Anne-Marie Helder

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Anne-Marie Helder
Anne-Marie Helder (photo by Tina Korhonen, 2012, Copyright Tina Korhonen. www.tina-k.co.uk).jpg
Anne-Marie Helder, photographed by Tina Korhonen in 2012 (www.tina-k.co.uk)
Background information
Origin England, UK
Genres Acoustic, acoustic rock, experimental rock
Occupations Singer-songwriter, lead vocalist with Panic Room
Years active 2004–present
Labels Firefly Music
Associated acts Karnataka
Luna Rossa
Mostly Autumn
Panic Room

Anne-Marie Helder is a British singer-songwriter and musician, best known for fronting the UK rock band Panic Room.

Also a solo performer in her own right, Helder has performed internationally both as a solo artist and with various bands since circa the year 2000.

Helder released her solo EP The Contact in November 2004, which received strong reviews and secured airplay on BBC Radio 2, with the legendary DJ Bob Harris declaring: "this is very dramatic music".[citation needed] UK national music magazine Classic Rock gave the EP an 8/10 review,[citation needed] and since its release Helder has toured across the UK, Europe and the USA, playing both headline shows and supports for established artists.

In 2005 she supported Fish on his major Return to Childhood tour, and since then she has opened shows for artists including Midge Ure, Nick Harper, Glenn Tilbrook (of Squeeze) and then landing the support for the major Ultravox tour in 2010, where she performed to thousands each night in venues across the UK, including the Birmingham Symphony Hall, London Roundhouse and Glasgow SECC.

Karnataka[edit]

From 2001 to 2004, Helder was a member of the Welsh band Karnataka, along with Jonathan Edwards and two other members of Panic Room (Paul Davies and Gavin John Griffiths). When the band split in 2004, these four continued to work together, which is where the ideas and music for Panic Room were born. Karnataka bassist Ian Jones later reformed the band without any of the other former members.

Panic Room[edit]

In 2006 Anne-Marie Helder began working with a group of musicians, including Paul Davies, Jonathan Edwards, and Gavin Griffiths, all of whom she had performed with previously in Karnataka, to start a new band project, which she wanted to be both rocking and experimental, dynamic, and full of creative freedom. This band evolved to become Panic Room.

In 2008 they released their debut album Visionary Position, and in 2010 the follow-up album Satellite was released, which shot the band to the top of the newest leading lights in UK music.

The multi-award-winning album also secured Helder her first award as an individual, for her voice : she was voted 'BEST FEMALE VOCALIST' in the 2010 Classic Rock Presents Prog magazine Reader's Poll (voted for by over 30,000 people), and has since then gone on to win the award for an unprecedented second year running.[citation needed]

Panic Room toured extensively to promote the Satellite album, and in 2011 played their largest run of dates yet, performing over 20 shows in 6 weeks in the UK alone.

At the beginning of 2012 the band signed a record deal with Esoteric Antenna | Cherry Red Records, for their next album 'S K I N'. This would be Panic Room's first album released on a label, having been purely independent up until this point. The first two albums were released on the band's own label Firefly Music, of which Helder is a business partner.

In 2013, Helder and fellow Panic Room member Jonathan Edwards formed the acoustic music duo "Luna Rossa". They released their debut album "Sleeping Pills & Lullabies" was released later that year.[1]

Other projects[edit]

Anne-Marie Helder also plays sessions and records guest vocals for other musical artists.

  • She tours with fellow UK rock band Mostly Autumn, playing keyboards, flute and backing vocals. Helder first collaborated with the band when she played some solo supports for them in 2007, and later that year she agreed to 'dep' for flautist/keyboardist Angela Gordon while the latter took maternity leave to have her first child. In early 2008, there were many shuffles to the line-up of the band, and as both Gordon and keyboardist Chris Johnson left to pursue other projects, Helder was invited to join them to play keyboards, acoustic guitar, flute and backing vocals. Helder recorded vocals and flute with Mostly Autumn on the 2008 album Glass Shadows, and has appeared on every album since.
  • She has supported Steve Hackett in 2013 on his Genesis Revisited II tour.
  • She has also performed guest vocals on the 'Icon' project by John Wetton and Geoff Downes, the dance album '"Electronica"' by Geoff Downes, and albums by other artists including Dave Kilminster, Parade (now Halo Blind) and The SKYS.

Discography[edit]

  • The Contact EP (2004)
Karnataka
Mostly Autumn
Luna Rossa
  • Sleeping Pills & Lullabies (2013)
Panic Room
Tigerdragon
  • Life Stories (2001)
  • The Universal Key (2002)

Guest appearances[edit]

Dave Kilminster
  • Scarlet (2007)
Fish
  • Communion (2007)
John Wetton & Geoff Downes
Parade
  • The Fabric (2009)

References[edit]