By Luke Voogt
Killing Heidi frontwoman Ella Hooper is set to play her brand new solo tracks when she heads down to Geelong next Friday.
“I’m practising for it right now,” the 37-year-old rock-turned-pop-and-Americana singer told the Independent last Friday.
“I just have a guitar and an iPhone.”
Hooper lives in childhood home Violet Town in northeast Victoria, well outside currently locked-down Melbourne.
“I’ve been writing, writing and writing some more, and occasionally walking around the town,” she said.
“Thank god, it’s pretty safe and sound here. It’s always been quiet because it’s a tiny country town but [COVID-19] just takes it to the next level.
“I’m talking to my producers every day and planning things.”
She also plans to play a few new tracks from her upcoming fourth solo album when she heads down the highway to Geelong Arts Centre on July 31.
“I’m so pumped,” she said.
“I’m hoping to play a few but I sort of choose the set list closer to the gig. It’s going to be mellow and intimate – like a folk show.”
The upcoming album would pay homage to Hooper’s long-time love of Americana music.
“If they’re a hardcore Ella Hooper fan, they know what I’m into,” she said.
“It’s very early days – it’s probably going to come out next year.”
The self-confessed music junkie drew inspiration from a trip to perform at a Nashville blues festival last September.
“Thank God I did, because I don’t think I’ll be able to go [overseas] for a while. I don’t think there’s anyone that loves music as thoroughly as an American music lover.”
At age 13 Hooper won Triple J’s Unearthed competition and three years later skyrocketed to fame with band Killing Heidi.
She recently re-joined Killing Heidi for a gig in online festival Delivered Live.
“It’s a bit weird when you’re doing a big full-on rock show and there’s no one there,” she said.
“For seasoned performers its fine but if you were just finding your feet it would be very strange indeed.”
She has only done one other solo gig during the pandemic, but enjoyed the increased audience interaction compared to her Killing Heidi gig.
“It’s fun because everybody is commenting and you can kind of play along with the comments,” she said.
But like most musicians, Hooper yearns to perform for a live crowd again.
“I love Geelong and I wish it was an audience,” she said.
“I can’t wait to come back when this all over and have people come along.”