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Changes are afoot!

Over the next few weeks (or months, depending on how busy I am), I’ll be re-jigging this website in a couple of ways. First and foremost, as Ells and the Southern Wild has morphed into Cobalt Fire, this website is going to go back to reflecting my solo work (old as it is!) and any side-projects that come up.

Secondly, I intend to make this more of an occasional music blog, talking about music industry news, music tips and techniques, opinions and/or my life of wrestling with creativity. Or, whatever I feel like really. I used to do some of this over on my old personal blog, so I will likely transfer some of the more useful posts over. I have been missing a space to do this lately, having fallen out of the habit and not updated either of these sites for so long. This site now feels like the appropriate space for it, where everything can be all under one umbrella.

Last night, I attended and performed at a Women in Music event in Bath, organised by my friend Chloe and centred around the theme of ‘sustain’ – how we continue to be creative in a world that is consistently pulling us in different directions. It has given me a lot to think about, and it was enlightening to hear the experiences of other artists. When I have gathered my thoughts a little, I feel that there will be a post coming on this theme… there’s some things I wanted to say, and didn’t and some things that others said that really connected and I wish to examine and share further.

You may need to be a little patient, but hopefully I will start getting things sorted soon.

Latest News

It may have been looking a bit quiet over here at ells.biz the last few months, but underneath the surface, we’ve had our heads down and noses to the grindstone. We’ve been working hard on getting some tracks recorded, and while it’s not currently clear what form this is going to take in terms of being released, I am really proud of how it’s sounding so far, and am looking forward to sharing.

However, the whole writing and recording songs head-space is very different to the booking, promoting and rehearsing for shows mind-set, which is why we haven’t been out and about too much lately!

Having said that, I’m hosting, and will be playing at the annual 4014 Project Carnival Open Mic on the 9th August. If anyone is interested in playing, just turn up to the Rose and Crown, Lower High Street in Malmesbury. 8pm start, see you there!

I’ll also be appearing for a solo set at the Malmesbury Carnival event on August 28th in the Cloister Gardens – music starts around 4pm. Hopefully the weather will be kind and we’ll have a lovely afternoon. More info at the Malmesbury Carnival Website

March Gigs

Spring is officially here, and it’s time for some shows!

I’ll be doing a little solo slot on March 4th in Swindon Central Library. This is a showcase of female singer-songwriters for International Woman’s Day, so I’m stoked to be involved. Come along to check out some fab Swindon (or there abouts) based musicians.

And later on in March we have two exciting new band shows – We’ll be playing Songsmiths’ at Mr Wolf’s in Bristol on the 20th, and at The Beehive in Swindon on the 24th March.

See you there!

Braving the Shave – Pictures and more!

It’s been almost three weeks since I faced the clippers at The Vaults in Cirencester, and my hair is growing back. It’ll be a while before I can go out without a hat mind!

However, it is about time that I wrote a proper post and shared some pics of the evening.

Check out the Gallery page for more pictures. Huge thanks go to Ned Gibbons Photography for the majority of shots.

So, the good news is that to date we have raised a whopping £912.79 – a few late donations have bumped up the total, so thank you all so much. The proceeds go to Macmillan to help them provide support for individuals and families affected by cancer. Special thanks must go to The Vaults in Cirencester for letting us take over their venue for the night, for Andy’s generous donation, and to everyone who helped out on the night (you know who you are, you amazing bunch!).

If you still want to donate, you still can here: https://bravetheshave.org.uk/shavers/eleanor-ponting/

And finally, here’s some tracks recorded on the night


The Brave the Shave Gig – 28th October

If you’ve been keeping an eye on my social media the past few weeks, you might have heard about this already (I have been posting about it like mad!), but here goes anyway:

On 28th October, I shall be having my head shaved to raise money for Macmillan. This will be happening at The Vaults in Cirencester; we’ll be playing a full band set, and the fab Emily-Jane Sheppard will be supporting. Entry is free, but donations on the night are more than welcome. You can also donate digitally here: https://bravetheshave.org.uk/shavers/eleanor-ponting/

We’re also rehearsing like mad as it will be our first gig featuring our new bassist Rowen Cox, and we’re all looking forward to rocking out with a completed line-up.

It’s Ells and the Southern Wild like you’ve never seen us before! 🙂


New line-up!

So, some of you may have noticed, or may have heard me mention it in recent interviews (*cough* here *cough*) that Ells and the Southern Wild have had a wee personnel change in the past few months.

Our lovely bassist Daryl Ball has relocated, and was sadly unable to continue with the band. I’d just like to say a massive (if belated) official thank you to Daryl for all the hard work he put in, for all the slightly inappropriate jokes and the good times we shared. We miss you!

However, we also have a new face to introduce – please welcome Bob Ball (no relation) on lead guitar! We played our first gig together earlier in the month at The Roaring Donkey in Swindon, and I’m very happy to say that I think it’s sounding great. Every musician adds their own style to a band’s overall sounds, so we’re currently busy exploring the sonic possibilities of the new line-up and predict that it will evolve naturally over time. Stay tuned!

We are in the process of recruiting another bassist so, if you think you are the right person for the job, please do get in touch at ells@ells.biz

Live and Local Podcast

As promised, the podcast from yesterday’s interview on Swindon 105.5 with Sean Hodgson is here:

I’m on in hour two, but there’s also some great tunes from local musicians so if you have the time check out the whole show.

And if you enjoy the show, you can find Live and Local here on Facebook

Many thanks to Sean and Stu for the great chat and laugh!

Swindon 105.5


Tomorrow (that being the 18th May), I am going to be appearing on Swindon’s community radio station Swindon 105.5 having a chat with Sean Hodgson on Live and Local.

If you live in Swindon, you can tune in on fm between 2 and 4pm or non-locals can stream the station live on http://www.swindon1055.com/

I’ll post up the podcast version when it’s ready too… assuming I don’t say anything too embarrassing that is!


So long 2015, A Belated Hello to 2016

Hello friends,

It’s already nearly the end of January and I am astounded by how quickly the year is going. 2015 was a quieter year for the band and me, but there have been lots of changes in the background and I have been taking time and re-focusing my energies. I am working on becoming a better songwriter, I am working towards filling up the gig diary and I’m working on making these songs sound as good as they can. The songwriter must serve the song, and I am aiming to do that more effectively through this year. I’m not going to divulge specific plans at the moment, but rest assured, we will be moving forward.

On that note, I am on the look out for a fourth member of The Southern Wild – I’m looking for a guitarist and backing singer who is able to help us make more of our sound, adding a little creative sparkle and some extra riff-age. If you think this is you, please get in touch via ells@ells.biz or drop me a message on Twitter or Facebook.

In other news, our first full band gig of the year will be at Stroud Brewery on the 6th February. More details on the brewery website on the events page.

See you there!