Hailing from the small Northern Ireland town of Omagh, Colm Kirwan wasn't sure exactly what to expect when he moved to Nashville, Tennessee in 2009. He only had two goals in mind-creating his own unique sound as an artist and becoming a great songwriter. With the release of his self-titled debut, he will be one album closer to accomplishing those goals.
For Colm, the road to Nashville and the creation of the album, a contemporary country collection with a Celtic flair, was filled with twists and turns. At 18, he left his small hometown for London, where he studied musical theatre performance for three years before hitting the road as an apostle in Andrew Lloyd Webber's Jesus Christ Superstar. The rock opera gave him a taste for the stage that only grew when he left the production to tour with his dad, hit recording artist Dominic Kirwan, on a seven-week tour.
"I remember the first time I ever stood on stage with my dad to a sold-out theatre in Belfast," Colm says. "To me, that's where I belong. It just felt right - it always has. If there's one place I'm totally comfortable, it's on stage." The tour was his chance to finally perform the type of music he grew up loving country. After three years of touring with his dad, Colm came to Nashville at the suggestion of a friend who had spotted his raw talent for songwriting. Ever since, he has honed his uncanny sound and songwriting ability, culminating in the creation of his first album, produced by Victoria Shaw. It will be released on April 19 in the U.K. and Ireland while he tours with country legend Don Williams. The U.S. release is slated for late summer.
"I don't want to be an artist that's big just in America," he says. "I want to be an artist who tours worldwide. There's such a big world out there that loves a lot of this music."
Colm's objective for the album and the tour is simple - to continue creating the music in his head, sifting through the ideas until they come together to create his signature country Celtic sound.