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I nearly quit music career to be a dog walker after smash hit – now I’m releasing my debut album eight years later

IT’S been eight long years since her smash single Say Something rode high in the charts and dominated clubs across the country.

But, finally, singer Karen Harding, 31, is releasing her debut album Take Me Somewhere on September 29.

Karen Harding is releasing her debut album eight years after her hit single Say Something
The singer is both excited and scared to discover how her music will be received

A lot has happened in the intervening time; the coronavirus pandemic came and went and Karen had two children.

While, at times, her will to remain in the music business was tested, the Geordie star kept her head down and stayed busy collaborating with huge names in the electronic music world such as Armand Van Helden and Oliver Heldens, biding her time for a solo return.

In an exclusive interview, she says: “There’s a few times when I’ve thought about setting up a dog walking business just because I was so sick of the politics of like…

“I was never doubting that I wanted to sing, I’ve always wanted to sing, but at times the politics of music can get in the way and it’s very frustrating. It can leave you feeling a little bit like not motivated.

“I think if any artist says they didn’t go through phases of that then they’d be lying because I think we all do, even the big ones go through it.”

She emanates no bitterness towards the hold up, though, as frustrating as it surely was. Instead, the bubbly singer appears to be a believer in what will be, will be and, ultimately, thinks the extra time has only helped her make better material.

“I don’t think having two kids in between helped or lockdown, all this sort of stuff,” she admits. “I love my two kids, obviously, but these things can also halt things, but it’s not a bad thing, it gives you more time to think about it.”

Reflecting on the delay from inside a recording studio, she continues: “I do feel like it’s been a long time and I could have released this years ago, easily, but it’s not just how it worked out. A lot of things make these things happen so I just had to play the waiting game and it’s all good.

“At least I’m gonna have this in my life, and I think it’s a bucket list moment for me as well. I’m so excited but at the same time absolutely bricking it because you’re scared of what the reaction’s going to be.

“I’ve been a bit scared to release a huge body of work because are people going to listen to it? This is the world we’re in right now? (preference for easily digestible singles) I think even if it’s my closest fans or someone who lives in a basement in Hungary, I’m not bothered. At least I’m able to do it.”

The first single from the new album is Wrong Places, a dark trance track with Karen’s distinctive vocals at the fore as it builds up to a huge, catchy chorus that’s impossible not to bop to.

She’d love to see it replicate Say Something’s success, but isn’t too hung up on the numbers.

“I’m super excited to see people’s reactions,” she says. “It’s a really exciting time but also my head’s all over the place.

“It’s still a really good feeling. I don’t know any artist who wouldn’t like chart success. It’s still a thing it’s still something you dream of. In terms of the streams and stuff, we’ll see. I try not to look at the numbers too much, my team do that a lot and I don’t. You can get to concentrated on the numbers, I just want to enjoy the music and let it flow.”

Say Something also features on the album, it’s continued popularity making its inclusion a no-brainer. It’s fitting, too, given that its success early in Karen’s career provided her with a good source of income to continue living her dream.

“If I hadn’t had that success early days, I think I would have really struggled,” she says. “I’d have been working a job as well as what I’ve been doing. To be honest, there’s nothing wrong with that. if that’s how you’ve got to do it I think don’t be scared to do that.

“It’s really hard to know when you’re going to get your next paycheck, if you’re going to get a record deal, if you’re going to get a fee or whatever, it’s really hard to know what’s coming next.

“I’ve just been really lucky, I think, and I don’t take it for granted at all. I just hope it continues.”

Having heard the record, she’s got nothing to worry about.

Take Me Somewhere is out on September 29
Karen has collaborated with some of the biggest names in electronic music

September 23, 2023 at 12:20PM

from The Sun

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