A song about being a woman – when doors keep closing before me. In every area of my life facing the assumption that I am not quite up to it because of my gender – and also fighting my own instinct to cower down and go quietly rather than speak loudly and insist on being heard. Everything takes me longer and feels harder and the lyrics (the cold on a moonlit night, the shadow of a bird in flight etc) refer to the forces people don’t see; or maybe they see them but don’t want to talk about them”
Hannah White began 2023 standing on the winner’s podium at the Americana Music Association UK Awards, as a hugely popular winner for UK Song of the Year with the goosebump-inducing ‘Car Crash.’ But the London-based singer-songwriter is one of those artists who is always about the next thing, and the year will culminate in the release of a completely fresh adventure in her fast-expanding career: the exciting new album Sweet Revolution.
The opening single from the new album, ‘Chains Of Ours,’ is infectious with a percussive mood winning comparisons to a modern-day Fleetwood Mac.
Both single and album are produced by Michele Stodart of the Magic Numbers, and the full-length, due in November, will delight new and existing fans, including the thousands who will see White with husband and guitarist Keiron Marshall as special guests on Paul Carrack’s autumn UK tour.
All of that is a long way, and yet a short hop, from Sidcup, where Hannah was born and started picking up instruments at an early age. “I played piano and violin,” she says. “I got to learn because our borough gave free music lessons to families on benefits. I first picked up a guitar because my cousin had one and showed me a few chords. Although I couldn’t do much on it, I ended up playing it more than the other instruments because of how portable it was and great to write with.”
White remains passionately committed to the idea of music as a force for good, and it’s that genuine belief, which reaches far beyond her own musical ambitions. “Music has such a power over me,” she says. “It’s got me through some of the darkest times and I don’t know what I’d be doing without it. I feel so strongly that if everybody had that opportunity, so many people’s lives could be transformed.”
It’s that down-to-earth sincerity that is stamped on Hannah’s personality just as it is on her music. When people talk about her songs, they talk about her combination of autobiographical honesty, social conscience and joyful musicality, and that conversation is getting louder all the time.