Nick Burbridge

“It’s what made my heart sing…”

I say it in the introduction to one section of this interview with Nick Burbridge but it bears repeating: these interviews never go quite where you expect them to.

I knew we were going to talk about music and his writing. I knew that politics and his lifetime of depression would also play a part. What I didn’t expect was the candour with which he would talk about his brother – about his incarnation as an “imbecile”, their reunion and his death at the age of 50.

The idea of The Plastic Podcasts  was originally to look at how perception of Irishness had changed over the course of the last six or seven decades. But Nick’s story emphasises that you can’t do that without looking at British society in general. Whether its changes have been for better or worse. Or whether it’s actually altered in any significant way at all.

It’s a complex question, and it’s one that Nick addresses with insight and passion. I describe the conversation as convoluted but that’s no reflection  of Nick (nor myself): it’s just the way it goes. In 45 minutes we take in a lot, and leave still more undiscussed. It’s quite the ride, and I hope you find it as exhilarating as I did.

We will be returning to Nick again (we’re already talking about a return interview in the next couple of months) so I can ask him the questions that we never got around to. Music and writing: how it feels to have your words interpreted by another.

At least, that’s the theory.

Who knows where it will go then…

To hear more of Nick’s music go to:

As for the books, there’s Operation Emerald and War Without Honour

Published by dougdevaney

Doug Devaney is a writer, performer and journalist. He is the presenter of The Plastic Podcasts. The Plastic Podcasts have been supported using public funding by Arts Council, England

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