LIVING LIFE THROUGH SONG
Seizing an opportunity and driven by her passion for everything musical, Faye Bailey talks to Gail Bailey about how taking a chance has led to her creating a career from her love of song
If something is worth doing then make sure it’s from the heart and it fills you with happiness,” is singer Faye Bailey’s philosophy, as she explains that this is what drives her when she’s singing and teaching.
Faye is the perfect example of turning a negative situation into a positive and powerful one – after being diagnosed with dyslexia, school wasn’t always the easiest place to be.
“Now I am a teacher myself I understand that there are different ways to help people learn, and I make sure I use lots of different strategies in my teaching to ensure no-one ever feels left behind,” Faye explains.
Attending school and college locally Faye always had a love of music and singing and studied it for six years before working in the sector teaching, performing, working on television and also spending some time teaching music at Camp America in the US before a family illness meant she needed to find a secure, regular form of income.
“I actually stopped singing altogether for five years,” Faye says. “But I parked my car behind a music school everyday as I went to my job in retail management and one day something just came over me and I decided to ‘bite the bullet’ and found the courage to walk in and introduce myself.”
Thankfully for Faye the director of the school was only too happy to help her rediscover her passion and reignite her musical career.
“I was a retail manager by day and a music teacher by night,” Faye says before setting up her own business in the Ribble Valley.
Starting with just two students, Faye was then approached by a group in Mellor that had a choir who ‘sing for fun’ and from working with this group, word spread, and Faye now also has choirs in Ribchester and in Edgeworth, along with more individual clients.
“Singing, whether it is alone or as a group has so many health benefits physically and emotionally. Scientists have now been revealing how singing is great to help lower blood pressure and lower your stress levels,” Faye explains.
“The act of singing releases endorphins, the brain’s ‘feel good’ chemicals, and this along with helping to increase confidence, has a long-lasting effect on health and well-being.”
Helping others through music and singing is what truly drives Faye and her work has seen her found a community interest company called ‘The Music and Wellbeing Project’ along with her mother, and this is currently going from strength-to-strength. “So far the project has seen us working and helping residents in both hospices and residential homes,” Faye says.
“Both are quite different but equally helpful to the patients.”
Faye describes how singing and music has a dramatic effect on those suffering with dementia: “Some clients can’t remember or say the name of a song, but can just sing it, and it’s amazing to see how uplifting and therapeutic this is for them.”
The hospice work is a little different and there, Faye works with patients to create a CD of their favourite songs, thinking about why they like the song and what it means to them: “Music is a great equalizer,” says Faye: “The soothing sounds can bring peace and calmness and helps patients so much with their mental wellbeing.”
Alongside the Music and Wellbeing Project, the choirs and individual students, Faye also spotted a gap in the market for ‘Singing Just for Fun’: “Groups can get together for a couple of hours, choose some of their favourite songs have a glass of fizz and just enjoy singing together. It creates a fabulous community feel and gives confidence,” Faye explains.
To develop this further Faye recently held an event in Ribchester at the social club, where all of her three choirs, along with some of her students got together and performed some of their favourite songs: “The event raised funds for our charity project,” says Faye.
For more information see Faye’s website or contact her for more details