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The talented Lauren Simm


LEIGH-ANN WORRELL

The talented Lauren Simm

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​HALF JAZZ-POP singer; half opera singer, fully talented.

Lauren Simm’s voice is an amazing anomaly. She is one of the very few able to seamlessly see-saw between lilting melodies a la Norah Jones and Lea Michele to the operatic stylings reminiscent of Sarah Brightman.

​The 19-year-old told WEEKEND BUZZ recently that opera singing ​​“came naturally” for her, while jazz-pop “chose her.”

“I think it chose me because I tried other things: the Beyonce and the Rihanna and the ‘shake dat’ type of music, but it wasn’t really me. Out of trial and error I realised that this is what sounds better for me and I play guitar and piano and it is very singer/songwriter of me,” she relayed.

“I love to be able to play the piano and express myself that way, but then to come and sing opera too is like a huge release of energy. Singing opera is a challenge and I like that and I like to add it in because no one expects it since I am only 5’ 2” and it is a good little selling point of mine,” Lauren adds with a quick laugh.

The St Winifred’s/Queen’s College alumna said music has always been a part of her life. In her childhood home in The Lake District (best known for the 19th century Lake Poets), Lauren recalled memories of her father playing the grand piano. The Simm family moved to Barbados when Lauren was nine years old.

“ . . . I used to try to copy him, and I was doing that for as long as I could remember. I started to take it seriously when I was about 16 and met Trevor Pretty and he started to teach me performance skills and how to talk to people in general . . . and I have been developing since then. Recently, I [also] started to learn to play the guitar and writing more and more songs and developing that side of me too.”

During her short, but growing career, the talented teen has been able to perform with the likes of American soul singer Chrisette Michele and at shows where American actor Columbus Short was in attendance.

Lauren was also a part of the Music Collective which, helmed by Trevor Pretty, took on the Follow Me tour. She was one of five artists who performed in the Dominican Republic for ten days in June this year.

“The experience was incredible. I did a show for some kids and they started off with maybe about 40 people and ended with 400. The hotel [where we performed] had a big theatre and it was me, my piano and the spotlight. There were beachside performances as well which were more hyped. I learned a lot and met people from a lot of countries,” she said of the trip.

​​Inspired title

​And the beat goes on, with an upcoming EP, boasting five self-penned tracks “at the moment”. She worked with Canada producer/songwriter Rob Wells (Justin Bieber, Selena Gomez, Paloma Faith) on the project titled Simple Explanations.

“The name [was inspired by] my writing style. It is deep and the message comes across as simple,” she explained.

Giving a glimpse into her writing process, Lauren said personal experiences and relationships tended to fashion her topics.

“ . . . I have to sit down at my piano and write it all out and make it into some expression of myself. I am a hopeless romantic so I write a lot of love songs but I try to change it up a bit, so for example my best friend has Asperger’s and I wrote a song about her personality . . . ,” she noted.

Lauren plans to release the tracks locally and shop it around to overseas labels and music distributors. The singer/songwriter also has her eyes set on studying music production at a college in England – with the strong support of her parents.

When Lauren isn’t writing or playing gigs across the island, you can find her among the puppies at the Royal Society For the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA). A volunteer there for the past seven years, she also started the Adopt campaign, where she encourages people to adopt a pet rather than buy one.

“Sitting with the puppies . . . is my fun, my free time [and] my therapy almost. They are my second family,” Lauren said with a smile.

 

 

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