Dani’s horses for courses

DANI Flynn is in heaven.

She’s checking on her horses and has a guitar strapped to her back.

It seems she has everything she needs.

We’ve agreed to meet at the windswept block of land high above the Southern Ocean where her horses roam.

We’ve spent the previous hour or so volleying questions and answers in the corner of a nearby café as she tries to summarise where she stands as a musician and as I try to grapple with the incongruity of equine-infused folk-jazz.

Once we jump the gate and wander the hillside waiting for the horses to show their faces, it all becomes clear. Flynn has such a deep affinity with her horses that it simply seeps into her music.

She is a kinesiologist by day and practises acupressure on humans and horses.

But she is also a sweet singer who can move effortlessly between folk and jazz as though there is no clear distinction and she knows her way around a guitar too.

Musically, Flynn is perhaps best known along the South Coast as one half of the duo, Freya’s Bounty, with bassist Madeleine Winton.

The pair have had no shortage of work over the past few years, but the grind of playing to noisy pub crowds with their backs turned took its toll on Flynn, who has bunkered down to write and record a solo album.

She says turning inwards with her music has helped rekindle the need to play.

The writing process for the album so far has been a mixed bag.

Flynn says she spent a lot of time working on a particular song that is dedicated to a friend she lost recently.

She worked tirelessly to get the song right and could concentrate on nothing else until the job was done.

But with the song done, the lid has been lifted on her creative output with ideas for words and melodies popping up at any time of the day or night.

She has half-a-dozen songs down for the album, which have flowed with a lot more ease.

“It’s often when you’re busy doing something else or you’re driving along that a line for a song will just jump out,” she said.

“So you’ve just got to stop and write it down before it disappears, which is a bugger when you’re running late.”

Flynn hasn’t set a deadline for the album’s completion, so we’ll just need to watch this space while she goes to work.

– Anthony Probert