Listen, you may remember Damian McGinty from the hit Fox series Glee, where he impressed the cast with his version Michael Bublé‘s ‘Home’, but the singer was performing long before Ryan Murphy came calling. McGinty started performing when he was just 14 years young with the vocal group Celtic Thunder. It wasn’t until The Glee Project, a competition series for young vocalists and actors to get the chance to star in the breakout series, that McGinty catapulted into the homes of millions.
Interview with Damian McGinty
Chris Vetrano: You recently released your infectious new single “Geronimo.” How does this song represent who you are as an artist today?
Damian McGinty: Geronimo speaks true to how I’ve tried to lead my life to this point. I genuinely try to look at things as, only one chance at this, it may never come around again. Take chances. Take risks. You never know what it could lead to. The song stands for and represents that idea of jumping. Living your life.
Chris: Speaking of taking chances. What’s the biggest risk you’ve taken in order to follow your dreams?
Damian: I think every day in show business, there is risk. That can come in different shapes and sizes. Risk can be going out of your comfort zone to do a song that you know doesn’t work for you, but it suits a company or production you work for. Therefore it’s for the greater good. Or risk can be as big as leaving Celtic Thunder to try The Glee Project, with 40,000 other people. That was a big risk. Agreeing to go on tour at 14 years old, and take my education on the road. Also a big risk. Not sure if that was bigger for my parents or me, but a huge risk none the less.
Chris: Absolutely! The Glee Project really paid off because you got to star in the third season of the Fox hit Glee. What was your favorite memory from the show?
Damian: So many great memories. Reflecting on it now, the highlight was working with Cory Monteith. He was such a great guy and was taken so young. Another great memory was a Christmas scene we shot outside with Cory, Lea Michele, Chord Overstreet and myself. That was one of my favorite days on set.
Chris: Do you keep in touch with any of the cast today? If so, who?
Damian: Honestly, a lot of those relationships were just professional. That’s not rare or surprising. I would say out of those guys, Heather Morris I’ve spent the most time with since the show. We shot a movie together this year, which is being released next year. She’s great and we’ve always had a really nice relationship. Bryce Vine from The Glee Project is one of my best buddies. Always will be. We barely spoke on the show at all, then after it, we had years of fun times and stories together. Lived together for a while, etc. He’s now off touring the world and has a gold single with “Drew Barrymore.” It’s great to see the good guys doing big things. Bryce is a good guy and such a great writer and performer. He deserves it all and more.
Chris: Sharing your time between music and the screen, which do you prefer, acting or singing?
Damian: Singing is always my priority. Always has been, always will be. It was my passion growing up. Acting came to me, in a way. I do enjoy acting, but I tend to be quite selective about roles I’m interested in. Just because both of these careers are so difficult when you are fully focused on one of them, splitting your attention makes it twice as hard. Having a long career making albums and touring is my priority. But if I can slowly grow acting also, that’d be the dream.
Chris: What can fans look forward to on your upcoming full-length album? Any favorite tracks you’re excited to share?
Damian: I suppose I have a soft spot for each track, in different ways. The last track written for the album was a song called ‘Forever I Do’ which is about my engagement this past summer. My fiancee is wonderful and I wanted to write a song to try and capture that moment in time. There is [also a] song on the album called ‘Saltwater’ which was written by Shevy Smith who is a great friend and producer of mine. I’ve had that song locked away for a quite a while, and I think it is incredible. I hope people love it and I’m excited for them to hear it.
Chris: Having performed in a group [Celtic Thunder], with an ensemble cast [Glee and The Glee Project], and solo, which do you like best? Why?
Damian: They’re all so incredibly different. Working with a cast is great because it’s a team. I enjoy being on a team. You can bounce ideas off of other people, you can collaborate, there’s just something great about being in something together and having the same objectives and goals. Solo I love for different reasons. I have full creative control, I can really shape something to what I want it to be and look like. It’s my responsibility. Its such a great learning experience, I love it.
Chris: You’re about to embark on a North American tour early next year. What cities are you most looking forward to exploring and visiting?
Damian: I am. I absolutely can’t wait. Its called the Young Forever Tour. I start off in Philadelphia March 19th and go across North America and Canada until April 29th when I finish in Seattle. I honestly can’t wait for every show and city. It’s my biggest tour yet and I can’t wait to see people and share this album and stories with them. Also a lot of old stuff from Celtic Thunder, Glee, you name it. Tickets are available at damianmcginty.com/tours [tour dates below].
Chris: What songs and/or artists are you currently listening to for inspiration?
Damian: I listen to music all the time. On tour when people see me my headphones are normally always on. I love Coldplay. Always have. Mat Kearney I only found about a year ago. It’s amazing people with all of this success you can never hear of. He’s brilliant, such a great writer.
Chris: With already so much accomplished in your young career, what’s next for you? What can fans look forward to once your LP drops?
Damian: I want to build as a solo artist. I am just excited about the journey because, to be honest, I have no idea where the end goal or end game is. I want longevity, not necessarily worldwide fame. That’s not my goal and never has been. I love this career, love touring, and I’ll do it as long as people keep enjoying it.
3/19/19 Philadelphia, PA
3/20/19 New York City, NY
3/21/19 Boston, MA
3/22/19 Hamden, CT
3/24/19 Portland, ME
3/26/19 Montreal, QC
3/27/19 Ottawa, ON
3/28/19 Toronto, ON
3/31/19 Pittsburgh, PA
4/1/19 Lake Orion, MI
4/3/19 Vienna, VA
4/4/19 Virginia Beach, VA
4/6/19 Charlotte, NC
4/7/19 Duluth, GA
4/8/19 Jacksonville, FL
4/10/19 Nashville, TN
4/11/19 Shelbyville, IN
4/12/19 Three Oaks, MI
4/14/19 Minneapolis, MN
4/15/19 St Louis, MO
4/16/19 Omaha, NE
4/17/19 Kansas City, MO
4/19/19 Broomfield, CO
4/22/19 Phoenix, AZ
4/23/19 Phoenix, AZ
4/25/19 Los Angeles, CA
4/26/19 Berkeley, CA
4/28/19 Portland, OR
4/29/19 Seattle, WA