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My Leeds
MY
LEEDS
MY
LEEDS
CORINNE
BAILEYRAE
By
Simon
O’Hare
Deputy Editor
for The
Leeds Guide
CORINNE BAILEY RAE IS ONE OF THE MOST
IMPORTANT BRITISH JAZZ AND SOUL ARTISTS
TO EMERGE IN THE LAST DECADE. BORN AND
RAISED IN LEEDS, WHERE SHE STILL LIVES, HER
RISETOFAMEBEGANIN2006WITHTHERELEASE
OF HER EPONYMOUS FIRST ALBUM. SINCE
THENSHEHASSOLDMORETHANFIVEMILLION
ALBUMS WORLDWIDE, COLLABORATED
WITH THE LIKES OF STEVIE
WONDER AND JOHN LEGEND,
AND BEEN NOMINATED FOR A
HOST OF AWARDS, WINNING
TWO MOBOS AND A MOJO,
AS WELL TWO GRAMMYS
FOR HER WORK ON HERBIE
HANCOCK’S ‘RIVER: THE JONI
LETTERS’. WE CAUGHT UP
WITH CORINNE AT THE 40TH
BIRTHDAYCELEBRATIONSFOR
THE ICONIC JUMBO RECORDS
SHOP IN LEEDS, WHERE SHE IS
A REGULAR CUSTOMER.
WHAT’S SPECIAL ABOUT LEEDS THAT MADE YOU WANT TO
STAY HERE?
I guess the main reason I’ve stayed here is because most of my friends and
family are here. I think you can make your home anywhere – and a lot of
my work is out of Leeds, out of England – but I like it here because I like
the size of the city, the fact that it’s really near the countryside, the fact that
there’s some really great restaurants, the Hyde Park cinema I really like.
Tere’s just a pocket of things that I enjoy and mostly I’m here because of
my friends and family.
WHAT ARE YOUR FAVOURITE PLACES FOR A DAY OR NIGHT
OUT IN LEEDS?
I like the Sela bar; andTe HiFi Club, Sunday nights are great there. I really
like Fuji Hiro in the Merrion Centre; Dos Amigos in Kirkstall, that’s really
good too. I love wandering around Kirkstall Abbey. Te New Ellington is
excellent, a great restaurant. And I’ve got to mention Te Reliance, Hansa’s
and the Victoria Quarter... there’s so much to choose from.
WHATAREYOURFAVOURITEMEMORIESGROWINGUP INLEEDS?
I grew up in Moortown and I guess a lot of my favourite memories are
school memories. I was at Allerton High, I was in the hockey team there,
I remember playing hockey. And playing at the Duchess of York [a pub
that closed in 2000] - Nirvana had played there in ‘91 or something, so
we felt like part of this tradition of playing in these wild venues! I guess a
lot of them are music related. I worked at Te Underground [a nightclub
underneath what is now the O2 Academy that closed in 2000], so I have a
lot of good memories of there when it was open.