When Ronan Met Burt

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Ronan Keating

Irish singer Ronan Keating and the legendary songwriter Burt Bacharach have released a video to promote their collaborative album, When Ronan Met Burt.

The album features the fomer Boyzone star singing some of Bacharach’s most famous songs such as I’ll Never Fall in Love Again and Make It Easy On Yourself.

The video features shots from the recording sessions and interviews with both men.

Keating said he found the experience of working with Burt Bacharach both exciting and energising. The album was recorded in the famous Columbia Studios in Los Angeles.

Keating said. “That alone was daunting enough but to have Burt Bacharach in the room well… I didn’t know how I was going to be.

“Then he came in and there was just this presence that he has. The respect everyone has for him is incredible and I have to say I was intimidated.”

Bacharach impressed with the young Irish singer

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Burt Bacharach

The maestro Bacharach was clearly enjoyed working with the young Irish singer. He said: “I’ve been impressed by Ronan’s voice and what Ronan can maybe bring to some of my material.

“My music is not the easiest to play, it’s complicated. What Ronan’s doing here is not playing it safe. Playing safe would staying static, saying I’m going to stay here because it really works. You’ve got to go and evolve.

“I can identify with Ronan’s personality. He doesn’t take his music casually. When he doesn’t do it the way he wants to do it, he’s hard on himself.”

Keating admits that he found the work difficult and he felt the pressure of a tight schedule and making the most of Bacharach’s songs which are a lot more complicated than they first appear.

Some of the hardest songs you’ll ever sing

He said: “It sounds so simple because that is the incredible ability that Burt has … to create these songs that sound so simple … but you try to sing them! Properly sing them! They are some of the hardest songs you’ll ever sing”

“I must say, I’ve had a tough time the last few days; the toughest I’ve ever known in my career. We had an hour and a half per song. The pressure is that you have an hour and a half and if you don’t get it then you’re in trouble because we move on to the next song.”

In spite of the pressure, Keating found it one of the most rewarding experiences of his life. He said: “It’s just great to be in his presence and listen to his stories. He’s seen a lot of life.”

The album, When Ronan Met Burt will be released on 21st March.

By Patrick Kehoe

Pat Kehoe is a writer for Irish Music Daily. His favourite Irish music bands are the Dubliners and Planxty.