Irish singer Imelda May is back with a new single Just One Kiss, featuring her mates Noel Gallagher on vocals and Ronnie Wood on guitar.
This superstar line-up came about after an idle texting exchange with the Oasis mastermind who happily agreed to a duet bringing what Imelda says is his “great vibe and kick-ass voice” to the steamy rock tale.
She met the Ronnie when they shared a stage in a Dublin blues basement when she was only 16, and the Rolling Stone brings an alley-cat energy to the rollicking tune.
“Ronnie’s just joyous to be around,” says Imelda. “It’s infectious. He’s fast, really on-the-ball, and he knows intuitively when something is working.”
Just One Kiss is a]lustful low-slung blues number showcasing Imelda’s prowess as a wordsmith and storyteller, and her distinctive voice.
“That moment you know it can go either way. The sharp notion if you succumb you might just lose control. The split-second decision you know might change everything, with just one kiss. Could you resist?”
This is the lead single off her sixth studio album, 11 Past The Hour, brimming with sensuality, emotional intelligence, spirituality and intuition marking a new chapter for Imelda.
Miles Kane is also a guest on the album that features inspired contributions from feminist thinkers and activists such as Gina Martin and Dr Shola Mos-Shogbamimu.
It was mostly written with co-producer Tim Bran and string arranger Davide Rossi who has worked with Coldplay, U2, Goldfrapp. Imelda says on this album she is diving deep into her true self, her Irish roots, her love of storytelling and singing from her soul.
“11 Past the Hour is my truth. I always write with meaning and from my heart as that’s the reason I write, to connect with my own story at each particular moment and I hope therefore I connect with others during theirs, even if just for a while,” notes Imelda.
“I’d like to think I can put into words and music what we all feel sometimes. We all laugh, sing, love, cry, dance, kiss, care. We all experience lust, anger, joy, worry, sorrow and hope. Sometimes we stay silent and hold it all in and sometimes we dance and throw it all to the wind with abandon, but one thing is for sure is we are in this life together. Each song is a moment in my life. Each life is a moment in time. Every minute counts.”
Born and raised in The Liberties area of Dublin, Imelda has become one of Ireland’s best-selling female artists in history. She was discovered by Jools Holland, who asked Imelda to go on tour with him, and she has gone on to perform duets with artists including U2, Lou Reed, Sinead O Connor, Robert Plant, Van Morrison, Jack Savoretti and Elvis Costello. She has featured on recent albums and live tours with Jeff Beck, Jeff Goldblum and Ronnie Wood.
Her last album went to No.5 in the UK Official Album Chart and she can count Bob Dylan and Bono amongst her fans. Last year, her 2008 album Love Tattoo was named the bestselling album of modern chart history by a homegrown female Irish artist by the Official Charts Company.
Last summer, Imelda released her debut poetry EP Slip of the Tongue to widespread critical acclaim and received global recognition for her poem You Don’t Get To Be Racist and Irish used by the Irish government’s ReThink Ireland campaign for billboards across the country.
11 Past The Hour is out on Decca Records on 23rd April.
Words by Paul Clarke, you can see his author profile here.