Torquay artist The Last Folk Singer has released her debut EP, Living In A World Of Silence. The project headed by poet and songwriter Camille Barr sees her seamlessly blend her two worlds of artistic expression to capture the kaleidoscope world where exploration is key to understanding the depth of existence. Sitting upon a delicate piano bed with curtains of strings draped around it, Barr creates ballads that underscore deeper political, sociological and environmental messages.
Within her first body of work, the five track EP Living In A World Of Silence, as recorded in Hot Bias Recording Studio with collaboration from Sefi, dissects a number of societal constructs. But firstly, it dissects the constructs of art and dreaming. Leaning in with A Little Gypsy Song, Barr acknowledges this as the piece for her that blurred the lines of where poetry and music stood.
Is there a feeling of relief or excitement that your EP has now been released?
It is wonderfully exciting to get the EP out. Already I have come further than I thought possible, beginning from the idea to turn some of my poetry into music as I wrote my second book.
Was it as much hard work as you thought?
Hmm hard work? Well it was certainly a lot of work but I just love it so much I could never say hard work. I enjoy the challenge even in the moments that are full of doubt.
Did COVID add another layer of complexity in getting it done?
Only when it came to recording – it meant a slight delay. So I just used this extra time to write some more and practice, practice, practice (there is always more to learn)!
Sonically, how would you describe your music?
As I’m self taught I don’t know all the rules which means I step outside of them quite often making my sound a little different, like the sound of a new perspective perhaps? Mostly though I believe my sound is that of words finding music to deepen their resonance.
How did your music career start?
By simply taking a chance on myself, wanting it more than I cared about failure. And through poetry – it always comes back to my poetry being the spark.
Who has had the biggest influence on your career?
Artists like Tracy Chapman who beautifully weave honest stories into melodies that touch your soul and never leave you.
What’s the background behind the name The Last Folk Singer?
As a poet my music is very lyric driven so I wanted something that would convey that within the name. This got me thinking about folk music and the history of storytelling through this genre, however when I searched for it on my music app it had disappeared. This really shocked me and made me see the subtle yet strong statement this made. So I decided to make my own statement, one that although not literal would hopefully make you think.
Are there plans for more new music?
A full album is in the works as we speak.
How excited are you about the prospect of touring?
I am very excited! It will be wonderful to make that more personal connection with an audience.
What’s a fun fact that your fans wouldn’t know about The Last Folk Singer?
I didn’t know I could sing until someone overheard me in my thirties and told me I had a lovely voice.
Interview By Rob Lyon