Get ready, world, for some raw heartfelt alt-folk tunes, because Ailbhe Reddy is going on tour.
Ailbhe’s journey with the music industry began in 2014 when her moving song ‘Cover Me’ was used for Today FM’s Shave or Dye radio ad campaign. Since then, her career as a self-described “Irish indie mewsishun” has taken off.
“I actually recorded that song on an eight-track in my room and someone happened to hear it when I shared it on Facebook or Soundcloud,” Ailbhe recalls. “My music has changed a lot. That song was just acoustic guitar and a vocal.”
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“I got a few nice breaks, but it took me a long time to find the right way to release my first album,” she adds, reflecting on how she’s changed as a musician since 2014. “I think I’m a better songwriter and I understand the industry a lot more. That little break was pure fluke, now I think I have a better idea of what I’m doing. At least I like to hope so!”
“I now work with a lot more people,” Ailbhe adds, “I just finished co-producing my second album with Tommy McLaughlin in Attica Studio in Donegal, so it sounds much different from that demo.”
With support from Maria Kelly, Ailbhe is touring her debut album, Personal History, which she describes as indie folk-rock.
“I really loved Julia Jacklin’s Crushing record, as well as Land of Talk, Alvvays, and a few other bands,” she tells us about her key influences. “If you’re into any of those, you might like Personal History.”
If you can make it to one of her live performances, keep an ear out for Self Improvement and Personal History, two songs for which Ailbhe admits she has a soft spot. “They just took me a while to get right and are about very specific moments in my life that felt important.”
The Dublin-based singer-songwriter recently performed at Féile in the 3Arena as part of Irish Women in Harmony, which she describes as a “pretty awesome” experience.
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“I got to sing my favourite Sinéad O’Connor song Mandinka with my pal, Faye O’Rourke. We have known each other a long time, but never performed together and it was great craic. What an experience to sing in the 3arena too. Great crew, and amazing to be accompanied by the Chamber Orchestra!”
Unfortunately, Ailbhe was one of the many artists who were hit hard by the pandemic.
“I had so much on the cards that it was all cancelled, some life-changing stuff. But hopefully, it will all come back. And lots of people will be in my position. I think at this stage, half the job is what I like to call ‘disappointment management’.”
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Determined to look on the bright side, though, Ailbhe goes on to say, “I had lots of time during Lockdown One and wrote and demoed my whole second album. So that was a plus.”
The Ailbhe Reddy tour will bring her to Kerry, Galway, Limerick and Dublin on November 26, 27, 28 and December 10 respectively.
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