A CLACKMANNAN country singer has signed a contract with a Tennessee record label in what is quickly becoming a dream come true.

Francesca Gray has signed with the record label MC1 Nashville, in Goodlettsville, Tennessee after releasing her debut single Echoes That Remain.

Singing and writing from the heart with a captivating voice, Francesca worked with fellow Clacks musician Les Key in a partnership that garnered international attention.

The song and composition blends country music with a Celtic undertone to great effect, having been released earlier this year.

Hailing from The Raploch in Stirling, Francesca developed a love for music at an early age, encouraged by her mother Jane who introduced her to the likes of Patsy Cline, Dolly Parton and Trisha Yearwood.

As a teenager, she would escape to the picturesque “auld brig” by the old Stirling Bridge to write lyrics and poetry.

A passion for singing has seen her overcome her childhood shyness and her brilliant voice would soon come out.

Francesca, who has been a backing vocalist to Wee County Elvis sensation Johnny Lee Memphis, told the Advertiser: “It was a single parent family as we grew up, could actually be a country song to be honest.

“We grew up with single parent struggles all our days but that was our thing every Sunday – we would get up, do the housework, have a wee dance about the house and she would put all the country tracks on.

“I was very shy when I was younger but it spurred me on, music was my escape and I loved it.”

Francesca moved to Alva as an adult and more recently to Clackmannan with Covid lockdowns giving her the opportunity to turn to her passion once again.

Her mother's hard working ethic always stuck with her and her debut single Echoes That Remain has seen her pen the lyrics with the music written by Les Key.

Francesca said: “We are such a great partnership and he has really helped bring me on as well.”

The singer is now looking forward to releasing her second single Hear Me in a few weeks.

With singles coming out, Francesca is also working toward an original album, but not before she had a chance to showcase the depth and diversity of her singing talent.

Indeed, she said she is collaborating with producer Alan Shacklock, who worked with the likes of Meat Loaf, on a cover album aiming get her voice out in the industry.

Francesca added: “This is what I've been dreaming about since I was a wee girl.

“I just wanted my chance to shine, to get my voice, my lyrics out – to reach people on a different level and it's finally coming to fruition.

“Growing up, financially there were a lot of restrictions but I pushed myself and I pushed myself and I never gave up.”

Echoes That Remain is available on major streaming platforms.

For more, find Francesca Gray – Little Songbird on Facebook.