After sell-out shows at Cork Jazz Festival and standing ovations across the country, Ladies in the Blues takes you on a women’s journey through the blues. We had a chat with the performers in advance of their gig here at the Civic on Thurs 1 Nov.
Next up it’s Clara Rose.

Can you tell us a little bit about your background and where you grew up?
My roots are in Co. Monaghan and I live in Co. Meath. I come from a family of musicians. Both of my grandfathers were musicians, active in Ceoltas Ceoltoiri Eireann and showband, ‘The Northern Airs’ respectively. My parents are also musicians and the record player was like an extra family member growing up. We play music together as a family and have toured in Germany and Italy.

What sparked your interest in music?
Music has always been a huge part of my life and I‘ve been singing since I was a young girl. My father taught me the guitar from the age of 10, and singing with my mother developed my ability to sing in harmony. Growing up with my brother Daniel who had Cerebral Palsy taught me so much about the power and primal function of music. Seeing his innate response to music lead me to pursue a career as a musician and music therapist. Part of my work is as a Music Therapist in Tallaght University Hospital one day per week.

Tell us about some career highlights?
Music has brought me on an interesting journey in life. From winning an All-Ireland Medal for Sean Nos singing (Aged 12) right up to releasing my second album,’The Offering’ this year; it has been some rollercoaster! I have toured across Europe, performed in Nashville (USA) off the back of releasing my debut album, ‘A Portfolio’ to critical acclaim (2010). I have shared the stage with the cream of Irish musicians including Eleanor McEvoy, Horslips, Henry McCullough and most recently Don Baker, with whom I recorded a collaborative album, ‘Baker Rose’, and completed a nationwide tour (2016). My current work with ‘Ladies in the Blues’ show is definitely my most recent highlight and I highly value my role in the show due to the calibre of the players and vocalists. I’m one lucky lady!

Do you play any instruments?
I play guitar and can find my way around piano, bodhran, tin whistle and ukulele.

Have you ever done any other jobs?
I have turned my hand to picking eggs in a henhouse in Co. Monaghan, cleaning Maynooth College and even working as a clerical officer in South Dublin County Council for a summer! When I became interested in studying a Masters in Music Therapy I worked as a care assistant in a residential service for adults with Intellectual Disabilities.

What can Tallaght audiences expect from Ladies in the Blues?
The perfect combination of song, story and sass with a band of top-class players that adds up to one great night of entertainment!

Whats next for you?
Having just released my new album, ‘The Offering’ I’m planning on touring it more next year. I’m also in writing mode so expect some new material from Clara Rose.

Tell us a random fact about yourself
I like to run half marathons and I can’t keep basil plants alive.

Photo Credit – Alan Monahan

Thanks Clara!


Thurs 1 Nov