Name: Clare Kelly
Where are you from and where are you based?
Originally from Leeds in the North of England, I’m now based in Brixton, in South London. London has a massive, eclectic mix of music going on in each borough but I feel Hip Hop and Grime artists are the biggest on the scene at the moment.
What style of music do you play and what drew you to it?
I describe my music as Alternative Indie Folk, alike to Angel Olsen, Julia Jacklin and Anthony & The Johnsons. I grew up drowning myself in Bruce Springsteen, Stevie Nicks, Carole King and so many writers who tell their stories with intricate and well-crafted lyrics. So, taking inspiration from them, my songs are all about the lyrics which are honest, emotive and often personal.
What’s your most memorable gig to date and why?
I’m a huge fan of Bon Iver and I was lucky enough to see their gig at Sydney Opera House in 2016. It was so beautiful and moving – I wept throughout!
Do you have any other projects outside of your music? What are they?
I have a couple of other music projects, collaborating with other musicians (such as Joe who I will be performing with) and producers which are still in the development process at the moment and coming to fruition shortly. I travel as much as I can, mainly to have new experiences, places and people to write about and I also work in music publishing.
Can you explain a little where the mermaid theme comes from and what it means?
I’ve been obsessed with mermaids since I was a child swimming endless lengths on the bottom of pools and watching The Little Mermaid on repeat. I’m a keen scuba diver and adore all sea creatures, so my lyrics often have aquatic references and when I have a band performing with me, they are my mermaids and my obsession continues on stage!
Apart from the Garden Collective show, what are you going to do while you’re in Lisbon?
I’m going to go diving! I’ll also be writing some music and exploring the wonderful city with Joe who lives in Lisbon.
Have you got any other upcoming shows at festivals or other venues that Garden Collective members should check out?
If anyone is in London, I’ll be performing an intimate show in Stockwell on November 8th as the release party for my forthcoming single ‘Radio’. Other similar shows will surround my EP release in January and in between I’m concentrating on being in the studio recording new tracks.
Anything else you want to tell us about?
Follow my Instagram @clarekellymermaid for all updates on gigs and tunes!
Clare Kelly played at Garden Collective: Dancing in September. Read more here.