The Austin Chronicle

Ellen O’Meara released her debut album, Take Me to the Desert, in May. Produced by Darwin Smith, it’s a combination of folk and Americana.

As a child, O’Meara became fascinated by spaces and shapes, so she considered becoming an architect. Her main goal was to live creatively with a sense of adventure. The local also grew up a tomboy; constantly exploring, climbing trees, and building forts. It’s the kid in all of us that makes her music so accessible.

It wasn’t until 2011 that she picked up a guitar.

“I was 21 years old,” says O’Meara. “I took a couple lessons, which bored me to tears. So I went home and listened to my favorite folk song on repeat until I had figured out the picking pattern by ear.

“I used the only four chords I knew to write my first few songs. During that time, I also found interest again in playing piano. After that, I picked up harmonica, then accordion, then banjo, and I haven’t stopped since.”

O’Meara grew up in Georgetown and went to college at Mary Hardin-Baylor in Belton, where she earned her nursing degree. Around the same time she started playing guitar, she began working as a pediatric nurse at Austin’s Dell Children’s Hospital. Inspired by Townes Van Zandt and Guy Clark, O’Meara found a way to put her health care-oriented empathy to work as a songwriter.

“I play acoustic instruments that make real sounds, and I write songs about real life and real people,” she explains. “I love the simplicity of folk music. My music appeals to people because it’s about common people and it’s easy to relate to. My music is narrative folk music and poetic imagery and symbolism.

Take Me to the Desert takes its name from a song about “someone experiencing a stark winter and pleading for rescue from the cold.”

“Though the desert is a place of desolation, in this song the desert represents a place of warmth, light, and eternal sunshine,” she offers.

Eternal sunshine of the 23-year-old mind.

“Everybody has to start somewhere,” she acknowledges. “I’ve had to remind myself of that a time or two. It’s easy for me to compare myself to my peers and wish I was more established as a musician than I am, but when I reflect on the past two years and how much I’ve accomplished, I’m proud of myself.

“My bandmates and those who played on my record are my friends, but also my mentors. They have years more experience than I do. They have been gracious, patient, and encouraging of my music and where I am in this process. I learned a great deal from them and am grateful to have them in my life.”

O’Meara plays Wednesday night at the Cactus Cafe as part of Five & Dime, her trio with Darwin Smith and Jaimee Harris. Take Me to the Desert can be found at Waterloo Records and online via iTunes and Amazon.

How Did I Get Here?

hello friends! i hope this episode finds you happy and healthy. things are going well. if you're receiving this on the day it comes out, i'll be playing some songs with the bluebonnets tonight  tuesday, july 16th 2013 at 10:30 at the continental club in austin, tx. i used to have an all girl (except for me) band a couple of years ago with kathy and dominique from the bluebonnets. anyway, we've been rehearsing and i LOVE playing with them. it's so fun and they ROCK!!!!!! kathy and i have been talking about getting something going... i want it to be like that. fuckin' straight-up rock and roll!!!! let's get down!

my guest for episode 188 is talented singer/songwriter, ellen o'meara. ellen has just put out her first album, "take me to the desert". in fact, ellen has pretty much just started playing and writing songs over the last couple of years! most people wouldn't be making their debut album with some of austin's best musicians, but ellen did because she's totally amazing. not only is she a naturally gifted singer/songwriter, she's also an amazingly humble and and sweet person. she came by the apartment and we talked about everything... growing up in west texas, nursing, lack of pop culture, old souls, discovering music, "you should be on the voice", getting out there and doing it and making an album with great musicians. i had a great time getting to know ellen. she's a special person and i think you're gonna like her too.

ciao! -jg

Noise Trade

Are you ready for a music festival on the beach? The Hangout Music Festival returns May 15-17, 2015 with an all-star lineup featuring Foo Fighters, Zac Brown Band, Beck, My Morning Jacket, Foster the People, Spoon, TV on the Radio, Phantogram, Lupe Fiasco,
Cold War Kids, Vance Joy, MisterWives and many more.
Introduce yourself to some the artists on the lineup with our Hangout Fest mixtape featuring Father John Misty, GRiZ, Trampled by Turtles, Strand of Oaks, Gramatik, The Lone Bellow, Umphrey's McGee, Charles Bradley, Rubblebucket, Colony House, Beats Antique, Knox Hamilton, Skylar Spence (formerly Saint Pepsi) and many more playing the beaches of
Gulf Shores, AL. Download and then get your tickets at hangoutmusicfest.com.

Ellen O'Meara , a singer/songwriter from Austin, Texas, is know for her poignant but eloquent way of telling stories.  Enjoy her debut album, Take Me to the Desert.

 


 

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Music Inform

Thank you Music Inform for the feature today! Check it out. This website is a great resource for new music.

Music Inform Feature: Ellen O'Meara

The Troubadour Show


Ellen O'Meara featured on The Troubadour Show!

#97. January 22nd 2015 Playlist


originally broadcast on The Penguin Rocks


       Playlist

  1. Hey Good Lookin' - Hank Williams
  2. Death - Maynard And The Musties
  3. Promise Of A Rising Sun - Blackbird Sing
  4. Before You Condemn - The Nut Drivers
  5. A Simple Song - Alice Wallace
  6. Better - The Gasoline Bros
  7. Three Thousand Miles From Nashville - David Latto Band
  8. The Outlaw - Dan Fogelberg
  9. Daddy Run - Amelia White
  10. Northbound 35 - Jeffrey Foucault
  11. The Sound - Mad Dog McRea
  12. 99 Years For One Dark Day - Robert Earle Keen ft Peter Rowan
  13. O' Be Joyful - Shovels & Rope
  14. Fools Rush In - The Hangdogs
  15. Dirty Old Buffalo - Gurf Morlix
  16. Ragged Old Truck - Billy Joe Shaver
  17. Gotta Get To Heaven - Scott H. Biram
  18. Meet Me In Heaven - Johnny Cash
  19. If Heaven - Gretchen Peters
  20. Long Gone Wrong - Daniel Meade
  21. Carolina - Ellen O'Meara
  22. Sutter's Mill - Dan Fogelberg
  23. The Way Love Is - Alan West
  24.  By The Boots - Malcolm Holcombe
  25.  I'm Leaving - Tony Manard
  26.  Since You Put Me Down - Margo Price & The Pricetags
  27.  Hell's Kitchen - The Westies
  28.  None But The Brave - Bruce Springsteen
  29.  Once Upon A Time In The West Finale - Ennio Morricone