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An Artist on the Rise: Introducing Delilah Montagu

By Aliki Barnes  

Delilah Montagu's extraordinary journey from a small town in Hampshire to the global stage is nothing short of remarkable. Her story began at the age of six serenading her family at home to performing at a sold-out Madison Square Garden in 2023. Her success is an inspiration for emerging artists across the globe.  

Born and raised in rural England, 23-year-old Delilah developed a deep love for music from an early age. At just nine years old, she started learning the piano and guitar and by 12 she had composed her first orchestral piece. Unlike many teenagers who side-line their creative pursuits to focus on awkward playground crushes and school assignments, Delilah’s commitment didn’t waver. In fact, by 17 she had already signed her first record deal.  

Delilah Montagu

Photo: Attitude

Delilah draws inspiration from indie-folk and rock luminaries like Joni Mitchell, Phoebe Bridgers, Florence & the Machine, Bon Iver and Michael Kiwanuka. She explores a variety of genres in her work, infusing indie, pop, R&B, and soul with her own unique sound. 2019 marked the release of her critically acclaimed debut EP In Gold on Columbia Records, featuring top hits Temptation and Gold. The album sparked a wave of excitement and praise from notable publications such as Sunday Times Culture, New York Magazine’s Vulture, The Times and The Line of Best Fit, which declared: “Temptation soars with a beautifully cyclic melody that hits the morose, the melancholic and the euphoric”. The EP’s smooth notes and silky sounds seduce the listener into a sensory slumber.  

For Delilah, music serves both as a means of emotional expression and as a tool to process those emotions. The vulnerability she conveys in her work fosters an intimate rapport between her and her fans, akin to a friendship. Delilah’s second six-track EP is a prime example of this raw emotional expression. Entitled This Is Not A Love Song and released in 2021, it was written towards the end of a relationship and stands as her most authentic work to date. “The songs on this EP are about the end of a relationship. They symbolise my inner relationship with myself as well as the experiences I had with my partner. The rawness and honesty of this EP is very exposing, and it is the most openly I have ever written about my life – which makes the EP very special and close to my heart” Delilah shares.  

In addition to her solo artist career, Delilah is actively involved in building her portfolio of features and co-writes. At the start of her journey, she collaborated with globally renowned DJ/producers Black Coffee and David Guetta, featuring on their track Drive, released in 2018. “I love people and what a gift it is to be able to have that intimate process with someone... Just being able to be open and put my ideas out there,” Delilah told The Line of Best Fit.  

There’s no question that Delilah’s career was already on an upward trajectory but what makes her story particularly intriguing is the unexpected twist that propelled her career. Delilah’s fame skyrocketed in 2022 when producer and DJ Fred Again sampled her song Lost Keys, a melancholic track describing the feeling of being surrounded by a bustling lively crowd yet feeling completely alone. Fred Again sped up the track to blend it with dynamic and upbeat electronic sounds creating a chart-topping club hit called Delilah (pull me out of this).  

Delilah Montagu

Photo: Attitude

In addition to her beautiful vocals, the incorporation of her name into the song’s title has secured her as a notable and iconic figure in the music scene. Fans became intrigued, asking questions like, "Who is Delilah? Where did she come from?". This curiosity generated a substantial increase in traffic to Delilah's page, becoming a pivotal factor in her rapid rise to fame.  

The collaboration with Fred Again not only transformed the narrative of Delilah's music but also left an indelible mark on the global music scene. With over 77 million streams on Spotify and a Brit Silver certification, the track found its way into YouTube adverts, FIFA World Cup broadcasts, NPR's Tiny Desk Concert, and even headlined Fred Again's huge Glastonbury set. The song's uplifting energy, set against its initially introspective origin, served as a symbol of optimism and connectivity felt in a post-lockdown world, illustrating the transformative power of music’s ability to unite.  

Delilah Montagu

Photo: The Line of Best Fit

Now living in LA and signed to MNRK Management, Delilah’s future looks very bright. Her latest single Coffee, released in December 2023, offers a refreshingly sweet and gentle portrayal of friendship. The song features warm acoustic guitar melodies with sweet and soft harmonies, “If you want me, I would be there in a heartbeat, call me and I’ll bring you coffee, and tell you there’s nothin’ to lose”. In essence, Delilah is trying to show that friendship and love don’t need to be complicated, whenever you need her, she’ll be there.  


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