"I want to share my stories with people, I want people to listen and feel like they know me. I want people to get an idea of who I am through my songs", says Catherine McGrath.
In 2017, a lot of people are finding out precisely that. Aged just 20, rising Irish singer-songwriter Catherine McGrath is an artist who has already had her first two Warner Bros Records UK EPs garlanded with praise from all quarters and resulted in seven consecutive New Music Friday placements on Spotify.
She has also written with some of Nashville's finest songwriters, and taken the likes of Country 2 Country Festival at the O2, British Summer Time, The Great Escape and Latitude/Longitude by storm. That is to say nothing of her support slots with Picture This, The Shires, and US megastars Dan + Shay. What's more, her latest brace of songs, ‘Wild’, ‘Lost In The Middle’ and ‘Talk Of This Town’ offer the best chance to get to know her yet.
Her immersion in country music came when she heard Taylor Swift’s ‘Love Story’ – an artist whose music McGrath’s certainly draws comparison to – Apple Music have even claimed that she’s the “new heiress to Taylor [Swift’s] throne”) – and yet that obscures the true breadth of her influences. Swift’s megahit sent her on a voyage of discovery converting her to the likes of Rascal Flatts, Brad Paisley, Kacey Musgraves and Kelsea Ballerini, the latter of whom McGrath recently supported at her first UK show at Under The Bridge. With these influences mixing with the traditional Irish music her parents raised her on, McGrath now stands as the most exciting breaking act in UK country.
While she is undoubtedly a superstar in the making, things could have been very different. In an alternate-universe, McGrath says she would probably be studying English at university right now. That she instead finds herself as an enormously talented songstress at the epicentre of the burgeoning UK country music scene is all thanks to a bit of serendipity on the Internet.
“I just put a few covers on YouTube and sang for fun!” recalls McGrath of her formative years as a musician covering acts like Ed Sheeran from her home. “I knew it was what I wanted to do, but I wasn’t sure how to officially become a singer.”