British multi-instrumentalist Guy Fletcher, the longtime collaborator and confidant of Mark Knopfler, has produced a forthcoming EP by Irish country-roots-pop act Megan and the Common Threads. Recording took place at Knopfler’s British Grove Studios in the summer, in the same month that the Rolling Stones and Eric Clapton were working there.
The group are fronted by Megan O’Neill, originally from County Kildare and now based in London. In addition to her work with the emerging band, who played at this year’s Country to Country Festival, O’Neill has the distinction of having one of her songs, ‘Don’t You,’ featured in the hit TV series Nashville.
In September, O’Neill was one of four up-and-coming country artists to have songs written and produced by the Shires’ Ben Earle and released by Decca. Also featured in the series were tracks by Liv Austen, Dexeter and Dahlia. Listen to O’Neill’s, ‘Can’t Put A Price On That,’ on Spotify.
The new EP, to be titled Stories To Tell, will be self-released by Megan and the Common Threads in February. uDiscover has had a sneak preview, and the six songs show off an assured and authentic country flavour with crossover potential, honed by Fletcher’s assured production.
O’Neill has been talking to us about how the connection with Fletcher came about. “After a few too many slugs of bourbon, my brother in music, Dan Clark, decided to email one of his heroes in the drunken hope that he might want to produce our new record,” she says. “To our incredible surprise that’s how it all started.”
“Guy called me two or three days later and we had a wonderful chat about the music, what his favourite songs were from my catalogue and the potential and logistics of making a record together. From there it all happened very quickly. We launched a Pledge Music campaign to fund the project and together we selected the six songs we would record.
“On 13 August, 2016 it was game on. We had an extremely exhausting but incredible day at British Grove, basking in the glory and magic in its walls…with the overwhelming talents of Eric Clapton, who had been in the day before, and the Rolling Stones, the week before, hanging over our heads.
“But we did it! And we’re going to be so proud and excited to share our new EP with the world. We’d like to take this opportunity once again to thank Guy for the strings he both plucked and pulled to ensure this record happened. We’ve loved every minute of it.”