I Hit That Mile, Time to Throw the Stone

Everybody gets older it’s just a fact of life. A fact that if I’m honest I hate but I’m not daft, we can’t be forever young, no matter what the songs preach to us.

I guess when you look at it, you’re only as old as you feel and over the past couple of years, I’ve felt a lot older than what I am. Let’s be fair, the pandemic has made us all feel a bit of a shell of ourselves.

I’m not a big fan of my birthday, mainly because it’s not a day of my own like most peoples. I share my birthday with my mother and my younger cousin, so if anything my mother should be the most annoyed about it. Birthdays are meant to be an individual celebration but not mine. There’s nothing I can really do about it so I put up with it. This year it was a milestone birthday, I’ve hit my 30s. At first I was really bothered by it and I have been reflecting on it a lot, but now, I feel a lot more comfortable about it.

I spent most of my 20s in a relationship that should have ended long before it did. Doesn’t mean it was all bad, we had some great times but just dragged it out a bit too long. I worked at the same place for eight and a bit years, which I’m glad I did. Gave me a chance to earn my own money, meet some cool people and learn a trade that I could hopefully always fall back on.

From 2017 to 2018, my long term relationship ended and my long time place of employment ended but in turn, I met some of the most amazing people in my life, made life long friends and not long after in 2019 (despite a break up), I discovered what I was meant to do, something that I adored.

HRH Team Pass

I joined Hard Rock Hell Radio and turned a half arsed idea (GlamRat) into its own thing. I became a radio DJ, I prefer the term radio personality as in the sense of a DJ, I am yet to master its practise. I have done things I never thought I would and actually decided to try and do this stuff properly. Become a professional gobshite aka a journalist.

I’m going to spend my 30s concentrating on myself I think. Turn GlamRat into more than just a radio show (maybe), more of a media company, blog, vlog and all that jazz in between. I’m going to try a be a bit like a California girl, work out to keep myself fit, gain a warm complexion (instead of a pale ginger), nice big hair, long nails and a wardrobe to die for. Yes of course, my own place, pass my driving test and all those bores but an investment in myself is more important. It is not something that I should ignore.

20s were a bit wasted, my 30s is where I hope to grow and hopefully take on the world.

Scrub A Dub Dub, Feeling Good in the Tub

I have always had dodgy skin. Skin on my face is oily, dry and dull, skin on my knees and elbows are dry and I had a terrible problem with strawberry legs. By accident, I found a scrub that I am completely obsessed with that has helped with all my problems… almost.

There is so many products out there that claim to be the miracle cure to every issue going. This scrub isn’t necessarily a miracle but hell, it has sure helped. The scrub is made ethically, kind to the planet and animals and gives back to charity. What more could you ask for?

Doesn’t look like much

I accidentally came across this scrub after I subscribed to Glossybox (it only lasted three months). It was something I didn’t think I would like, a body scrub, made from tea? I don’t think so! But I gave it a go anyway as the Body Shop had stopped making my favourite sugar scrub. The scrub was called Delhicious. At the time, I had the original flavour but there are three: original, coconut and mint. I opened the packet and I must say, it did stink of dead teabags, one that had been used within an inch of its life and slapped into the bottom of a bin bag. In my hand it felt very rough but not harsh. I lathered my skin in hot water in the shower and began scrubbing away.

Scrubbing my legs

Surprisingly I only had to use a small amount to get the full benefit. A 50 pence piece size did one limb at a time and the same for my body. Massaged it in and began buffing it off. My skin didn’t feel dry, it felt nourished and incredibly hydrated not exactly your first thought when using a rough scrub. The smell of dead teabag actually didn’t matter, it combined its scent with my own skin and was just amazing! It was even gentle enough (even though it feels rough) to use on your face and didn’t like my skin feeling tight or over irritated.

Fast forward two years and I am still buying this scrub. It is truly perfect. I only use it every couple of days, at a maximum of four times a week otherwise my skin does get dry. It is my favourite thing to come home to after a long shift, a weekend away or after being out the night before at a sweaty gig (or a long night of drink), it’s perfect to cleanse away all that grime. I like to take a little bit in a little pouch on holiday with me, just great to buff away the day’s sunscreen before applying aftersun lotion.

The coconut tea scrub is my favourite, especially during the summer, combine it with Original Source Lime shower gel and you smell amazing! The company has since gone on to create moisture balms which I am yet to try. Everything Delhicious makes is Vegan and Cruelty Free, and is ethically made. 10% of all profits go to a charity called “Stop the Traffik” which aims to stop human trafficking (click the link to find out more). I love this! Indulging in self love also gives love back to those who need it. I adore Delhicious for this and I think more companies should look at this.

The coconut scrub contains Black Assam Tea, coconut extract, sugar and salt, essentials oils and love. It claims to “combat stretch marks and dry skin giving you a radiant glow.” With a dab of Vitamin E to help promote healthy skin, it’s a wonderful bit of self love added to your day.

If you wish to give the scrub a go yourself, please head over to their website and order yours today! I promise you, you won’t regret it!

https://www.delhiciousbody.com/

Boots

This is Who You Should Be

It’s been 10 days since I returned home from the most amazing weekend that I have had in nearly two years. I didn’t want to come home, there’s nothing wrong with coming home, I just can’t be me.

