Interview: Orla Gartland

 Hey guys,

I really think studying journalism is absolutely brilliant. But some of the essays you have to write can really drive you insane.
Whenever that happens I'm more than happy to come over to the house in the sand and just get away by writing stuff I love.

This time I've got an interview for you.

The absolutely lovely Orla Gartland took time to answer a few questions.

Orla is a singer/songwriter from Dublin, Ireland. Music has always been a part of her life; at the age of 5 she learned how to play the violin and the guitar became her friend when she was 12.
The six string has not left her side ever since she started uploading videos on YouTube of her covering various songs.
The guitar based folk/pop sound became her signature style with which thousands of fans fell in love with.

Her debut EP 'Roots' showed that people not only enjoy her covers but also her original songs. The light and bouncy 'Clueless' just makes you want to have a good time dancing shamelessly (and singing along even more shamelessly, I would know) but then again Orla proves how she also has a serious side and wins you over with a softer tune like 'Human'.

In the interview Orla talks about filming videos, musical heroes, eating doritos, people jumping on stage and ... a lot more. Have a good time reading!

house in the sand: Hi Orla, thank you for chatting with us! How are you doing? And what have you been up to lately?
Orla: Thank you so much! I've been great, thank you. For the last few months I've had gigs here and there but mainly been writing songs by myself and with others. I've also been doing some recording and gearing up to release my second EP in a few months!
house in the sand: A lot of people know your YouTube videos, how is the recording process for a video there different from performing live on stage?
Orla: Wowza, it's so different. Althought it can feel like more pressure I actually much prefer live shows. There's a lot more of a connection with the listener, I guess. A little more fun than being a little loser by myself in my bedroom!

house in the sand: How long does it take you to film a video?
Orla: It usually takes 3 or 4 gos depending on how well I've learned the song but I generally settle with a take as early as possible, even if there are a few flaws in it. When watching the videos of others, I appreciate the rawness!

house in the sand: Talking about YouTube - you've covered quite a few iconic tracks. Now imagine: one of your musical heroes was going to cover one of your songs - which artist/band would you want it to be?
Orla: THE DREAM would be to have Regina Spektor to cover a song.. she's incredible! One of the driving forces for me to start writing songs! She seems pretty wacky which I love.

house in the sand: Which one is your favourite cover you've ever recorded?
Orla: Ooooh. I recorded a cover of 'Book of Love' which was really fun! Apart from that.. maybe 'Wannabe' by the Spice Girls. It's a funny one to whack out for gigs because most people rather shamelessly know every words.

house in the sand: Do you have any pre-gig rituals?
Orla: I drink a ton of water? Boring answer. One time I ate spicy Doritos before going on stage and mid-song I lost my voice completely, it dried up and I had to stop! NOT FUN. So after that I'm a lot more aware of what not to eat and all that. Other than that I usually just talk to people! If I'm alone in silence I'll get far more nervous than if I keep distracted.

house in the sand: Your social media pages are really lively and you are really close and personal with you fans, which is great! How do you handle all the positive as well as the negative feedback you get online?
Orla: Aw thanks so much! The negative has never been too hard to brush out, anyone that puts themselves out there is in a vulnerable spot and has to just take some criticism every so often - sometimes it's pretty tough but oddly it can also keep you grounded, keep you reminded that you've a lot people yet to win over!
With the positives I just try to listen to and thank as many people as possible. I reckon if I'm doing something right I should do more of it!

house in the sand: The craziest thing that ever happened during a gig was?
Orla: Oh, this was recently. I played a slot at a festival and during one song a girl hopped over the barrier and ran up on stage. She took the microphone beside mine and started singing harmonies. Security weren't sure if she was part of it so they just let her have her moment.. she turned out to be really good! I spent most of the song trying hard not to laugh. In hindsight, she wanted to do something and just DID it. Pretty admirable!

house in the sand: Which song do you catch yourself dancing to whenever it comes on?
Orla: I'm obsessed at the moment with a lot of pop from past eras.. I've been indulging lately in a lot of Michael Jackson and early Madonna. I LOVE A GOOD GROOVE.

house in the sand: This site is a music blog filled with tons of insider tips of musicians with so much potential. Could you share some of your favourite artists/bands who are not known globally (yet)?
Orla: For sure. Hudson Taylor, Lauren Aquilina, Hannah Grace and Greta Isaac are all fantastically talented musicians. Others I've been listening to lately incluce Sive, Rae Morris and a New York band called St. Lucia! All brilliant. It's an exciting time for new music!

Fan question: Which artists would you most like to work with?
Orla: OHHH. Imogen Heap would be awesome as she has a wacky home studio and produces all her own stuff! If I could turn back time I'd love to jam with Fleetwood Mac or Kate Bush! Loving the 80s lately.

Fan question: Which is your favourite lyric of all time and why? 
Orla: Paolo Nutini has a song on his second album that ends with "it was in love I was created and in love is how I hope I die". Love that! It's such a simple, wholesome wish. Fantastic!

house in the sand: Please complete the following sentence: I am Orla Gartland and I...
Orla: ... LOVE MUSIC. Which I suppose is a pretty good thing considering I'd quite like to play it for the rest of my days!

Orla Gartland online: Twitter | Facebook | YouTube | Tumblr

Many thanks to Orla for taking the time to answer the questions and being an absolute sweetheart!
Also thanks to Dan for setting this up.

Thank you for reading!

Credits // Text & Questions: Vanessa Jertschewske | Answers & Videos: Orla Gartland | Photography: SteamyInTheCity


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