Aoife O’Donovan Writes Collection of Songs During University Residency

In January of 2021, I’m With Her’s Aoife O’Donovan reached out to her friend, producer Joe Henry (Rhiannon Giddens, Bonnie Raitt), and what initially began as a collaboration of a handful of songs turned into many. 

“What transpired from that first conversation was a lot of new music—a lot,” says O’Donovan. “I’m so excited to share songs from those sessions.”

The first two releases from the session, “More Than We Know” and “Captain’s Clock,” were both recorded during the spring of 2021, while Aoife was in-residence at Full Sail University in Orlando, Florida, working with Henry, musicians from around the country, and Darren Schneider, an engineer at the school. 

Co-written with Henry during the session, “More Than We Know,” features the vocals of Joey and Kenneth of The Milk Carton Kids, while the guitar-led “Captain’s Clock” weaves around O’Donovan’s vocals and an added horn arrangement.

“‘Captain’s Clock,’ yes, it’s [Captain] Hook reference, features insanely beautiful woodwinds by Levon Henry,” shares O’Donovan.

Aside from her collaboration with Henry and working with her I’m With Her bandmates Sara Watkins and Sarah Jarosz, O’Donovan, is booked throughout 2021, headlining dates with Alan Hampton (Andrew Bird) and Griffin Goldsmith (from Dawes) and getting ready to introduce an expanded group with Lula Wiles’ Isa Burke, in addition to performing songs around her women’s suffrage movement project “America, Come.”

O’Donovan is also set to play shows with string quartet, showcasing material from her 2020 EP Bull Frog’s Croon, in addition to festival appearances and dates with Goat Rodeo Sessions, the collaborative group of Yo-Yo Ma, Chris Thile, Edgar Meyer and Stuart Duncan.

She will also join Henry and Schneider at Americanafest this year for a behind-the-scenes discussion of their collaboration.

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