Molly is a lovely vivacious singer / songwriter from Lancaster. Her debut album, released in early 2015, drew on her early influences of Fleetwood Mac, Simon and Garfunkel, and KT Tunstall. Helen Ashton from Find Your Activity, met up with Molly. in her local, The Borough in Lancaster.
HA: How did you get into singing?
M. I started playing guitar and absolutely hated it, hated it for ages! One day I was listening to KT Tunstall who really is my biggest inspiration, and I thought, I want to do that. I got a little music book of hers and practised every song in there and that was the start from the age of about 10. I did music at school, played in bands, BTech performance, Stars in their Eyes, that sort of thing and loved every minute.
I Left school and said, “I just want to do music” and here I am.
HA: How have you kept yourself afloat?
M. I have always worked in pubs, but since Covid hit and pubs were no longer an option, I am working for Barclay’s part time. I never thought I would work in banking, but the virus hit and that is the way it is – very random! Up until this last year music was enough to keep me going, but I have had to adjust along with everyone else.
Things are coming back quicker than I thought they would.
HA: Have you missed gigging?
M. I did a gig at a festival at Eskdale in the Lake District 2 weeks ago, right in the middle of no-where, but there were only a few thousand there so slightly limited numbers. But it was just amazing! It was so good to be back and although the weather was not the best it did clear for my set! I did have quite a few festivals booked in but most of them have been cancelled but pub gigs are going ahead. I will go wherever I am asked, and I have played in Amsterdam, Ireland, and all over the country. I was doing a lot of gigs in London before Covid and I am looking at touring later this year so watch this space!
HA: How do you get your music out there?
M. I stream mostly, Spotify – which I just get royalties from, iTunes, etc. I have not done any hard copies, but the ultimate thing is to get a vinyl out there. We have just moved and got out all the old vinyl’s on the record player, so it is fuelling my enthusiasm.
I find Christmas songs really hard to write as they are a bit cheesy ☺️!
HA: How do you go about writing a new song?
M. My inspiration comes from my book of lyrics. It’s like my go to bible. I just write lyrics down all the time, wherever I am. We could be driving along, and I think ‘that’s a cool lyric’ and it goes into the book, so it’s great to refer back to. As long as I have my first point of reference down it just spirals. I do tend to start a song with a topic, it could be something that is relevant at the time, but sometimes it takes time to come to me. Some days I just don’t feel inspired but some days I get up and songs just flow through me. It’s definitely a frame of mind thing.
I always write and play the music I like, which covers different moods, upbeat summer song, to something slower, but all my music is similar to what I listen too. I did some Christmas songs last year, like Joni Mitchell and Fairy Tale in NY / Have yourself a merry Christmas, but I am looking at doing an out and out Pop song like ‘Shakin’ Stevens’ type of thing this year. I do love Christmas! I find Christmas songs very hard to write as they are a little bit cheesy! I am thinking of using the ‘Lancaster on Ice’ set up for the backdrop for my next Christmas vid. I was just getting to grips with ice-skating and then they couldn’t hold it last year! May need to hold on to one of the kids’ penguins again.
HA: What other music inspires you?
M. My inspiration comes from current songs. People like Sigrid, Maggie Rodgers, KT Tunstall, kind of similar Indi Pop, but Fleetwood Mac is one of my biggest inspirations. I remember finding the first vinyl, in Mum and Dad’s collection. Rumours by Fleetwood Mac and just knowing that this is what I like. Since then, I have collected them all.
HA: How did you meet your manager?
M. I have been working with Mark for the past few years, completely randomly came across him. He heard my music online. So, we set up a meeting and he was a genuinely nice guy. We just hit it off really well. You get a lot of people asking to manage you, but Mark is really straight with me. He tells it how it is so is pretty straight up. He worked for people like Channel 4 and various radio stations, but he has started his own label Blinding Talent and it’s all going really well.
It is so exciting when a song is released from the producers, and I think “this is why I do it!”
HA: Do you enjoy doing the music videos?M. It is really good fun doing videos. I was at work at Barclays yesterday and guys were just chatting to me and were saying ‘you have this whole different life outside the bank’. It really is just what I want to do but I do understand I have to work to get to do the music. It really is so exciting when a song is released from the producers and I think, this is why I do this. We did a great video for the song ‘Midnight Dance’ in a lovely stately home and a friends Jaguar! Everyone thinks its my house (in my dreams) – I got some funny comments as a couple of videos previously I used a small cottage, and I am sure people were thinking, wow, she is doing well to move up to a stately home! I filmed Brick by Brick around here (Lancaster) and I would see people I knew and it was really embarrassing as they would stand and watch.
Playing Live is my biggest thing, it’s what I get the biggest buzz from.
HA: Did you enjoy doing the lives on FB?
M. It was really weird to start with. I really did not like it, I would sit there and just watch everyone’s comments come in! I actually got up to 500 people watching at one point! It was just a form of gigging really, just gigging in my bedroom. I decided to do it before the NHS clap at 8pm on a Thursday – it gave a sense of coming together. It also really helped with sales, and I was getting random people coming up to me in the street and saying, ‘I really loved your session!’. What was amazing was lots of local businesses shared it, so it really got out there.
HA: You have some great Merchandise, how did that come about? .
Mum and Dads garage is full of kit and cd’s!
M. People want to support me; they really want to buy t shirts so why not! I can also give them out at gigs. On my website I have much more, Hoodies, caps etc. I don’t have them myself as Mum and Dad’s garage is getting pretty full!I don’t tend to use my website too much as I use Instagram and Facebook more as it is more personal. People can interact on FB.
Playing at a local school I had all these little faces glued to me – it was very cute!
HA: What has been your scariest moment?
M. Playing at Kendal Calling on the main stage was perhaps not scary it is more nerve wracking. I even get nervous when I am releasing a new song! You are putting stuff out there that is a bit of you, so you always want people to like it. If I played Wembley, I might just get a little nervous then. I have played showcase gigs for record companies. They literally just sit there and say ‘Play 5 songs’ – it is very intense. They are looking for faults too but the more you do it the less nervous you become.
Although I was asked to sing at a children’s school recently, they were doing a project about following your dreams and they asked me to sing at the whole assembly. All these little faces just glued to me; it was very cute!
HA: What is next
M. May be going on a support tour later in the year but we are just waiting to confirm that. I will make it work with my part time job.
HA: What is your dream?
M. I want to go on Jules Holland (Hogmanay), play at Glastonbury and get a Vinyl made. Not necessarily in that order. I want it to be the right time to get the best impact in my career.
HA: Why did you become an ambassador for Find Your Activity?
M. To find a platform that covers more than just sport it pretty amazing. Kids love music and the performing arts and may not want to play football or swim; they may want to act and sing! Anything I can do to help that happen for any budding ‘artist’ I will of course do!