Daithí Ó Dronaí is something of a unique phenomenon within Irish music. The Clare native has managed to carve out a successful career in Ireland by taking the genre of Irish traditional music and reworking it with the electronic house sound that he specialises in.
Daithí would grow up in Ballyvaughan, Co. Clare, steeped in the Irish music traditional with numerous members of his family being esteemed traditional players. He was first thought fiddle by his grandfather before advancing on to bass guitar later on in his childhood. Daithí would begin to develop his ability for songwriting while attending Rockwell Boarding School in Co. Tipperary, and it was during his first year in Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge that he began to experiment with a fiddle and a loop station. Over the next few years, things would begin to happen very quickly for the talented producer, he would reach the finals of both The All Ireland Talent Show on RTÉ and Must Be The Music on SKY 1. The final of the latter would see the artist perform to a 10,000 capacity crowd in Wembley Arena.
Daithí // Carraroe (Feat. Elaine Mai) from Feel Good Lost on Vimeo.
The song that Daithí would perform in the final, Carraroe, would go on to become his debut single and would peak at no. 6 in the UK indie charts.
The first official music release by the producer would come with the release of the Embrace EP in February 2011. The EP would showcase the looped fiddle technique that Daithí would eventually become known for and the lead single Sleep Like a Stone would be premiered by esteemed music blogger Nialler9. The success of the EP would see Daithí embark on a tour of live shows across the country, which would include performances at Electric Picnic, Body & Soul Music Festival, and Castlepalooza.
In early 2012, Daithí would be approached by Sony Music Ireland and he would sign a development and record deal with the company. This deal would provide him with the opportunity to work with songwriters to hone his craft, including David Kitt and others. This period would see Daithí begin to develop a greater appreciation of pop music, an appreciation that would influence his music from that point on.
The following summer, in June 2013, would see Daithí make his proper mainstream breakthrough would happen for the Clare man when his single, Chameleon Life, would begin to get frequent radio play. This atmospheric offering of electric pop would become the sound of the summer for many with its positive feel and laid back vibe. The song would go on to be nominated for a Choice Music Prize for Irish song of the year, and was extremely well received by various music journalists.
After a period of releasing singles and featuring on tracks with other artists, Daithí would finally release his first LP, In Flight, in June 2014. The album would receive acclaim from fans and music critics alike with the title track of the album, In Flight, featuring the front man of The Coronas, Danny O’Reilly.
Shortly after the release of the album, Daithí would part ways with Sony Music Ireland and move back to the west of Ireland to focus on a different direction for his writing. The result of this change of direction was the Tribes EP that came in late February 2016 was another well received in Ireland with the single Mary Keane’s Introduction would eventually go viral. A collection of five expertly crafted electronic pop songs, including the songs April and Love’s On Top featuring Sinéad White.
Daithí remains one of the most unique artists in Irish music at the moment, a performer who is constantly trying to develop his sound while making sure to never drift too far away from the Irish traditional heritage that gave him his start in music. His most recent EP release, Holiday Home, earlier this year was another example of the innovation and maturity that Daithí Ó Dronaí continues to write with.