Devin Reardon is a new Irish-American musician hailing from North-East Florida but currently based in County Wicklow. His music has a strong emphasis on vocal harmonies, growing up with a strong background in a capella and choir.
During the lockdown, he realized songwriting was not only an immense passion but a way to manage his mental health and find balance. By sending out an intimate and heartfelt indie-folk sound layered with surprising alternative rock nuances, it went from being a hobby to a form of self-actualization and reflection for Devin Reardon.
Dousing listeners in a pacifying indie-folk ballad that bolsters the intimate experience of his heartfelt tenors, Devin Reardon presents his latest single “Ireland Song.” Delving into the soothing timbres that lusciously flow in a vibrant motion through the musical components, Devin Reardon displays a narrative that is rich in personal experience as he touches on his move to Ireland over a year ago.
The welcoming embrace of the warm acoustic guitar strums cascade with Devin Reardon’s vocals in a manner that emotionally tugs on your heartstrings as you follow his delicate discussion about finding home amid struggles all people face. Evoking emotion in a way that brings out our own personal reflections, “Ireland Song,” wraps listeners up in a melodic blanket full of robust cordiality. Rounding out the composition with elusive synth and organ elements, the picturesque soundscape of “Ireland Song,” is prominent while honing in on the intimate agility that Devin Reardon carries in his virtuoso.
Getting lost in the deep sense of comfort that radiates from each note he visits with his undeniable croons, the striking balance of musicality in this record is a harmonious cocktail of security. Be sure to get wrapped in the authentic hues of Devin Reardon as you treat yourself to what he has in store.
Hello Devin Reardon, thank you for joining us at BuzzMusic. We love the soundscape that you bring to life in “Ireland Song.” Could you please take us into what inspired you to turn this experience into a song?
Hey, wow thank you so much! I’m originally from the States, and I moved over to Wicklow a year and a half ago to live with my Irish family. My mother is from Dublin but moved down to Wicklow. I moved here in the middle of winter, January 2020. Florida is very different from the South of Wicklow. It’s hilarious as well because I got here and was so excited to explore Ireland and then the lockdown hit three months into me being here. So the sound of the song comes from a lot of solitude and kind of a mythological idea of my new home colliding with reality. The environment was so cold and grey during that time, it made its way into the sound of the song. I wanted it to sound like what it feels like to sit next to a fireplace with a warm blanket, and I feel like the song wraps the listener in a blanket of love. Also, my family and a few friends who were here were so good to me when I first arrived, that carried over. Moving to Ireland was a time of reflection and healing for me. I had just graduated college in the states, gotten out of a relationship, and had some serious mental health stuff I was dealing with. It was a time of change for me, lots of long walks, you know. I was looking for a way to kind of honor that, and that’s how this song was born. Also, I’ve been here a few times as a kid and have very warm, lovely memories of Ireland, but this was a different warmth than before. Every day I was creating a new relationship with this place, and some days would be better and some worse. I tried to put that in that kind of emotional warmth in the song with the birds, the warm vocals, and the multi-track guitar. I think it fits!
What went into the creative and recording process? How long did it take you to bring this vision to the table in its entirety?
It took about a year and a half. I started writing it in the first few months when I got to Ireland. It’s a combination of two songs I was working on at the time, that fit together perfectly. There’s a rough demo on Bandcamp that I recorded for a friend’s fundraiser project, and that’s when I knew I had to strip the song down and re-record it. The song just had so much more life, and I could hear it. So we re-recorded it to give it the sound it deserved, and that’s the one we’re releasing on the 30th. I’m really happy with how version 2.0 turned out. I worked and recorded at a friend's house in Arklow, Tristan Howurd. He’s a great musician and collaborator. We spent a full day recording the single in my shed. I had suited it all up for recording and after hours of setting up and playing that first day, Tristan sent me a message that night saying, “bad news.” Turns out the highway near my house had pretty much ruined all takes we had because when you compressed the audio all you could hear was cars. We had to rerecord pretty much every take from that day. That was hilarious and soul-crushing at the same time. It was a big learning experience for me. So I just use the space now for writing and recording demos! This is my first official song, so sometimes you have to learn the hard way. But then rerecording it all with him was a chance to learn so much, and get it right. It was kind of a dream come true for me. Also, the final piece of the puzzle came months later, in my saga of finding someone to mix it the way I liked it. I got a referral from a mutual musician friend in Florida to the incredible Jordan Stoffel at Stoffel Recording Co. in Nashville, Tennessee. We sent drafts and notes back and forth for a few days and finally, it was done. The whole process of writing and having the finished mix took about a year and a half, it’s been a journey.
Do you find that being in Ireland is shaping the sound you’ll be exuding in your music moving forward? Have you noticed changes in your creative process?
That’s a great question. I have changed my writing process over the past two years. I’m pretty new to being an official “songwriter.” I’ve written music for years, but only become methodical about it recently. It’s a lot less pressure now somehow, I think I can be more patient because I’m becoming more methodical. It's less personal if I write or not because it's a process instead of sporadic manic bursts. I used to just bounce between notes on my phone, scraps of paper, and voice notes. Well, I still do that some, but I’m learning what works for me, which is usually sitting down with an idea, giving myself time to play with my guitar, and enjoy that. After working on an idea for a bit, walk away, then when I come back it usually hits harder. The ideas usually come the easiest like that. I used to put loads of pressure on myself, and I’ve found this works much better. Being in Ireland has affected my sound, and who I am as an artist. Being in Ireland has allowed me time to debunk mythical Ireland from my mind, seeing how it is in real life. It’s helped me be more realistic with my outlook of myself as well. For me, writing this single was very insular, except working with Tristan in the recording studio. I’ve socially withdrawn with lockdown, so for me, I had a lot of time to get to know myself. Also, a lot of these influences for this song came from music I listened to as a kid and in lockdown. This song has a lot of influence from Jim Croce and Lizzy McAlpine, which is a wild combination, but that’s what I’d say it is. There’s a huge world of different genres coming on my EP as well. I was nervous about how that would be received for a while, but now I see it as being excited to show my diversity. I’m excited to see how more exposure to the Irish music scene shifts my projects in the future. But I think my sound is still forming honestly.
What is the main message that you hope to send to your audience through your music?
I wanted to release this as my first single because it's near and dear to my heart. Ireland Song is like a diary entry. It’s also more than just a lockdown story, it’s a story about the power of a beautiful place healing someone who needed it, and that person also healing themselves. Ireland is a really beautiful and special place to me, and a lot of people. I tried to pay tribute to that. I also wanted this to be my first single because I feel like this is the closest to what I feel is my own sound, out of all the songs I’ve written in the past few years. I wanted to release it first so I could take some variations off of it with my next few projects or maybe explore it further. In coming here I took a risk and I’ve gone through a big change, in a lot of good ways. I think a lot of people are coming out of lockdown feeling a change as well. This song is for people waiting for themselves to “move out of [their own] way,” which I think is all of us. I want to share that feeling with people. I went through a dark time, and I want to share something that brings a bit of light. Growing wiser, loving yourself. All that good stuff people don’t usually write music about. Lastly, if I had to say something super directly it’s that I hope I can inspire people a little bit to be patient with themselves, and that something better than we imagine can sometimes be around the corner. This song is like that; it was something I never saw coming, and now it's so much better than I imagined. You can take two steps forward while taking one back. It feels so good to say that, well, type that, so thank you for these great questions! Also, I want people to know there’s a 5 song EP coming out soon! I think this project has a lot to give people. Thanks so much for taking the time to talk to me!