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14-year-old singer-songwriter is YouTube hit
A TEENAGE singer-songwriter has amassed nearly 2,000 YouTube views and has recently recorded her fourth EP — all before her 15th birthday.
Charlotte Hackett, of Shrewsbury Road, Prestwich, is a true musician of the digital era — regularly uploading videos of her self-penned acoustic songs to the internet.
Despite turning 14 earlier this month, Charlotte has already amassed 1,751 followers on Twitter, 1,914 YouTube views and almost 500 individual YouTube subscribers.
And the Bury Church of England High School pupil has fame in her sights, with new EP Drawing Board due for release in November and plans for a career in music ahead of her.
Charlotte, who cites Taylor Swift, Ed Sheeran and Nina Nesbitt as inspirations, said: “If I could do anything with my future I would be a musician — this is what I love doing more than anything else.
“I got into the guitar two years ago because of Taylor Swift. She started learning the guitar aged 12 so I thought I’d better do the same and I borrowed an old battered guitar belonging to my aunty.
“Eight months later, I started having guitar lessons, bought my own guitar and haven’t looked back.”
Charlotte, who works with the Edwin Street Recording Studio in Bury, was hand-picked to take part in their showcase of the borough’s best new talent at The Met in April.
Having returned to The Met in July to support Prestwich band The Rocket and played an acoustic gig at Prestwich British Legion earlier this month, Charlotte says it is performing live which gives her a buzz.
She said: “I don’t get nervous before performing. I just say to myself it is no different to singing in my room and, if I am doing something I love, I shouldn’t worry.
“It is fantastic knowing people are actually interested in your music and what you are doing — not just those who come up to you after gigs but those online too.
“All this started with YouTube and it is an amazing community. I love being able to post things and see what people think of them immediately. But it is all too easy to hide behind a screen.
“Everyone who puts themselves online has to deal with malicious comments from time to time.”
The teenager, who plans to study music at college, has already released EPs Charlotte Hackett (August, 2012), Full Stop (November, 2012) and Back of the Bus (February, 2013). She says her songs are about the things which preoccupy “every teenage girl” and lyrical inspiration can come to her from anywhere.
Charlotte said: “A lot of the time my lyrics are not personal — I would be embarrassed if I wrote something about somebody and they knew it was about them. Sometimes if something has annoyed me or upset me I will write a song about it, which is better than taking it out on somebody I guess!”
And despite a longing for her songs to be heard, Charlotte has strong opinions about her future in the music industry. She said: “There is a side of music which is full of genuinely lovely people, but you also see artists clearly not enjoying life under their management.
“It would be amazing to be truly independent and to carry on releasing things off my own back without a record label.”
l Drawing Board, which features seven tracks including five originals, will be released for free via YouTube on November 4.
For more of Charlotte’s music: go to youtube.com/ user/Charlotte Hackett13
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