Catching up with Sophie May Williams

Its was back in Spring 2013 when I first heard Sophie May Williams sing.  She was busking in Ossett Town Centre, and it stopped me in my tracks.  I invited her to sing at Eller Coffee and was delighted when she accepted.  With that voice it was no surprise that within a few months we would be watching her perform in front of millions on the final of BBC’s The Voice.

Amongst other successes, in late 2014 Sophie teamed up with Georgia Harrup and sold out a concert in Ossett at Trinity Church called an Evening of Northern Voice. She has continued to be popular in Ossett and has kept in touch.

Sophie kindly offered to do a quick Q&A to let us know what’s been happening.

Mark: On reflection, what do you feel you gained from The Voice?

Sophie:  oooooh wow it all seems so long ago! I definitely gained a lot more confidence – more than I ever thought I had. It also helped me realise what kind of artist I wanted to be and how I could achieve it. I started to write more songs and spend more time in the studio which enabled me to learn more about the production and arrangement of songs.

Mark: How did The Northernettes come about?

Sophie:  So basically Katie had seen Georgia and I on the third series, already being a fan and an ex contestant. After our auditions she reached out to us through Twitter with just general appreciation and we responded. Georgia has a vintage boutique online and Katie owns a quirky vintage shop and I just have a weird and wonderful love of vintage so we all thought it would be a good idea to meet up and just talk vintage really! After we got together and had got on so well, we decided to book a rehearsal space and just jam together. We all had such a laugh and then had the mad idea to form a retro vintage lovin’ 3 piece girl group. We’ve just released our first single and couldn’t be happier!!

Mark: What are the main differences working in a group?

Sophie:  It’s a lot louder for a start!! I personally love being in a group as you can constantly bounce ideas off one another, so there’s always some sort of creative spark going off whenever we’re together. I’ve done a lot of solo work and a lot of solo writing so it was really refreshing to work with other people whom you respect both musically and personally.

Mark:  How have you managed to fit everything in to 2015?

Sophie: When you’re doing something that you love it’s not a case of having to fit things in, you just have to mould yourself around your schedule and make things work. Personally, I love being busy and having projects to work on!

Mark: Favourite memory from the last year?

Sophie: Playing at the Isle Of Wight festival, 10000%!! It was our first gig together as a group so it was pretty daunting as it’s such a massive festival but we just embraced it and had the most amazing time!! I’m just ecstatic that I got to see Fleetwood Mac live – they’re one of my favourite bands and inspirations and when Stevie Nicks sang Landslide I just cried my eyes out… and I never cry!!

Mark: What’s in store for you in 2016?

Sophie: Lots of writing, studio time, interviews and PR sessions so all very exciting!!

Mark: Is there anything you’d like to develop more in your music career?

Sophie: I’d love to keep up the momentum of everything that’s happening right now. It feels like it’s the right time for everything that’s going on and I’m a firm believer that everything happens for a reason. I’d love to continue making music so I’d definitely wish for longevity within the band – I want to be writing and performing music even when I’m 70!!


The Northernettes debut single, “Let’s Go” is out now  – you can download it on iTunes.