The singer, who has sold millions of records and sang at the Olympics opening ceremony last year, moved to Alford, near Aberdeen, as a child - a move she described as deeply unsettling.
"I moved to Scotland when I was four," she told Angela Yee, a presenter on Power 105.1.
"We were the only black people there and that was very isolating. I needed something, and that's where the music came in. That became my world and the way I could connect with people. So as soon as I could I moved to London."
Sande, whose father Joel is from Zambia and mother Diane is from Sunderland, told Ms Yee that she did not, however, suffer racist abuse.
When she spoke to The Herald Magazine last year, Sande revealed that in the 1980s "my parents were in Sunderland and they went through some awful things. They got people saying things to them in the streets, in bars. It was tough for them."
Picture: Ian Gavan/Getty