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The Conversation: We catch up with musician Sharon Corr

By Andy Welch

The 44-year-old was formerly a member of The Corrs with her sisters Andrea and Caroline and brother Jim. She is married to Belfast barrister Gavin Bonnar and is mum to son Cathal (8) and daughter Flori (7).

Are you looking forward to your new tour?

Very much so. I'm in the middle of a world tour really. I started last year in South America, and have slowly been working my way around the world ever since. The shows have been going great. I've done six weeks in the States, I've been to New Zealand, and I'm loving playing the songs from the new record.

This is your second solo album, and it's very different from the traditional folk music in the first...

Yes. I love that record but I listen to it now and it wasn't who I am now, I hadn't found the music I wanted to make then. I feel that was a transitional record from The Corrs to what I'm doing now. I still had a pull to write songs from The Corrs, but now I'm writing for myself. It's just me this time around, and I think it shows I've developed. It's all merged together into one giant influence. I love what I did with the band, but I love what I'm doing now too, it's about moving forward all the time.

Did it take a while to stop writing harmonies and songs like you would have done before?

It did a bit. It's like sticking on braces, but then getting your crooked teeth back. We all wrote for the band and accommodated each other so, yeah, it did take a bit of time just writing for me. I think stage-wise it was easier, I've always been comfortable on stage, but inhabiting the centre role now is very natural to me. There was a little transition but it's all part of the journey.

The album references 1970s singer-songwriters. Is that music you listed to growing up?

Yes, it's a bit of that, but more than anything it's about the art of songwriting. There are no short cuts, no AutoTune, there's a really organic sound on it, and I'm really sick of the way a lot of new music sounds now. That's why it's so lovely to hear someone like Adele being so good at what she does – that's what we're supposed to do as singers.

Anything we do is worth doing well, and you have to give the songs your all. People listening deserve that, and they can feel the truth when you're singing. It's about having high expectations for what I do, and also a high level of respect for the audience.

Who is you audience? Do you get lots of Corrs fans?

There are some Corrs fans who have stuck with me, which is a great endorsement and I really appreciate that. But mostly it's new fans who come to see me.

It must be reassuring to know new fans are coming?

I don't really think about it, I'm not bound to the past. If I'm delivering something new I expect new people to turn up. If I think about it then I think I create barriers, and start thinking of something not as it is in reality. For me, every day is a new possibility. I focus on who I am, not who I was.

What else do you fill your time with?

I do a lot of things, but I don't have a lot of free time. I have a boy and a girl, aged seven and eight. When I'm not touring, I am with them. I've also been a coach on the Irish version of The Voice, which was great and brilliant to be part of, especially as it was so kind to the artists who are up and coming. And the support on my upcoming tour is someone I worked with on The Voice, so it's great to help someone in that way.

The plug

Sharon Corr releases her second solo album The Same Sun on September 16, and tours the UK and Ireland from September 14, including a date at Dublin's Sugar Club on September 20. For details, visit www.ticketmaster.ie

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