Outfit for Day 1

Not going to lie but I was anxious about stepping into a large venue again after being away for so long. To be amongst that many people in a confined space had me a little worried, but once I was through those doors I didn’t have a care in the world. I saw the girls from HRH Tower and then walked into the back room to give a big old hug to Toby, followed by Mikki, Geoff, Simon and of course boss man Jonni. The hugs from those whom you’ve missed so much are the greatest.

The room was filled with madness gathering everyone’s passes, sound check, sorting out bands, COVID checks and everything else, it was pure madness and as always the darling Toby was having kittens. The litters he have are unreal! Once the voting texts were all sorted and sound check was completed we were good to go! Twister sadly had a prior engagement so couldn’t open up the Highway to Hell competition but Enquire Within did a cracking job getting the crowd warmed up and ready to rock. After being away from live music for so long, my poor ears didn’t quite know how to handle it other than ache. So yes, I had to wear ear plugs for a bit. A failure to myself but my ears, wow! And in all honesty I have missed that after gig buzz in my ears and butterflies in my stomach. It was great to amongst my own people, my own kind!

Outfit for Day 3

I couldn’t get over the fact I was in a room with all these people and could feel the vibrations under my feet once again. We were in our own little bubble and nothing happening outside of the walls we were in mattered in that moment.

Another thing that I enjoyed was getting ready. Slapping on my make up, backcombing my hair, having a little drink before taking on the event. I had outfits saved and stored at home just for events like this. At home, you get called dressed up or too smart just for wearing clean clothes. During the day my town looks like a dilapidated Olympic village and by night a collection of Love Island rejects, but everybody is carbon copy of each other. Yes people have every right to be who they are and wear what they want but then why is it ok to shun and sneer at others who try to be different? At HRH, I’ve never felt like that.

People will say just be who you are or as Dave Lepard of Crashdïet (RIS), “Be Yourself and Not a Puppet in the Freakshow”, but it is hard when you have confidence issues. I was bullied a lot at school and diagnosed with a mild form of Body Dysmorphia so having any confidence in how I look is a big difficulty. Yet for some reason when I am at these events, I feel safe and more confident than ever before. Now I have friends who along the way have helped me become who I am and encourage me to be GlamRat. I can be Charlotte to my family, I can be Charlie to everyone else but I need to be who I am a lot more, especially since the years are ticking by. Before I know it I will be too old to take advantage of my position which I have done for years. Allowed the world to go by, not anymore.

This is who I should be. I should be me.

That Didn’t Work

The year of the Rat didn’t exactly go to plan. Let’s face it, 2020 didn’t go to plan for anybody. My optimism for the year quickly disappeared along with everyone else but there has been some sparkling highlights.

I was determined to take on 2020, invest more in myself and create more with GlamRat. I wanted to do interviews, reviews, work festivals and just become a whole new me. Sadly Coronavirus took over the world and ground everything to a halt.

My radio show with Hard Rock Hell Radio has carried on being a success during lockdown and my listeners were steady. To be honest, doing the radio every week kept me sane but it did become difficult with not having much to talk about. Nobody was touring and not many bands were producing anything new. Life did become a bit of a drag.

Over the summer we opened back up to the world and come the autumn I began my university journey, which was such a thrill (even though it stressed me out I loved it). Come the winter months we closed back down again and only now have we started to get back to some kind of normal.

Whole Lotta Noize Poster

Let’s just say last year was a bit of a washout but 2021 has started to pick up with only four months left to go. I’ve finished my first year with a 2:1 average and I gained a new radio show with Scotland Rocks Radio which has been great. A brilliant chance to show off other genres of rock, not just AOR. My first festival is at HRH Sleaze over bank holiday weekend, I’m back at university in September and then I have a milestone birthday in November, with two weeks at a HRH festival which I’m so excited for.

2022 is looking to be a busy year and I can’t be more excited for it! This is the main reason for me getting back to this website. I want to share more with you all both with the music side and personal side. The blog will be fun and maybe sometimes thoughtful and I’ll try to keep it interesting.

Most of all I want to thank you for taking your time to support me and who knows what the future will bring!

Until next time…

Sunset Strip: The Boulevard of my Sleazy Dreams Part 1

Mötley Crüe, Poison, Guns n Roses, Ratt, W.A.S.P, Def Leppard and many more have graced that infamous boardwalk, plastered the lamp posts with poster, rocked those clubs and broke many young girls hearts but they made it their sleazy playground. “A cesspool of depravity” as Vince Neil (Mötley Crüe) put it in the band’s autobiography “The Dirt” back in 2001.

