There is something magical about the music of Irish duo Grace Wilde. Singer/songwriter Audrey Fay and guitarist Enda Duffy have a brilliant, electric chemistry that comes through their live performances.
The Skerries, County Dublin pair have just released a fantastic live video for a brand new song, “Under Your Skin.” Watch it now, and you will understand why I did a special edition blog post.
The performance is electric, vibrant, charged with this magical energy that some musicians — no matter how hard they try — just can’t capture. Audrey is captivating. She is so confident and assured and Enda is just fantastic on the guitar melodies … all I can say is wow.
So with this tune fresh out, a rush interview was in order. Please enjoy.
Tell me how you got started in music? At what age?
Audrey: I have been singing since I was very little, as young as 8 years old in school choirs. I learned to play guitar when I was 12 from my mother, I was writing music even then … and I haven’t stopped since.
Enda: I discovered rock and roll at 14, and at the age of 16, I decided I want some of that and I bought my first electric guitar.
Have you both played in bands, or have you mostly been solo, Audrey?
Audrey: I was solo right up until I met Enda.
Enda: I played in bands right up until I met Audrey.
Tell me how that happened …
Enda asked me out for a drink … there happened to be an open mike night on in the bar. I got up and played “Bring Me To My Knees” and then it all began. Enda suggested we build a band and take the music out there. I think he liked me. Anyway, we have been together since then and things keep getting better for us. We share the one dream and that is an absolutely beautiful way to live.
That’s a wonderful story! How long ago was this?
Eight years, and we have been through all sorts of things. We seem to grow together which makes things work for us, particularly our music. Every day keeps getting better.
Do you mostly perform as just the two of you or as a full band?
Mostly the two of us and lately it seems this is where it should go and be. What we create together on stage feels magical.
Do you write songs together?
Not really… that’s not the format we use at the moment. We have co-written Grace though. I like to channel the songs through and they tend to come through in full complete pieces quite effortlessly, then Enda adds the wonderful icing. His guitar ideas and parts are the flavour of Grace Wilde … they bring the song and sound to completion.
His guitar work is amazing for sure. Your songwriting has such passion — is it hard to open up and expose everything when you write?
Not at all … I find it easy and it’s getting clearer now and even more natural.
You certainly don’t hold anything back, and that passion comes through in the live videos. It was what caught me first with “Bring Me To My Knees.” I had goosebumps listening to a video!
Thank you! Sometimes in life we are afraid to express our true feelings in fear of being hurt but even in our honest expression, even in our mistakes we are all nothing short of perfection and beauty.
Have you always been this open or has it developed over time?
Oh, it has developed over time. I was always forward in my emotions but over the years I have watched myself suffer in my own thoughts of inadequacy … I made peace with myself and who I am … I have found love for myself even the wrong bits and that love is available for all of us — that is what I call Freedom.
This freedom allows me to express myself fully. I am not afraid of what anyone will think. I want to show an open and honest me to the world.
That is beautiful. Sometimes it takes people forever to make peace and love themselves. It really does free you up to do what you want.
Yes, Rebecca, the only people who hold us back in life are ourselves and our own limited beliefs. Every single one of us are perfect just as we are — we are all doing our best within our own circumstances and instead of whipping ourselves we should be patting ourselves on the back. All is good.
Wonderful advice! How often do you play live?
At the moment any chance we can get. It is all about playing live for us. It is all we want to do.
Do you mostly play intimate rooms, or do you play many larger venues?
At the moment intimate rooms, but we are looking to move onto a bigger platform now and play larger venues.
Have you played any festivals this summer?
Nope, we stepped back from our music over the summer and practiced letting go. if you hold on too tightly to your dreams, they don’t happen. We are back in the game now and for the first time ever, I feel I have finally stepped into who I am as woman and an artist. That I have to say feels fantastic and I’m ready now.
Sometimes a break is needed. What is the best advice you’ve gotten from someone about the music business?
Be authentic, be yourself there is no one in the world quite like you — be an original.
Great advice. Imagine if everyone actually followed it?
What a beautiful place that would be! Beautiful independent minds, everybody accepted as they are.
Do you ever get nervous when you perform?
Yes, but not about the performance … more logistics really … whether any people will actually show up. they always do but the wait can feel like an eternity for me. I am looking forward to that stage passing now and the relief of sold out shows. Happy days!
I’m sure you have a ton of regulars who make it to most of not every show.
Ah, there is of course, but that is the only nervousness I’ve experienced in the past … I love bringing this energy onto stage. It is what I was born to do. And we have some wonderful fans who are completely behind what it is we do and The Grace Wilde Experience.
The new single is “Under My Skin” … Tell me why this tune is so special …
Ah, “Under Your Skin” is my favorite and I am most proud of it. I was reading a book called “The Friendship Tree,” by Jack Hanna, about his wonderful son Davoren.
Davoren was severely disabled with nearly no form of communication. Through tireless work with his mother, sometime taking days to write one word, he wrote the most stunning poetry and went on to win many awards in Ireland.
I felt this was stunning. The potential for creative energy to shine is always within even in the most dormant body — that is an unlimited power that is available to us all. If that young man could do it, we all can. That power is sitting right “Under Your Skin,” waiting to come forward … I love the track for this reason. I love unleashing that power I feel it in my bones … It’s magic!
Wow, fantastic! No wonder I can feel the power of it coming through the video. How long did it take to shoot it?
It was a really simple video … We did two live takes. The second one was on fire, the energy had arrived. We went with the second take.
That’s incredible … Just two takes … That doesn’t happen often, I’ll bet.
No, but when you practice and refine your art for years. and when you finally own who you are it begins to a happen all the time!
Indeed … What’s up your sleeve after this one?
We are heading into studio here in Dublin on Thursday to make new recordings and capture more of what’s in that video. Then after that I will go with the flow and see what opens up for us.
You can find Grace Wilde on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/gracewildexx/, on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/GraceWildeMusic/home, on Twitter at @gracewilde_band and on YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCVUTe7H-uA5s0kd1ILfY6qg.