By Wal Reid
If you believe everything Wikipedia says then new mum Anna Coddington has quite the colourful past. Raised in the seaside town of Raglan (anyone else get Home & Away vibes going there?) she tutu-ed on the drums at age 11 before taking up her signature guitar while fronting and writing for her first band Handsome Geoffrey which went on to win the 1998 Smokefree Rockquest, the prodigious siren went on to record an EP with her group Duchess before a tirade of solo albums including The Lake in 2008 and Cat & Bird in 2011.
"I've got a good balance now" she muses. "But the way I look at music I mean it use to be one of the at least the most important things in my life, it still is but clearly having a child is now and everything else gets put down a peg, but it's been a good way to get some objectivity on music as a thing as well - it's important, very important".
She's on tour taking her friends synth-duo Lips on the road with her, 2012 Apra Silver Scroll winnerStephanie Brown and New York native Fen Ikner who have both been living in New York for eight years will be joining Coddington, it's a move that has Anna relishing the thought of touring the country as a three piece band.
"We decided to tour together that we wanted to do the whole show" she reveals. "Between us we're a full band really because we've got keyboards, bass, drums and I play guitar so we're like ‘Let's make our band' so temporary band really".
Coddington's new music video is called Slate, it's the prefect juxtaposition of Coddington's sultry voice and the stark contrast of the wild West Auckland beach location, the song wonderfully stands on its own merits, a mature departure from her previous outings.
"Well it was the middle of winter" she remembers. "We were outside in the sand and I was wearing very fashionable dresses that the stylist had chosen, so it was cold - it was cool. My good friend Adie Walker directs all my music videos so it's nice for me because I really trust her vision - yeah I was really happy the way it came out so that was the main reason for doing this tour because both bands had new singles out and they've (Lips) got a new video for Chasing Teddy as well".
I prod and ask Steph ‘if she can sing', she remarks casually ‘Barely' with a tinge of laughter. "Can she ever? She's a great singer" says Anna. I remark to Fen he must be like ‘Phil Collins and can sing and play drums'. "This is true yeah. I am like my man Phillip" he retorts back.
Anna Coddington and Lips embark on a ten date nationwide tour that take in major towns & cities around the motu (country), however we couldn't help but notice the absence of smaller places like Invercargill or Masterton.
"No we did talk about Masterton actually but we just couldn't fit it in logistically speaking" she assures us. "So we start Wellington September 10th. The run which I have embedded in my mind is Wellington, Nelson Takaka, um Christchurch, Oamaru, Dunedin Wanaka, Napier, Hamilton and Auckland".
"I've been to three or four places at this point" chips in Fen. "Really looking forward to seeing the whole thing".
"I'm actually flying in and out for each leg then going home in between to look after my 21 month old baby" picks up Anna. "These guys will be doing the drive. The last time I toured I was 7 or 8 months pregnant and I was very optimistic you know, like ‘you don't get any time to yourself' and this and that. I was like ‘I'm going to be different I'm going to make music while he's sleeping' but uh I was so wrong. I kind of didn't do much for the first little bit but I've slowly been getting time back for myself and getting better at the whole routine at doing everything so that I can make more time for making music".
Anna Coddington and Lips NZ Tour
Thursday September 10th: Meow, Wellington
Friday September 11th: The Boathouse, Nelson
Saturday September 12th: The Mussel Inn, Takaka
Thursday September 17th: Wunderbar, Christchurch
Friday September 18th: Upstairs Cucina, Oamaru
Saturday September 19th: Taste Merchants, Dunedin
Sunday September 20th: Gin & Raspberry, Wanaka
Thursday September 24th: Cabana, Napier
Friday September 25th: Nivara Lounge, Hamilton
Saturday September 26th: The Tuning Fork, Auckland
Tickets via Eventfinda
Auckland tickets via Ticketmaster