|YMMV • Radar • Quotes • (Funny • Heartwarming • Awesome) • Fridge • Characters • Fanfic Recs • Nightmare Fuel • Shout Out • Plot • Tear Jerker • Headscratchers • Trivia • WMG • Recap • Ho Yay • Image Links • Memes • Haiku • Laconic|
Born Eithne Ní Bhraonáin in Gweedore (Gaoth Dobhair), County Donegal, she started out in the early 1980s, with small gigs here and there for commercials and movies, usually providing vocals. She also had a short part in Clannad (the New Age band, not the anime), but soon started seeking a solo career. In 1985, she released a Self-Titled Album that got her some recognition with BBC, but nothing much else came with it.
Then, in 1988, she struck gold with her landmark album Watermark. From that album is the famous (or infamous as some of her fans hate the song) "Orinoco Flow (Sail Away)", which gained some moderate radio airplay. Watermark has been critically praised as a masterpiece of New Age music, but for some reason Enya refused to let herself be labeled with the New Age scene.
Her popularity stayed the same throughout the 1990s, with a few of her albums continuing the decent sales and critical praise. Towards the end of the 1990s she settled down for a bit to get some rest from the music scene.
She made a triumphant return in the 2000s with a new album, and featured as a vocalist for "May It Be" in the first The Lord of the Rings movie. Another overly-exposed Enya song, "Only Time" was released around this time and also got some fan hatred.
She is still recording music, with her latest album being released in 2008. She is also notable for being the second-best selling Irish artist next to U2. To be in competition with a band completely outside her genre is something of a Crowning Moment of Awesome.
The Fugees also sampled one of her songs, without permission. Enya originally wanted to sue, but changed her mind when she found out they weren't a Gangsta Rap group, and both parties settled out of court. She has had a sort-of friendship with the Hip-Hop scene since.
Enya provides examples of the following tropes:
- Ask a Stupid Question -- A nonplussed Enya was once asked by a UK interviewer whether "Orinoco Flow" was about Orinoco from The Wombles.
- Con Lang -- Loxian.
- May it Be also includes two lines in Tolkien's Sindarin language, "Mornie utúlië" and "Mornie alantië" ("darkness has come" and "darkness has fallen" respectively).
- Early Installment Weirdness -- The video for debut single "I Want Tomorrow" is... odd.
- Echoing Acoustics -- Enya is known for using large amounts of reverb.
- Epic Riff -- Admit it, some of her piano riffs are just plain awesome.
- Everything's Louder with Bagpipes -- Though not the perfect example of this trope, she tends to use Uilleann pipes a LOT. (Which suits her anyways seeing as she's a Celtic artist).
- Greatest Hits Album -- She has TWO of them.
- Hey, It's That Voice! -- This is what every person in the audience was saying during her vocal parts in The Lord of the Rings movies.
- The Power of Love
- Magnum Opus -- Watermark
- Mind Screw -- A lot of her songs are this, especially "Anywhere Is" and "Orinoco Flow".
- Non-Appearing Title -- "Evacuee". The non-appearing title is effectively Word of God on the song's context - the lyric itself is vague enough that it could be about any parting from loved ones.
- Ominous Latin Chanting: "Cursuum Perficio", "Pax Deorum", and "Tempus Vernum".
- One-Hit Wonder -- Though "Only Time" got some good sales, it isn't considered a hit. So therefore she's a One-Hit Wonder with "Orinoco Flow".
- Pimped-Out Dress: She wears a number of these in many of her music videos.
- Refrain From Assuming -- "Orinoco Flow" is sometimes mistakenly (and even unmistakenly) given the title "Sail Away".
- Rhymes on a Dime -- "Orinoco Flow" does this with exotic place names from all over the world. For example:
- Sampled Up -- The Fugees sampled "Boadicea" for their song "Ready Or Not". Surprisingly well done.
- "I Don't Wanna Know" by Mario Winanas also samples "Boadicea"; in this instance, Winans sampled the Fugees song without seeking permission from Enya; the single was credited to "Mario Winans featuring Enya & P. Diddy" as a compromise, creating the unusual situation of Enya reaching #2 on Billboard's R&B chart.
- "Exlxaxl" by DJ Jappo & DJ Lancinhouse, and related remixes, famously sample Exile.
- Self-Backing Vocalist -- Part of her signature sound are the vocal layerings. Several interviews have stated that she doesn't use studio techniques to create the effect; she actually sings every layer of the thick, cloud-like harmonies. She also has quite the range, seeing as she can sing well into the male vocal range and way up into the high soprano range.
- This is also why she doesn't play live concerts.
- Self-Titled Album -- Later re-released as The Celts. The original print is quite valuable.
- Signature Song -- "Orinoco Flow" and "Only Time".
- Sweet Dreams Fuel -- Great music to sleep to.
- Vocal Evolution -- Especially between her first two albums Enya and Watermark.
- Word Salad Lyrics -- Not always the case, but a few of her songs just make no sense.