Gemma Ray

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Gemma Ray
Born Basildon, Essex, England
Origin Basildon, England
Genres Other, Torch singer
Years active 2006-present
Labels Bronzerat Records

Gemma Ray is a British musician, singer, composer and producer.


Born in Basildon, Essex and raised in Billericay, she currently resides in Berlin. Ray fuses many disparate genres, and has been given diverse tags such as “pop-noir”, “sideways blues”, and “gothic folk”. She has collaborated with, amongst others, Sparks, Filmorchester Babelsberg, Michael J Sheehy, Matt Verta-Ray, Alan Vega, Thomas Wydler and Howe Gelb.[1]

She has released several albums on the Bronzerat label.[2] The first The Leader in 2008, and co-produced with Michael J Sheehy. Whilst struck down with illness, she wrote and recorded the album Lights Out Zoltar! (released 2009) which earned her an Independent Music Award.[3] After seeing her live supporting Mott the Hoople, Jimmy Page was roused to announce that Gemma was “not to be missed!”.[4]

In 2009 she recorded an album entitled It’s A Shame About Gemma Ray (released 2010) with Matt Verta-Ray of Heavy Trash, at his NY Hed studios.[5] It featured 18 cover versions including a merging of Sonic Youth's “Drunken Butterfly” lyrics, set to the music of Kryzstof Komeda’s “Rosemary’s Baby” theme.

In 2010, she was stranded in Australia for a few weeks after the Icelandic volcano Eyjafjallajökull erupted.[6] Whilst grounded there she unwittingly began recording a new album returning in 2011 to complete what become Island Fire. The album was a 6Music Album of the Day,[7] peaked at number 19 on the CMJ chart[8] and the video for album track "Rescue Me" appeared on the revamped Top of the Pops.[9]

Also in 2012 she released the single “Gemma Ray Sings Sparks" (with Sparks).[10]

In 2013 she released the vinyl-only “fantasy soundtracks” album Down Baby Down, which heavily featured the stylings of Thomas Wydler of Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, and was Gemma's most free sounding record to date (“Ray is one inspired music machine”****MOJO).

She has shared the stage with the Filmorchester Babelsberg, Marianne Faithfull, Grinderman, Kris Kristofferson, Ane Brun, Kitty Daisy & Lewis, CW Stoneking and others, and has appeared previously with Seasick Steve, Mott the Hoople, Mick Harvey, Amy Winehouse, The Low Anthem, Lambchop, Gallon Drunk and Joel Plaskett.[11]



Year Title
2008 The Leader
2010 Lights Out Zoltar!
2010 It’s A Shame About Gemma Ray
2012 Island Fire
2013 Down Baby Down


  1. ^ ZEIT ONLINE GmbH, Hamburg, Germany (2012-04-20). "Musik: Retro-Pop mal anders: Klasse-Album von Gemma Ray | ZEIT ONLINE". Retrieved 2012-11-16. 
  2. ^ "Gemma Ray". Bronze Rat. Retrieved 2012-11-16. 
  3. ^ "Nominees : Album : Eclectic". The Independent Music Awards. Retrieved 2012-11-16. 
  4. ^ Frank DiGiacomo. "Gemma Ray Doesn't Like Mick Jagger and Doesn't Need Jimmy Page to Play Guitar for Her". Vanity Fair. Retrieved 2012-11-16. 
  5. ^ "Gemma Ray It's a shame about". Retrieved 2012-11-16. 
  7. ^ ""Island Fire" is BBC 6Music’s Album of the Day". 2012-07-05. Retrieved 2012-11-16. 
  8. ^ "CMJ Charts, May 8, 2012 - Spiritualized At No. 1". Retrieved 2012-11-16. 
  9. ^ "BBC Two - TOTP2, 21/05/2012". 2012-06-20. Retrieved 2012-11-16. 
  10. ^ "Gemma Ray Sings Sparks (with Sparks)". 2012-01-13. Retrieved 2012-11-16. 
  11. ^ "Live". Retrieved 2012-11-16.