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Joan Armatrading: 'I was born to do this'

She was the first British female singer-songwriter to achieve international success. Hits such as “Love and Affection” and “Me Myself I” in the 70s made her a household name, but other songs like “Barefoot and Pregnant” now a feminist anthem, and “Rosie” about a transgender character have become cultural landmarks. As Joan Armatrading turns 70, she speaks to Eve Jackson about getting a CBE from the Queen and the UK’s Women of the Year Lifetime Achievement Award, being asked to write a song for Nelson Mandela and how she sees the future of the music industry after the pandemic.

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