Introducing...Karima Francis

Technically we've been a bit misleading with this intro feature, given that Karima Francis released her critically acclaimed debut album The Author back in 2009.

So let's treat this as more of a re-introduction to the Blackpool-based singer-songwriter as, after three years away, she prepares to release her new single 'Wherever I Go' on May 13th, ahead of the release of her sophomore effort The Remedy this summer. If you're in need of a quick reminder of her charms, head over to Karima Francis' Facebook page for a free download of 'Forgiven'.

Now that's done, read on to hear what she had to say when we caught up with Karima ahead of her London show tomorrow night (20th) at The Slaughtered Lamb before she embarks on a full UK tour throughout April and May.

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What's your earliest musical memory?

My first musical memory was, when I got christened, I went missing. Then the organ started playing… it was me! I must have always been attracted to sound.

If you could hold a recording session with any five artists, who would you choose?

Oooooh OK let me think... Van Morrison, Tim Buckley, Ray LaMontagne, Karen Carpenter, John Martin. I'd really love this to happen, in fact I think this is a sensitive group, but I'm quite a sensitive girl...

You want to describe your music to a stranger on the street, who do you compare yourself to?

I compare myself to a girl who projects truth with her voice; I only believe it might sound OK because the truth always does.

You are going to live on a desert island for a year, which three albums do you take with you?

I always wonder when questions like this are asked. All the records I haven't heard that might be the life savers. So far in my life I would choose... OK, don't laugh: August And Everything After - Counting Crows, John Martyn - Glorious Fool and Ryan Adams - Ashes And Fire (absolutely immense record, one of the best ever). You had me searching long and hard for this question.

Everyone has a defining music moment, one that lives on in the memory, what is yours?

Playing Jools Holland. I'd do anything to do that again; what a surreal but overwhelming show.

What is the best gig you've ever been to and why?

Led Zeppelin! Because they played 'No Quarter', then I snuck into the after show that lead onto a lunch the next day at the Ritz, with the head of Marvel comics. I think we scared everyone on the Ritz as we all wore false teeth and dressed like hippies; we were looked at like dirt to the shoe, funny though!

Where do you see yourself in five years time?

Somewhere in middle America. I see the heat burning off the ground, and I'm hesitant to move. I'm still with comfort of the streets around me, I am still fuelled by my music as each song I write puts a few more weeks onto my life.

If we were to look at your MP3 player, what is the most embarrassing track or album that we'd find?

Oh no, you're going to laugh again…. just have a guess… Donna Lewis - 'I Love You Always And Forever'. Great song, I'm not embarrassed...

How would you sell your new single 'Wherever I Go' to us?

Thick sounding, a song for those who miss the ones they have left behind. A combination of melodies joining up the chorus, in a sort of dirty manner, almost musically sexual in its tone, but showing the two complete sides to my being: hard and also very soft.

What's next for Karima Francis?

You tell me.

Karima Francis' new single 'Wherever I Go' is out on May 13th through Mercury / Vertigo. Find out more about Karima at her official website - http://karimafrancis.com/

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