From the first glance upon one of Orla Gartland’s many many selfies, you instantly want to put her in your pocket.
Cute, quirky, well-dressed, and ginger, it’s not hard to fall in love with her.
And wait till you hear her sing. As young as 18, the Irish girl has a voice like soft butter on a rainy day. That may sound mushy or something, but I don’t care.
We caught up with Orla to chat about her ginger pride, pet peeves and upcoming debut EP.
How long have you been songwriting and performing?
I’ve been doing it full time now for two months! I started it all about three years ago and balanced it alongside school until I finished my exams in June.
Describe your sound…
Wacky guitar-infused pop!
Which artists/bands inspire you?
The main ones for me would be Regina Spektor, Imogen Heap, and Joni Mitchell.
Have you ever written a song about being ginger?
I haven’t yet, but why the heck not!
How’s the recording going for your first EP?
All done now! It was the most fun I’ve ever had. I finally felt like a real musician; it’s amazing to just feel immensely proud of something you’ve created. Now I can’t wait to release!
Do you play other instruments than guitar? Will these feature on your EP?
I like to mess about with keys and bass, but I’m rubbish. I played all the guitar that features on the EP and worked alongside my producer Charlie to come up with all the other parts, some of which were recorded by friends of ours.
You’re about to tour the UK. Excited? What do you love/hate most about being on the road…
Can’t wait! I’m supporting my friend Frank Hamilton at 8 of his UK shows. It’ll be my first time playing in Wales which is cool.
I’m a complete newbie to touring – I supported a friend of mine and finished a week ago and had to come home to catch up on sleep! I loved it and can’t wait to travel more, but living out of suitcases is a real pain when a pet hate of mine is creased clothes!
Where are you based at the minute?
Technically Dublin, hopefully London soon.
Have you always been proud of your red hair?
Absolutely! It makes me stand out a bit – nothing wrong with that. With Ron Weasley and Ed Sheeran, we have some absolute legend gingers flying the flag for us out there.
In my opinion everyone that teases gingers is actually jealous.
How do you think it contributes to your personality and identity?
I have a pretty wacky sense of humour, so it definitely matches up with that!
Are there other members of your family with ginger hair?
Nope! My Dad always called me “the milkman’s daughter”. I didn’t understand it until I was 12, and when I did I definitely didn’t find it one bit funny.
What was it like for you growing up with ginger hair?
It was absolutely fine really! Luckily being ginger isn’t too rare in Ireland, so I was not alone!
Which ginger artist would you like to collaborate with? Why?
Florence & the Machine perhaps. Is she a true ginger?
When can we next see you perform?
I’m supporting Frank Hamilton on some UK dates and my friends Hudson Taylor in London on December 5th, but I’ll be announcing some headline dates of my own very soon. Gah, I’m so bad at keeping secrets.
Anything else you’d like to tell everyone?
I’m very proud of my roots! (Roots – hair – geddit? Geddit?! Sorry. I’ll get my coat)