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Celebrity Health - Róisín O

Photos: Nicholas O'Donnell

Róisín O is an Irish singer, songwriter and musician. A member of the Black family, her brother Danny is in the Coronas and mother Mary is a well-known singer. Her debut album The Secret Life of Blue came out in 2012, she has supported Lionel Richie on his Irish tour, performed on The Late Late Show, The 7 O'Clock Show and Ireland AM and performed at Electric Picnic. In 2020, Róisín was part of Irish Women in Harmony, a collective of female singers and musicians who recorded a version of the song Dreams in aid of the charity Safe Ireland and toured with The Coronas. Her new album is due out in April and she embarks on a nationwide Irish tour in April and May.

Did you miss performing during the pandemic?

During the first lockdown in 2020 in a way it was a nice break. Everyone was in the same boat, with everything on hold. I was in my apartment in Dublin and could go for walks and jogs. Getting the break gave me time to write songs and the songs just poured out of me.

As it went on it became difficult to be in the music industry, and not being able to work or plan anything can mess with your mental health. I was lucky that when we went into another lockdown from January to April 2021 I was in the family's holiday home in Dingle, Kerry, which made a big difference. I was able to climb Mount Brandon and walk in the countryside. For many people in the music industry this was a really tough time. It was healing for my soul and I tried to be healthy and eat healthy food.

I am optimistic about 2022. I have my new album release in April and a nationwide tour during April and May. I have a single called Stolen with Gavin James which was recently released.

What exercise do you do to keep in shape?

My big passion is women's gaelic football – my whole family are mad into GAA. My club is Templeogue Synge St – there is a real community spirit. I find doing a team sport gives you great camaraderie and mental release – everything you do is for the team. There is no upper age limit in GAA, so I hope I can keep going for years. I love it way more than other exercise, although if there is no training I try to go to the gym, or force myself to jog. When I was in Kerry I would get out and go for a walk with someone else – it's better to do things together.

Keeping fit helps me to give a good performance on stage and not get out of breath. I am always concerned about looking after my voice as a singer, so I focus on vocal health. It's important to get enough sleep and stay sufficiently hydrated.

What sort of foods do you eat to stay healthy?

I have times when I am being really healthy, and other times when I am less healthy. I think it's important to have balance and enjoy food.

For breakfast I might have fruit and yogurt – my brother makes great granola.

For lunch I love salads, one of my favourites is strawberry and feta. I try to avoid too much white bread, pasta and rice.

I love eating out for dinner, but if I am being healthy and cooking myself I might go for salmon with lots of vegetables and baked potatoes. I try to avoid a lot of sauces. I tend to go for chicken and fish more than red meat.

Do you take any supplements?

I try to take vitamin A and echinacea in the run-up to going on tour as I need to be in the best health. Since Covid I have started taking vitamin D. I also take omega-3 fish oils.

Do you have any tips for Rude Health readers?

  • Look after your body so that it can do what you need it to.
  • My voice has to be in top shape in order to sing.
  • I avoid alcohol because it is dehydrating.
  • I drink lots of water and steam my vocal chords with a Dr Nelson's inhaler to warm them up before going on stage.

Róisín O – The Irish Tour
14 Mike the Pies, Listowel
22 The Pav, Cork
23 INEC Acoustic Room, Killarney
29 Dolans, Limerick
30 Opium, Dublin
6 Monroes, Galway
20 Kavanagh's, Laois
21 Sean Og's, Donegal

Tickets from usual outlets.


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