Voice Of An Angel: Introducing Roberta Childs to the Ascensionite family
The divine vocalist soon to feature on Public Domain's new forthcoming single on Ascension.
The rolling green hills of Scotland. A land of single malt, tartan and one of the finest voices to break through into electronic music. Capturing the Celtic heritage of her homeland with a stunningly divine vocal sound, singer and actress Roberta Childs brings a fresh new take on the scene. Ahead of her debut with Public Domain, the Ascension® team caught up with Roberta to chat singing, acting and that moment in front of Simon Cowell.
Who are your musical influences?
It is really so varied. I don’t even know where to begin! Tina Cousins was probably the reason I got into dance music and was quite a big influence in how I started out. Above & Beyond, Craig Connelly, Whitney Houston, it’s genuinely a case of “you need to hear this” to “please don’t judge me”.
Your voice is beautiful. It is refreshing and has a true Celtic feel to it. Did you have any training?
Thank you! Growing up I trained with the Royal Scottish Academy of Music & Drama which was classical and great in teaching me my vocal ability. Ultimately the older I got the more I realised classical wasn’t for me. I then studied music in Perth and later did my degree in Glasgow. To be honest though, the best training I’ve had has been out on the road playing live. Those are lessons you can’t get in class.
What are your top five tracks of all time?
That’s up there with one of the most difficult questions in life.
Gouryella, Born Slippy – Underworld, Drifting away – Lange, No One Like You – CraIg Connelly, Turn it around - Alena (Space Brothers)
I genuinely feel so bad for the ones I’ve had to leave out.
What was the very first record you bought and do you still have it?
My dad allowed me to get the bus into town for the very first time on my own, to go buy him an Erasure CD. No, I don’t still have it.
You got the opportunity to sing in front of Simon Cowell. How was that experience and would you do it again?
It was a stress! I really didn’t want to do it but the band I was in at the time did and I was heavily outnumbered. Simon gave me nothing but great feedback but I wouldn’t do it again. I’m happy where I’m at and what’s for you doesn’t go by you.
You debuted in 2001 with the Euro House track Dreams. Have you always had a love for dance music?
No, to be honest I grew up wanting to be Mariah Carey or Whitney Houston. As I started going out and living a little, dance music became everything I loved. But It wasn’t until I heard a track with Tina Cousins on it that I realised I didn’t have to make ballads to be able to sing a great melody.
You're featuring on the forthcoming Public Domain single Where It All Began. How did the collaboration come about?
I had been out of the game for a few years and had the overwhelming urge to get back in the studio. When my husband (who’s a DJ) made the connection for me, I released a track on James' Infected Records label and after that we continued to work together.
What's it like working with James?
He’s a nightmare. Just kidding, he’s genuinely incredible. He is patient, honest and exceptionally good at what he does. We work well together in the sense that we have the same creative vison for everything we work on, well, almost everything. He could really be doing with turning s*** up! Apart from that, I love working with him.
What was the best and most memorable gig you've ever done?
The most memorable gig was probably Party In The Park singing to 100,000 people. It was just insane. You couldn't see a face but just a blurred sea of people having a good time. The best gig was probably playing in a small club in my hometown of Glasgow with a crowd that knows every word to your songs and radiating love and support.
Have you had any embarrassing gigs or moments on the road?
It was not really on the road but I was once doing a live TV interview and after being introduced I walked on set and sat on the couch opposite the presenters. As I sat on the couch, I must have did it with a little force, or else their couch was cheap and it flew backwards. The first live shot of me was of a couch on its side and two legs (mine) in the air. Every waking moment for me is usually an embarrassment.
What do you enjoy doing outside of singing?
I’m a mum, my whole life literally consists of running around after my kids and then gigging at night. If there’s any time in-between I’m usually at the gym or in the studio.
You've also starred in films like the independent ScotsFilm Revenge. How did you get into acting and do you have any forthcoming projects in front of the camera?
I did, although I try to forget it! I’ve did some acting here and there but that was my first lead. It was in parts a great experience and I also met some great talented people, aside from that it’s not one of my greatest moments. I recently worked on a film called Starcache which is on its final edit and I’m really looking forward to seeing the end product.
Are there any more music collaborations on the cards?
Much more music to come with myself and James Allan (Public Domain). The longer we work together the better it gets.
What advice would you offer to anyone looking to become a recording artist and live vocalist?
Keep Singing, open doors, steal the mic, don’t stop and don’t lose your passion.
Public Domain Featuring Roberta Childs Where It All Began is out soon on Ascension®.