When Frances added the finishing touches to “Grow” in her shoebox sized London bedroom - which only contained a bed, a lamp and a keyboard - she had no idea it would go on to become one of the most cherished slow burners of 2015, a stripped piano meditation on tender love, spun over 1.5million times across Soundcloud, YouTube and Spotify. Now, with two EP’s on Communion, a debut album in the making, and a memorable live lounge rendition of Justin Bieber’s “What Do You Mean”, the Berkshire songstress is shaping up to become one of the most gifted young singer-songwriters in the UK. Her sound striking a chord somewhere between the exuberance of Carole King and the ethereal tones of Imogen Heap, but enough youthful whimsicality to happily fleet from keyboard confessions to jilted funk-stained electronica.
Frances’ soul-bearing vocals stand out as a key component in her sound, and though barely in her twenties they carry the depth and complexity of a veteran. By 8, she was playing violin; by age 10, piano; by 12 her dad had bought her a songbook of tracks he liked. Not your standard kid’s songbook though; we’re talking sheet music for acts like Radiohead and the aforementioned Carole King. “I developed a little understanding of chords. Once I could do that, I started writing my own things.” By only 15, there was a seed in her creative imagination, and from there a love for real songwriters, like Beck, Thom Yorke and Chris Martin grew.
In her short time in London, the 21-year-old has found herself in sessions with seasoned pop songwriters like Jimmy Napes, Jonny Latimer and the aforementioned Howard Lawrence, and she’s determined to blend all that experience with her own blossoming talents to create a debut album that smacks with honesty, authenticity and straight up melody. A feat that must seem a little less intimidating, if you’ve been writing music for fun since 15. With lyrics that can touch hearts and vocals that can knock walls down, Frances has all the signs of another powerful British solo artist to be proud of.