Faye Fantarrow Releases Video for “The Weekend” Amid Brain Cancer Battle

In August of 2022, Faye Fantarrow was recording her debut EP, AWOL, with producer Dave Stewart when she was diagnosed with a brain tumor. Diagnosed with a rare and potentially fatal Glioma brain tumor, the British singer and songwriter—who first battled Leukemia when she was 8 years old and a second time afterward in 2015—went ahead with the release of the EP on February 10, 2023.

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In between starting treatment for the brain tumor in early 2023, the 20-year-old moved forward and began releasing songs from AWOL, beginning with the title track on February 4, marking World Cancer Day.

“Life very rarely goes to plan but the plan was always to write, sing and perform and I’ve been lucky to be able to do that,” said Fantarrow in a previous statement. “I am so proud of and the fantastic opportunity I was given. To work and record with Dave Stewart will be forever special to me.” 

Released on Stewart’s Bay Street Records, AWOL shows off Fantarrow’s many musical visages and eccentric vocals, from the soulful thumps and galloping guitar on the title track through the funked-up “Six Foot,” and more tender locomotion of piano ballad “Never Love.” 

Accompanied by a music video, directed by Myles Docherty, and filmed in Fantarrow’s hometown of Sunderland—also Stewart’s hometown—“The Weekend” keeps the beats around more chilled-out electro-pop pulses.

Forecasting the escapism of when the weekend comes, Fantarrow sings Been a real shitty day / Didn’t get my pay / And I just want to smoke these bad feelings away / It ain’t good for my health / But I ain’t got nothing else / So let the good times roll and take me to my grave.

“‘The Weekend,’ for me, is a great example of mine and Dave’s working relationship and how we collaborate as artists,” said Fantarrow. “It was so lovely seeing the soundscape dynamic come together in the production of the song and to see all the hard work of everyone involved including the team behind the video. Needless to say, I am very proud of this track and video and honored to have worked with the great Mr. Stewart.”

Faye Fantarrow and Dave Stewart

On their collaboration, Stewart called Fantarrow “a rare jewel from the North East.”

“She’s from Sunderland, a city with a big heart, and there’s no bigger heart than Faye’s,” said Stewart. “As a songwriter and performer, she tells stories to make you explode with joy or weep along with her at the trichotomy of the human spirit. Faye is one of a kind, and I love her dearly as a sister, a daughter, and a great music partner.”

Stewart continued, “We had an unbelievable time together while recording this EP. Both in search of musical freedoms, two souls laughing constantly at the joy of creativity. I love Faye Fantarrow.”

Following the release of AWOL earlier this year, Fantarrow was undergoing treatment for her condition in California. An update on her Fight for Faye social media pages on Tuesday (June 13) revealed that the singer’s health has since deteriorated.

“We are closing The Just Giving page and ceasing all fundraising with immediate effect,” read the statement. “Faye’s health continues to deteriorate and it is unlikely she will be able to take any further part in the trial.”

The statement continued, “We hope we have your support in using some of the fundraising funds to make Faye’s life more comfortable and allow her to remain mobile and at home. All remaining monies, once medical expenses have been covered, will be donated to charity.”

Photos: Courtesy of Bay Street Records / Milestone Publicity

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