SPEAKING to Luke Jackson, it is hard to avoid the F-word.
The F-word in question stands for "Folk" and the 19 year old Canterbury singer-songwriter’s profile has been done no harm at all after being nominated in this year’s BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards in both the junior (Young Folk Award) and senior (Horizon Award for new talent) competitions.
"Although I didn’t win an award, it does mean getting your foot in the door and getting in front of a new group of people," he said.
"When you want to get booked for gigs and say you are a double folk awards nominee, that makes people more likely to book you.
"The experiences as well was one of the most brilliant of my musical career."
Despite his place on this year’s nomination list, you would wait in vain for Jackson to start signing a traditional murder ballad or stick a finger in his ear, so it does raise the issue of just how comfortable he is with that F-word.
"It’s a strange genre, isn’t it?" he laughed.
"I was surprised, to be honest, that I was accepted into that world. One thing I never do is try and write songs in genres. I just write songs and whatever sort of vibe the have is due to the topic.
"I’ve been accepted into that world, but at the same time, kids who are into the more mainstream stuff like my music as well. But the folk industry is great because it has such a family feel. People are there to help each other and will take you under their wing. It’s great to be involved in that."
It was Jackson’s guitar-playing father who first shaped young Luke’s musical tastes and some of his dad’s music heroes, like Britain’s Richard Thompson and America’s John Hiatt have become big influences on his music and songwriting.
"It was my dad who first got me to pick up a guitar," Jackson added.
"He played slide and acoustic guitar, but I went onto the electric guitar to learn all the solos and rock music and all that sort of stuff. But when I started writing songs, I immediately went back to the acoustic. That’s how it all kicked off, really."
Like many young musicians, Jackson was also part of a band for a while. However, because he formed the band at college with fellow students from different parts of Kent and none of them drove at the time, getting together to rehearse proved a logistical nightmare.
"When I was at college, I found the stuff I was writing with the band was completely different, up-tempo indie stuff," he said.
"That was great fun as well because when you are with a band you do different things you wouldn’t normally do on your own."
In the meantime, Jackson enjoys driving from gig to gig on his own, though he admits he might be interested in doing something with other musicians, perhaps as a trio, in the future.
"Writing story songs and just trying to engage with people with just me and my guitar is what really excites me," he said.
Still a teenager, Jackson has been playing music for almost half his life. Soon after getting his first guitar at the age of 10, he was singing covers and soon progressed to appearing at open mic nights.
"I was nervous at first, but soon after that, I just got excited and keen to play," he said.
His debut album, More Than Boys, touches on issues of childhood, from climbing trees with friends to riding bikes with no brakes and the feelings of parents watching their children grow.
Yet Jackson says he did not think of a theme while recording the album, and instead had just brought the 11 best songs he had at the time to the recording studio.
"They were about growing up and childhood days and I think that was because I was about to leave college and take that big step into the big wide world," he said.
"I’ve always tried to write stuff that was quite close and personal to me, but I thought that if I was writing about growing up, everyone grows up. It will interesting to look back at the album in 10 years because by then I might have finished playing the songs, and see what effect it has on me and if it conjures up childhood memories. I’ve never actually thought of it like that."
The album was produced by Welsh singer-songwriter Martyn Joseph. Like Steve Knightley of the band Show of Hands, Joseph is an inspiration who has become a friend.
"I was fans of their music before I started working with them," he said.
"I look up to those guys massively. Working with Martyn and going on a few tours with him have been some of the best times of my life. I see him partly as a mentor, but he’s more of a friend who is in the same trade and has helped me out massively with my craft. It’s the greatest feeling to have that after being such a fan of his music."
Jackson is currently working on his second album, which should have a different feel from More Than Boys.
"It’s got more of a band feel. Some of the songs are done as a three piece," he said.
"It’s been great fun taking the song and building up percussion and so on."
The topics of his songs has also changed, so out go the growing-up tales.
"After More Than Boys I started to feel that I’d done that album, so I can’t keep writing songs about that," he said.
"The newer songs have a more bluesey feel, which is interesting because I haven’t been listening to more blues music than I usually do.
"It’s all story songs. I love telling stories and taking people for a journey and painting pictures in their heads. As long as I’m doing that, I’m happy with the way that my songwriting is going.
•Luke Jackson on tour in Scotland: Wednesday 16th October, Old Bridge Inn, Aviemore; Thursday 17th October, Hootananny, Inverness; Friday 18th October, Mosset Tavern, Forres; Sunday 20th October, Cheers Bar, Fraserburgh; Monday 21st October, Tunnels, Aberdeen.