By day, she works in a warehouse, packing CDs and records. By night, she sells CDs — her own. She’s Grace Davies, a 20-year-old singer and songwriter from a rural village in Britain. And she has taken The X Factor UK by storm.
She got a “big” or “huge” yes from all four judges at her audition. Since then, she has brought her smoky voice to both killer covers (like David Bowie’s Life On Mars?) and her own original works (like Hesitate). Grace has her hometown, and seemingly the whole country, behind her. Here are 10 fun facts about this rising star.
- She started by singing in her pubs and restaurants at the age of 16. Her friends thought she would be stuck in those venues and never have a real singing career. “And I was starting to believe them,” she says, until she auditioned for The X Factor.
- Though Grace claims she’d prefer singing “in a pair of trainers and some baggy trousers,” she has made pink highlights and sparkly eye shadow her signature look.
- She writes her own songs as well. She has performed her original works, including Roots, Wolves and Too Young throughout the competition, which even the show’s official YouTube account called “risky.” But it has certainly paid off!
- Grace has released these songs on an EP, My Kingdom, available on Spotify.
- She lists Carmen McRae, Etta James, Billie Holiday, and Ella Fitzgerald as her musical influences.
- When she returned to her hometown of Blackburn this past week, she was mobbed by fans of all ages.
- After she performed her original song Wolves, Simon said, “That was like listening to somebody who comes on the show as a returning artist with a hit record.” Grace was almost speechless, but managed to respond “Thank you so f***ing much” — on live TV.
- Grace’s family owns a cat, who’s pretty adorable.
- There’s a rumor that Grace had a brief fling with fellow contestant Matt Linnen at the contestants’ house.
- She has cleverly turned her crazy hair into her personal logo. Good branding!
It’s down to Grace, Kevin Davy White, and Rak-Su to battle it out for this season of The X Factor. Can Grace rocket from working in a warehouse in a rural village to worldwide fame? No matter what happens this weekend, Grace is already a winner.