Derry singer-songwriter Damian McGinty has said he is blown away after his new album race to the top of the billboard charts in the U.S.
The 24-year-old from the Buncrana Road area said he was delighted that the independently produced festive album ‘This Christmas Time’ had reached number one on I-Tunes and soared to number two on the Billboard Holiday Album and Billboard World Album charts.
It has also sold strongly on Amazon and in countries beyond the US.
Speaking to the Journal before hitting the stage in Phoenix, Arizona this week, Damian said:
“It’s ridiculous, I did not expect that to be honest. We have been working on the album all year.
“I put a lot of time and effort into it. I wanted to do it right. We thought up the concept and knew what we wanted to do.
“I did the album independently to see how it would go for us in the future.”
Work began back in February and Grammy-nominated producer Warren Haurt, who has worked with numerous artists and produced a string of hits, was recruited for the album as efforts were continuing to fundraise for the project and Damian was setting up his company to take it forward.
“We hit it off right away and he wanted to come onboard on the album.”
Once Damian had laid down the tracks, he headed off to Australia with Celtic Thunder, while Warren got to work the orchestra and PR for the album.
“I am delighted with the finished product,” Damian said. “It shows on a product when you have put time and effort into it.
“We have very specific goals and targets for this album, and the charting is a real boost.”
Former Glee star Damian is planning to return to Derry for the festive season this year.
“I’m quite fond of Christmas. I always get home for it and it always reminds me of getting home- my job is a very particular job and I don’t get to go home a lot, but so far I haven’t missed a Christmas a home. I always look forward to that.
“With the album this year it’s been Christmas all year.”
The success of ‘This Christmas Time’ is all the more sweeter as two of the tracks, ‘Irish Christmas’ and the title track, were penned by Damian himself alongside his writing partner Tom Harrison.
Other songs on the album include stripped back versions of Joni Mitchell’s ‘The River’ and Leonard Cohen’s ‘Hallelujah’ as well as a number of tracks featuring big productions and festive favourites such as ‘It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas’.
There are now talks of appearances on RTE, ITV and BBC over the Christmas period, and Damian may do a gig for his friends and families upon returning to Derry.
Damian has been based in Los Angeles for the past five years but Derry remains very much the place he calls home and her hopes in the future to start splitting his base more between here and the U.S.