There’s something about Rae Morris that makes her impossible not to love. We know it, Charlie Fink knows it and so does British fashion house Burberry who adopted her soaring demo track Walls as the accompaniment to their SS collection this year’s London Fashion Week.
Recently finishing recording her hotly anticipated debut EP For You with Charlie Fink – one quarter of Noah and the Whale - the Blackpool born songstress cites the progressive folk greatness of Feist as a blueprint to her own unique and enthralling sound.
But while it’s hard not to fall under the spell of Rae’s delicately powerful vocals it’s her natural and unassuming likeability that gives this English rose an impressive edge over a sea of fellow female ballad writers. She’s bubbly, grounded and very real. She might only be 19 but when she sings about heartbreak and relationship breakdowns you can’t help but feel every ounce of her anguish.
Famed for her captivating performances, her corkscrew curls, sapphire eyes and ability to woo audiences into such a silence that you could hear a pin drop at the back of the room, we caught up with Rae on a breezy Brighton seafront to discuss an exciting year ahead…
For people who haven’t heard you yet describe your sound…
Emotional, genuine and honest maybe…
I saw you play as part of HMV’s Next Big Thing, you got the whole audience laughing along with your filler jokes you seem like a natural on stage…
I keep getting in trouble for bad jokes! I went from being able to have a joke and then a few weeks ago I was not able to say anything. I go through stages I get really scared of the talking bit.
What goes through your head while you’re performing?
It’s weird, I think about so many things at once and then I forget to concentrate on actually playing, A lot of the time I’m thinking oh my god, do people hate me. I don’t know why I do it I’m just so paranoid when I’m performing!
You’ve just finished touring with Bombay Bicycle Club that must have been quite the initiation to playing sell out arenas?
It was amazing, I feel so devastated that it’s over! My brother is my tour manager so he came as well and we got on really well with the band, they’re such genuine, down to earth, beautiful people and that’s definitely my kind of person. You don’t expect people to be like that, I never thought they would be in this industry!
Playing at the Empress Ballroom in Blackpool which is where I’m from! It was my dream venue and I never ever thought I’d get to play there! I used to go there all the time, one of the first bands I went to see there was Bloc Party supported by Biffy Clyro, I was only 13 and dead scared of everyone crowd surfing! I saw Paolo Nutini there as well!
Am I sensing you’re a fan?
Yes! He’s at Atlantic too, I feel if I ever meet him I’d keel over! (laughs)
When did you first get involved in music?
I started learning the piano when I was four, I used to have music lessons every Friday and I hated it! Every week you dread going back because you’re like ‘shit, I didn’t do my practice!’ (Laughs) I’d always end up passing the exams by one mark but I think I just thought to myself just do it and one day maybe I’ll start enjoying it and luckily I did!
What was it that changed your mind!?
It was about two years ago when I wrote my first song that I think I started to love it – before that I wanted to play gigs and I wanted to perform but I had nothing to play so had always had a bit of a love hate with music. It was when I first started playing my own material that I found out I could maybe start enjoying it!
What tends to influence your writing?
Emotions and feelings which is actually really cheesy! (Laughs)
You recorded your debut EP For You with Charlie Fink, any thoughts on who you want to work with on your album?
I really don’t know to be honest, when I first found out that Charlie Fink wanted to work with me I nearly died, I couldn’t have chosen anyone that I’d like to work with more!
For You is available to pick up at Rae’s live shows and for those who can’t wait for her proper release she has made her Blueprint Demos EP available for free download here! (www.raemorris.co.uk)