Derry man Matt Whoriskey is over from Manchester to play the Moville & Greencastle Music Academy Tony Bramwell Songwriter Contest tonight. This is his first entry into the competition in the final heat. He was surprised to find that Ryan O’Dohertaigh from Derry is also playing. Ryan virtually runs music in Derry. He also happened to be in Matt’s class in school.

Matt asked if anyone else from Derry was playing. I told him that Jack Craig, who finished 4th in the Derry Songwriters Contest Final was coming too. “He used to live 2 doors down from me for 20 years” said Matt.

“Anyone else?” he asked.

I told him that John Deery wasn’t actually playing in the contest but will be playing for Tony Bramwell in Moville when he comes over in 2 weeks time. He is very well thought of in Derry and very highly rated – and, of course, he was in Matt’s class in school too.

It seems that there is a golden generation of talented musicians who grew up in together in Derry – and three of them will be in the Sean Ti tonight.

The Champion

On his way up from Limerick is last year’s champion, Lawrence Hackett. Who could forget that night in the Sean Ti when he won. Even those that finished runners-up to him told him that they were glad he won as it was the best song. One local journalist said it was one of his favourite songs of the whole year.

Here is one of the songs he will be playing tonight –

And here’s the song that he won it last year with –