She's a multi-million selling singer and she's just about to become the face of Calvin Klein, so how does Shirley Manson manage to keep so down to earth? Mike Jones found out.
If Shirley Manson was any more down to earth she'd be somewhere under the carpet. As it is she's taken a lofty position perched on the window ledge to shield her eyes from the sun streaming in. "The light's making me feel funny," she says.
That might be so but it also shows the Garbage singer for what she really is - one of the sexiest women in rock.
Not that the modest Scot would ever admit it, even though her pale face is about to become one of the most recognised in the world as she fronts the latest Calvin Klein ad campaign.
"That should be coming out for the autumn," she says. "So you might see me on the side of the No 53 bus before too long."
The Calvin Klein job isn't her first foray into the world of fashion - before joining Garbage Manson worked at Miss Selfridge. But she was always destined to do more than just stand behind a till and, after the shop shut, Manson worked with a succession of groups until fate stepped in and turned her into a superstar almost overnight.
"I've been in bands since i was 15," says Manson before explaining how a remarkable stroke of luck four years ago saw her join forces with Steve Marker, Butch Vig and Duke Erikson, the three American musicians who make up the rest of Garbage.
"I was playing in a Scottish band called Angel Fish and our video was shown on MTV in the States.
"Steve saw it and really liked my voice and they called me up and asked me if I wanted to record a track with them. I agreed and then we ended up recording a whole album."
Their self titled debut not only went to No 1 in Britain but also turned the band into a global success spawning a string of hit singles - Queer, Only Happy When It Rains and Stupid Girl.
Garbage's subtle layered sound combined with Manson's lyrics and lilting vocal charm took rock into a new dimension and earned them three Grammy nominations in 1997. Manson says the key to the groups success is that they're not constrained by any boundaries.
"I'm not saying we're necessarily doing anything new, but that's the approach we've taken from the beginning," she says.
It's a formula that doesn't just work, it gets more potent.
Garbage's 1998 follow-up album, Version 2.0, was released to huge critical acclaim and sold by the truckload from L.A. to Moscow thanks to full-on tracks like I Think I'm Paranoid and the haunting beauty of You Look So Fine.
The upshot of this has been a relentless touring schedule and offers of work from all over the world including the concert they staged in Edinburgh to mark the opening of the new Scottish parliament last week.
It is also widely rumoured that Garbage will be doing the theme to the new Bond film, The World Is Not Enough. Manson says she might also appear in a movie at some point - provided she gets time.
"It's just busy, busy, busy at the moment," she says.
"But I'm well aware that you only get your place in the sun for a short time and I think you really have to make the most of that time because it doesn't last very long."
Yet superstar status hasn't gone to her head. "I love really modest things - they're the sort that really excite me and titilate me beyone belief.
"Supermarket shopping is a big turn on for me," she laughs. "i'm just a very normal girl."