Anna & Jake

January 2020

Anna O’Brien, age 11, and Jake McCarthy, age 12, are learning music through Music Mash Up, a partnership between Foróige, Music Generation Cork City, COPE Foundation and Voices of Cork Choir.


I’ve been with Music Mash Up since last year. We already knew each other from before, as we are in the same class in the same school (Gaelscoil an Ghort Alainn, Mayfield).


I joined Music Mash Up after the 2018 Music Mash Up Summer Camp, and then Jake joined.


I usually play the bongos, and I’m a great singer. I love singing ‘Shotgun’ by George Ezra. He’s one of my favourite singers.

I also used to do hip hop dance classes in Blackpool.

My family wouldn’t usually be in the mood for singing or dancing, so they are very surprised at me doing it, they’re astonished. My mom never knew I could sing until she heard me perform with Music Mash Up at a concert in Mayfield Library. Sadly my Dad had to go to work that day, but my sister and my Mom were there. I can play the bongos and sing at the same time.


I sing, I play piano and I’ve gotten into more instruments because our living room has turned into a music room! There’s the piano, 3 guitars, the ukulele, a microphone, an amp and my brother’s electric drums.

My mom grew up in a family who were into sports, not music. My French Grandpa is into sports, and my other Grandad doesn’t think I should be a (famous) singer because you mostly hear about singers who have died, more than sports players.

 My mom started the guitar lessons (Music Mash Up adult beginner guitar group for the parents) so it’s a small bit of a music family now but its mostly a sports family.

 I love Freddie Mercury. I actually don’t know how I first heard of him. I watched the movie, of course, but I knew him before then. I’ve just always been a big fan.

Jake: She is non stop talking about him.

Anna: Well there are French singers I like too.

Jake: Ya but it’s basically Freddie Mercury all the time.

Anna: Ya it is actually!

I like all things with art – like art education, drawing, drama, and things. I play a bit of basketball too.

Jake: I do some drama with Anna. We did a play called ‘Shh They’ll Hear Us’.

Anna: It was a mime and we came first place and got the cup at Feis Maitiú.

Jake: Performing on stage is kind of nerve-wracking at first, when you’re in front of everyone. I always get that feeling.

Anna: I’m fine with talking or acting on stage, but when it comes to singing, I get nervous. I really like doing it though, and I feel good after.

Jake: I lose the nerves once I start. And I feel great after.

Anna & Jake – Music Generation Cork City