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Eternal tribute

JUGGLING ACT: Sarah Blasko will return to Newcastle City Hall on April 9 as part of her first national tour since becoming a mother last year.
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THERE was an outpouring of emotion throughout the world when David Bowie died last month.

As is the norm in modern society, social media led the charge for the musical icon.

One of the most moving tributes that was readily shared on Facebook and Twitter four days after Bowie’s death came from Sydney singer-songwriter Sarah Blasko.

Her hauntingly beautiful rendition of Life On Mars for Triple J’s Like AVersion struck a chord, as its 450,000-plus Youtube views would suggest.

“It felt like a lot of pressure because you’re handling a song from an artist that’s been loved so much by so many people and I’m always a little bit nervous to do covers of well-known, well-loved songs,” Blasko said.

Sarah Blasko’s cover of “Life On Mars”“I think I was working on a video clip that day, so when I got home I realised a lot of people had seen it and I was pretty surprised. I felt really honoured by the whole thing, because David Bowie meant so much to me and I felt it sort of helps people.”

In April Blasko will hit the road to tour her latest album Eternal Return, which hasseen the 39-year-old embrace synths and an 80s pop aesthetic.

As part of the tour Blasko will return to Newcastle City Hall on April 9, a venue she last performed at in 2013.Her Bowie tribute may even make an appearance.

“It might be the right thing to do because you kind of want to give the audience what they wantto a degreeand obviously do what you love doing as well, so I might think about it for these shows,” she said.

Eternal Return is a departure from Blasko’s previous four albums that often portrayed melancholy beauty.

Unashamedly a love record, Blasko almost sounds gushing on singles like Only One.

The new direction has attracted some high-profile admirers, such as EltonJohn who recently name-dropped Blasko on internet show, Carpool Karaoke.

“It was pretty surreal,” Blasko said.“I’ve been listening to Elton John my whole life. He’s one of the first artists I remember hearing as a kid, so it’s pretty weird hearing him say my name.”

The upcoming tour will also be Blasko’s first since the birth of hersonJerrylast July.

She said becoming amothernever threatened to slow down her career as a touring musician.

“It’s just assumed that these things are more difficult for women, which maybe they are to a degree, but I think if a guy had a new record out he wouldn’t be asked about how he’s going to do it with a new kid,” she said.

“I’ve got a really supportive partnerand that’s definitely the way I’ll get through doing this and everything I’ve been doing since I’ve had a baby. You can’t do these things without having great support.

“I love doing what I’m doing and I think it would be something that was goingbe negative for my kid and me if I didn’t keep doing it. I think it you’re a happy parent, then hopefully you have a happy child.”

Only One by Sarah BlaskoBlasko first burst onto the scene in 2004 when she became an indie darling with her debut The Overture & The Underscore and its follow-up two years later,What The Sea Wants, The Sea Will Have.She continued her success with themore mature jazz and orchestral-inspiredAs Day Follows Night (2009) and I Awake (2012).

Despite Blasko fast approaching 40, which generally casts artists into the realmof classic hitsradio, she has maintained her broad critical appealin the music industry.Tracks from Eternal Return have receivedhigh rotation on Triple J.

“I always notice when I do shows that the range of ages is quite diverse,” she said.

“I’ve always felt there arethree generations who comealong to the shows. I’vebeen flattered by that. There’s definitely some grandmas that come along with the teenage girls.”

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