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Celeb News

Baby Animals all grown up

**By Lucy Chesterton Music took Suze DeMarchi from her suburban backyard in Perth to Los Angles, and now the passion has brought her home again.** Kicking around the back streets of her suburban Perth neighbourhood in the sixties, the teenage Suze DeMarchi was already thinking big. "When I was a kid I couldn't stop thinking about what was going on in the world," remembers the singer, famous for her stint as front woman of Australian band Baby Animals. "The little street I lived on was really was beautiful but I always wondered what else was out there. "I went searching for something new when I was 19 when I left Australia — and I never stopped." The singer's search took her from Perth's local pub rock scene to the heights of fame and fortune in New York, Los Angeles and Paris, where she found love with guitarist Nuno Bettencourt and gave birth to two beautiful children, Lorenzo Aureolino and BeBe Orleans. Now Suze, 45, has returned to her roots, reforming the band that made her famous and earned her three ARIA awards and a spot in the ARIA Hall of Fame along with bandmates Dave Leslie, Eddie Parise, and Frank Celenza. But although her distinctive rasping rock-star vocals are still familiar, a lot has changed for Suze in the years since we last heard from her on the acoustic album Il Grand Silenzio. The wild child of the Australian rock scene has mellowed into a loving mother, raising her two children with their famous father Nuno, the musician who penned the worldwide smash hit anthem More Than Words and who has a line of guitars named after him, not to mention his cyber likeness appearing in the PlayStation game Guitar Hero. While the two musicians seem like a match made in heaven, Suze admits their high-flying lifestyle doesn't mean the couple are immune to the problems that are a part of any marriage. "There's nothing easy about it," Suze says of her marriage. "Sometimes I look at Nuno and I think he's the best thing that I've ever had in my life and sometimes I look at him and I don't know who he is. "You have to be careful about what you say to each other in a relationship, and we made a pact before we got married that we would be respectful about the way we spoke to each other, even when we felt like we hated each other. "Don't damage the relationship by saying things to each other that are disrespectful or things that you don't forget." Words are a big deal in the DeMarchi household, where both parents make a living from their writing, but Suze says her children have yet to see their mother on stage belting out her self-penned lyrics. "They've never seen me on stage," she says. "They know I make music and stuff but they've never seen the full rock show. "I'm forcing them to come to the show during this tour but they might be so scarred by it they'll need therapy afterwards!" While BeBe, 13, and Lorenzo, 6, are both part Australian through their mother's heritage, and are constant visitors to our country, Suze says there are some habits the kids pick up from living in Los Angeles. "The kids have full American accents now and it's very upsetting!" Suze laughs. "Sometimes I look at my daughter when she's yelling at me and I think, 'Who are you? Do I know you?'" Despite having adventures all over the world, Suze maintains that Australia is the most "magical" place imaginable. But when it came to her own magic moment, her wedding day to Nuno, the couple chose the Portuguese island where Nuno was born as the setting for the romantic ceremony. Refreshingly, Suze showed fame hasn't given her flash taste in expensive gowns by opting for a simple dress bought straight off the rack, while local island women made the cake and created intricate floral arrangements from a range of native blossoms. It was, sighs Suze, "beautiful." She describes her husband as a mercurial man who often switches from hot to cold and experiences flashes of highs and lows. "I think we're pretty opposite in a lot of ways and that keeps it interesting!" she says, jokingly adding: "Although I'm just perfect in every way, maybe that's why it works!" Heading to the island to wed, Suze says, was one of the high points of her life, made even more exciting by the private plane the couple hired to fly both their families across for the ceremony. "Like any marriage it's really hard work. There's nothing easy about it. But it was a great adventure." Life is still a grand adventure for Suze, who set out from Perth aged 19 in search of inspiration, and has now completed the full circle by coming home to Australia to reunite with the band that made her famous more than ten years ago. "I'm really offended by the term people are using now, 'heritage act'," Suze says. "It's a term that means an act has been around for more than ten years. "I find it really offensive because you've got to keep working and you've got to keep evolving in music. You don't really get good until you've been around ten years!"

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