It’s not every day that an 18-year-old gets spotted by the frontman of a world-famous band and is asked to play at one of his stadium gigs but this is exactly what happened to Falmouth girl, Polly Money.
While playing at a small gig at Marylebone Summer Fayre this year, Polly was spotted by the frontman from Muse, Matthew Bellamy, and his Hollywood actress girlfriend, Kate Hudson, who stopped briefly to watch her perform and pick up one of her promotional kite flyers.
A few days later she received a phone call from Muse’s management team asking if she would like to open at the band’s World Tour gig at the Stade’ de France in Paris in June.
“It was awesome,” said Polly “It was such an honour to be asked and I am so thankful for the opportunity.
“I was nervous, but somehow I was in the right head space for the performance.”
Despite playing a half-hour set in front of 80,000 people at a stadium in Paris, Polly is grounded and extremely modest about her talent and she is happy to play anywhere, from small pubs to festivals.
The singer has just started her third and final year at the Institute of Contemporary Music Performance in London but she spent the summer playing at gigs and festivals all over Cornwall and the UK, including Porthleven Food and Music Festival, Beachbreak Live, Rock Oyster festival, Over The Hill Festival, and Boardmasters.
The 18-year-old also embarked on two tours in Cornwall this summer, supporting Australian singer, Ash Grunwald, on his UK tour and co-headlining a Cornwall/ Devon tour with award-winning Blues Boy, Dan Owen.
Music has always been a big part of Polly’s life and from a young age she played the piano, had singing lessons from the age of seven, and guitar lessons from the age of ten. Growing up, Polly listened to a lot of country music and during her teens, her music was influenced by RnB. Her style is a unique blend of acoustic and Pop and her vocals have been likened to those of the late Minnie Riperton.
“I’m easily influenced and inspired by different genres of music. I’m a real people-watcher so this often inspires my writing, as does Cornwall’s beautiful natural scenery,” Polly explained.
“I love John Mayer and Jason Moraz and people like this inspire my style and songwriting.”
Polly has been writing her own music since she was 10 and her first gig was at the Henri Lloyd Falmouth Week. She recorded her first album, Along Came Polly, in 2009 and she has just released her new EP “That Guy” which she recorded at Sony ATV Studios in Soho, London.
While Polly loves people-watching, she often writes her music in the comfort of her own room at home in Falmouth or London.
“The riff comes first, then the melody, and finally the lyrics,” she said.
“Sometimes I go down to Jam Records in Falmouth. It’s a very cool record shop and a great place to find inspiration because you are surrounded by different types of music.”
Over the next 12 months, as she finishes her last year of her degree, Polly is also planning to do as much gigging as possible, write more songs, and secure support slots for gigs and festivals. She is also hoping to take a week-long tour in France next year.
“My ambition is just to travel with music and hopefully make a career out of it,” commented Polly.
Her enthusiasm is endless and her upbeat, happy-go-lucky attitude is refreshing and contagious. With one stadium gig already under her belt, it’s likely to be the first of many for this talented Cornish gem.
First album you listened to
Dixie Chicks, Take Me Home
Who would you most like to perform with (dead or alive)?
Michael Jackson or John Mayer
Who’s on your iPod now?
John Mayer, Haim, Frank Ocean, Taylor Swift, Ben Howard and Gabrielle Aplin
Which venue would you love to play at?
Koko in Camden, London. It’s a big old theatre with 1,500 capacity. I would love to headline there!
Who would you like to support?
Ed Sheeran or Gabrielle Aplin
Which has been your favourite gig this year?
Supporting Muse was a definite highlight! Over The Hill Festival was fun this year as was the Rock Oyster Festival
Who are your favourite Cornish artists?
Tom James and Willie and The Bandits
What do you think of Cornwall’s music scene and how would you like it to improve?
There are loads of promising young acts coming through including Tom James. Cornwall needs a main venue where local artists can regularly perform without taking them away from the smaller, intimate gigs that take place across the county.