The literary giant Samuel Johnson wrote “Great works are performed not by strength but by perseverance”. Born in Cork city, Ireland, Nicole Maguire personifies Johnson’s aphorism and her dedication and determination have forged a remarkable debut album.
Nicole’s frequent performances across Ireland led to an introduction to Texan singer Nanci Griffith. “The girl they had lined up to support Nanci on her Irish tour pulled out at the very last minute” Maguire explains “and I happened to be on the tip of someone’s tongue. . I learned an awful lot from those gigs. It was just me and my guitar and a theatre full of people.”
At twenty five years of age, after over ten years of writing songs, Nicole sent a demo of two of her self penned tunes to producer Mitchell Froom.
This led to an invitation to Froom’s Santa Monica Studio to record what was to become her debut album ‘What You Really Mean’.
The studio band comprised Elvis Costello and The Attractions drummer Pete Thomas, Crosby Stills and Nash’s bass player Bob Glaub and Val McCallum, guitarist for Sheryl Crow and Lucinda Williams. Backing vocals were handled by Vonda Shepard. The album was engineered by Grammy award winning engineer David Boucher.
Maguire recalls that there was an incredible energy and momentum to the sessions. ‘We did it all live. We just went in and played ’till we loved it and then we stopped. I hoped to create something that in twenty years I could be proud of. I think I did that’.
The album is profoundly emotional with a homespun lyricism that recalls Lucinda Williams, Bonnie Raitt’s early 70’s recordings and Christine McVie poignant songcraft in Fleetwood Mac.
Since recording the album, Nicole has performed on a very strong list of live performances. Since November 2012 at the INEC Killarney opening for Don McLean, Nicole has shared the stage with Damien Dempsey, Vince Gill, Glen Hansard, Kenny Rogers, Donovan,Lucinda Williams, Paul Brady, plus a host of others.
In September 2013, Nicole toured the U.S for the first time in the company of Damien Dempsey.
In March 2014, the album was officially launched in Ireland along with the release of the single ‘Hard Love’. ‘Hard Love’ was play listed on a number of radio stations nationwide.
Nicole also appeared on several of these radio shows including Newstalk 106’s number one show hosted by Pat Kenny. Nicole and band also performed live on Ireland’s flagship T.V show, The Late Late Show in early April.
Two Irish tours and a tour of Switzerland followed this T.V appearance and towards the middle of May this year, Nicole was invited back to the U.S again in the company of Damien Dempsey to share the first half of his summer U.S tour.
This trip was to include some fabulous Nicole performances in cities such as Boston, New York and San Francisco.
Nicole is now back in Ireland planning a string of dates for later this year to support the upcoming release of her next single. Also a return trip to Switzerland is planned for early December.
“I do not think that there is any other quality so essential to success of any kind as the quality of perseverance. It overcomes almost everything, even nature.” John D. Rockefeller