Cork-based Clare O’Mahony has forged her own solo music career for nearly two decades, bringing her original songs to Irish and international audiences. Recently she has developed a new element to her musical performances – a night composed entirely of the songs of Joni Mitchell. Clare has shared the stage with artists such as Mick Flannery, James Blunt and John Spillane, while working in studio with Declan Sinnott and Ber Quinn (Villagers, John Grant, Cathy Davey, Lisa Hannigan). With two self-released albums under her belt, why Joni Mitchell?
She developed her love for Joni Mitchell even further on a trip to Canada where she spent a year writing and performing her own compositions. She submerged herself in the rich and plentiful world of Canadian songwriters during a trip to Newfoundland as part of a songwriter’s exchange alongside Mick Flannery, New York-based Niall Connolly, Ger Wolfe and Ron Hynes (writer of ‘Sonny’s Dream’).
“I see it as a great challenge to play a concert of her work. Also, no one else really does it, you can go to a venue or pub any night and hear Dylan, Leonard Cohen and other artists from her era, but you never really hear Joni Mitchell. I think that is such a shame. Joni Mitchell is someone that will likely never play live again, and certainly not in Ireland. I’m certain there are loads of Joni Mitchell fans out there who’d love to hear her stuff played live, even if it’s not by Joni herself.”
Joni Mitchell’s catalogue of songs stretches far and wide musically. It’s the kind of catalogue where you know more than you think you know. From that moment in Love Actually where Emma Thompson’s character realises her husband is having an affair (Joni’s ‘Both Sides Now’ plays) to Counting Crows’ version of ‘Big Yellow Taxi’, most people know more Joni Mitchell songs than they realise.
Saturday November 3, 8pm