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Aoife O'Donovan Bull Frogs Croon and Other Songs Yep Roc

Aoife O’Donovan to Release New EP with String Quartet: ‘Bull Frogs Croon (and Other Songs)’

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Fresh off her Grammy win last month with the trio I’m With Her, Aoife O’Donovan has announced the release of her first new studio recordings in four years, the Bull Frogs Croon (and Other Songs) EP, out March 6 at all digital services.

We have a Yep Roc Store EXCLUSIVE: Limited First Edition of 500 CDs and 500 LPs comes with limited edition poster insert hand autographed by Aoife O’Donovan. Pre-order here before they’re gone!

A fascinating and arrestingly beautiful song cycle, Bull Frogs Croon had its origins in 2015 when O’Donovan, violinist and composer Jeremy Kittel, and young conductor Teddy Abrams were commissioned to create a new piece of music for Oregon’s Britt Music and Arts Festival. While researching the project, Aoife was introduced to Oregon’s poet laureate Peter Sears, whose work would serve as the lyrical source material for the three songs on Bull Frogs Croon.  Sears, who passed away in 2017, attended the premiere performance of these songs in 2015, observing “When poems are set to music an entirely new creation springs forth.”

Today, Aoife has shared “Night Fishing,” one of the songs which draws on Sears’ poetry.  Of the original poem she says, “It was the opening line that drew me in: ‘The water is a glaze like loneliness at ease with itself.’ That idea really struck a chord.”

While the 2015 premiere of Bull Frogs Croon was performed by a full orchestra, O’Donovan elected to strip the studio recording back to an elemental string quartet consisting of violinists Kittel and Brittany Haas (Crooked Still, Hawktail), violist Mario Gotoh (Silkroad Ensemble, Broadway’s Hamilton) and bassist Paul Kowert (Punch Brothers, Hawktail).  In addition to three new compositions, the EP — which was co-produced by Aoife and Kittel — consists of fresh takes on two songs that have been part of O’Donovan’s repertoire for years: the Irish folk song “Lakes of Pontchartrain,” and Hazel Dickens’ “Pretty Bird.”  Says Aoife: “The through line for me is that the poetry of both of those songs fit well with how Bull Frogs Croon ends in such a beautiful loving way.”

AOIFE O’DONOVAN 2020 SONGS + STRINGS TOUR


February 22 – Town Hall – New York, NY %
March 11 – Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center – Old Saybrook, CT *
March 12 – Sanders Theatre – Cambridge, MA *
March 13 – The Barns at Wolf Trap – Vienna, VA *
March 14 – Modlin Center for the Arts – Richmond, VA *
March 20 – Stoughton Opera House – Stoughton, WI *
March 21 – North Shore Center for the Performing Arts – Skokie, IL *
March 22 – Memorial Hall – Cincinnati, OH *
April 5 – Lucas Theatre for the Arts – Savannah, GA 
April 16 – The Arts Center – Carrboro, NC *
April 17 – Clemens Arts Center – Paducah, KY*
April 24 – The Momentary – Freshgrass l Bentonville, AR !
May 18 – Staatsoperette Dresden – Dresden, Germany
May 19 – Bryggarsalen – Stockholm, Sweden
May 21 – Hallé St. Peter’s – Manchester, England
May 22 – Barbican Centre’s Milton Court Concert Hall – London, England
June 12 – The Kino – Cork, Ireland ^
August 12 – Wolf Trap – Vienna, VA #
August 15 – Fiddler’s Green Amphitheatre – Denver, CO #
October 27 – Carnegie Hall’s Stern Auditorium – New York, NY #

% Live From Here
* Taylor Ashton supports
! duo show with Noam Pikelny
^ Aoife solo
# The Goat Rodeo Sessions

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