Simon Cowell signs up Derry’s Martin John

Derry's Martin John McCafferty (left) pictured with the rest of 'Jack Pack'.
Derry's Martin John McCafferty (left) pictured with the rest of 'Jack Pack'.
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A Derry man who signed a record deal with Simon Cowell’s label ‘SyCo’ last week said he owes all of his good fortune to his family.

Martin John McCafferty, 32, is from Kingsfort Park and is the son of Eithne (nee Rainey) and Michael McCafferty.

Martin John McCafferty, Patricia McLaughlin and Michael McCafferty. Picture: Elaine Hill

Martin John McCafferty, Patricia McLaughlin and Michael McCafferty. Picture: Elaine Hill

A former pupil of St. Patrick’s P.S. Pennyburn, St. Brigid’s College and St. Columb’s College, Martin John has been involved with music since his early teens.

“I would be lost without my whole family,” said Martin John.

“There are too many of them to mention but I think they know just how much they all mean to me.”

Martin John joined Simon Cowell’s record label when it was announced he was to replace a member of a band recently signed up by Cowell called ‘Jack Pack’.

Martin John McCafferty.

Martin John McCafferty.

Martin John is the second youngest in the group and last week the band performed together for the first time in the Grosvenor, London front of almost 2,000 people.

Music and singing was always something Martin John was familiar with growing up. Martin John’s mother, Eithne and his three older sisters all sang in the local Colmcille Choir.

Martin John’s father, Michael, was also a regular performer in Derry and would have played alongside many of the show bands.

A stalwart of the Derry Jazz and Big Band Festival Martin John also featured as a regular extra in all four seasons of HBO series ‘Game of Thrones’ which was filmed in the North of Ireland.

Singing and performing is something Martin John has done for years but it would be no stretch to describe his decision to join ‘SyCo’ as a defining moment in his career.

The proud Derry man had given up on his dream of career in music two years ago when he moved to the south of England to study for a degree in teaching but in recent months he was hand picked by people affiliated to ‘SyCo’ to replace one of the members of ‘Jack Pack’ who left the band.

“I want to thank everyone who has supported me with my music over the years and I don’t say that lightly.

“I have made some amazing friends along the way who have always supported me and they have never looked for anything in return.

“It’s scary to think I was ready to put it all to one side to pursue a teaching career,” he said.