The 80’s was the decade of excess. Everything was/is big in the USA but the L.A. club scene was fit to burst at its sweaty leather seams, dripping with body fluids, charged with cocaine, stinking of booze all tarted up with make up and held together with hairspray, “There was never enough hairspray as far as I was concerned!” – Bret Michaels, Poison. West Hollywood became every wannabe Rockstar’s dream, “If I can make it here, I can make it anywhere” was the main train of thought whether you were a group of lads in a band or a girl with dreams of becoming a video girl or a model. Since Motley Crue’s “Girls, Girls, Girls” blasted on my grandmother’s tv with the roar of their motorbikes, Mick’s opening chord and the thump of Tommy Lee’s drums, I wanted to be a Sunset

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Nikki Sixx with some “fans”

Strip girl! At first I wanted to be a video girl after seeing Tawny Kitaen in Whitesnake’s video for “Here I Go Again”, damn that girl was so sexy! Flipping and splitting over those two jaguars with the smoke billowing around her with the luscious spill of backcombed auburn hair. Then of course there was Bobbi Brown… the Cherry Pie girl in Warrant’s video “Cherry Pie”. She was gorgeous too… I love my men but for a girl like her… dayum! Because of her (and a few of the guys) I wanted to dye my hair blonde, have a boob job and start roller skating again like I did when I was six. All those girls in the videos were tall with long legs, slim and beautiful bodies, perky boobs, long luscious hair teased to within an inch of its life with plenty of hairspray. But little old me, only five feet tall, auburn hair with awful split ends and a full fringe because I have a huge forehead and a very round face, short dinky legs, average boobs and slim(ish) body with braces to rein my tombstone hamster teeth with dorky glasses. I was nothing like the girls I idolised in the videos. I started to take drama classes at school and took Expressive Arts as a GCSE because believe it or not I can be rather dramatic when the time calls for it! But when I was told I was too ugly, I was stupid for thinking about it and not sexy enough, it really set me back mentally (even to this day) but it didn’t stop me idolising those girl’s on Grandma’s tv screen.

I remember I was sat watching Motley Crue’s infamous music video on Kerrang TV after school when Grandmother came in, exclaimed in horror and snatched the remote off me “Don’t let me ever catch you watching that smut again! It’s disgusting! It shouldn’t be allowed on tv!”. I tried to protest but I didn’t get anywhere, there’s no point when it comes to Grandma. The funny thing is that nine years later, she bought me tickets to their “Farewell” tour as a birthday present! I didn’t tell her that it was the band that she banned me from watching on her tv screen all those years ago, “Go and enjoy your rock band dear”… I shall! I was lucky enough that my gamble to stay behind after the gig paid off. I waited in the freezing cold for two hours just for a chance to see my teenage crushes (well two of quite a few). Nikki Sixx and Tommy Lee did come out to see their fans and I was over joyed. Nikki Sixx was so beautiful in the flesh and very nice to cuddle even though we had metal bars between us. Tommy Lee, even though I knew he was tall, I didn’t expect him to be so tall and his voice was rather deep. He was very funny and signed my brother’s wrist, thought he was going to bust a gut. After seeing them running around on stage, my love for the genre was reignited again! The bright lights, the thumping of the drums (obviously with the Crucifly going over your head with Tommy Lee, thrashing it to death is something else), the gorgeous girls shaking their tits and arses all over the stage… damn I wanted to be like that so much!

I had for years admired the glam rock/hair metal genre behind closed doors and only my close friends knew I liked the bands of yester years but as we all got older and moved away as life generally does take you, I felt isolated not having anyone to enjoy my love of these bands. Thankfully after splitting up with my ex I went onto social media full time (I had Instagram and Twitter for years but not Facebook), I found people who had similar music interests as me and I was joyous. I found myself admiring other girls on social media (mainly Instagram) dressing just like the girls I had admired in all the music videos from that golden era and wishing that I had the balls to do that. I kept my clothing just to the basic white girls uniform of jeans, t-shirt and hoodie which even now I still rock on the down days. But then slowly I began to realise I need to be an individual, be myself and if that meant dressing the way I wanted and not what was expected of me, then so be it.

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Poison

I went back to all those music videos, carefully keeping an eye on the girls, what they wore, how they did their hair and makeup and matching them up to modern influencers. Maybe I was a bit late coming to the scene with my own style but with my mother’s attitude of “why dress like everyone else”, finding like minded people who gave me the confidence to be myself, having friends who encourage me to be myself and not like everyone else, then to top it off I found a man that made me want to make an effort. Sadly we are not together any more but have remained the closest of friends. He, himself, is a very individual person who is defined not just by his voice but his hair (pretty much like CC DeVille and Taime Downe, that’s why I liked him so much) and by him being so different and standing out, not because he actually wants to, but because that is who he is, it gave me the confidence and encouragement to be more like I wanted. Who I am.

When you look back at all the documentaries, photos and videos of all the girls queuing up to get into The Roxy, The Troubadour, The Cathouse and obviously The Whiskey, I wanted to be a part of that so much. Queuing outside waiting to see your favourite band is one of the greatest feelings, filled with so much excitement and dizzying eurpjoria! Can you imagine the feeling, the buzz on The Strip?! It is said that during the day, the Sunset Strip was just a mess filled with trash and was nicknamed by some as the Confetti Street because of all the posters and flyers ripped off the walls and scattered down the boulevard. I want to know more about my dream… what was it really like in the 80s? Will the excitement ever be recaptured? Or was I born in the wrong decade and just cling to everyone’s distant memories?