Ali McGuirk has made a career of captivating audiences with her unique blend of hypnotic R&B grooves, folk songwriter lyricism, classic soul delivery, and a gravelly blues temperament. With a focus on lively improvisation, a taste for heavy grooves, and her own buttery voice, her earliest years as a performer were spent earning residencies across 4 continents, from Santorini to Hong Kong.
Ali has recently settled in Boston, where she has been steadily gaining recognition as one of the city's most compelling vocal performers. In 2016, she was recognized in the Boston Globe as an "artist to hear" by the influential Boston rock critic Steve Morse, and was featured among Lake Street Dive, Haim, Margo Price, and other notable names. Shortly thereafter, she released her debut EP, and launched a highly successful GoFundMe campaign. The 4-track sampler is heavily influenced by the jazz tradition and freely moves through soul, blues, pop, reggae, and R&B feels. It features local horn players, such as big band leader Alex Lee-Clark and baritone saxophonist Dana Colley, of Morphine.
She is now poised to release her first full-length album, which will see her working with an eclectic mix of artists, including Boston guitar legend Jeffrey Lockhart, former music director for Bryan McKnight. The album will feature an all-star cast of musicians, as well as frequent collaborators and bandmates Brandon Mayes, former drummer for Kendrick Lamar and Soulja Boy, and fierce lady bass player, back up vocalist, and front-woman in her own right, Cilla Bonnie.
Read what others have to say about Ali:
"A soul singer who evokes comparisons to Amy Winehouse but rocks even harder."
- Steve Morse, The Boston Globe
"When she opens her mouth, people stop and take notice, captivated by her swooping, honeyed voice."
-Paul Robicheau, The Improper Bostonian
"A vocal powerhouse and smart songwriter."
- Jed Gottlieb, The Boston Herald
""Equal parts soul, rhythm and blues, jazz, pop, and pure mysticism, McGuirk never rushes. Her songs, which are played to perfection by an outstanding band, are a meditative, musical, anachronism in this era of no time to think, and no room-to-breathe."
- Kristina Kehrer, Neighborhood Media
"One of the rising stars on the local scene... performing a set of tunes that are uniquely hers - soul drenched, jazz inspired, and freely delivered with an ease that belies her young age."
- Billy Beard, Session Americana