My Birthday With The Bangles…

Nat Ripepi with Susanna Hoffs

This blog is all about reminiscing….I wanted to share with you one of my greatest musical memories…. Lets go back to the 29th of October 2010, which A) was my birthday, B) was the day I got to hold my (then) brand new CD PIECE BY PIECE for the very first time, C) I had one of the BEST gigs of my life and D) I got to hang with THE BANGLES!

I had been asked to be the opening act on a dream line-up of total legends, Pat Benatar and The Bangles who were performing on a huge stage in the glorious grounds of Perth Zoo! I was in complete and utter awe as I had grown up listening to both of these artists, singing and dancing around the house with my sisters when we were kids, so to be sharing a stage with them blew my mind! I was so shy and nervous going back stage, but after my soundcheck, I did just that and was soon warmly greeted by Mick Mahan, Pat Benatar’s long time bass player (and all ’round awesome nice guy!). He made me feel right at home and we chatted at length about all things music. Soon I was back on-stage doing my thing and WOW, what a gig! The audience were amazing. As I left the stage, The Bangles were waiting at the bottom of the stairs getting ready to go on. They greeted me warmly and complimented me on my set. Susanna even told me how amazing she thought my voice was! I think I nearly fainted on the spot!!! 🙂

There’s teeny tiny me on that HUGE stage!

Then it got even better …I wandered out to the merch tent after my set to see if I might sell a cd or two and was shocked to be greeted by a massive long line of people waiting for me to sign their CDs! I was signing CD’s for what felt like ages! I sold close to 100 CDs that night! I was on cloud nine! When the line was finished, I wandered to the side of stage to watch the rest of The Bangles set. They were awesome as expected. So much energy and such fun…I was feeling like a kid again.

The Bangles from side of stage

Unfortunately, I missed my window to meet Pat Benatar. She arrived while I was on stage and had a separate backstage area to us and also had to leave immediately after her set to catch a plane. My disappointment was only minor though as I still got to watch her from the side of the stage. Man…What a voice! Pure rock goddess! I sure have a thing or two to learn from her! Susanna, Debbi, Vicki and Mick all assured me she was totally wonderful off stage as well.

Nat Ripepi with Debbi Peterson

The girls from The Bangles were all Amazing! Even though they also had a seperate backstage area, they preferred to hang with all the crew etc. in the common area. I was too nervous and star-struck to approach them, but turns out I didn’t need to – as they all approached me – AND asked for my CD! They were all so friendly and fun and treated me like one of the gang. I had such a great night hanging with them, talking music, watching cool videos on youtube…I cant begin to describe just how cool they all were. I didn’t want that night to ever end!

Nat Ripepi with Vicki Peterson

I’ve opened for a lot of very talented and successful artists over the years, but this particular gig was the crowning glory of them all… I guess the stars were all aligned or something….it exceeded all my expectations and left me with some great memories that will stick with me forever. I’m forever grateful for this musical life I lead…. I’m one very lucky gal!…

If you have a favourite memory, musical or otherwise, I’d love to hear all about it! Please feel free to share it in the comments section below!

With love….nat xx

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