This week we chat to Hannah Vivian-Byrne, known professionally as Hannah Grace, a Welsh singer and songwriter, who currently lives in London.
If there’s one word to sum up Hannah’s voice, it’s powerful. Hannah’s career began in 2013 after she joined Gabrielle Aplin on her album tour. You may recognise Hannah with her release of Fatboy Slim’s song ‘Praise You’ which was chosen as the soundtrack for Lloyds Bank TV, and has even been praised by Lady Gaga who tweeted a video of Hannah in 2017.
With her performances being inspired by the likes of Eva Cassidy and Stevie Nicks, you could agree that Hannah’s sound is very soul and jazz. Currently working on her first album, Hannah says that she feels very lucky to do what she loves every day, so we were excited to chat all things music and community.
What inspired you to get into music?
I never really thought about doing anything else! My parents introduced me to so much music growing up and I always sang. It felt natural to me to pursue a career in it.
How has your community shaped your work?
I am lucky enough to be part of a really amazing community of musicians. I suppose all starting with my friendship with Gabrielle Aplin, her support has enabled me to tour and release music (on her label Never Fade). I’m part of an ever-growing circle of wonderful artists and musicians such as, Hudson Taylor, Orla Gartland, Martin Luke-Brown, & Greta Isaac. We all play together and sing together and write together, and genuinely support each other in what often feels like a very competitive and brutal industry. I don’t know where I would be as an artist without these wonderful people.
What is your proudest achievement to date?
I have so many new songs that I am proud of and I am beyond excited to share them with the world. They feel more me than anything i’ve released before. My album isn’t even out yet and it’s already my proudest achievement – I just hope people will like it too!
Who are your biggest influences?
I have always loved Eva Cassidy she was my first music love. I have always been in awe of the classic jazz singers like Ella Fitzgerald , and Billie Holiday and Sarah Vaughan – I grew up wanting a voice like theirs. Then I found Joni, Stevie Nicks and Carol King and was inspired to start writing my own songs too. All these women were so talented and showed great character and strength through their music – they really helped me find my voice.
What do you love the most about where you live?
The thing I love the most about Ealing, is that it’s really green – there’s loads of parks near me and trees everywhere. I think that’s important when living in such a big overwhelming city like London.
Where would you recommend eating and drinking in Ealing?
Ealing Broadway has loads of lush spots to eat and drink. Limeyard is lush for brunch and Crispins Wine Bar is my favourite for a drink. It’s a bit shabby but literally has the best music playlist ever!
If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?
Right now? I’m happy where I am.
Where to find Hannah
About My Community Is…
When it comes to culture, London competes on a global scale. The UK’s capital is bursting with exciting things to see and interesting people to meet. It is no surprise given the incredible talent that can be found across every borough.
So the team at ideal flatmate wanted to meet the creative individuals producing some of the best work. We wanted to understand the significant role a person’s environment has on influencing their work, and at the same time, showcase the fantastic things they are producing.