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Rourke this way
Not very long ago, Declan O’Rourke looked set for the big time. His fanbase included Paul Weller and he’d just signed to a major label. Global success IMMINENT – but things didn’t QUITE work out that way. Now signed to his own label, he talks about his period in the wilderness and explains why his latest album represents a whole new BEGINNING.
Olaf Tyaransen, 12 May 2011
While O’Rourke also has two musical sisters, as things turned out, his younger brother contributed significantly to the new album. “Edward actually co-wrote a couple of the songs on this album. He wrote and played the piano. It was a new thing for us, an experiment, but I was delighted with it.”
While it lasted, writer’s block was a major problem. “Persistence brought me out of it in the end,” he says. “It was a very scary kind of experience. For ten years or something, the songs were always coming. I was always chipping away and there were always loads of half-written songs that I could finish if I wanted. So I didn’t know what was wrong. I couldn’t get a grasp of it.
“Actually for a while I was thinking, ‘maybe you’re supposed to have a little break after so long, maybe it’s normal and I should just roll with it’. That was fine for a while. But after seven or eight months it was getting scary.”
Booze wasn’t the obstacle. “I gave up drinking about halfway through the writer’s block – about two-and-half years ago. I wasn’t a particularly heavy drinker but a big part of it was around the time I hit 30; I started to get these desperate hangovers. Even from just a couple of drinks. It was kind of depressing and I wasn’t enjoying it anymore. In my twenties I could drink for Ireland, and never feel a thing.”
Drugs definitely weren’t the problem, either. “I don’t take any drugs,” he confesses. “I had a bad experience with acid when I was about 19 or 20 and living in Australia. I’d been having great fun with drugs before that, smoking bongs every day and all that. But I was really into The Doors and I really wanted to try acid. I’d taken it a couple of times before and it hadn’t done much for me. But I was drunk when I took it this time and I had a really bad trip. It was a big thing in my life at the time. For the next year or two, I kept getting these panic attacks. I didn’t even know what they were at the time. I couldn’t talk to anybody about it. I couldn’t talk to