Mica Millar NTF Press Shot Crop (Medium Res)
Mica Millar NTF Press Shot Crop (Medium Res)

The Radar: Mica Millar Interview

By Soulfultiz
Wed 30 August, 2017

Before Manchester’s Mica Millar launches her latest single in Liverpool, Soulfultiz spoke to her about the Manchester scene, performing in Liverpool and her new music.

Mica Millar made a statement with her debut single, My Lover, releasing it on International Women’s Day. It announced her as a major talent, the sheer strength of her voice easily giving you goosebumps.

It is no fluke that the Manchester Evening News has tipped her as one to watch in 2017, and she has been further championed by both BBC Radio Manchester and BBC Introducing.

Her next single, Not the First, is released today, and is yet another showcase of her emotionally charged vocals and great heartfelt songwriting.

We caught up with Millar to chat about the Manchester music scene and what to expect from the single launch at the Buyers Club next month.

PS: I believe your first performance in Liverpool was at Liverpool Loves a few weeks ago. How was it?

MM: We really enjoyed it. I think the Liverpool crowd are probably a lot like Manchester audience being northern. If they like what you’re doing they’ll let you know about it. I definitely felt like we were welcomed with open arms and it was a great first show playing outdoors in the middle of the city, in the sunshine.

PS: Not The First is the second single taken from your debut album.  Any idea on when we can expect the album?

MM: The album has been written and I’m performing a lot of the songs that will be on it at the shows. Rehearsing and gigging with a band, you come up with new ideas and parts for the songs along the way so some of them are being developed, while other are pretty close to being finished. I had originally aimed to release it this year but gigging over the summer has taken precedence over recording so I’ll be getting back into the studio in after September and the album will be out in 2018.

PS: What was the inspiration behind Not The First?

MM: Not the first is about the ideology of “The One” and not wanting to settle for less than “incredible“. It about asking that question “Does The One exist?” and “Should we keep looking for it?“, and accepting that if the perfect person doesn’t come along, you might end up alone. It’s about making that choice and how painful it is to leave someone who loves you for someone who potentially, is ultimately just a figment of your imagination. Or maybe they aren’t? Time will tell.

PS: What can we expect from the Single Launch at the Buyer’s club next month?

MM: I’m really looking forward to the launch. I came across two support acts from Liverpool who I think are really talented and they’ll be performing before me. Neil Noa will be on first. He’s got a great voice and some brilliant songs. He’s going to be doing an acoustic performance so it’ll be really intimate. The second act is a three piece called Little Grace and the lead singer’s voice is so soulful. I found them on Facebook – they had a video of them performing a cover of a song, I can’t remember what it was but their vocal harmonies and the arrangement was amazing. I had it on repeat for days. When they got back to me and said they wanted to play I was really excited. Little Grace have some electronic influences and use a lot of synths in their tunes so it’s going to be varied but ultimately, it’s a night of Soul. I’ll be performing with my band and my three backing vocalists. Tickets are already selling fast so I think it’s going to be a really great event.

PS: What are you currently listening to?

MM: Wow, good question! My go to at the moment is usually Anderson .Paak, I’ve started listening to Anthony Hamilton again recently – I just love his voice. I always have some Stevie Wonder and Aretha Franklin on the playlist, as well as D’Angelo. I also saw Laura Mvula at Soundwave a few weeks ago and she was incredible so I’ve been listening to some of her stuff again recently.

PS: What’s the soul scene like in Manchester? Apart from yourself obviously, is there anyone we can look out for in the future?

MM: Definitely, there’s lots of great artists who are inspired by Soul. Mali Hayes is repping Neo-Soul in Manchester at the moment. She’s supporting me at my Manchester launch at The Deaf Institute on 30th August. I love her good vibes and she’s got really soulful but delicate voice. Family Ranks are another great band – their sound crosses over with Hip Hop really, they have a vocalist called Ruby-Anne who’s got a great voice. The Mouse Outfit are leading the way for soulful Hip Hop with MC’s like Sparkz who is doing his solo tour at the moment. There’s loads of great up and coming Hip Hop artists like Layfull Stop and IADDB another female, Neo-soul/Hip Hop artist. There’s also groups like Freewize Men and Cut De Sac. I get to hear a lot of great Soul and Hip Hop doing my radio show on Reform Radio, which you can hear every other Monday from 7-9pm.

Mica Millar‘s single launch takes place at the Buyers Club on Wednesday 13th September. Tickets are available now from Skiddle.