IMS chats to Francesca herself
When we first came across Francesca May it was quite the mouth opening moment as we were completely blown away by the music and in particular the vocals which were breathtakingly stunning. Investigation was immediately called for and luckily for us the young lady herself granted us an interview.
Francesca originates from the Isle of Man and her particular genre is Folk/Pop but for us its much, much better than that so my first question had to be about how she first got into music.
“I’ve always had an interest in music, since I was a kid. My first experience of playing music was in my primary school’s folk group. I loved performing in concerts and competitions with them. I had my first piano lesson at around age 8, and I picked up the guitar soon after that.”
“I always took music really seriously. I knew that it was what I wanted to do, ever since I wrote my first song and performed it on stage at a music summer school back home in the Isle of Man.”
I’m the sort of person that loves a good vocal and there is no retreat from the fact that Francesca May has a stunning velvet voice and its always nice to know if this is just pure natural talent or if she has in fact had some vocal coaching.
“I’ve never had formal training. I’ve grown up singing in choirs and being part of musical theatre groups - and these definitely helped with my singing technique and my confidence. My focus has never really been on my voice until recently - I’ve been more concentrating on my song writing and piano/guitar playing. I played my first solo gig in September and since then I’ve been working on my vocals a lot, pushing my range and trying to strengthen my voice.”
When it comes to the ep release of ‘Home’ full marks were awarded so the burning question has to be is there an album forthcoming.
“I’m always writing new songs! An album isn’t in the works yet, but it’s definitely a possibility. I’m still trying to figure out exactly what style I want my music to be, since I write in so many different genres. At the minute my writing has been more Pop, but I have a lot of older songs that I’d really like to record, that are a similar style to the EP.”
One of the things that its always nice to know is if there were any difficulties when it comes to getting music released and in the public view so I posed this question to Francesca and also asked her what she though of the independent scene at the moment.
“When I released the EP, it was my first time releasing music independently. I had to figure it out on my own which is always difficult, but I didn’t have any major problems. Releasing my new single ‘Fire’ was so much easier - I knew exactly what I was doing. The only thing I struggled with was choosing a cover! A talented friend of mine drew three potential covers - it took me about a month to decide which I liked best!”
“I think the independent scene is great. There’s so many opportunities for artists - and releasing your music online is really easy. There’s a lot of support within the independent community and I think everyone is pushing each other to succeed. That’s what I like the most.”
“It’s easier than ever to be an independent musician, but you have to work for it.”
Francesca sits firmly in the Folk/Pop genre but I wanted to know if this was something that she was happy with and if she was looking at making any changes.
“At the moment, yes. Folk music played a massive part in my childhood and my growth as a musician. I never really thought about what genre my music is until I released my EP, but there are definitely folk influences and I love it. I have been trying to write in more of a pop style recently but I keep falling back into my Folk-Pop ways!”
Having been through Francesca’s social media it was interesting to note that at present there were no live performances planned so I asked if there was anything on the agenda in the future.
“I did a lot of live gigs over the last few months, but since moving down to London I don’t have anything lined up yet. I’ve been so focused on releasing my new single and writing new material, I haven’t really started looking for gigs.”
“I’m hoping to get back into performing live very soon!”
As beautiful as the Isle of Man is, the fact remains that it is an island and so was Francesca looking to relocate in order to bring her music to a wider audience. That is however a bit of a contradiction on my part as her track ‘Catacombs’ has had well over a million streams on Spotify!
“I already have! I grew up in the Isle of Man, but when I was 17 I moved to Liverpool. I had been offered a place at the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts brand new Sixth Form College.”
“Moving to a new city at such a young age on my own was really scary but it also brought so many new opportunities. It was also the inspiration for writing my EP! I wrote my song ‘Home’ about the Isle of Man, and my song ‘Catacombs’ was about the people who helped me adapt to such a huge change in my life.”
“I graduated last July, and moved back home for a couple of months to really focus on my song writing and performing.”
“I’m now living in London - one of the biggest steps in my career yet.”
And so as we neared the end of our chat we just had time to fire off quick Q&A.
Vocally and musically we feel that you stand head and shoulders above your peers. What is your opinion of that?
“I think my music is definitely different, which helps me stand out. I also think that because it’s different, it can’t be compared to other people’s music. There’s so many amazing independent artists out there, all with diverse genres and fan bases. Everyone has varied opinions of what’s good!”
At such a young age and looking forward do you think that you will stick to your guns in terms of music style or are you the sort of person that likes to experiment with musical genres?
“I’m not really sure yet. I love experimenting with new styles and genres, and I’m always trying to improve my writing. I’ve been leaning more towards pop recently, but I’m still writing in my folk-pop style too.”
“I’ve tried writing in so many different styles and I’m trying to see what sticks. If I release any new music, I think I’ll stay with my current genre; but who knows what might happen in the future.”
What can we expect to see from Francesca May going forward?
“Hopefully I’ll be releasing more music, maybe an album at some point. You’ll be seeing a lot more content on my YouTube channel and social media pages, and I’d like to eventually be able to do a small tour.”
Is there anything you would like to say to your followers?
“Thank you for all the support, and watch this space!”
Francesca May is a shining star in the music and destined for great things. We will be following her career with interest and hope to bring you regular updates.
It's not very often that I just stop cold when listening to something but this is very special. Cited as Folk Pop it's so much more. 'Home' the opener is just stunning and the vocals are smooth as velvet. It's an OMG I LOVE IT track and based on that alone I was wondering if I could get away with writing beautiful and leaving the review there. But best off writing a bit more. 'Ashes.' Beautiful.
So calming and on a day like today just perfect. Francesca May has one of those voices I could listen to all day. 'Falling Deeper' is yet another fabulous song and I'm running out of compliments. This just flows and takes you on the journey with it. 'Catacombs' is the final track and I'm just blown away. This will crawl into your soul and just stay there. Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful.
Fast forward to 2019 and the new single 'Fire' which shows how much this young lady has progressed. Bit more of an edge to what has gone before but still expertly written and performed. There's something very special about Francesca May and we can't wait for an album. Just mind blowing. 10 /10