Paloma Faith, singer, songwriter and actress chats with Kevin Cooper about becoming a mum, her ideal Christmas, her latest album The Architect and next year’s tour of the UK.

Paloma Faith is an English singer, songwriter and actress, known for her retro and eccentric style. Faith is the only British female artist other than Adele to have three platinum albums.

Faith released her debut album; Do You Want The Truth Or Something Beautiful? in 2009, featuring the top twenty singles, Stone Cold Sober and New York. The album was later certified double-platinum.

In 2012, she released her second studio album, Fall To Grace, which reached number two in the UK and has since been certified double-platinum. The album produced her first top ten single, Picking Up The Pieces and the top twenty cover version of INXS’s Never Tear Us Apart. Her third album, A Perfect Contradiction was released in 2014 and has become her most successful album to date. The album included the top ten singles, Can’t Rely On You and Only Love Can Hurt Like This, which became her highest-charting single in the UK.

Faith won Best British Female Solo Artist at the Brit Awards in 2015 and has been nominated four other times. She has also made feature film appearances in The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, Dread and the 2007 remake of St Trinian’s.

On 22 August 2016 in a letter to her fans (handwritten by Faith) which was posted on her website, she announced that she was pregnant, after spending her “whole life” wanting to be a mother. She also confirmed that her fourth album would be entitled The Architect and would be released in 2017. After her maternity break, Faith said she would return “full of energy and excited to come and sing for you again”. She released the first single from the album, Crybaby, in August 2017.

Whist promoting her latest album and being a full time mum, Paloma Faith took some time out to have a chat with Kevin Cooper and this is what she had to say.

Hi Paloma how are you?

I’m good Kevin thanks, how are you?

I’m very well thank you and let me thank you for taking the time to speak to me today.

No, thank you for taking the time to speak to me.

And just how is life treating you?

Life at the moment is really good. I really do feel optimistic.

May I offer my congratulations on becoming a mum?

Thank you, that is so sweet of you.

Has becoming a mum changed your outlook on music at all?

I would have to say that I don’t know really. No not really. You have to remember that I first started writing this album four years ago now before I was pregnant and continued it throughout, but I think that I have always known that once I felt that I had the platform to stand on for people to actually be listening to what I had to say, then I really should start using my position to somehow impose some sort of air of potential change. I don’t think that it is a single handed thing that any one person can do on their own but I just think that I have got a duty to use my positon and not throw away the opportunity on self-involvement and finally look outwards a bit.

On the subject of the new album Architect, I have been playing it now for a few days and I have to say that I absolutely love it.

Thanks, that is always great to hear when someone tells you that they like and are enjoying your work. That’s really nice of you to say that.

I personally find it deeper and more thought-provoking than your previous work. Would you agree with that?

Yes, I would, I really would like to think so.

Are you happy with it?

Yes I am really happy with it. I really can’t wait for it to be released so that lots of people can hear it. It was definitely written as a full body of work. I know that the music industry now works on the basis of downloads and everyone simply picking out one song that they want to hear but I really wrote it to be a whole album which really should be listened to from start to finish.

I totally agree with you on that point that is the way that an album should be listened to.

Yes it should, and I really do hope that the people who buy the album will give it time and listen to it from start to finish. If they don’t then there is so much on the album that they are in danger of missing out on.

I would say that it is your strongest work to date, would you agree with me?

I really do hope so (laughter).

Putting you on the spot just who or what is The Architect?

Well in this case I wrote a song very early on during the writing process for this album called The Architect which says in it ‘I will forgive you but I won’t forget, I will forgive you for the burden and neglect, I will forgive you but I will not forget, but I will outlive you, I am the architect’ and that is basically the earth or mother nature singing to humanity. And so the whole song is from that perspective, with the earth or Mother Nature saying “I am going to be around longer than you because you have basically treated me really badly”. So from that point of view it seemed appropriate to call it The Architect going down the line because then I was pregnant and I was making a person. So it felt very much like it was the completely right name to call it.

I’ll Be Gentle is a duet with John Legend, how did that collaboration come about?

Well John and I co-wrote a few songs on my last album A Perfect Contradiction and after I had written I’ll Be Gentle I just thought that song would suit him. I contacted him because I already knew him from working with him before, and he agreed. He really is fantastic (laughter).

I have to be honest with you and say that being old school I really do like ‘Til I’m Done because you simply cannot beat a bit of 70s disco.

I am really glad that you are saying that it is 70s disco because it took me a long time to get it to sound like that. Originally it sounded a bit too modern for my liking Kevin and I had to keep berating everyone saying “that is not me, it sounds far too much like a dance track”. Even though it is a dance type of record I am really pleased that you are calling it a 70s disco track because that it what I wanted it to be.

You have got some fantastic people contributing to the album, John Newman, Ella Henderson and David Arnold to name but a few. But I have to ask, whose idea was it to get Samuel L. Jackson involved?

Mine (laughter). I worked with Samuel on his charity, One For The Boys which was an initiative to raise awareness about men’s cancer. At the event he said to me “I owe you a favour” and so I called it in for this record.

Is he a fun guy to work with?

He is really professional and very sure of himself. Being around him you really do feel secure.

You will be going back out on the road to tour the album here in the UK in March. Are you looking forward to that?

Touring for me is the best thing, which is the reason why I do this job.

Will it be a little harder for you this time around now that you have got the baby?

I will be honest with you and say it probably will be a little harder this time but as all of the mums who will read this will know that we are not strangers to a challenge.

You will be bringing the tour to the Nottingham Motorpoint Arena on 3rd March, what can we expect?

To be honest with you I don’t know because I don’t even know yet (laughter). I am currently working on exactly what is going to happen. However, what I will say is that my mind-set is different now compared to what it used to be and I think that has most probably been effected by parenthood. I am now far more interested in looking at the present and the future rather than the present and the past. So I would expect there to be a more futuristic feel to the shows on the forthcoming tour. My favourite futuristic film is Blade Runner although it looks quite old fashioned now (laughter). But that might, just might give you a clue as to the theme of the forthcoming shows, but you will just have to wait and see.

What was the first single that you bought?

That was Michael Jackson’s Bad album.

Who did you first see performing live in concert?

That was The Fugees.

What was the last song or piece of work that made you cry?

The only time that I have ever cried live at a concert was just before he died; I went to see Leonard Cohen and he sang A Thousand Kisses Deep. It was just amazing and I burst out crying.

Now that the festival season is fast approaching, what would be your idea of the perfect Christmas?

That’s easy. The perfect Christmas in my view would be somewhere hot, lying on a beach, sunbathing next to some turquoise crystal blue water, with not very many people, just a few people who are very easy to be around, no expectations, everything would be very relaxed and I would be eating some really posh seafood from the local area like lobster or big massive prawns. That would be the ideal Christmas for me (laughter).

It sounds absolutely fantastic. I think that I will book a flight right now (laughter).

Go on, let’s do it (laughter).

On that note Paloma let me once again thank you for taking the time to speak to me today, it’s been great if a little short. You take care and I will see you here in Nottingham.

Thanks Kevin, you take care and bye for now.