Hampshire has become a second home for Jazz

Children are encouraged to get creative with art

2010 was quite a year for Jazz Morley, going from playing odd gigs in and around Guildford to slots up and down the south coast and even headlining Brighton's prestigious Komedia.

She didn't go unnoticed by the professionals either. Labels and artist management groups were regularly spotted in the crowd for her shows, not least 14th Floor Records – home to the likes of Damien Rice, Ray LaMontagne and the all-conquering Biffy Clyro.

Industry magazine Music Week has Jazz as featured artist and lead track

on their next issue. She is also one of two acts from the south selected by BBC Introducing to attend an all-day event at the world-famous Maida Vale and Abbey Road Studios.

When you listen to Jazz it's easy to see why there's such an interest in her. Her voice, smokily seductive one moment and beguilingly innocent the next, hooks you from the first note.

She's got the music too. An accomplished songwriter herself, Jazz has also formed productive collaborations with others.

Portsmouth-based songwriter and Guide Award nominee Becky Jerams' flair for pop has added instant hooks to Morley's music and the two seem natural compatriots.

Jazz clearly thinks so too. She's become firm friends with Becky, a bond that both hope will lead to even better collaborations down the road.

Jazz is also working with Polly Scattergood. Polly is a well-known artist in her own right and has written for the likes of Katie Melua.

Jazz has been secretive about their collaboration, revealing only that the songs they've written are very different from what Morley has written before and may mark a different direction.

Another of her projects is performing at schools. After returning to her own school last year and seeing the effect it had on the pupils, Jazz says she sees it as her chance to give a little encouragement to young musicians and remind them that not every performer has to come from a TV show.

The X Factor and the like are shows that Jazz is strongly averse to. She says they are a combination of popularity contest and karaoke and bemoans the lack of opportunities for unknown acts to get such attention for their own music.

She'll have plenty of chances to draw attention to her music when a 23-date tour begins in London on January 28 and takes in Southampton, Segensworth, Petersfield, Brighton, Winchester, Gosport and Portsmouth.

She's no stranger to Portsmouth, having played here repeatedly last summer. She's become a favourite at The Cellars at Eastney and in Petersfield and other towns, so Hampshire has become a second home for the Dorset-born musician.

See Jazz at Upstairs @ The Square Brewery in Petersfield on Thursday, February 10, or at The Cellars at Eastney a week later on Thursday, February 17. Tickets cost 7 on the door or 6 in advance from stiffpromotions.co.uk or (023) 9282 6249 for The Cellars and 01730 264291 for The Square Brewery.