Dungiven lad Cahir McLaughlin may be young in years but, when it comes to performing on stage he sounds like he’s been at it for years.
The teen musician celebrated his 14th birthday at the weekend, and has lots more to look forward to in the coming weeks.
“I’ll be performing at the Stendhal Festival in August and I can’t wait,” the excited teen told the ‘Journal’.
The talented lad has written and recorded a four-track EP ‘Secret Hopes’ - available on iTunes - and is still on a high from playing at the popular (and last ever) Glasgowbury Music Festival in Draperstown.
“It was lethal, just a brilliant experience,” he said, explaining through his work with The Nerve Centre in Derry he was able to sing two of his own songs to the crowd and a cover of a song. “The crowd at Glasgowbury were really good and went along with everything and were cheering and singing along. I had a great time and coming off the stage was the best feeling ever. They were talking about it on BBC Radio Ulster on ‘Across The Line’ and the guy that was reviewing it said he’d heard me and thought I was good. That’s amazing!”
Neither Cahir or his parents, Maria and Marty, want to go down the ‘X Factor’ route, although Cahir admits his dream would be to record at Abbey Road and play Madison Square Garden. For now, Cahir wants as much experience as possible playing the local music scene.
Already, he has played several times in Derry, and at several City of Culture events.
After seeing Derry’s ‘Soak’ play at the Stendhal Festival in Limavady last year, Cahir applied to the Festival for a slot on stage, and is over the moon at making it onto the schedule this summer.
“I can’t wait for it. I think it’s going to be fantastic,” he says, explaining he’ll be playing on Saturday, August 17th at 11am along with dad Marty and uncles Rory and Stephen Harkin. “Definitely, I’m excited and, I suppose, beforehand I’ll be a wee bit nervous too, but it’s going to be class!”
Cahir will have plenty of support when he takes to the Stendhal stage, with family and friends camping out overnight to make sure they’re there to sing along the next day.
“I can’t imagine being in an office when I get older. I just want to sing and perform in front of people,” says Cahir. “I hope I make it and, if I do, I hope I’m the kind of artist that people respect.”
Follow Cahir on social media on Twitter @CahirMcLMusic or, on his Facebook page.