Irish-Influenced Musician Aoife O'Donovan On Her Top American Playlist09:16

Aoife O'Donovan performs at The Bullingdon in Oxford, England in February 2016. (theradicallight/Flickr)
Aoife O'Donovan performs at The Bullingdon in Oxford, England in February 2016. (theradicallight/Flickr)
This article is more than 5 years old.

As Here & Now continues to explore the meaning of American music with artists of all genres, this week we hear from folk singer and guitarist Aoife O'Donovan.

O'Donovan grew up outside of Boston, but spent her summers in Ireland, exploring a mixture of both Irish and American folk songs. Today, she's known for her unique style, as well as her collaborations with people like Chris Thiele of Nickel Creek, Yo-Yo Ma and the Boston Pops.

While on her tour promoting he latest album, In The Magic Hour, she stopped by the Here & Now studios to answer the question: "What does American music mean to you?"

"There's so much American music," O'Donovan said. "There's all these great traditions. But I think that the common thread is the human experience of being a person - I don't know if that's distinctly American, but I think it's what draws people to listening to music in the first place. It's something everybody can relate to. They hear words and melody and something that tugs at their heart strings. It's sort of undeniable."

Aoife O'Donovan's American Music Playlist

"Down In the Willow Garden" (feat. Paul Brady) by Tim O'Brien (The Crossing, 1999)

"Fruits Of My Labor" by Lucinda Williams (Live @ The Fillmore, 2003)

"Steam Powered Aereo Plane" by John Hartford (Aereo-Plain, 1971)

"Porch Light" by Aoife O'Donovan (In The Magic Hour, 2016)


This segment aired on June 1, 2016.