Bryan Murphy, the Westmeath Bachelor 2022, with Bressie, during the bachelor festival last week.

New Bachelor looks forward to busy year

Sarah Slevin

Musician Bryan Murphy was crowned Westmeath Bachelor 2022 and is looking forward to a busy summer playing gigs. The Kerryman (25) impressed the celebrity judges and found himself stuck for words when he was announced as the winner.

“I was shocked, the rest of the lads were sound people, there were some really great interviews, and I thought at the time I had no chance,” Bryan said.

“I’m not usually caught for words, being a Kerry man, but after winning I was. I didn’t know what to say and I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry.”

Bryan used his accordion skills to wow the judges and the crowd at the competition and said he has a busy few months ahead.

“I’ve a very busy summer, three and four nights a week of gigs starting straight away for the summer season down here, and some weddings too,” Bryan said.

He said the weekend was a great experience and he was full of praise for the town, the locals, and the festival itself.

“Mullingar is a great town, with great people. The music line-up was incredible too. I had friends with me some of the nights and they all really enjoyed it, we had a mighty weekend and it’s a brilliant town,” Bryan said.

“It’s a brilliant idea and the amount of effort and work that went into it are huge. There isn’t enough thanks to give to the people who made it happen,” Bryan said.

“For anyone out there, I’d tell them to go for the competition next year, it’s a brilliant weekend.”

Bryan mentioned how the Covid-19 pandemic swayed his decision to enter the Westmeath Bachelor competition.

“In the past, I’d never put myself out there in case I was shot down, but after the two years of having nothing going on during lockdown, I said I’d go for everything I can go for, because why not, to go and live life, and the last two years we didn’t get to,” Bryan said.

“I entered it to have the craic, and I’m proud and delighted to come away the winner,” he added.

Having worked on farms for years, Bryan decided last August to give it up and pursue his music dreams.

In February 2021, he broke his vertebra in a farming accident, and he said it had a major effect on his thinking.

“It changed my outlook completely; I was on my back for eight to 10 weeks. There’s a lot to be said for being able to throw your legs out of bed in the morning and walk,” Bryan said.

“I happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time, and animals are so changeable, and I just got trapped in a small area. My biggest thing to say to any farmer is ‘don’t take chances’,” Bryan added.

Along with the title of Westmeath Bachelor 2022, Bryan won a trip to Ibiza, a new wardrobe, a cash donation for a charity of his choice, and a trophy made by wood carver, Richie Clarke.

“I have a lot of charities close to my heart, it’s difficult to choose between them all, there’s so many brilliant ones out there,” Bryan said.

To keep up to date with Bryan and his music endeavours find him on Instagram @Bryanmurphy_music or on Facebook at bryanmurphymusic.