Imelda Mary Higham (born Imelda Mary Clabby on 10 July 1974), professionally known as Imelda May, is an Irish musician and singer-songwriter. Born and raised in The Liberties area of Dublin, May began her career in music at age sixteen - performing with a number of local bands and musicians - before forming her own band in 2002. She released her debut studio album, No Turning Back, in 2003 and relocated to London, United Kingdom, with husband and guitarist Darrel Higham after its release. Following an appearance on the BBC music programme Later... with Jools Holland in 2008, she released her second studio album, Love Tattoo (2009). At the 2009 Meteor Awards she won the Best Female Artist of the Year award . Her 2010 album, Mayhem, earned her a nomination for the Choice Music Prize.
Although known primarily as a singer, May also plays the bodhrán, guitar and tambourine. Described as "a unique vocal talent," May is known for her musical style of rockabilly revival and has also been compared to female jazz musicians such as Billie Holiday.
Born in Dublin, the youngest of five children, she fell in love with rockabilly at the age of nine, though was also exposed to a range of musical styles, from Irish traditional music to Elvis Presley. She now specialises in rockabilly, singing her own material and covers. Her debut album with Blue Harlem was No Turning Back, which was followed by Swing Street, and Talk to Me. Her first solo release was Love Tattoo.
May has shared the stage with Alison Moyet, Dionne Warwick, Bryan Ferry, Anastasia, The Supremes, Sister Sledge, Scissor Sisters, Matt Bianco, Elvis Costello, Jools Holland, Elton John, and Jeff Beck. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply.