By Hannah Trigwell
Every once in a while (and usually when you least expect it) you discover something special. A huge (but entirely selfish) part of you wants to keep it for yourself, assuming that if the rest of the world knew about it, that it would somehow get ruined.
So around 2 years ago when I happened to chance upon a 17 year old busker playing acoustic guitar on stage at the Brudnell Social Club in Leeds, I felt comfortable that I wouldn't be concerning myself too greatly with that particular dilemma on this occasion.
However I was in danger of being proved hideously wrong, as beautiful song after beautiful song floated from the stage. The packed venue fell diligently silent throughout, and the obviously nervous young girl grew in confidence as her set progressed. All of the songs were lyrically mature and incredibly accomplished (more accomplished than any 17 year old had any right to be), and in the short time it took to complete the set, you know you seen someone who, whilst might not make it big, certainly had an immense amount of talent. (If you can find it "Old Fashioned Stuff" remains one of the few 'Love Songs' that to this day, still summon a lump to my bitter and cynical throat.)
So what has happened to Hannah Trigwell in the last couple of years? 2 EPs, 2.5 million hits on YouTube, worldwide subscribers and the kind of attention that seems far removed from support slots at small acoustic gigs, and playing to shoppers on their way to Argos. So I wonder - Has my feared prophecy come true? Is the rest of the world ruining that special discovery?
"Not Enough" opens with "Pieces", a slow burning, heartfelt epic. An assured development in Trigwell's song writing, but one that holds on to the nucleus of acoustic innocence and beauty. This development is pretty much demonstrated in this song alone, from the opening verses of simple vocals and string picking, seamlessly growing into a full on (radio friendly?) coolness.
"Headrush" follows closely behind, and follows suit. Whilst the melodies remind me a little of Taylor Swift, this may well be the track to break her to the wider public. This will be on a film soundtrack by 2012 and will be played in the scene when the leading couple are going through a semi-breakup before the finally realise that they are perfect for each other. (At the point of writing I'm not sure what odds you can actually get for this prediction...)
"Call Me" marks a slight departure from the previous tracks and whilst not shifting genres, again demonstrates that Trigwell has moved beyond '1 girl + 1 guitar'. I must admit this was not an instant favourite, but further listens has allowed it in and is, to rent a cliche a 'grower'.
"No Way Back" slips back into form, and is probably as stripped-back as Hannah Trigwell will get now. A simple enough 'breaking up' song, but constructed with a real level of wisdom and thoughtfulness. The bitter and cynical throat will have to get used to more lumps.
So as with many great discoveries, perhaps they only truly become 'great' when more people get involved and validate those thoughts that you originally had. So consider this your invite, go out and listen to Hannah Trigwell, the world's best-kept secret.
Greg Holden is a Scottish-born, English-raised songwriter currently living in New York City.