- 11 Jan 23
Tickets for the musician's tour are still available via her website from €15. A limited number of tickets are still available for Your Roots Are Showing: Ireland’s Folk Conference for €35 minimum.
Beginning on January 26th, Sarah McQuaid - former columnist for the Evening Herald and Hot Press - is back on tour with her new live album, The St Buryan Sessions.
Touring through to February 11th, the musician’s gigs include shows in Wexford, The Naul, Portaferry, Ennis, Naas, Ballina, Athy, Waterville, Listowel, Kenmare and Tramore, as well as an appearance at Your Roots Are Showing: Ireland’s Folk Conference in Monaghan Town.
Having relocated to England, Sarah has since taken the plunge to become a full-time musician, with six critically-acclaimed albums under her belt, including her new live album and video series, The St Buryan Sessions.
The former columnist found herself in Ireland in the mid-1990s, having been born in Spain and grown up in Chicago. The publication of her book, The Irish DADGAD Guitar Book led to an invitation to write a weekly folk music column for the Evening Herald.
Soon expanding to include album and gig reviews, the 56-year old was enlisted by Hot Press as a reviewer, regular columnist and writer of longer interview/profile pieces on artists like Alison Krauss, Stereophonics and Bentley Rhythm Ace.
“I remember that for the Stereophonics piece, myself and a few other writers were flown over by the record company to interview the band in a pub in their home village of Cwmaman,” Sarah remembers. “With a stop in London en route to meet another up-and-coming outfit called the Hormones, also in a pub. If you’d asked me at the time which of those two groups would become megastars and which would be dropped by their label the very day the album was released, I suspect I’d have got it the wrong way round!”
Looking forward to heading out on #tour again! Retweets hugely appreciated, and please buy tix in advance if you can. See https://t.co/RhQQizI9nz for newsletter signup and info/ticket links for all shows. Thank you so much! #concert #livemusic #keepmusiclive #whatson #events pic.twitter.com/n00h1X1tqv
— Sarah McQuaid (@sarahmcquaid) December 28, 2022
From interviewer to interviewee, the Spanish-native launched her first solo tour in 2007. That same year, Sarah made the decision to relocate to West Cornwall, striking up a friendship with writer and performer of 1991 UK Top 5 single ‘Sunshine On A Rainy Day’, and fellow mother- Zoë Pollock. Soon the two women were co-writing songs for an album released in 2008 under the band name Mama.
“I owe Zoë a tremendous debt of gratitude for getting me into songwriting in a serious way,” says Sarah. “Prior to that I’d thought of myself basically as a folksinger who happened to write an occasional song, but through working with Zoë I not only learned a hell of a lot about the craft of songwriting, but also just the fact of someone of her calibre wanting to co-write with me was what finally gave me the confidence to start focusing on my own original material.
“And of course, if it weren’t for Zoë I’d never have met Martin” – Martin Stansbury, collaborator and former bandmate of Zoë’s who produced the Mama album, soon became Sarah’s manager and sound engineer, accompanying her on all tours worldwide from 2009, and most recently, having produced Sarah’s sixth and most recent solo album.
Released in October 2021 on CD and limited-edition double LP, the The St Buryan Sessions was recorded live in lockdown in the beautiful medieval church of St Buryan, just over a mile from Sarah’s home.
The new album, hailed as “a starkly minimalist recording of exceptional beauty”, by Ink 19’s Bob Pomeroy, Sarah is set to appear as a panelist at “Your Roots Are Showing: Ireland’s Folk Conference” in Monaghan Town on Wednesday January 25th prior to the beginning of her tour.
Tickets for her upcoming tour are available via Sarah McQuaid’s website from €15.
Stream The St Buryan Sessions below.