Dominie Hooper is a British songwriter and multi-instrumentalist who “sings like a mother-bitch” – says Yola, Queen of Country Soul. Having spent years as a collaborator and session musician, working with the likes of the aforementioned Yola, Alabaster Deplume, and Band of Burns, 2021 sees the launch of Dominie Hooper’s ambitious, brand new, full-band solo project. With an aesthetic drawing on English folk, classical music, alternative rock, and avant-garde pop, the music defies easy categorisation, already being described as “deliciously off the wall” by Terry O’Brien of Playpen Music. Hooper pushes the boundaries of folk and standard singer-songwriter fare, disregarding rules and leading listeners on a journey with unexpected grooves, soaring strings and moments of furious, heavy abandon. Hooper’s lyrics tackle inherited religious shame and sexuality, the dissonance between coming of age and leaving shit behind, and the riddle of love in the guise of an acorn received in the post. This is a bold, adventurous new project, carefully nurtured and ready for a stratospheric launch into 2022 and beyond.
Originally from Dartmoor, Devon, Hooper is now based in London, and is a founding member of international folk ensemble Band of Burns, having fronted the band at such venues as The Union Chapel London, St George’s Hall Bristol, Barrowland Ballroom Glasgow, Band On The Wall Manchester, Celtic Connections Festival, and live on Radio 3. Aside from live and recorded music, Hooper has explored crossovers between music and theatrical performance. She trained in physical theatre, and has worked extensively with composer of a cappella song-theatre Verity Standen, helping to create startlingly immersive and avant garde choral works. At the start of 2020 Dominie was awarded a £10K DYCP grant from Arts Council England to develop her skills as a creative composer, taking time to work with mentors and develop new sounds. She has composed for theatre and dance, as well as The Sunday Boys low voice choir. She is currently completing a year on the English Folk Expo’s Artist Mentoring Programme.