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Emma Langford’s latest single is steeped in women’s history

‘Abigail’ is the first of three songs born of Langford’s fascination with the medieval Irish saint Gobnait

By Sadhbh Pearse

Emma Langford has done it again!

Over the course of her impressive career, the Limerick folk singer has gained legions of fans with her skilful songwriting and outstanding vocals. 

Emma has been very active locally in recent months, hosting multiple gigs and other events such as a live recording of her podcast, ‘The Limerick Lady’.

Since the pandemic, Emma has thrown herself into studying the history and folklore of women in Ireland, which has led to a deep connection to the medieval Irish saint Gobnait of Ballyvourney and her latest single, ‘Abigail’. 

After two years of following this fascination and simultaneously writing her fabulous socks off, Emma is ready to release her first piece of work that pays tribute to Gobnait – which can be translated to Abigail in English.

One piece of folklore that drew Emma to the female saint is the tradition of Gobnait’s Measure, a ritual whereby ribbons are blessed using a historic statue of Gobnait. This practice got the cogs in Emma’s head turning.

“When I heard of the tradition, it made me think about our ‘measure’ of a person… How we judge each other, how women have historically been judged and punished in Ireland based on criteria established by people claiming to be good and righteous, and how if we were to live life the right way there would be more scope for redemption, openness, forgiveness and kindness,” the singer explains.

Known for her moving lyrics and vocal style, Emma’s her new track ‘Abigail’ stays true to this. You can feel her love and curiosity for Gobnait as you drink it all in.

Beginning sweet and soft, the single swiftly builds to a strong, moving piece, emotion cascading from Emma through the medium of her phenomenal vocals. 

‘Abigail’ is set for release on February 3.

Listen to Emma Langford on Spotify.

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