George Murphy explains how Dublin icons led to a new musical breakthrough

“You’re a Star” icon George Murphy has been a part of Dublin’s music scene for nearly two decades, but the Beaumont ballader has recently experienced a pivotal moment in his career.

Murphy has put on great shows for years performing iconic Dublin ballads, but in October 2020 he released his first original song.

“Dublin Inspires” is a ballad which encompasses all that is the capital of Ireland.

Murphy spoke to Dublin Live about the creation of the song, what it means to him and what it was like to perform it for the first time.

Speaking about what inspired him to write the ballad, George said: “It’s funny now to talk about inspiration because I just realized that today is the 13th anniversary of Ronnie’s death. Drew.

“When I first started I sang Raglan Road for an audition on a TV show. Obviously the song was synonymous with Luke Kelly and the Dubliners and people were hailing me as Dublin’s new balladeer to such a youngster. age.

George Murphy’s career took a turn after the release of his own ballad “Dublin Inspires”

“I had the opportunity to meet and work with Ronnie Drew and work with the Dubliners and the Furies and some of the really big names in Irish folk music.”

Murphy said he sang great Dublin songs like “Dublin in the Rare Old Times” and “Monto”, but he never had one.

The confinement was a turning point for him and gave him time to create his own ballad.

“There have been so many times that I have thought about writing a song about Dublin, but every time I put a pen on paper I was not happy with what I came up with.

“During the lockdown I was stuck at home and there was no concerts or live music and I was trying to find ways to motivate myself and figure out how I might find something. I came back to the idea of ​​trying to write a Ballade dublinoise.

“I was thinking what I’m going to do to write this the way I want it. If this was to be the first Dublin Ballad I would release as a Dublin Balladeer, it had to be something I could be proud of and watch. back in the years to come and think I really did my best. “

He wrote all the things that made him think of Dublin: The Liffey, the Ha’penny Bridge, O’Connell Street, Ronnie Drew, Luke Kelly, the Dubliners, Molly Malone, the Old Triangle.

“I put them all aside and made a long list of all of those things that remind me of Dublin and found a way to incorporate them into one song.

“So for me, song is a way of walking the memory trail with Dublin with all of its characters and places and history over the years.

“I hired a camera crew to come and shoot me as I walked across Ha’penny Bridge and O’Connell Street and The Liberties and we put it all together and took it out.”

“I couldn’t believe she made it to number 2 on the charts and the video surpassed 200,000 views online, which is just crazy.”

Murphy wanted the song to uplift Dubliners as the country went through a dark period during the lockdown.

“I think at a time when Dublin was really suffering and Ireland in general was really suffering from the lack of live music and bad news every time you looked at a newspaper, there were so many reasons to ‘being very upset with the current Dublin State and Ireland at the time.

“I wanted to find something that would put a positive spin on Dublin and Ireland and show the rest of the world that we still stand up for all of our culture and heritage.”

Although Murphy’s career began in 2003 when he appeared on “You’re a Star”, the singer believes he is finding his true base now as a musician.

“To start as a singer and to be identified as a singer and to be compared to Luke and other Irish singers was a beautiful platform to stand on, but I wasn’t a songwriter yet. still think I only find myself now as a songwriter and have evolved as a musician.

“When I started singing I didn’t know how to play an instrument and when I learned to play an instrument I started hearing melodies in my head and thinking about the lyrics in my head .

George Murphy Dublin inspires
George says he “can’t wait” for the concerts to return.

“When you put it all together and create your own song, it’s the most rewarding thing in the world.”

Murphy’s dream is to have a crowd sing to him the lyrics of his own ballad.

“Even if you could go on stage and sing ‘Raglan Road’ or sing ‘Dublin in the Rare Old Times’ or ‘The Fields of Athenry’ and everyone in the crowd sing them to you because everyone in the country knows these songs so well.

“But for me, even if seven or eight people in a crowd know my song and sing it to me, it shows that I’m making progress and I’m going somewhere.

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“Who knows, maybe one day I’ll get to the point where I can stand in a room and a few hundred or a few thousand people might give me that reaction.

“If it stands the test of time and people are still listening to it 50 years from now or when I’m dead and gone, that would be something I could be really proud of.”

Murphy performed the song for the first time on Sunday night with The Rising Sons in the outdoor area of ​​his local pub and said the experience was “absolutely amazing” and that he “can’t wait for the indoor concerts to be back. “.

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