Carly’s next step on road to stardom

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SHE is currently best known for being the girlfriend of The View frontman Kyle Falconer - but Carly Connor is set to become a major star in her own right.

Signed to the mighty Atlantic Records and managed by the team that look after Paolo Nutini, the 20-year-old from Glasgow’s tough Easterhouse scheme is tipped to be a household name after debut EP Let Go To Be Free drops on Monday.

Connor moved to the bright lights of London three years ago and scored herself a major label record deal after a spur-of-the-moment audition.

“I was 17 when I went to London and I was just meant to be there to get some songs together and no-one was supposed to hear me,” says the blonde singer, who plays her first headline gig in the Capital at Electric Circus on Tuesday. “But people kind of found out about me and I went to Atlantic just to meet them, but I took my guitar and ended up playing a couple of songs.”

So impressed was Atlantic head honcho Max Lousada, that the young starlet was signed on the spot.

Since then Connor has racked up a impressive live resume. She supported fellow Scots The View and Nutini on tour last year, entertained 10,000 fans at the Arena Civica in Milan and played at the Montreux Jazz Festival alongside Chaka Khan.

Atlantic’s new protégée expects to release her debut album later this year and has been working with an impressive line-up of producers including Angelo Petraglia (Kings Of Leon), Daniel Ledinsky (Cee Lo Green) and Kid Harpoon (Florence and the Machine).

The first of these tracks is released next week on her EP, which includes current single Let Go To Be Free, plus The Road and Walking In The Sand - three songs that show off a powerful voice that brings to mind Aretha Franklin, Janis Joplin and Tina Turner. Not to mention a knack for writing heartfelt lyrics that defy her years.

The singer says she struck up a close friendship with Nutini, who acts as a mentor as well as a friend.

“Paolo is so cool and down to earth and just a regular guy from up the road,” she says. “It gives me hope that I can do it too.

“I think, ‘I can never do all that as I am from Easterhouse’ – but he shows I can. He’s from Paisley!”

Boyfriend Falconer is another who has had a big hand in her sound. “Kyle has been a huge influence musically,” she says. “Since I met him all we have done is write tunes - he’s got me thinking more about lyrics and helped me get better at writing them.”

After being cooked up in the recording studio for months writing for the album, Connor is now desperate to get out and play live.

“This has already been a really exciting year for me and is set to get better and better,” she says of the headline tour that brings her to the Capital next week. “I can’t wait to get out on tour and rock it.”

Just days after her gig at Electric Circus, the singer is set to fulfil one of her long-time ambitions - playing at next weekend’s T in the Park.

“I just about wet myself when I heard and I’m not even kidding,” she laughs. “When I found out I was blown away. It’s such a big thing for me.”

Carly Connor, Electric Circus, Market Street, Tuesday, 7pm, £6, www.theelectriccircus.biz

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