Fourteen years ago a Herefordshire primary school girl predicted she would be famous one day, and judging by the huge fanfare of publicity currently surrounding Ellie Goulding, she was spot on.
Twenty-three-year-old’ Ellie’s meteoric rise to stardom was soundly reinforced last week with a Brit Award as the critics’ choice of 2010, and the future is looking extra good for the girl from Lyonshall who learned to play guitar and write her own folk-inspired music at the age of 15.
Success for the former Lady Hawkins’ School pupil has not come as a big surprise for Ellie’s proud mother, Tracey Goulding-Summers, who encouraged her daughter’s love of music.
“She’s worked damn hard and deserves all of it!” says Tracey, who used to live in the village.
Ellie grew up in Lyonshall with her elder sister, Isabel, younger brother Alex and sister Jordan.
For months, Ellie, has been the darling of music writers all over the country. She appeared on Jools Holland’s cutting edge TV programme, Later..with Jools Holland and her music continued to be regularly played on BBC Radio One.
As fame quickly beckoned, former fellow pupils and villagers in Lyonshall watched on in awe.
One former pupil recalled Ellie at primary school lamenting that though she wanted to write music, “all the good songs had already been written”.
Ellie had already topped the BBC Sound of 2010 list, which has previously heralded the careers of artists such as Adele, Mika and 50 Cent, when she was nominated for a Brit award with her ‘folktronica’ brand of music.
She will collect her award at the main event on February 16 having been named as the act “most likely to break through next year” at the nominations’ show last week.
It was while studying drama at university that Ellie was exposed to electronic music, and with the help of chart act Frankmusik, who she contacted on MySpace, developed her own sound, since compared to the music of Imogen Heap and Lykke Li.
Says Tracey: “She went down to Kent Uni, (too many miles away, incidentally, for me to give 100 per cent support – I wished I could have been down there more!) – and worked her socks off. “She struck the right chord with the powers that be and gradually picked up a following who were really impressed with her unique voice.”
Tracey points out: “When your child turns around at the age of eight and says, ‘I’m going to be famous one day mum,’ you say, “yes dear”; it’s very hard to imagine it actually happening! But really I should have realised just how determined she was – especially when she pronounced she was quitting uni to pursue her dream.
“Im sure a lot of other mothers would have been worried!”
Though Ellie has been the subject of numerous magazine and newspaper interviews, Tracey continues to be deeply moved.
“I must admit that I do all the ‘Motherly Blubbing’ when I open a magazine or see her on the TV, and the fact that she’s won a Brit is just surreal!
“So yeah I’m incredibly proud, as I am of all my children,” says Tracey, pointing out that her son, Alex is a “brilliant bass player” performing with his band in Hereford.