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A Year in Music – 2020 – Susan O’Neill

A Year in Music – 2020 – Susan O’Neill

We asked some of our favourite artists/ musicians to tell us about their year. You can see what Susan had to say below. You can find out more about Susan here.

“A critically acclaimed performer, as well as a member of King Kong Company, SON – aka Susan O’Neill – is one of Ireland’s brightest emerging talents”

An extraordinary year in many ways.  How did it affect you specifically?

I was very lucky that the legends at Hotel Doolin kindly offered me an artist in residence so I have spent a lot of time in Doolin soaking in the landscape and the beauty and becoming inspired by it. Slowing down has helped me to approach writing in a new way.

Where did music fit in during 2020?  Does it seem important?

For me, music was present most days in 2020. I missed the live gigs, crowds and festivals of course but I found ways to celebrate beautifully made music and sounds. I found some stunning albums, took a portable speaker into the wild Burren, turned it up and drank in the views, danced, walked and revelled in the wonders of it all. Music was the glue that kept me together during the ups and the downs in 2020.

What albums resonated this year?  Can be old or new.

There are so many… but here are a few.

Everything by the Gloaming,
Aretha Franklin – Amazing Grace
You want it darker – Leonard Cohen
Sangoma – Miriam Makeba
Sali Sidibhe – From Timbuktu To Gao
Tinariwen – Live in Paris 2014
The last Dalai Lama? – Tezin Choegyal / Philip Glass

If you had to pick one album to sum up this year, what would it be?

O god. I can’t, I actually can’t. That feels as hard as picking between the woods and the sea.

How have you got through the last 7 or 8 months?

With a new attitude to accepting things that I cannot change. I realise life will possibly keep shifting so I might as well let go, flow with it like a river instead of trying to swim against stream.

I am also trying to be more accepting of changes in my heart, mood and mind. It is okay to be a different person to the one you were yesterday. Just keep going. Do your best, thats it.

For me a stoic approach has also helped.

Are you working on any interesting projects?

I was working on a duet album with Mick Flannery over the last few months which is now finished and we are looking forward to sharing it with the world. I am also working on some new songs in Hotel Doolin. I have turned the place into a home studio and it is a lot of fun.

Any hopes for next year?

To dance in a crowd of people.

To evolve as a human.

To write some great music.

To bring joy and value to people outside of my own circle.

Categories: Header, interview, Music

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