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Thursday 30 May 2024

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Amy Montgomery Interview

Sep 3, 2019

Thanks for talking to us Amy! You and the band caused quite a stir at the Cambridge Folk Fest, are you used to getting such a positive reaction from audiences the first time people hear your music?
Cambridge Folk Fest was a truly incredible experience for me. Everyone there really seemed to love what I was doing which I was so grateful for. I would not say that I’m used to it. What I am used to though, is people’s surprised faces and the words; “You’re so tiny…but your voice is so…big!”

How would you best describe your sound in one sentence, and have you ever experimented with different genres?
If Alanis Morissette and Trent Reznor had a baby in Belfast, and sent her to Joni Mitchell half the week, and then Janis Joplin for the remainder of the week to babysit. Then you might be close to our sound.

Yes, as well as my alt/roots/blues/rock genre, I like to experiment with electro soundscapes, stripped back folk, and piano ballads. What even is a genre?!

Tell us a bit about your pathway into music…
My pathway into music started from a very young age, maybe 6. I remember singing ‘Mary Mary quite contrary, how does your garden grow’ to a caravan site full of people. From our family hi-fi, would always be various artists in Rock, Blues and Country music, so I was fortunate to have parents with good music taste.

I was a singer before anything else, growing up competing in local singing competitions. Before she passed away three years ago, my mum was my biggest fan and motivator. She always believed that I should put my all into music and performing. I wish she could see where I am now. Maybe she can. I remember her urging me to sing for those around anywhere we went. In restaurants, toilets, taxis, gardens, streets, shops… Everywhere! Haha!

When I was around 14, I started teaching myself guitar. (With a little help from my dad!) With this, I began to get out on the streets busking around Ireland. Busking was a real confidence booster for me, and where I started to have a real connection to performing.

I met Michael Mormecha (my drummer and producer) a few years ago, and began writing and producing music with him. From there, we continued our passion working together to form a band. The past couple of years have been spent discovering and developing our sound. And also for me, delving into the nature of performing more and more. The catalysts for all of these amazing opportunities that are coming up for me now, are my management Jaba Music and booking agent Midnight Mango Ltd.

amy montgomery interview

You spoke about about positivity, letting go of bad experiences and growing from trauma during your set, is the human condition a big influence on your songwriting?
Definitely! My performance and voice comes from an indescribable place within my Self. Deep in my soul. Where pain, grief and sadness lies. But more importantly, where growth, liberation and healing is present. The tragic cause of my mum’s death prompted me to pay close attention to mental health and state of mind. And of course, we need positivity to help us through this. Being human comes with a lot of difficulties, but also a lot of beauty if you give yourself permission to see it. I hope that my exploration of this is visible in my music, my songwriting always has good intention behind it. For my own healing, but for others too.

What is your current “on the road” soundtrack?
I am completely in love with Sharon Van Etten’s latest album Remind Me Tomorrow. It’s on repeat! Also a few key tracks from Gomez’s legendary Bring It On.

What was the first album you purchased and how has that had a lasting effect on your music?
I was given a lot of record’s from my dad, all of which I really loved. But the first one I purchased… maybe Lady Gaga or something. The fascination of listening to music is where it all starts isn’t it? I suppose I wouldn’t have exactly the same drive without those early influences. Gaga inspired me to take risks, be myself and stand my ground as a human and an artist.

If you had the chance to collaborate with someone on a song, who would you choose and why?
Scissor Sisters! Let’s get them back together to collab! I can imagine it being immense fun. That sort of genre I really love; dance/disco/rock. I can’t sit still when a track of theirs comes on.

You’re organizing a festival and you’ve got the Friday, Saturday and Sunday headliners to choose. Who do you pick and why?
What a difficult question! Do they have to be living right now / still a band? Keep in mind that you can’t see the rest of my curated line-up!

Friday – Talking Heads – To start the festival off with a dance!

Saturday – Queen – Freddie was a really interesting person and performer. I’m intrigued by the performance aspect of music, so I yearn for the chance to see this legend commanding attention from a crowd.

Sunday – The Beatles w/ a special segment from Ravi Shankar – The Beatles would close the beautiful festival, they would bring everyone together for a hearty finish. Ravi Shankar would have to play, for a splash of India. I left a little bit of my heart in India this year, when I saw/heard a sitar along the River Ganges for the first time, I shed a tear of openness and gratitude. So this part, would be for everyone to engage in reflection.

What are your plans for the rest of 2019?
We have played a lot of festivals this year and still have a few to go. This month H2U Openair in Switzerland, Stendhal and Electric Picnic in Ireland. I have three headline shows in London, Dublin and Belfast on 25th, 26th & 27th September which you can find tickets for on my website. Early October will see us along the East Coast of Australia with William Crighton for a short run of dates. From there to Germany for a few shows in mid October. We’ll be off to Germany again in November for some festivals. This year we have definitely been focusing on live shows because I see the importance of people feeling the raw energy in person and understanding the performance.

Where can we find you online?


Instagram: @amymontgomeryofficial

You can find my music on Spotify, iTunes, Apple Music, Amazon.

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