A Perfect Musical Equation – #DerekFest2012
Great music + inspirational lyrics = great songwriting
Or at least, that’s what you’d expect when the singer is also a talented fiction writer and prolific blogger. Thankfully, that’s exactly what Derek Flynn delivered in the Long Stone pub recently, surrounded by an army of twitter fans and friends, eager to hear his first album unleashed.
After a successful launch as part of Waterford Writers Weekend, Derek brought his affable acoustic rock to Dublin. In his opening speech, Derek stated that his album, Do You Dream at All?, was made possible by Twitter; a social media outlet which has not only allowed him to engage with a vast and otherwise unreachable audience but has also provided the extra encouragement and confidence needed to take his singer/songwriting to the next level.
Despite playing music professionally throughout his adult life, Derek has never attempted an album. But with a growing roster of songs and an expanding fan base via Twitter, Derek finally found the motivation required to take the leap and produce an album. It’s a modern day fairytale in many ways; a testament to the fact that no matter what the state of affairs, people will always create.
Uncertain what to expect; I headed down to the #DerekFest2012 gig (yes, the event earned a unique Twitter hashtag) to see what Derek would deliver. After all, I find lots of DIY stuff enabled by the internet/social media tends to disappoint; there’s plenty of good stuff out there but there’s also a seemingly unending pile of trite which I wish had never graced my eyes or ears. But when it comes to Derek, this is not the case. A skilled writer as well as a musician, Derek clearly combined both talents to full effect to create an album worthy of praise.
Derek’s ability as a musician is unarguable. His voice – strong, lyrical and persuasive – kept his audience captivated throughout a medley of emotive songs, ranging from Original Sin, a song about the life and death of Kurt Cobain, to Are You My Life?, a song about dependency in relationships, whether it be one person’s dependence on another, or one person’s addiction and their need to be saved from it. My particular favourite was Janey: a sad song with a happy backstory (it led to Derek meeting his wife which you can read about here).
It seems Derek has been busy in the meantime; the whole #DerekFest2012 event was filmed with a view to providing live acoustic content for youtube and a rather busy blog tour. And I hear that Derek is playing another launch/gig/tweet-up in the Raglan Road pub in Tramore, Waterford, on April 14th at8PM. If you’re nearby and can make it, I’d recommend you go and give your support; and get a great evening’s entertainment also.
For those of you would like a taster, or are unable to make the gig, you can listen to samples of Derek’s music on his blog Rant, With Occasional Music, buy Do You Dream At All? from his blog or download from CD Baby.
Elizabeth Rose Murray lives in West Cork where she writes full time and lives the rural dream. Represented by Sallyanne Sweeney of Watson Little Ltd, London, she has a particular interest in writing for children and Young Adults. Heavily involved in the literary scene since moving to Ireland in 2008, Elizabeth was part of a live writing installation, Ciudades Parallelas: Station, in 2012 as part of the Cork Midsummer Festival. She has also worked as professional blogger for most of the major festivals including Listowel Writers Week, Dublin Writers Festival, Ulster Bank Theatre Festival, Cork Spring Literary Festival and Dublin Book Festival. Follow Elizabeth on Twitter @ERMurray or visit her website Green Fingered Writer to find out what she’s up to next.