For the singer, music is a form of therapy, a way to address her battles with anxiety, depression and an eating disorder
At the age of 16, Donegal’s Rosie Carney signed a record deal that guided her away from the unadorned and honest songwriting that she wanted to pursue. After that false start, Carney knuckled down and got even more real and began to address her battles with anxiety, depression and an eating disorder that occupied her teenage years.
As she told Mahogany in a recent video documentary, the catalyst for change was when her grandmother, who suffers with dementia, asked her mother if Rosie had cancer, as she was so thin. Music really became a form of therapy for her.
Last year’s single Awake Me, released as a 19-year-old, was a song about escaping the grip of depression. “From down on the dirt / to under mountain tops / where our life stops / and I’ve been a fool / for more than half my life / I’ve tried to hide / awake me / don’t break me,” she sings gently as if lifting the fog and opening her soul to the listener.
Each song Carney releases is a resonant depiction of a person moving on, learning and coping. Instrumentation is sparse: guitar, piano and little else. It’s Carney’s voice that holds the attention. A suitable cover of Cigarettes After Sex’s K pares back an alreadysparse song to its essentials, while her newest song, Bare, reaches for a hand in hard times.
It’s music that comes entirely from Carney’s own experiences and expression, which would likely have been diluted by industry machinations. Carney’s music now offers solace for others as well as herself.