Backing Vocalist

Backing vocals, vocal harmonies and blend are Kim’s specialty areas and passion. Ever since she was a little girl Kim was always picking out the harmonies before ever bothering with singing a melody. Kim’s parents claim they found Kim singing harmonies along to adverts and songs when she was only 3 years old!

Here are some of the diverse artists that Kim has had the good fortune to provide background vocals for (in alphabetical order):

Barry Manilow (Choir Director – Brisbane Entertainment Centre, Australia)

Barry Manilow

The Bee Gees (TV backing vocals: “Strictly Come Dancing ” BBC1)

[Watch on YouTube]

The Bee Gees

Björk (Backing choir on “Oceania” from her “Medulla” album)

[Watch on YouTube]

Bjork

Brian Conley (Studio backing vocals – album “Let The Good Times Roll“)

Brian Conley

Cerys Matthews – Catatonia (TV backing vocals – “Don’t Forget The Lyrics Celebrity Special“, Sky One)

Cerys Matthews

David Gest (TV backing vocals – “Don’t Forget The Lyrics Celebrity Special“, Sky One)

David Gest

Doug Parkinson (Studio backing vocals on jingles and live backing vocals, Jupiters Casino, Gold Coast, Australia)

Doug Parkinson

Gareth Gates (Studio backing vocals on a charity single and TV backing vocals – “Don’t Forget The LyricsCelebrity Special, Sky One)

Gareth Gates

Hamish Stuart – Average White Band (Live backing vocals – Michael McDonald concert at the Royal Albert Hall and Mermaid Theatre, London)

Hamish Stuart

Jo O’Meara (Sole studio backing vocalist for S Club 7 singer on unreleased track “Learn To Love Again“). Visit “Showreel” – “Backing Vocal demo” – for an excerpt.

Jo O'Meara

John Patitucci (Sole backing vocalist on track featuring jazz bass legend John Patitucci on album "Triptych" for famous Russian producer/writer Sasha Shulgin. This album also features British and American jazz ‘heavyweights’ such as Bob James, Billy Cobham, Bob Mintzer, Gary Husband etc. and was arranged/produced by Richard Niles)

[Watch on YouTube]

Triptych

Justin Lee Collins (Studio backing vocals on unreleased material)

Justin Lee Collins

Kate Robbins of “Spitting Image” fame (Live backing vocals – Ronnie Scotts, Pizza Express Soho, 100 Club, London)

Kate Robbins

Kevin Rowland – Dexys Midnight Runners (Studio backing vocals – Premises Studio, London)

Kevin Rowland

Lulu (Live backing vocals – Michael McDonald concert at the Royal Albert Hall, London)

Lulu

Maria Lawson (Sole studio backing vocalist for UK “X Factor” finalist 2005 on her debut single “Sleepwalking“)

[Watch on YouTube]

Maria Lawson

Michael Bolton (TV backing vocals- “Brian Conley Show” ITV, Choir Director – Brisbane Entertainment Centre)

Michael Bolton

Michael Jackson (Backing choir on an unreleased track)

Michael Jackson

Michael McDonald (Live & TV backing vocals: “Top of the Pops” BBC2, Royal Albert Hall, Mermaid Theatre, BBC Radio 2). See “Showreel” for video footage.

[Watch on YouTube]

Michael McDonald

Michelle McManus (Sole studio backing vocalist for UK “Pop Idol” Winner 2003, unreleased track “Everything Changes“). Visit “Showreel” – “Backing Vocal demo” – for an excerpt.

Michelle McManus

Natalie Cole (Live & TV backing vocals: DVD “Ask a Woman Who Knows”, Langham Hilton, The Forum, BBC 4, American PBS channel, BBC Radio 2). See “Showreel” for video footage.

[Watch on YouTube]

Natalie Cole

Neil Diamond (Live backing vocals – American Embassy, Dublin, Ireland)

NeilDiamond

Nicki French of “Total Eclipse of the Heart” fame (Live backing vocals – Stockholm, Cardiff)

Nicki French

Pat Kane from “Hue and Cry” with the BBC Big Band (Live backing vocals – Falkirk, Scotland, BBC Radio 2)

Pat Kane

Puff Daddy (with London Community Gospel Choir – Wembley Arena, London)

P Diddy

Renee Geyer (Live backing vocals, Jupiters Casino, Gold Coast, Australia)

Renee Geyer

Rick Astley (Live backing vocals and Choir Director – Shepherd’s Bush Empire, London)

Rick Astley

Shane Richie (TV backing vocals – “Don’t Forget The Lyrics” Sky One). See “Showreel” for video footage.

Shane Richie

Thelma Houston (Live backing vocals – Jupiters Casino, Gold Coast, Australia)

Thelma Houston

Uriah Heep (Live backing vocals and flute on live recordings “Acoustically Driven” and “The Magician’s Birthday Party” – CD’s and DVD’s)

[Watch on YouTube]

Uriah Heep

Westlife (Choir Director – no.1 hit “Queen of my Heart“)

[Watch on YouTube]

Westlife

DON’T FORGET THE LYRICS!

Kim was the backing singer in the 7-piece live house band for the UK version of the hit TV gameshow “Don’t Forget the Lyrics“. Hosted by the very popular Shane Richie, the first series aired on Sky One in 2008 and was their highest rating show. The successful follow-up second and third series was broadcast throughout 2009, and now all three series are on regular repeats. [Watch on YouTube]

Don't Forget The Lyrics


Here’s what the industry professionals are saying about Kim’s abilities as a backing vocalist:

“Kim had the very difficult task of being all voices to all people and in all styles…she has a flawless ear and a wonderful sense of harmony…we were able to make one or two voices sound like many more…” Musical Director “Don’t Forget The Lyrics!”

JESS BAILEY (Credits: Spandau Ballet, Randy Crawford, Simply Red, Alison Moyet, Corinne Bailey Rae etc).

“I have had the pleasure of working with Kim on a number of different projects, from hard rock and soft acoustic tracks with Uriah Heep, to dance/funk styles with various artists, and also very straight musical show type material. I have always been amazed at Kim’s ability to cope effortlessly with whatever I’ve thrown at her! She has a great feel for all styles, excellent pitching, is never late, and is also a fine musician, being able to sight read efficiently when needed. Oh, and she happens to have a great sounding voice too!! Kim is definitely one of the best out there.”

PIP WILLIAMS (Producer: Status Quo, Shirley Bassey, The Moody Blues, Kiki Dee, Elton John, Uriah Heep, Jim Diamond, Doctor Feelgood, Bucks Fizz, Elkie Brooks, Barbara Dickson, Nightwish etc)


Kim was interviewed about her life as a backing vocalist for BBC Radio 4 on a programme called "R.E.S.P.E.C.T – The Art of Backing Vocals" (broadcast in 2009).

BBC Radio 4

Kim was quoted about her life as a backing vocalist in an academic publication called "The Ashgate Research Companion to POPULAR MUSICOLOGY" (Ashgate Publishing Ltd, 2009). The paper was called “Genre, Subjectivity and Back-up Singing in Rock Music” by Canadian musicologist Susan Fast.

Popular Musicology

"The Singer" Magazine

The Singer” magazine featured an article written by Kim called “Backing Up” which discusses the ins-and-outs of being a backing vocalist.

Just wanted to say how much I enjoyed your article on backing singing. You managed to include the right balance of practical advice with anecdote and really made clear the role of the backing singer – how important and undervalued it is – without labouring the point. Thank you very much for doing it.ANTONIA COULING (Editor – “The Singer”).

Click here to see a copy of the article.