Essex singer-songwriter Declan J Donovan has this week released a repackaged version of his ‘Homesick’ EP, out now on Polydor Records. The EP includes his breakout song ‘Vienna’ along with two brand new tracks – ‘I’ll Be There Love’ and ‘Anymore’ – added to the original five-track set. ‘Anymore’ featured in a key moment in last night’s episode of Love Island, when islander Connor Durman exited the villa, leaving his partner Sophie Piper – Rochelle Humes’ younger sister – bereft and alone. Stream ‘Anymore’ here and watch the emotional episode back here, with the song featured from 13:03 onwards. Declan has also shared a surprise cover of Justin Bieber’s ‘Sorry’, putting his own stamp on the megahit – stream his reinterpretation here.

Speaking about the EP, Donovan reveals, This EP is a collection of songs that are very personal to me. One thing I pride myself on in my songwriting is the honesty in the lyrics. A few of the songs have been hard for me to release, like Pieces and Father’s Son, as they’re topics that I’ve always found hard to talk about like mental health and growing up without a dad in my life.”

The eponymous lead single ‘Homesick’, released late last year, is a stirring folk singalong powered by Donovan’s soulful croon and imbued with what is fast becoming his trademark way with a masterful melody. It’s a song about missing your loved ones. “Whenever I go on tour the thing I always miss most is my family and friends,”he says. The track was accompanied by a video shot in and around Harlow, Donovan’s hometown. “Harlow is a place very close to my heart and the video shows me driving around the town reminiscing about the past and growing up there.”

Growing up in Harlow, Donovan could never have imagined becoming a singer-songwriter. But the first track he ever wrote – ‘Fallen So Young’, written especially for his brother’s wedding – propelled him to success after he uploaded it to Soundcloud. It garnered a million plays within six months. Self-funded tours around the UK and Europe followed before Donovan signed a record deal in Germany.

In 2018, he was one of the only unsigned acts to play BBC Music’s Biggest Weekend, appearing on the bill alongside Taylor Swift, Florence + The Machine, Sam Smith and more. He has spent seven weeks at Number One on the European Border Breakers Airplay chart as well as being Top 20 in the European Airplay chart. In Germany, he’s had a Top 10 hit and more than 25k radio plays, Top 10 in the Shazam charts and received more than 10 million streams of his single ‘Pieces’ on all platforms. ‘Vienna’, his debut single for Polydor, was released last year.

Having just finished a run of shows with Tom Walker at the end of last year, Donovan will soon embark on a UK headline tour in March ahead of a run of performances at SXSW – stay tuned for further details.

Declan J Donovan UK live dates:

4th March – Dingwalls, London
5th March – The Louisiana, Bristol
7th March – The Poetry Club, Glasgow
8th March – Oporto, Leeds
9th March – Hare & Hounds 2, Birmingham
10th March – The Latest Music Bar, Brighton
12th March – Gullivers, Manchester

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