A new album of songs based on the locally best-selling book Pulling Back the Clouds by author Kieran Beville has taken to the airways. The songs written and performed by Dominic Taylor, the publisher of the book and the director of the Limerick Writers’ Centre was released in May 2021. The album of the book, also called Pulling Back the Clouds, tells the story in song and music of Mike Kelly, the collector and curator of the die-cast model aircraft display in Shannon Airport.
Dominic Taylor, who has studied songwriting at the Irish World Academy of Music and Dance, wrote the songs after being inspired by Mike Kelly’s story. Mike’s story was also broadcast on RTEs Nationwide programme last year and he has been the subject of an aviation documentary on YouTube, which has amassed over half a million views.
The album has been six months in preparation and he has been working with local musician Austin Graham perfecting the recording of the songs. ‘Writing and recording the songs has been a labour of love for me’ said Dominic. ‘It was important that Mike was happy with what I wrote and that the lyrics and music reflected his experience, there is some very emotional content in the songs, especially the song about his mother who was a Magdalene laundry girl.’ he said.
Speaking about the album Mike Kelly said that he was amazed when Dominic brought the first song to him but when he brought eight more songs based on his life experience he was dumbstruck! ‘I just scratched my head in wonder that someone could come up with such beautiful and meaningful songs’. Mike added: ‘I was overcome really, but to hear my life story set to music was a joy. Even though some of the songs brought back some painful memories from my school days, overall I felt that there was a positive, hopeful message in the songs’.
Dominic and Mike Kelly also have something else in common in that they both grew up in Rathbane on the Southside of the city.
Local author Kieran Beville, who wrote the original book, said, “It is gratifying to know that my book about Mike Kelly has been a source of inspiration for these songs and I wish Dominic the best of luck with the album.”
Pulling back the Clouds, the album, is available on all streaming platforms including Spotify and Bandcamp. Copies of the CD are also available locally at Golden Discs on Cruises Street, O’mahony Bookshopand on-line from www.limerickwriterscentre.com or contact Dominic Taylor or Mike Kelly directly.
Photo Caption: Kieran Beville, author; Mike Kelly and songwriter Dominic Taylor.