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Rediscovering Amy Studt: why she still reigns supreme over my teenage CD collection





Think about your favourite musicians. Did you discover them as a teenager? For most of us the songs we hold the most tightly were released during these hormone filled years, even if the music itself wasn't all the revolutionary. Very few of these acts end up standing the test of time: many become one hit wonders, or disappear from the limelight to produce music that's aimed at a niche market rather than the masses. If I was to sit down with today's 13 year olds and speak to them about Busted, Blazin' Squad or even Blink 182 I'd probably be met with blank stares. 

For people my own age Amy Studt is a name that might not immediately ring a bell. To be honest, despite having had her songs on repeat at age 13 I had long forgotten about her. It was only while on a recent visit to my parents house that I came across her 2003 album False Smiles and remembered freaking out every time her song Misfit came on the radio. 

She was originally signed to Polydor and released her first single Just a Little Girl to the masses in 2002. It probably remains one of her most well-known to date and if you don't recognise the name of the song, you might recognise this video clip (or the music in it): 



However it was her second single that caught the eye of my 13 year old self and if a film of my life was ever made this song would feature. Misfit was her most commercially successful song and put her on the British public's musical radar (or at least the teenage radar). It was here that she was named "the British Avil Lavigne" - something that at the time I thought would be an accolade to print out and frame. 

Loading the False Smiles CD onto my laptop (the only thing I have these days that can play a CD) I realised something. The music took me back to my teenage years as associated memories flashed through my head but something differed Amy from Avril and my other teenage favourites. Amy Studt's music was actually good and I didn't take the CD back to Glasgow with me out of sheer nostalgia. 

The song Misfit was the standard "angry girl music of the indie rock persuassion" that was popular at the start of the 00s and I can see why the media made the Avril connection. But the rest of the album is full of meaningful lyrics that went beyond moaning that the world didn't understand her or having a crush on your teacher (thanks Busted!). The frustration sounded mature and as if Studt just had a few things she needed to get off her chest. 

This led me to Googling her name. Turns out she is still making music, albeit sporadically without the established music label to prop her up. She has left the commercial style of Misfit behind (unlike Avril who still makes music aimed at teenagers) but her new songs are reminiscent of the haunting sounds found on the her first album. Here's She Walks Beautiful, my personal favourite:


If you live in London you can still catch Amy performing from time to time. Follow her on Twitter to keep up to date with what she's up to. There have been whispers of a UK tour but we will have to see, but if she is coming to Glasgow/Edinburgh you can bet my high school year book I'll be there. 

And I won't be there for the same reason I'm attending a Good Charlotte concert later this month. Lifestyles of the Rich of Famous is fun and Predictable was once my 'moody at the world' song but neither belong in any Hall of Fame. I'll be there to relive my teenage years, not appreciate musical genius. 

Our teenage favourites always have a place in our heart - no matter how cringy they might be - simply because it was the music of our teenage years. But some artists remain on our radar because they do have musical talent, not just because it was the song played on the school bus every morning. For me, Amy Studt is one if these acts.

But for old times sake, here is Misfit:




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