Paloma Faith will perform at two Surrey venues this year
- Credit: Archant
As Paloma Faith gets set for performances at Hampton Court Palace and Lingfield Park Racecourse this summer, she talks to Neill Barston about juggling touring with being a mum and why her new album scales the heights
Becoming a parent is just about the biggest event in anyone’s life. For Paloma Faith, the experience of being a new mum may have left her wondering where her next night’s sleep might ever be coming from, yet it’s brought a renewed sense of purpose and focus to her music. “I’m trying to juggle being a mother and a singer. I have no idea how I am managing, but I am somehow,” she laughs, recounting her whirlwind existence recording her fourth studio album.
The 36-year-old has already amassed an enviable career over the past decade that has seen her become the only female artist beyond Adele to have three double platinum recordings to her name. While it’s been a road requiring plenty of hard graft, her artfully soulful sound and quirky style have undoubtedly played their part in propelling her to stardom.
The singer’s latest offering, The Architect, follows boldly in its predecessors’ footsteps, showcasing her distinctive powerful vocals that have earned comparisons with everyone from 20th century icons such as Etta James and Billie Holiday, through to the late Amy Winehouse.
It seems the singer is enjoying a comparatively settled phase of her life living with French boyfriend Leyman Lahcine, and it’s apparent that starting a family has directly influenced her music. “I do feel my approach to music has changed since I’ve become a parent, which does have an impact. With difficult things that are happening in the world, you feel protective and want to make things comfortable for your family.”
From her early CV that spanned everything from being a life model, cabaret dancer and bartender, to a gig as a magician’s assistant, her rich experiences have offered plenty of tales and adventures to fuel her inventive songwriting. As if to underline her determination, she famously walked out on a deal for a record contract when the agent watching her refused to stop texting on his phone. Needless to say, it was very much his loss, and the wider music industry’s gain, for Paloma then secured a major deal that set in motion her strikingly memorable debut album.
To her credit, Do You Want The Truth or Something Beautiful? blazed a trail into the top 10, and proceeded to lodge in the album charts for the next 100 weeks. But how does she look back on it now? “Well, that was nearly 10 years ago, and it was what it was. But 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,” she reflects.
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By her own admission, trying to sustain a fanbase and avoiding the trap of merely recreating a formula for previous hits has offered plenty of challenges. But as she enthuses, she is not one to rest on her laurels, and “likes to mix things up a bit”, which is the case with her latest material.
Besides the album, fans can now enjoy her latest UK tour, which heads to Hampton Court Palace Festival on June 8 and Lingfield Park Racecourse on August 11. It’s destined to feature some of Paloma’s trademark self-designed sets to spark the tone for a hit-packed series of shows. “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,” adds the engaging singer, who may well have a little more to think about with a young child in tow – yet it won’t stop her from enjoying every single moment.