Orla Gartland describes herself as 'an 18 year old music makin' ginger nutcase'. She is unsigned and has recently left college to continue into a music career.
She has previously released a single called 'Devil On My Shoulder' and has recently toured with Lauren Aquilina and Frank Hamilton. But she is about to release her debut EP and has just announced a tour in February 2014. Orla's group of supporters is getting bigger and bigger and so is her music!
1. How old were you when you started getting involved in music and how?
I began learning violin when I was 5 or so, and guitar when I was 12. I always sang - mostly in the shower, never in front of anyone. Once I got a bit more handy at the guitar, the two were naturally combined!
2. What is the most inspiring gig/concert/festival you've been to?
I went to see Bon Iver in the O2 Arena in Dublin last year - that was special. People always talk about hearing certain songs sung live and getting shivers; I never really understood that until that day!
3. What have you been listening to lately?
HAIM, Lorde, the 1975, Regina Spektor! My friends Hudson Taylor have just released a killer EP, so that too.
3 Questions for Orla...
1. You have created such a huge fan base without releasing an EP yet, do you think YouTube/gigging has helped you most and why?
Youtube has definitely helped most in the beginning. Off the back of a couple videos filmed in my bedroom in Dublin I began to be offered gigs; charity fundraisers, support slots, festival appearances - once I got that first taste of performing I was hooked! I'm still pretty active on the internet and upload videos regularly but this summer I think it's been gigs that have helped most - now that I'm finished school I can gig every night!
2. 'Roots' has a unique image, what songwriting process did you go through with it and how did you create the idea for the music video?
Wahey, thanks so much! The song is about leaving home and moving out, something I'm experiencing right now. I wanted to portray that in the music video in some sort of strange way... so far the video I needed the device that would entice me away from 'home' and transport me elsewhere... and I chose a whale. We used live animation, so anything was possible! The lyrics of 'Roots' probably resonate with me more than any other song I've written, so it seemed to automatically become the EP title track.
3. You have uploaded lots of covers and originals on YouTube, but what are your top 3 videos (of yours) and why?
The earliest would probably be the music video for the first song I ever released called 'Devil On My Shoulder'. Some friends and I went to a funfair in Bristol and between us we pieced together a little homemade music video, it was a right laugh. I recently did a cover of a song called 'The Wire' by a band called Haim and that's a fave too simply because I didn't expect to enjoy making the video so much! I've recently started playing a lot of electric guitar so I loved playing it for that cover. And last but not least, the Roots music video. It's my first proper music video, and it's absolutely the weirdest thing but I love it!
Random Q's from Readers...
1. What age did you know you wanted to be a singer? (from Lailana)
Oooh! Probably about 12 or so. Before that I was too scared to consider it as a real possibility.
2. Where are your roots? Where's home for you and who's it shared with? (from Francesca)
I grew up in Dublin, Ireland - although I've been making music in England for the last couple of months, Dublin's still technically my home! I love it. I live there with my parents, younger sister Niamh and younger brother Ciaran. The 'roots' I'm talking about in the song are actually different aspects of personality that I associate with home - your attitudes, your opinions, your values. In the song I'm toying with the idea of moving out and leaving home, but questioning whether I can bring these different aspects of my character with me along the way!
3. Where is your dream place to perform and why? (from Tracy)
I'd LOVE to play shows in America. In Ireland and England we're bombarded with American culture through TV programmes and various other media outlets, so it seems like a sort of dreamworld for me. I feel like I know and understand the USA but I've never been!
4. What track off your new EP are you looking forward to people hearing the most and why? (from Evan)
Bahhhh, such a good question. The second track 'Clueless' and I'm really excited to see what people think of that one; I think it's my favourite one to play live! It's proper bouncy!
Any other things you'd like to share/say?!
My first EP 'Roots' is out now and is available over on iTunes worldwide now - eek!
iTunes link: https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/roots-ep/id699781855
Also, I've just announced a brand new UK/Ireland tour for February 2013 - I'm coming to Bristol, Nottingham, Manchester, Leeds, Glasgow, London, Birmingham, Belfast, Dublin and Cork. Tickets are on sale now! I'll be playing some old songs, playing the new EP songs and meeting everyone after every show. EXCITED FOR LIFE.
Tour Tickets: http://www.orlagartland.me/tour/
Reviews of 'Roots' by Orla Gartland
1. Lailana: 6/5 - one of mah faves <3
2. Haytham: 5/5 - catchy tune and very interesting video :) loved guitar too.
3. Sophie: 4/5 - beautiful and well written lyrics.
4. Evie: 4/5 - really nice guitar and vocals.
Orla Gartland's Links:
Check It Out!
Chart: The Monster ft. Rihanna - Eminem
Eminem returns with another song featuring Rihanna.'The Monster' is taken from Eminem's eight studio album 'The Marshall Mathers LP 2'. It's the fourth collaboration between the duo and it seems to be doing just as well as the others did in the chart. (Warning though, the song contains explicit lyrics...)
Live Performance: Cinema ft. Gary Go - Benny Benassi
An 'old' song for those of you who put best before dates on music. However this is a live performance from a few years ago, which I re-discovered recently! It was released on 8 March 2011 and did well getting into the UK Singles Top 20 and peaked at 2 in the US Billboard Charts. Mainly known for Skrillex's remix of it but here's Benny Benassi and Gary Go performing it live for SBTV back in 2011.
Cover: Somewhere Only We Know - Lily Allen
This song has been topic of conversation all over the country! As soon as the John Lewis christmas advert was aired for this year, people took to Twitter, Facebook and other forms of communication to say how great it was! 'Somewhere Only We Know' originally by English band Keane, released in 2004, has been covered beautifully by Lily Allen for the advert and has already made it to number two in the UK Singles Chart.
YouTube: Focus - Ryan Keen
Ryan Keen is a guitarist and singer/songwriter, who has recently released his first album. I've had it on repeat recently and think he's a great artist that deserves more recognition. His music has faint echoes of Ed Sheeran, Ben Howard, April Keen and even Nickleback. Enjoy!
Thanks for reading!