move from country Wiltshire –where she acknowledges she’d been having to make too many compromises regarding her musical dreams – to London, where she met her current band members and things have been on the rise ever since.
“This huge thing came along that put my life on hold, but made me re-evaluate and get the chance to start again,” reflects Young.
“It was so big. So much bigger than me, that I felt it was kind of leading me somewhere else. I moved to London and that’s when everything started falling into place.”
In a brilliant example of cross marketing, Young also has what she describes as a ‘Pop-up boutique’ called Gabberdashery. Fans were so captivated by her fashion style; she now sells various items via a stall at her gigs.
“I used to just have a few friends stalls at my shows. Then I wanted to take it on the road and started adding in other people: accessories, art, beautiful head pieces and jewellery. It’s all things that I would wear or hang on my wall.
“Things that inspire me and the people I work with are inspired by our music. It works really well together.”
GABBY YOUNG plays The Toff In Town on Thursday February 24. We’re All In This Together is out now through Other Tongues.
BY HEIDI LEIGH AXTON