With a new name and new music, Áine is about to take over 2019. Clara Brannigan checks in with the rising pop singer-songwriter.
Áine Cahill emerged in the Irish music scene with her now iconic single ‘Black Dahlia’ in 2014, this enchanting song caught like wildfire and her following grew quickly. She has recently decided for her stage name to just be “Áine”, explaining, “I think the change to just Áine is much cleaner. It’s hard enough to pronounce for people outside of Ireland”, she laughs and tells me a comical few mispronunciations.
Áine explains how her inspiration for singing and songwriting began. “I was always into sports but then I wanted to learn how to play the piano.” Áine was heavily involved in her local GAA club in Cavan, she reflects, “I did a lot of singing at home, but I thought I couldn’t sing. There was a piano in our concert hall in school and one day someone was playing a song and I sang along with it and everyone was like ‘wow’, and that was the first time I thought ‘maybe I’m not a bad singer.’”
“I used a lot of those stories to talk about myself but not in a direct way. Before I started writing music, I always had trouble opening up to people and that was the way I just got all my feelings out.”
Áine began writing her own music when she left school at 19 and quickly became known for her intricate storytelling lyrics; “When I started writing, at first it was like story-telling. Over the last year I tried to put more of myself into it.” She has been branching out lyrically in her latest singles, with a new sound emerging too. She adds, “I used a lot of those stories to talk about myself but not in a direct way. Before I started writing music, I always had trouble opening up to people and that was the way I just got all my feelings out.”
There was a massive shift in Áine’s career when she was given the opportunity to play at Glastonbury Festival in 2016, playing the bread and roses stage. “When I got to Glastonbury, things changed.” During the Glastonbury Festival she was spotted by the BBC and was asked to play an acoustic performance live on their Glastonbury TV coverage. “I signed with my manager at Glastonbury and this is the manager I still have today.” She shares that he has been a key component in her success so far. “He really pushed me and pushed my name out to record companies and then I got signed.”
In October 2017 she had toured with JP Cooper, she explains that it set her up a little bit: “but nothing could prepare me for this huge tour with Kodaline.”
In 2016, Áine joined fellow Irish musicians Kodaline, Picture This and All Tvvins to play the
Moving on from her previous contract with Warner’s records, Aine has recently signed with Parlophone records. She gushes, “it’s probably one of the most iconic labels ever, signing the likes of The Beatles, it’s crazy to even think about.” Parlophone have worked with other iconic artists like Queen, David Bowie and Coldplay, making it a huge step in her career. “I’ve been working with them since a few weeks before Christmas and I just feel like they really take me seriously as an artist.”
Spending time between Ireland and London, Aine is currently working on her new EP set to release in the coming weeks. “At the minute plans are happening now, because I have been working on music full stop for the last year and working with different people and co-writing.” After signing with Parlophone she has been constantly writing more and more. “It’s just the case of getting it out there and that’s what I am focusing on now.” In 2018, she released her single ‘Water Into Wine’ which features her ever-present powerful yet pensive vocals. She gives her own insight into the song: “I love ‘Water Into Wine’, I wrote it at the start of last year, so it was finished for a long time before it came out, but ultimately, it’s a song about taking back control over your own mind.”
"Áine has recently signed with Parlophone records after being previously signed to Warner’s."
An album is more down the line for Áine; “an album, in my head, has to be ten or more of the best songs I could possibly do and until I feel like I’ve reached that I won’t put out an album.” Showing true signs of a woman who is full of ambition and is deeply passionate about her music, Áine mentions her expectations, “I want it to be a real example of what I can do because in the last year I have grown so much.” With the world of streaming being the most popular way to make a name for yourself Áine highlights artists have more creative control. “My sound is changing and evolving, I don’t want to be put into a box in terms of my sound. I don’t think there is a need to be a certain type of sound when you could be anything.”
The Irish music scene has always been known for producing some amazing talent, but that has been taken to an all time high with huge acts emerging annually. Áine shares her thoughts on the industry, “in the last four years that I have been part of the industry, there has been so much amazing talent coming from Ireland...Everyone is always looking for new artists and when someone new comes on the scene, the Irish people support them right away and I think it’s unreal.”
Discussing the challenges that come with trying to break into the music industry as “for me it was a lot of hounding people to get any type of air play on the radio.” Áine’s sheer determination worked in her favour and she remained positive, she says that, “if music is something you really want, you will work as hard as you can and keep going. I believe if you push for it, it will happen, that’s how I see it.” Although the Irish music scene may be booming, there is still a need to sign overseas for some artists. She thinks for a moment, “I 100% think signing overseas will give me more of a reach internationally, the focus will be on UK and Ireland first, then Europe and then America.”
"Her latest single ‘Blue Valentine’ is a testament to her talent. She admits that Lady Gaga has inspired her the most and gave her the push she needed to pursue a career in music."
Áine shares how “Lana Del Rey has influenced my music” and how her own lyrics are a testament to this as she too is gifted with talent beyond her years. Her latest single ‘Blue Valentine’ is a testament to her talent. She admits that Lady Gaga has inspired her the most and gave her the push she needed to pursue a career in music. “She got me into music, when I listened to her music, I got obsessed with pop music in general.” She casts her mind back, “I saw a video of Lady Gaga playing the piano, she was playing an acoustic version of ‘Paparazzi’ and I was like ‘wow I love that’ and wanted to learn how to play it.” She quickly adds “...and Marina is Queen,” which would be certainly hard to disagree with.
Moving onto her plans for the next year; “Everything me and my manager have been working for over the last few years, everything feels like it’s falling into place right now, I am so happy with everything and It feels right.” Her music video for her latest single ‘Blue Valentine’ released fittingly on the Valentine’s Day. “I am nervous to put out my new music video, but I am so excited because it is so different from the other videos I have done, and I love it. The last scene is a little bit controversial, but I am so excited to put it out.” There is also plans for a few more singles in the coming months and “as for the rest of the year, I plan to do a few festivals, I didn’t do
Áine’s new EP ‘Blue Valentine’ has just dropped on Spotify, so make sure to head over and check it out if you haven’t already. One thing is for sure, this is only the beginning for Áine, if you didn’t already know her name, you will now.