A Rae of sunshine

PUBLISHED: 10:50 23 March 2006 | UPDATED: 14:38 12 May 2010

Corrine Bailey Rae

Corrine Bailey Rae

HAILED as a modern day Billie Holiday, Corinne Bailey Rae has a lot to live up to. But the 26-year-old has taken the music world by storm with her critically-acclaimed album, which is loved by her peers as well as the public. Her bluesy, soft, almost a w

HAILED as a modern day Billie Holiday, Corinne Bailey Rae has a lot to live up to. But the 26-year-old has taken the music world by storm with her critically-acclaimed album, which is loved by her peers as well as the public. Her bluesy, soft, almost a whisper, voice would make you think it belongs to someone from a more musically exotic location - Mississippi or Manhattan, say - but not just east of the M1. Her musical career began when she was singing in a church, and when her youth leader offered to buy her an electric guitar, a star was born. A love affair with Led Zeppelin in her teens forged the way for Corinne to start her own indie rock band, Helen. Uninspiring name notwithstanding, Helen began attracting considerable local attention. And that was good enough to elicit an offer of a deal from the home to all manner of guitar abusers, Roadrunner Records. All was going well until the bassist became pregnant and the band fragmented. So Corinne went to Leeds University to study for an English literature degree. By now, she was writing her own material and moving away from everything indie to something with a little more soul. By the time EMI signed her last year, she had more than 10 years' experience under her belt. Her latest single, Go Put Your Records On, was a number one and she is on her first UK tour, which includes an appearance at The Junction in Cambridge. The tour coincides with the release of her debut album, Corinne Bailey Rae. - Corinne Bailey Rae is at The Junction on March 31. For more details visit www.junction.co.uk

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