DEIRDRE McLAUGHLIN Interview (April 2019)

DEIRDRE McLAUGHLIN: BACK AT NUMBER ONE.

Letterkenny’s own, Deirdre McLaughlin, is back in the number one spot of the Beatport charts after her single ‘Gravity’ rose to the top of the billing last week. The song was created in collaboration with Aly and Fila; an Egyptian dance duo who have a staggering 1.8 million followers on Facebook.

And yet, it’s not the first time this highly-talented musician has reached this milestone as Deirdre previously reached the number one spot with ‘Chasing After You’ back in 2017.

Last Friday, she took time out to speak with us here at the Leader about her latest ventures. 

By Jonathan Foley

“For the song to initially go in at number four – from 78th – was fantastic enough, but when it made a quick climb to number one, considering the quality of performers we overtook, it was a massive surprise.

The song itself took the best part of three years to finalise. There were countless times I’d rewrite the lyrics or the melody and the producers would look for things to be readjusted, but it all came good in the end” she told. 

More good news was to follow. ‘Gravity’ was then voted as the week’s ‘future favourite’ on the Armin van Burren’s A State of Trance radio show that is broadcast from the Netherlands capital city of Amsterdam. The show has a listenership of 40 million people on a weekly basis; a place where the listeners themselves have the autonomy to vote for their favourite track from the weekly show!

The many thousands who follow Deirdre’s own online profilse were also in for something of a double-treat last week when not one, but two, of her songs were released within only a matter of days of each other. 

“I suppose it was a bit of a ‘famine or a feast’ situation. I hadn’t actually released anything for a while and it just so happened that ‘Gravity’ and ‘Guide Your Way’ were scheduled to come out around the same time, so as you can imagine, it shows that it’s been a very busy but certainly a very enjoyable period of recording this past while” Deirdre informed. 

‘Guide Your Way’ was written in close collaboration with another Letterkenny native and well-known producer at Full Tilt Studios, Tommy Conway. Tommy, who’s a regular collaborator with Deirdre, approached her to write a song that was inspired by the recent birth of his son, Callum.

“The song is not necessarily about Tommy’s little boy, but he wanted a song that could strike a chord with anyone who feels the desire to give love and support to someone that’s special to them. Be it from family members, loving couples, close friends et cetera. This is something that, we hope, a lot of people can relate to when they hear the track” Deirdre told.

This particular song has a wonderful melody to it and was released in conjunction with Black Hole Recordings. On a more day-to-day basis however, Deirdre’s love for music has taken a new path in recent times, as since her last interview with us, she has started conducting singing lessons with people of all ages from the local area right here in town. 

“I’ve really enjoyed starting up the singing lessons. I suppose, in a way, being a secondary school teacher helps with the planning and assessment process but music has always been a passion of mine and it’s a wonderful feeling when you get to work in something that you’re passionate about” she told.

“The gang who come to the lessons are great. There’s a variety of ages amongst the group and everything is conducted through a six-week block of lessons. I start out by trying to find their range, then together we go through some vocal exercises and finally, plans are made to perform a new song every week.

In a way, the lessons remind me that I’m still a student of music, as well as being a teacher, because if the kids choose a pop song, it’s up to me to then go and learn how to play that song for when they come back to sing it a week later” she fondly added.  

Deirdre’s work is easily accessible online through her own promotional social media pages and YouTube is a great vantage point to watch the immensely professional videos that have been created to coincide with her work. These pages also provide a great chance to see the audience reaction to her songs; particularly from other parts of the world.

“When I get tagged in a video that shows huge crowds dancing along with and enjoying to my songs, it’s really something very special. Last week, I shared two videos of crowds showing great energy at trance events in both Mexico and the United States and considering those songs were jotted down at my home not long before that, it’s quite surreal to see how far they can travel. To put it simply, I love seeing the energy that they bring to the crowd” she concluded. 

With all that, it must also be stated that Deirdre’s talents don’t rest purely in the fields of dance music. Her vocal style is calm and soothing which contrasts very well with the higher temp of the music that goes with her singing. Perhaps where this derives from is due to the fact that she is talented in a plethora of musical genres and styles. 

She is a keen enthusiast of acoustic guitar and piano-based music and this has often transpired into the works she has shared with her many followers. She’s on high demand to perform at weddings across the county and Deirdre can often be found performing evening shows in the background of the bar/restaurant areas of The Shandon Hotel in Marble Hill.

Essentially, Deirdre McLaughlin is undoubtedly one of the most talented singer-songwriters to come out of Donegal in the modern era. 

The sheer quality of her talents seems to know no boundaries and it’s highly recommended for everyone to check out her songs for themselves. If you do, you certainly won’t be disappointed. Her passion for music and sense of creativity is awe-inspiring and, here at the Leader, we wish Deirdre every ongoing success that comes her way in the future.

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