When you listen to the music of Clara Mann it is hard to remember she is just 19 years old. Vulnerable lyrics are accompanied by stripped back production to create folksy ballads of incredible fragility. Her debut single I Didn’t Know You Were Leaving Today was released toward the end of last year, and her raw talent gained her a buzz among the music community. Today sees the release of her new single Thoughtless on Sad Club Records, as she works towards the release of an EP next month.
Thoughtless is melancholic and reflective, listening to it feels like a rare insight into another person’s private, personal world. Mann’s upbringing in the South of France resulted in a youth immersed in classical and religious music. This is reflected in her songwriting, with Mann commenting “The village we grew up in was (as a lot of the south of France is) deeply Catholic, so actually, religious music really affected me, at least from a musical point of view. My family weren’t really religious, but it was so ingrained into the village life – some of the arrangements on the EP are really quite choral, which I suppose must come from that side of my life.” Mann’s classical training is evident in her confident and skilled orchestration, but is balanced in such a way that the music never feels artificial. Quite the opposite in fact, it is the candid nature of the songs that make them so unique and interesting.
It is rare to hear lyrics so unguardedly honest, let alone from such a young musician. If Clara Mann’s first two singles are anything to go by, her new EP which is due in a few weeks is likely to be one of the most exciting releases of the year.
Listen to Clara Mann’s new track Thoughtless here.
Photography by Chiara Gambuto.