Having supported the likes of Paloma Faith and Tom Robinson, soul singer-songwriter Lorna Dea has certainly proven that she’s come a long way since her first nerve-racking live performance.
Confidence is a word that springs to mind for anyone brave enough to perform on stage. However, this wasn’t a trait that Leicestershire artist Lorna Dea always possessed. In fact, it was something that held her back until her early 20’s: “When I graduated from University I hit a crossroad where I had a decision to make. I had my education, but my heart always led me back to my music. It was at this point that I challenged myself to sing live in front of people, opening myself up to judgment and criticism.”
Now, at 27-years-old, the talented singer has learnt to embrace her fear of performing in public which has enabled her to develop her own unique music style. Listening to the likes of The Jackson 5, Stevie Wonder, Diana Ross, Joss Stone and The Spice Girls (as a 90s child, how could you not?) when growing-up have all influenced this style, which can be described as a contemporary mix of old soul, Motown and pop.
With two EP’s under her belt and a third set for release this year, which she has worked on with multi-platinum selling writer and producer Fred Cox, Lorna shares what she loves the most about the writing process: “I can enter the studio with an idea, and when the song is finished it may be nothing how I originally intended it to be. The lyrics may point towards a topic that they weren’t initially intended for, or the melody idea I had has been adapted so much that it’s almost unrecognisable. How a song can morph throughout a writing session is incredible. You really have to channel all your energy into creating the best version of the song possible. That’s the part I love.”
Following the release of her second EP, Comfort Zone, earlier this year, Lorna rose to number five in the iTunes R&B/Soul Album Chart. It was also this EP that she included a cover track of Paloma Faith’s ‘Crybaby,’ a decision which led to her biggest performance yet.
After the events manager at London’s O2 spotted Lorna’s YouTube video featuring the cover track, she was contacted and offered the opportunity to support Paloma at the renowned venue as part of her Architect tour back in March: “The night was incredible. I was supported by a very talented and professional pianist called Xantoné Blacq, who used to be the pianist for the late Amy Winehouse.”
With an exciting career ahead and enjoying every aspect of the journey, the singer reveals the most valuable piece of advice she’s been given: “Enjoy the journey. Enjoy every opportunity, be true to my own creative vision and never underestimate the audience feedback.”
By Jessica Challoner-Sterland