Paloma power

Liz Nicholls

We chat to musician Paloma Faith,

Q. Hello Paloma – thanks for your time and congratulations on your new arrival! How’s life changed?
“I’m trying to juggle being a mother and a singer. I have no idea how I’m managing, but I am somehow! I do feel my approach to music has changed since I’ve become a parent – which does have an impact. With difficult things happening in the world, you feel protective and want to make things comfortable for your family. I think things are changing in our history and maybe not for the better, which is something I’m concerned about. I feel there’s a sense of duty to talk about events.”

Q. You’ve been keen to shield your youngster from the press and paparrazi haven’t you?
“I value my privacy more so than ever now, as it’s a real responsibility being a parent. I want my child to know itself first rather than everyone else feeling that they know all about them.”

Q. Growing up in East London and studying at the Northern School of Contemporary Dance, did you always have an inkling you’d become a singer?
“Growing up in Hackney, I was surrounded by lots of different types of music – from my mum, I remember listening to plenty of revolutionary music from the 1960s such as Bob Dylan, while my dad was into jazz, which is where my interest in all that comes from. Later, when I was studying, I got into R n B dancehall, and originally I wanted to be dancer. Then I did my musical theatre, and I think music just chose me.”

Q. Your album Do You Want The Truth or Something Beautiful? hit the top 10, and proceeded to lodge in the album charts for the next 100 weeks – how do you look back on it?
“Well, that was nearly 10 years ago, and it was what it was. I think it is great that I’ve managed to sustain a career as unfortunately not many people get to make more than one or two albums these days.”

Q. Your vocal abilities have continued to garner contrasts with the late Amy Winehouse – how do you feel about that?
“I’m flattered by comparisons to Amy. It’s not something I am offended by, though I am quite different. When she met me once, she asked if I played an instrument, but I said no, and she said that was a shame as she would have liked someone like me in her group. I was a massive fan of hers, and after watching the documentary about her life, I actually wrote a song for her, Price of Fame, which is on the new album. Her death was such a tragedy.”

Q. You were nominated several times for a Brit Award, with your persistence paying off two years ago – hurray! How did that feel?
“It was amazing to win the Brit Award and to finally gain some acknowledgement. I come from a long line of people that haven’t really been acknowledged for what they did… But I think there are a lot of people out there doing important work, like doctors and nurses who don’t get that recognition they should.”

Q. We’re looking forward to your tour and hear that you’re going to design some of your trademark show sets – are you excited?
“The only reason I do what I’m doing is because I love touring – as when I’m out there I am excited and feel that I’m in the right place.”

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