About Marilyn

Marilyn O'Malley's versatile vocals can be delicately beautiful, deeply passionate, or even a bit raucous, but they are always genuine. A Celtic vocalist for more than thirty years, her performances are a delightful mix of artistry, humor and mischief. She exudes warmth and conviction, tempered by silliness. "You have to balance seriousness with light-heartedness," Marilyn believes, and she has found an entertaining way of doing just that.

Her repertoire includes bawdy songs, sea shanties, rebel songs, lovely airs, and her own songwriting. Her originals are often influenced by Irish music, with depth and variety, from profound to playful. She accompanies herself on her acoustic Taylor guitar.

Marilyn has lived most of her life on the West Coast, moving around Oregon, Washington and California. Most recently she moved from Sonoma County, California to Eugene, Oregon where she intends to stay permanently. She is now the host of the Celtic Music Hour on KOCF, a gig which fell in her lap after being heard at an open mic. She is writing new songs and learning more Celtic ones and is busy discovering the vibrant community in and around Eugene.

In Sonoma County she formed the Irish band Wild Green with fiddler, Francis Small and later added Ann Chambers on percussion and Stefan Goya on bass, cello and fiddle. She was the lead vocalist and rhythm guitarist in the Olympia-based trio, Metcalf, McKeegan & O'Malley. She performed in the Portland Irish bands, Sheer Audacity and Brigid's Fire, and sang in the acappella all-woman sea shanty group, Broadside. Over the years she has also performed as a soloist, which is doing once again (though she hopes to find a fiddler).

"We are living in very difficult and complex times. Music is a great tool for expressing our hopes, fears, protests, and dreams. I've been writing more songs about the environment. Troubadors have always had some influence in changing things for the better. I hope I can too. And at the very least I hope I can make people laugh or experience something beautiful once in a while." - Marilyn Irene O'Malley, 2022