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KT Tunstall Interview

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by Tony Collins (subscribe)
I am a freelance writer specialising mainly in health and education and living in Staffordshire. Find me on Linked In
Songwriting Superstar Set To Raise Roof Of Cathedral
This year's Lichfield Festival will be launched in style when leading singer-songwriter KT Tunstall opens the jam-packed nine-day programme with a concert in historic Lichfield Cathedral on Friday 5 July. Since achieving worldwide success with her debut album Eye To The Telescope in 2004, which went on to sell more than five million copies, KT Tunstall has remained at the forefront of UK singer-songwriter talent. The Scottish star went on to win the 2006 Brit Award for Best British Female Solo Artist and also collected the Ivor Novello Best Song award for her self-penned hit 'Suddenly I See'. She also landed a Grammy nomination for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance. KT Tunstall first came to national prominence in 2004 when she performed 'Black Horse and the Cherry Tree' on Later With Jools. But she was certainly no 'overnight sensation'.

KT Tunstall
KT Tunstall will be headlining the Lichfield Festival

A: I looked a lot younger on Jools than I actually was. I was just about to turn 30. I'd spent 10 years of hard graft to get to the point of making my first record after signing publishing and record deals. I'd put in the thousands of hours of practise and live performing, so when the golden ticket came up for me, I was able to really use it. Things moved extremely quickly (after that). We rushed the album out after the crazy reaction to the live performance, and Black Horse... was followed by Suddenly I See, and then the lid just blew off. I loved it and found it uncomfortable at the same time. But what I loved the most was being able to travel the world with my guitar.

KT Tunstall
The Brit Award winner will be performing at Lichfield Cathedral

Q: How easy do you find songwriting? Has it become easier or more difficult?

A: I am extremely grateful that songwriting has always come very easily to me. I wouldn't try to pretend that I completely understand how it happens, but I'm more aware now of what helps me create. Solitude, interesting travel, and journaling are three big ones.

Q: Performing on stage or working in the recording studio? If you had to choose one?

A: I used to answer that very easily; stage. Recording just felt like a vehicle to get more gigs. I have absolutely changed how I feel about that now, I love both equally and thank god don't have to choose between them! The studio for me now is a playground of experimentation and endless potential, I love it.

Q: You've performed in so many different places around the world and in so many different settings. What have been the most memorable?

A: 60ft up in a one-woman air balloon inside The Eden Project in Cornwall...Giants Stadium in New York to 65,000 people for Live Earth... Japan is always a thrill. I busked at the top of the Empire State Building last year, that was great!

Lichfield Cathedral
Lichfield Cathedral plays host to KT Tunstall

Q: In Lichfield, you'll be playing in a medieval cathedral. Have you done many of those before?

A: I grew up with a medieval cathedral down the road in St Andrews, so I'm hoping I'll feel very at home! The crew and I have a game where we talk in 'Castle Speak', and I feel this may reach some sort of peak the day we play Lichfield!

Q: You now live in America. Does that feel like home now? Do you miss St Andrews?

A: I really am a nomad at heart. I don't feel the need to have roots so deep anywhere that I'll stay forever. There are many places I would like to live. I love living in California, it is an amazing part of the world with extremely beautiful nature and many interesting people. I am in Scotland quite regularly which I enjoy, but I miss the LA sunshine when I'm away!

KT Tunstall is appearing in Lichfield Cathedral on the opening night of the Lichfield Festival, Friday 5 July 2019. More information and ticket booking for all Lichfield Festival events is at
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Why? A Chance To See Singing Star KT Tunstall In Cathedral Setting
When: July 5
Phone: 01543 306150
Where: Lichfield Cathedral, 19A The Close, Lichfield WS13 7LD
Cost: Tickets from 11
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