Florida-born, Wicklow-based singer Devin Reardon has released his new single, Take Me To The Coast. We asked him the BIG questions . . .

Moving from Florida to Ireland in pursuit of musical ambitions, Reardon previously drummed in the wonderfully named Moist Patio and was a member of acclaimed college Acapella group, Reverb.

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With a Beach Boys yet Mac Demarco-like sound, Take Me To The Coast is a nostalgic indie-folk psychedelic summer single inspired by Reardon's upbringing on beaches of Florida’s East Coast. The song features Broadway singer-actor Katerina McCrimmon in a duet with Reardon. Accompanying the two musicians is Josh Hackett on electric guitar/bass and Tadhg O’Griffin on the singing organ.

Tell us three things about yourself . . .

I used to live in a shack in the woods. By that I mean I was a whitewater rafting guide and kayaking instructor for three summers in the Blue Ridge Mountains, and we lived in (nice) shacks in the woods.

I went to school for musical theatre at Florida State University in Tallahassee, FL. I loved it, and I miss it, but I prefer writing and performing my own stuff.

Half of my family (my mother’s side) is from Dublin, and the other half is from New Jersey, but a lot of the family lives in Florida now. So, I’m between both places a lot but Ireland has become my home.

How would you describe your music?

The music I write has been called 'mountain man music’ by my friends. My first song is definitely influenced by all the styles of Americana and indie-folk music that I grew up with, in the Southern US. My first single, Ireland Song, released this year, was about when I moved to Ireland from the US, and how I fell in love with Ireland and its people. Ironically it has a very contemporary US, sound but it’s about County Wicklow, not far from where my mother was born in Dublin. It became a tribute to the Irish landscape, people, and heritage I came to embrace in lockdown. The song was released and got some attention on radio, articles, and playlists in Ireland, the UK, the US, and some other countries, which was absolutely amazing. I began to play around a lot with my song writing. Experiencing my first bouts of serious homesickness, realizing I really missed Florida, my music kind of began to shift too. So, Take Me To The Coast is like a part two version of Ireland Song in a way. It has a Stevie Wonder/Beach Boys easy surf-rock kind of vibe.

Who are your musical inspirations?

Queen, The Beatles, Simon and Garfunkel, and Young The Giant would be the big influences. I grew up with each of these groups/musicians from a super young age. Through life’s seasons and as things changed, their music remained a steady through-line in the cycles of my life. Additionally, in lockdown, I really started experimenting with other song-writing styles. Now my sound is strongly influenced by classic Americana/folk music, 70’s music, and half-influenced by new psychedelic indie music from the 2010’s. I’m constantly inspired by new artists that I discover. As with the seasons of my life, new musical inspirations come and impact how I write a song at the moment.

What was the first gig you ever went to and the first record ever brought/downloaded?

The first gig I ever bought a ticket to was to see one of my favourite new bands when I was a freshman in high school in Florida. My best friends and I loved this little group called Young The Giant, who had a radio hit called Cough Syrup, which had been on the radio for a few weeks. Now they’re huge in the US.

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The show was at this famous dirty little shack of a venue called Jack Rabbits in Jacksonville, Florida. When I saw their show, I was absolutely enraptured by the explosion of energy and beauty these guys radiated in those two hours. Seeing them live, with lights, spectacle, and all their incredible other songs I hadn’t heard… it all swept me away to this euphoric world. I was particularly moved by the lead singer, Sameer Gadhia. His voice became something I’d try to emulate and learn from as I grew up, and I am still to this day deeply influenced by his sound. Their albums are still always my go-to feel-good music. I also bought my first CD, their premiere album, from that live gig at that show, which Sameer signed, and I still have it at home in Florida.

What’s your favourite song right now?

I cannot stop listening to Space Love by Tadhg, who is an insanely talented Irish musician from Carlow, who worked with me on Take Me To The Coast! Tadhg is a wonderful guy and just as wonderful of a musician. I’ve been listening to his song a lot when I get off work and need a boost. It’s this massive Elton John/Queen-style of song, and It always gets me in a mega-sunny mood. Basically, whenever I need to cheer up or have a boost, I listen to it. Such a wonderful thing for a song to be able to do.

Favourite lyric of all time?

There’s a song I listen to whenever I want to slow down and feel safe and calm named Call It Dreaming by Iron & Wine. I draw a lot of inspiration from that writer Sam Beam. He inspired me a lot in that "mountain man" feeling my first song contains. The song is about that beautiful point in life where we finally breathe, and stop, and slow down because we’re genuinely happy for the first time in a long time

If you could only listen to one song for the rest of your life what would it be?

My favourite song ever? That’s a very difficult question. Probably, and this is a complete shift of genre, would have to be Don’t Stop Me Now by Queen. I used to listen to the Queen Greatest Hits album in the car with my dad, on home from school, singing it all at the top of my lungs. Yeah, that one is just my favourite. If not something by them probably something by The Beatles or the Beach Boys because of all their wonderful tempo and mood changes, I love a song with levels, as you can see as my own song isn’t very short either!

Where can people find your music/more information?

My website, Spotify, YouYube, I’m on Instagram as DevinReardonMusic, and Facebook as Devin Reardon - Music.