Laura Mvula

Yes, there’s that vocal style – elegant, sophisticated, but with a certain sensuality reminiscent of Amy Winehouse, who’s definitely a source of inspiration – but Laura Mvula has enough qualities of her own to make her an original in her own right, and one of the leading voices of the new wave of British urban music. The 26-year-old Brummie (which means from Birmingham for our non-UK readers) made her debut just a few months ago with the EP ‘She’ that immediately set her apart from the crowd. In that crowd of solo singers Laura stands out because her sound walks a fine line between the future and the past, the blues reinterpreted in a contemporary key. In her vocals one can detect all the pathos of Bille Holyday, but without, we hope, the tragedy that engulfed the Lady.  Laura grew up in an environment in which music was all, listening to jazz, including bebop, and free and gospel choirs. She  studied piano and violin at the Birmingham Conservatoire. The influences, the depth and impact are really there in compositions like Father Father with their echo of Nina Simone. “I love her immensely,” says Laura, “her technique, her style has had a great influence on my music.”

The singer is now in the studio to finish work on her first album ‘Sing to the Moon’ which will be released in early March and followed by a long tour which begins in London (opening for Jessie Ware) on March 13 at Sheperds Bush Empire.

 

Pierfrancesco Pacoda

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