Music with Eddie Rowley
IN JULY of this year, Irish country music star Derek Ryan lost his biggest fan.
Derek was devastated when his beloved mother, Sally ( above), died peacefully in hospital following an illness.
In the immediate aftermath, Derek coped with his bereavement by immersing himself in his work, going back on stage to fulfill commitments to shows around the country. As one of Ireland’s award-winning songwriters, Derek also turned to his creative talent as an outlet for dealing with his personal pain and loss.
The result is the heart-wrenching ballad ‘To Waltz With My Mother Again’, which features on his latest 12-track, self-written album, Ten.
After helplessly watching his mother pass away last July at St Luke’s Hospital in Kilkenny, Derek was plunged into emotional turmoil. But his hectic schedule, which the singer resumed immediately, left him with little time to grieve for his mum.
“I went back to gigging straight away because I didn’t know what to do,” says Derek. “I had gigs coming up and tickets were on sale, and in our business you can’t really just take a week off.”
The hugely popular country music entertainer admits he found it hard to focus on his work in the months that followed.
“It was tough getting on stage because people expect you to be up for it and stay smiling,” he says. “But you can’t smile — there is nothing to smile about. I was in the zone, I got through it, and that was it.”
He penned ‘To Waltz With My Mother Again’ while drawing inspiration from childhood memories of Irish dance halls, and reflecting on the inescapable fragility of life.
By channelling his emotions into his music, Derek has written one of his most moving ballads. ‘To Waltz With My Mother Again’ is a song that will resonate with grieving families across the globe.