What inspired you to first start making music? And how did you come to be in your current incarnation? Or if you prefer, a brief bio about you.

I have always had a keen interest in and desire to play music from a child. I have always enjoyed listening to music if I heard it on the street, I would draw crowds as I danced away totally oblivious to those around me.
At church I would sing and prepare solos for evening service and at school my love or gospel extended to forming a gospel choir which went on to be led by a member of LCGC followed by Clinton Jordan and then finally back into my hands until a few years ago. I went on to study music at college and university and pursued a career in teaching, (music of course!) So, you could say I practice what I preach. I have never stopped creating I just pass the baton to the local youth now and try to make their journeys easier with the knowledge I have gained to date about being a professional artist.

Provide us with some info about your latest release…

My latest release is a 6-track collection of original songs called ‘Keep Dreaming’. It’s a journey of love (Feels so Good), Friendship (Freeness), self-reflection (Keep Dreaming/Take Control) and social commentary (Do Better).

Which ones would you consider your main influences both music-wise & non-music-wise?

My main musical influences are a real cross section: Mariah Carey, Aretha Franklin, The Clark Sisters, Erykah Badu, Jill Scott, D’angelo, Kirk Franklin, James Moore, Garnet Silk, Chronixx, Jodeci, SWV, Mary J Blige, Nina Simone, Gregory Porter, Norah Jones, Buena Vista Social Club, Robert Glasper, Omar, Nao, Christian Scott – the list is endless!

Non-musical influences include writers such as: James Baldwin, Maya Angelou, Bell Hooks, David Gillborn, Bob Gass, Jonathan McReynolds

In what way does your sound differ from the rest genre-related artists/bands and why should we listen to your music? In other words, how would you describe your sound?

I would describe my sound as conscious soul music, with a hint of jazz and R’n’B. There is always a unifying thread within my music, but you will always hear a variety of sounds within a body of work.

Please name your 3 desert islands albums, movies & books…

Albums:
Mariah Carey – Butterfly
Tweet – Southern Hummingbird
The Clark Sisters – The Return

Movies:
Hitch
Black Panther
Coming to America

Books:
Make Room: Finding where faith fits – Jonathan McReynolds
Never Give Up – Joyce Meyer
The Bible

Do you prefer studio or performing live and why?

I prefer performing live as you get to vibe off the audience and it’s a completely different feeling, being in the moment. Studio sessions tends to be artificial and can sometimes take away the joy of the song as it takes time to get it right, although I do love to record backing vocals and hear how the layers build up.

Is there any funny-unique story you would like to share with us, always in relation to your music ‘career’?

Which track of your own would you point out as the most unique and why?

That’s a tricky one but I’d say Freeness as musically it gives the impression that it is going to be a bog standard acoustic number and then it gradually develops into a funky groove, lyrically it explores the idea of safe spaces within platonic friendships which can be likened to a form of freedom of expression; and vocally it hints at my gospel influences in terms of vocal arrangement and harmonies.

Would you like to share with our readers your future plans?

We are in a unique period of time where live music has come to a standstill due to the global pandemic. So, in the New Year I hope to be able to showcase the EP live and bring my music to new audiences across the UK and beyond.

Free question!!! (Ask yourself a question) you wish to answer and haven’t been given the opportunity…

Who would you like to duet with ok the future?

I am big fans of Children of Zeus and Emeli Sandé and would love to work with them; either write with them or feature on a project with them so I am speaking it into existence!

Curated by: Christos Doukakis

Recommended listening:

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Connect with Rachel Huggins:

https://twitter.com/rhugginsmusic 

https://www.instagram.com/rachelhugginsmusic/