Irish actor Conleth Kane has written and performed a song for “anyone who has ever been bullied”.
The Lurgan man released ‘Proud’ and has been overwhelmed by the positive response it has received online.
Kane has acted onstage in the West End, and on popular television shows, but decided to turn his focus to music after he was invited to sing at Pride in London earlier this year.
The openly gay artist explained he didn’t write the song specifically about the same-sex marriage ban in his native Northern Ireland, but he can see it is relevant.
Kane said: “I wrote Proud because I was invited to perform at Pride in London this year, which was something that was very big for me.
“I thought, I am starting to get noticed for singing so I’ll write something specifically tailored to it.
“I suppose it is poignant and, of course, relevant to the LBGT community back home.
“That question kept coming from a London-based audience. People constantly ask me what sort of island is Ireland when you can only get married in three-quarters of it.”
Conleth has always been proud of the person he is, although he revealed that it did cause him some trouble in his youth.
“The best writing comes from experience and therefore from the heart and from what you know.
“When I was 14 there was a non-uniform day at my school and I told my mum and dad I was going to wear a Spice Girls T-shirt.
“I could tell by their reaction that they thought I was going to get bullied or a battering for it, but they said, ‘Wear what you want’.
“So I did, and for the next six hours at school I was made to feel very uncomfortable.
“In the video for Proud I made sure I wore a Spice Girls T-shirt and I told the cameraman to make sure it was included.”
Conleth added that Porud is not just a song for the LGBT community, but for anyone who has experienced bullying in their lives.
Take a look at the video below. Proud is available for download now on both iTunes and Spotify.
Written by Andrew Moore