Singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, radio presenter. Naomi has more than one string to her bow, but one thing she has more than anything is focus.
That focus is why, even at 19, the Manchester girl is tipped for the very top.
“I love singing, playing guitar, piano, ukulele, but my favourite thing to do is to write songs.
I’ve been writing for years and years. I used to just fire them off on spec to people I found on Google, but when I was about 15 I wrote a song for my coursework at school. I sent it off as usual on a whim to various people, but this time it got picked up and went huge really quickly, to the extent I ended up opening my GCSE results live on Daybreak. From then on in, people have been paying attention.”
From an early age, she has been fascinated, not just with music, but with how it was made, who was behind it and what makes it work.
She said: “When I was really young, I was obsessed with Avril Lavigne, like properly obsessed. In later years it was artists who you could tell write their own music and put a lot of themselves into it that really resonated with me, people like Taylor Swift and Ed Sheeran, as well Adele and Coldplay. I really love how Lorde can be so innovative whilst staying so accessible. That’s something I always try to put into my own music.”
One listen to any of her songs is enough to confirm that she’s more than pulling off her ambitions, With her music as sonically interesting as it is radio-friendly.
She said: “The overall genre is pop, but there’s hints of rock in the guitars, RnB in the melodies, country in the backing vocals, but when you mix it all together, it becomes pop.
There’s a retro feel to it at times, maybe Fleetwood Mac with Police-esque guitar sounds, but juxtaposed with big modern drum sounds and loud, soaring vocals.
I’m writing a lot about my life, but I’m trying to do it in a different way to how I usually write, it’s a lot more personal, but still hopefully open enough that the message can apply to anybody. I’m really proud of it.”
Thinking why she does it, there’s only one reason. Like any true artist, it’s because she has to.
“I absolutely love writing and have done since I was 13 years old. It s such an amazing experience going from sitting at a piano to taking what you’ve created into a studio, with all these electronic sounds coming out, I just love the journey of a song.
My proudest achievement so far has been playing at the Etihad Stadium as I’m a huge City fan, but when it comes down to it, I love the studio time, that whole process. I’d be doing it even if nobody ever heard any of it.”
‘Rivers Run’ is out on 25th September 2015
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