The more eagle-eyed and obsessive amongst you may recall that I recently reviewed an EP from Adam Wedd. Since then, Adam has put me onto Leoni, a singer-songwriter with a golden voice which paints beautifully detailed tapestries. She’s just put together a video for her track ‘Rainy Days & Cigarettes‘ which you can check out exclusively a little further down. I caught up with Leoni to find out a little more about the voice behind the music;
First things first, who are you? Where are you from? And why should people be listening to you?
Leoni, Tonbridge in Kent. My stuff is all original, they are all personal experiences written about me and the stuff that has harmed while growing up and I think the best songs are written from experiences, it’s just how I express myself. People can relate.
How would you describe your sound?
Are there any influences you think you’re particularly like?
Keaton Henson because when you listen to him you really feel what he is trying to say. Ed Sheeran is also a massive influence on my music.
When did you first feel a passion for music stirring inside you?
I’ve always enjoyed singing and growing up at music festivals with my family has meant I have enjoyed such a varied amount of live music influencing my passion for performing.
Who was your musical idol growing up?
The Smiths and Robert Plant were two of my Dads favourite artists so they have been a big influence on me whilst growing up. The Smiths now being one of my favourite bands.
What is your creative process?
I write about life experiences, usually past relationships. I’ll play about on the guitar until I get the right mood and then add lyrics from what I’m feeling at the time.
Tell us about ‘Rainy Days & Cigarettes’ – what was your inspiration for the song and how would you best describe it?
This song is about ending a relationship and then missing the time that you spent together. I think after you spend a lot of time with someone it can be really hard to adjust to life without them and that’s basically what the song is about.
What’s the story behind the video?
The story of the video is very similar to the actual meaning of the song. Tim, who produced the video, wanted to keep it as personal as possible so in the video I have broken up with my boyfriend and I’m remembering all the time we spent together. This being very similar to the songs meaning.
How do you think your sound, and your attitude towards music, has changed throughout your time as a songwriter?
Since writing I have paid more attention to the lyrics of songs and the meanings behind them because my lyrics are so personal. When I started songwriting I couldn’t play guitar so recently I have been able to create the perfect mood through the more complex way I can play.
Do you feel that it is important to have a message in your music or should music be more for pleasure and enjoyment?
My music is more about expressing the way I feel and the way I cope with situations that effect me in a big way; but then at the same time I want people to be able to enjoy listening to my music. It shouldn’t all be about the songs meaning.
What has been the highlight of your musical career so far?
Supporting Wolf Alice on their tour was incredible, to perform with such a band was such an amazing experience.
Do you think it’s more difficult to be a solo artist or is it perhaps easier as you’re not constantly suffering from ‘creative differences’?
The music I write it very personal to me so being a solo artist makes getting my own message across easier. However I love performing with a band, it can make live performance a whole lot more enjoyable.
What can we expect to hear from you in the next few months?