Released 19th July, “Night On My Mind” is the latest single from Sharky (AKA Georgia Mason) taken from her newly announced upcoming debut album ‘People Are Strange’. Pushing the surreal and ambiguous into the realm of experimental, the LP is the result of shared musical understanding between Sharky and producer/husband Todd Speakman. Named after graffiti on a wall between Cricklewood and Kings Cross, “Night On My Mind” follows previous single “Shark”, which received upfront support from Sian Eleri (BBC Radio 1), Jamz Supernova (BBC 1Xtra) and Jess Iszatt (BBC Radio London).
Plunging into a swirling imaginative state from the opening line (“Night on my mind / Want to be rolled out like a carpet / in the aisle of your soul”), “Night On My Mind” grew from a dream Sharky had; walking through and exploring an unfamiliar house, before laying on the carpet in one of the rooms. “It seems tame, but I think the dream had some undertones to it… Because I woke up and wrote these lyrics!” She muses, “I wanted this song to be suitably ambiguous so the listener can really create their own image”. Utilising the musicality of Sharky’s distinctive vocal stylings, Todd Speakman makes her voice the primary instrument of the track. Offset with horns, warped out guitars and saxophone from Alex White (Fat White Family), the smooth layers point to Art Rock Influences including David Byrne and David Bowie.
Featuring both “Shark” and “Night On My Mind”, ‘People Are Strange’celebrates Sharky’s ability as a lyricist to reflect on playful, personal, and poignant themes with a sense of humour and openness to all people, places, and aspects of life.
The album takes its name from a photograph Sharky took in Paris when she was 18 and the subsequent dream she had about revisiting this place – brought to life by @everyonesfavourite. While reflecting on her own growth and the signposts that have marked this journey, Sharky’s writing allows space for interpretation and reflections. The LP follows previous releases “Hawaii”, “Cause and Effect” and the “Fruit” EP, which garnered support from Annie Mac, Gilles Peterson, Lauren Laverne, Jamz Supernova, BBC Introducing and BBC Radio 4.
Long before becoming Sharky, Georgia Mason always loved sharks; “when I was small, I would sit in the pub and tell people all about them”. With her grandad a paratrooper in the army, Sharky’s family settled in Aldershot, a military town in Hampshire. Growing up close to her grandparents, Sharky would listen to her Nan – Joan – singing around the house. “She’s got such a gorgeous voice – really old school. She loved Doris Day and had a classic warble to her voice that I always tried to imitate”. Georgia began to craft the unique Sharky sound taking inspiration from Joan’s high soprano tones and the cross-generational vocal similarities with the women in her family.
After a spell of writing as ‘Georgia Mason’, Sharky began to feel disillusioned with the music industry and decided to move to London. Spending her days selling burgers, she would head down to the Southbank in the evenings to busk; taking the opportunity to experiment with song writing using just her voice and an autoharp. Making music this way unlocked a new type of creative freedom for Sharky.
As Georgia’s sound grew, she started to collaborate with other artists including Speakman Sound, Franc Moody and LONO. In this musical collective, she found a home of like-minded and creative free spirits. Stirring these artists in a mixing pot of entertaining collaboration, late night sessions, true experimentation, and self-exploration; Sharky’s musical project came to life. Steering the ship alongside Sharky was producer Todd Speakman, with the duo’s relationship developing into a strong bond, both musically and privately – “If Sharky is a shark, Todd is at least one fin”, Sharky adds.
Continuing to strengthen her list of supporters, Sharky performed as part of a televised Speakman Sound set on the BBC Introducing stage at Glastonbury 2017. She has since gone on to play at the Jazz Café and support Jordan Mackampa on his sold out 2021 tour.