A catchy Christmas single recorded by a talented young musician from Banbridge has caught the attention of a top American songwriter.
Twenty-year-old singer-songwriter Caitlin Cousins is lead vocalist on local musician and composer Brian McAteer’s festive song ‘Christmas is Coming Around’.
Originally recorded in 2012, the seasonal single has been proving popular again this year after Brian decided to re-release it in aid of a Belfast-based homeless outreach charity.
Brian, who plays with well-known folk rockers Blackthorn and trad group Bernagh, is donating all download incomes to The Welcome Organisation.
The catchy Christmas song, which has been an online hit, has caught the attention of award-winning US songwriter Jason Blume, who has penned hits for top recording artists such as Britney Spears and The Backstreet Boys.
Blume has praised the pop infused song’s “killer chorus” and has wished Brian and Caitlin the best of luck with their fundraising campaign.
Caitlin, a second year Music student at Belfast Metropolitan College, is currently recording a duets EP under the name Eliza-Rose, which is due to be released early in the New Year. And she’s delighted that Christmas is Coming Around has been praised by Jason Blume.
“That’s incredible. It’s really great that someone so notable is getting behind it,” she said.
Caitlin, who along with her classmates at Belfast Met has previously used her musical talents to raise funds for The Welcome Organisation, is hoping that “giving the single a bit of a push” in the run up to Christmas will prove lucrative for the charity.
Brian, a Music undergraduate at Queen’s University in Belfast, invited Caitlin to record Christmas is Coming Around after working with her through trad group Bernagh.
“I knew instinctively that Caitlin’s voice would be perfect for this song - it’s raw, haunting, organic and melodic. Many people say it’s reminiscent of the late, great Kirsty McColl. Hopefully it’s going to be well received and people will give generously to this worthy charity,” he said.
“The song is an attempt to highlight the real meaning of Christmas, away from the tinsel and chestnuts roasting. It mentions the down and outs, so I thought it only fitting to try to raise some money for The Welcome Organisation, who work tirelessly to help homeless people living on our streets.”
Thanking Brian and Caitlin for their fundraising effort, Sandra Moore, Director of Homelessness Services at The Welcome Organisation, commented: “The money raised will go directly towards The Welcome Organisation’s services for people affected by homelessness across Belfast.
“On behalf of everyone who uses our services I would like to say a big thank you to everyone involved with the single.”
To donate to The Welcome Organisation log on to www.justgiving.com/homelessbelfast or text WEL33 £3 to 70070 to donate £3.