Our music is about human connection, says Sarah Howells of Paper Aeroplanes. Not surprisingly the story of Paper Aeroplanes is as heartwarming and poignant as one of their songs. Vocalist Sarah Howells suffered a great personal loss, leading to her meeting guitarist Richard Llewellyn and their subsequent realisation that they were meant to make music together. Now they’re ready to reach their widest-ever audience with their much-anticipated third album ‘Little Letters’.
Sarah began life in Milford Haven, a small industrial town in Pembrokeshire, and Richard was bought up in Tresaith, a picturesque coastal village on Cardigan Bay. At the age of 13, Sarah began composing songs, realising quickly that music was the career path she would take. Later in her teens, her band, Jylt, were on the verge of national success when bass player, and best friend, Nia George was diagnosed with leukaemia, from which she tragically passed away at just 21.
Following a period of soul searching, Sarah felt compelled to continue writing and singing. She joined forces with Richard after he stood in for Nia in the Jylt line-up. In 2005, Rich and Sarah formed Halflight, who quickly caught the attention of the Welsh media.
The duo have released two albums, “The Day We Ran Into The Sea” and “We Are Ghosts,” as well as three EPs. In the process, they’ve gained considerable recognition amongst some prominent champions of new music, such as 6 Music’s Steve Lamacq, Cerys Matthews, Chris Hawkins and Lauren Laverne and Radio 2’s Bob Harris. Radio Wales are also big supporters of the duo, helping cement their ever-increasing reputation in the principality.
Spring 2013 saw Paper Aeroplanes releasing their third album ‘Little Letters’ on Navigator Records (home to amongst others, Bellowhead). The new record is co-written by Sarah and Richard and produced by the duo alongside Phill Brown (Talk Talk, Bob Marley, Laura Marling), with recording sessions taking place between Yellow Fish Studios, Lewes, and Richard’s Cardiff flat.