Clare Maguire is an English singer-songwriter who was was signed to Universal Music Group Polydor Records in 2008. She was announced on the 3 January 2011 as 5th place in the BBC Sound of 2011 list of the top 15 most promising new artists. Maguire was also singled out as one of MTV's Brand New: For 2011 Acts. Her voice has been compared to Annie Lennox and Stevie Nicks.
Born in Birmingham on 15th September 1987 Maguire comes from a large musical Irish family and started singing and writing music from the age of 7. She includes among her significant influences Sister Rosetta Tharpe, the pioneering 1940's gospel singer, songwriter and recording artist who popularised mixing spiritual lyrics with rock and roll accompaniment.
When she was 17 Maguire began travelling regularly to London to establish music contacts and also began posting demo songs on MySpace. One of these tracks, a song called Strangest Thing recorded with Joe Flory (Primary 1) approached 500,000 plays, leading to interest from a number of major recording companies. Maguire was also invited to Jay-Z's restaurant to meet the American rapper and millionaire businessman and other well established recording artists, including Jarvis Cocker, who was impressed and offered her one of his songs. Maguire signed a recording contract with Polydor Records in 2008 and since then has been working on her debut album Light After Dark with producer Fraser T. Smith, who has previously worked with Kylie and Adele.
Maguire began a European concert tour in October 2010 supporting Plan B and Hurts, an English synthpop duo from Manchester composed of singer Theo Hutchcraft and synth player Adam Anderson. She has also written a song with fellow Birmingham rap artist Mike Skinner entitled "Lock The Locks" which will feature on his last Streets album, Computers and Blues. Maguire also features on a track entitled "Midnight Caller" that appears on Drum and Bass-duo Chase & Status' second studio album, No More Idols.
Maguire released her debut single "Ain't Nobody" in the United Kingdom on 18 October 2010 through Polydor Records, where it debuted at number 78 on the UK Singles Chart. Maguire's song "You're Electric" was selected as the iTunes single of the week and was avaliable for a free digital download from 28 December until 3 January 2011. The song is currently due to appear on Light After Dark, but was released as a part of an iTunes-exclusive EP entitled Let's Begin.
On 31 December 2010, a song titled "Lucky" appeared as another free promotional download on Amazon. However, the single does not currently appear on the Light After Dark tracklisting. In January 2011, Maguire confirmed on Huw Stephens' BBC Radio 1 show that her second official single would be entitled "Last Dance". The single was said to have been written by Maguire the day after the death of music legend Michael Jackson in response to a series of unjustified comments. The official video for to accompany the single was first premiered by Perez Hilton on 7 January 2011 and was directed by AlexandLiane.