March 2011: Eoghan Colgan


Artist of the Month     >    2011 Artists


NAME: Eoghan Colgan
LOCATION: Glasgow, Scotland
ORIGIN: Northern Ireland
ART: Music
MAIN GENRE: Singer-Songwriter/Alternative
TRAINING: Self-taught

BIO: In 2007 Eoghan (pronounced Owen) left behind a successful career as a doctor to pursue his love of music. It was a decision 9 years in the making ever since he contracted a near-fatal dose of malaria whilst working in a bush hospital in Africa. Alone, and with only his cassette player for comfort, Eoghan fell in love with the album Grace by Jeff Buckley which he played repeatedly. “Looking back it was then I realised how short life could be, how important it is to live life with no regrets and also how much of an impact music can have on people’s lives, including my own.” With a voice now endlessly compared to Jeff Buckley’s, it seems that this experience also shaped his whole musical style.  

In the years that followed Eoghan would complete his medical training then work for 6 years as a doctor in Belfast, then Australia, and finally settling in Glasgow, Scotland, drawn by its vibrant music scene. It was there he progressed quickly from local coffee shops and open mics to sell-out shows at Scotland’s premier venues. He performed live on numerous radio programmes including BBC and XFM Scotland and performed at festivals in Scotland, Ireland and Norway. Not bad despite working anything up to 100 hours a week.  

In 2007 Eoghan stunned some key music industry luminaries in London with a performance that would win him the O2 Undiscovered Music Bursary, a UK-wide search for ‘the next big thing’. “He was the only artist in the competition with a God-given talent, that being his incredible voice. With the right help and development he could go on to sell millions of records” said Amanda Ghost (President of Epic Records and co-writer of James Blunts ‘You’re Beautiful’) one of the judges. Having felt constrained by a busy medical career, now was the time to make the break. And he’s never looked back.  

Since 2007 Eoghan has played at the Wireless Festival in Hyde Park, the Q Magazine Awards Launch Party at the Millennium Dome alongside Athlete and The Manic Street Preachers, the Grazia Magazine Fashion Awards ceremony in London, the Scottish Fashion Awards Show and the Mobile Phone World Conference in Barcelona. He has released 2 singles on his own label which were play-listed on dozens of radio stations including RTE 1 in Ireland and BBC Radio Scotland. He has had feature articles in national papers such as The Independent, the Sunday Times, Daily Record, Sunday Life, Belfast Telegraph and the Irish News. In April 2009 he completed his first tour through Ireland and Scotland to rave reviews.  

Eoghan most recently shared a stage with Tom Jones at the Guinness 250th Birthday party in Dublin and has just completed the full soundtrack to a new independent British movie starring Virginia Mckenna (Born Free, A Town Like Alice) and a whole host of British theatrical greats. The movie is set for international release in 2010.

LATEST WORKS: Love/Loss – Move Soundtrack, released 2011


Please describe your artistic themes
I generally write quite emotional music which is strong on melody and harmony. The lyrics are generally about life, love and situations that move me in some way (e.g. natural disasters, political processes, the innocent victims of war, etc.).

Please describe your creative process
I initially focus on the melody which comes more naturally to me. I will tinker with chord progressions on the guitar and increasingly the piano. I hum a tune over this and if I like it I will add lyrics at the end. The lyrics generally reflect the mood of the music.

What are your artistic goals?
I probably had ambitions for a fairy high-profile career when I was a little bit more naïve. I’ve learned a lot in the last few years about the industry and my career goals have definitely changed. I now just want to write good music, develop my publishing, enjoy my local performances and further my other career which is a Doctor and researcher.

What are your views on the industry?
It’s a tough world. It demands a lot of commitment and perseverance. It may not always be what you imagine. There are definitely opportunities to enjoy a nice mid-level career if you work hard and develop your fan base.

What advice could you give to emerging artists?
Be focused. Be clear on what you want from your career because what you think you want is very often not what you imagine it to be. Be true to yourself. Be committed and expect a lot of knock-backs but learn to pick yourself up and be stronger. It’s only someone’s opinion and there are lots more people out there that will like what you do.

WEBSITE: Eoghan Colgan on Facebook

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