Lucy Rose sits across the table, flicking through our April issue of Gallery wanting to know everything about our little island. The blossoming career of this pretty, softly spoken singer/songwriter from Surrey, whose astounding talent for performing and creativity have propelled her into the commercial spotlight. It’s not been straightforward.
Having already worked with the likes of Bombay Bicycle Club, the Manic Street Preachers, Noah and the Whale, Razorlight and the legendary Counting Crows, her success and infectious happiness continues to grow. VOGUE magazine recently reported Lucy as being “one of indie music’s breakout stars” and it’s emerged that she will be visiting us too in the not too distant future. As she is soon to be gracing the Channel Islands for events over the summer, Gallery Magazine caught up with her to find out what makes her tick…
How long have you been living in London?
I’ve been living in London for seven years
How did your career in music start?
I just did a load of open-mic nights with a company called eARmusic and then they gave me a job putting together artists and nights. It was a big deal for me! And then made I made friends with lots of other musicians so it went from there.
So A’n’R picked you up whilst you were performing at a gig?
Not originally. I sold out a 600 capacity venue, had my music played on Radio 1, all whilst I was an unsigned artist. I had a great producer, and Radio 1 were playing my single ‘Middle of the Bed’ and I was pretty happy with what I was doing.
So then I went to my parents house with Björn Ågren (ex Razorlight guitarist and Lucy Rose band member) who just has absolutely every type of equipment possible, loaded what we could into a van and just set up a studio there in the lounge, just in front of the fire. As soon as we recorded the album my manager started playing it to people and then A’n’R agents started to understand.
What’s been the biggest moment in your career to date?
It would have to be when I got the opportunity to be ‘Song of the Day’ on YouTube in America. I was in Brazil the day it happened so we were a few hours ahead. I was pretty excited, but woke up in the morning) so the day in the States had already been and gone) – looked it up on the internet and they had listed me as Lucy Bell. I saw it and my heart just sank.
So there’s a Lucy Bell somewhere who randomly had a million SoundCloud hits that day..?
It was crazy – it was my video for ‘Middle of the bed’ but labelled completely wrong. ‘Song of the Day’ in America is only agreed on a 1-day basis so wherever you are Lucy Bell, you’re probably a big deal now!
What’s the best festival you’ve ever played? (classic question)
It’s not necessarily the best but Glastonbury had this mad, overall energy. It’s as if every single person at the festival can’t believe that they are actually there. It’s such a sought after ticket that everyone attending feels lucky to be involved. Tons of bands and good things!
Ever been star struck?
I was asked to support Counting Crows last year and that was really strange. Adam Duritz (lead singer) was stood on the side of the stage during every one of my performances, mouthing the words and generally just being amazing. He’s an amazing person! But I did see Trevor McDonald once in a restaurant…and I did genuinely think, holy hell it’s Trevor McDonald.
Seriously. Trevor McDonald? No-one else?
Yes seriously! It can be a bit strange going into catering areas at a festival and seeing everyone in there.
I really like a group called Deep Valley and my band mate Simba (whose brother is the drummer for Rudimental) was straight over and chatting to them. They are seriously good at what they do and very cool. I did wonder if I was a little plain for them. These things happen when you really respect/like someone!
Most memorable performance to date?
Glastonbury was great purely because my parents were there but also playing at the Electric in Brixton. It was a defining moment because I always get nervous before going out in front of a crowd. This one performance was scheduled shortly after my album had come out and I had the usual bout of pre-gig nerves.
My whole career up to this point had revolved around going out on stage to impress and win the affections of the crowd. My manager came backstage and said, “I don’t know why you’re nervous – they’re all fans. They’ve all bought your record”. It was the first time I had gone out on stage and felt relaxed. Definitely one of my most memorable experiences. And my parents were there too!
Your music has been featured in quite a few syncs hasn’t it?
I had only a couple of small things but then I did an advert for Sony. Before that I’d just been played on the radio in the Rovers Return on Coronation Street.
You haven’t made it until you’ve been on Hollyoaks though…
I have been in Hollyoaks! Tony was crying about something and ‘Shiver’ was playing in the background. I did think it was a bit strange.
Can you name 5 red haired singers?
Cilla Black. Avril Lavigne. Ed Sheeran. Mick Hucknell. And T’Pau. Avril Lavigne is definitely not ginger (a brief google search and a small argument later reveals she is demi-red. We agree to disagree)
Have you got any new material on the way?
I’ve nearly finished my second album. I’ve written and recorded a ton of new material but working with my label (Columbia Records) to work it down to maybe 15 tracks. We recorded all of it in SNAP studios in Manor House, north London. It’s such an amazing space and a pleasure to record there. I absolutely love it.
So will we have any new material to look forward to at Jersey Live?
Definitely – I’ll be playing quite a lot of it there! I’m really excited!
This month’s theme is Mode. What’s your favourite item of clothing?
God I don’t actually know. I’m not that cool… (at this point Lucy’s friend Joel screams across the table) (J) ‘When I think of Lucy, two words come to mind. Chunky knit’.
I suppose it would have to be my black jeans. I wear them all the time, I have identical pairs and I love them.
Have you ever been to the Channel Islands?
I went to Bestival once…does that count?
I went to Jersey when I was younger and I fell off my bike terribly.
Lucy Rose is playing the main stage at the 2014 Jersey Live Festival. Don’t miss it! Download ‘Like I used to’ by Lucy Rose on iTunes or pick up a copy from any local retailer. Thanks to Lucy Rose and Joel Armsden from eARmusic for their time.