Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I moved from Limerick, Ireland in May 2016 on an O-1 Artist Visa to the DC area to try and find my audience…I’ve been a musician for most of my life. I grew up in a sporty house, My Father played Rugby for Ireland. I was a swimmer. I am the eldest of 6. I have a son Aran. I am the 4th generation of a musician on my Mother’s side. My great-grandparents had the Bowyer/Westwood Opera Company. My grandfather, Stanley Bowyer, was a Conductor/Organist/Composer. My mother is a music teacher.
How did you get your start in music?
My first boyfriend already gigged so I joined him, I don’t know how long it would’ve taken me to take that first step on my own. And I was lucky to be obsessed with music in the late ’80s when there was a lot of great music on tour. I remember I saw Arlo Guthrie in Shinrone, Co. Tipperary one night and Ted Hawkins the next night all locally. It was a magical time. Townes Van Zandt was hanging out in Limerick then too as he recorded his last album No Deeper Blue in Xeric Studios, Limerick where I recorded Mumbo Jumbo Bla Bla Bla. We would hitchhike to gigs all the time. Truckers gave us lifts, Farmers gave us a patch of ground to pitch our tents on. People were so kind.
I made a few tapes/cassettes, one under a ‘stage name’ – “Lily Tumbleweed” was a cassette with 8 original songs on it and “What’s It All About” was a cassette with 4 songs on it. Then I made Mumbo Jumbo Bla Bla Bla on CD in 1995 which was received well on the National airwaves 2FM in particular. Then I followed that up with a Single/EP called Like a Habit in 1997. I was broke then so it took me a long time to get the next recording done. “Beautiful Bodies” was a song a friend of mine wrote, that came out in 2006. Then Songs I Grew Up To in 2008 with guest Uilleann Piper Paddy Moloney (The Chieftains). 2013 was self-titled and produced by Eamonn Hehir who had written “Beautiful Bodies” years earlier. Now I’ve come to know where I am releasing You Can’t Run Out Of Love.
How would you describe your musical style?
It’s a mix of all the different music I listened to growing up – folk, country, blues, jazz. It’s songs written with an acoustic guitar and a band recorded behind them. Americana? Maybe!! Folk and rock are apparently not a ‘cool’ thing to say now, but none of that matters.
How have you evolved since your debut EP “Mumbo Jumbo Bla Bla” was released in 1995?
I’ve calmed down a lot…lol…musically, I have just matured I suppose. I give more time and discipline for writing. It’s still all the truth.
What led you to move to America in 2016?
I knew there was more I needed to do with my music and I had become stale and unfulfilled and a very unhappy person. So I made plans to get away from everything I knew, to try and reach a bigger audience.
What can you tell us about your latest album, “You Can’t Run Out Of Love”?
It’s very real and raw at times and honest and hopefully uplifting. It’s been a labor of love to use a cliché. I feel so fortunate to have come this far in two and a half years of moving to America. I know I made this all happen and have learned that when you throw the kitchen sink at something it actually does work out. I have had the luxury of being able to give this my full attention and 100%. It’s an accomplishment I feel very proud of.
What’s next for your career?
I want to get on the road with this band and tour these songs. I want to find the perfect booking agent.
What advice would you have for aspiring singers/songwriters?
Be truthful. Be real. Be vulnerable. Be humble. Be kind. Be aware of your ego. Be present. Make time for the stillness you need to write.
What’s your life like outside of music?
Kinda boring. I have committed most of every day to music. I am hoping with all the work I’ve put in I will start having fun now. I have already really. I have found some really nice friends here so that’s cool. All work and no play makes Johnny a dull boy. Yea, I wouldn’t want that to happen!
Let the readers know where to find you online.
Website – www.siobhanobrien.com
Instagram – @siobhanobrienmusic
Facebook Like Page – https://www.facebook.com/Siobh%C3%A1n-OBrien-124162614263985/
Twitter – @siobhanobrien