Raised in Cork and based in London but just as likely to be found recording in LA, Cian Ducrot takes a nomadic approach to pop music. Home for this 22-year-old singer, songwriter, producer and classically-trained multi-instrumentalist is wherever he happens to find his laptop and guitar — but no matter where he is, Cian always seems to find himself returning to one thought. “Honesty is absolutely the best policy,” he says. “Honesty is the key.” Cian grew up in the port town of Passage West in Cork, on a massive hill surrounded by fields; at school, there were cattle grids to stop cows wandering into the playground. Raised by a single mum, Cian focused on music while his classmates were into rugby and football. He knew that in order to pursue his dreams of music school, he had to work hard enough to earn a scholarship.
Which is exactly what he did, not once but twice: landing a music scholarship at Wells Cathedral school in Somerset, then another at London’s prestigious Royal Academy of Music. “I realised I wanted people to sing my songs, so I needed original music,” he says. So, he moved on from the covers he’d perform in local pubs and bars, or the covers he was uploading to YouTube, and focused on writing his own music. After spending many months writing between Los Angeles, London and Ireland, Cian made the tough decision to drop out of his studies to focus solely on his artist career – an extremely hard decision.
Flashforward to 2020 and Cian’s song “fucked up all the time” — which Wonderland Magazine praised for its ‘raw and melancholic pop’ appeal — captures that turbulent period in vivid detail. “I was at home, I’d dropped out of the Royal Academy, and there was a backlash from my family, even my friends, telling me: ‘That’s the worst decision you could have possibly made, you’re so dumb. You’re broke. What are you going to do?’” At a point when Cian needed support, none came. “I was alone in my room and I voice noted a lyric: ‘I’m so sick of feeling so fucked up all the time,’” Cian remembers.
Which brings us to earlier this Summer where Cian’s self-starting ambition and incredible natural talent landed the young artist a record deal with his “dream label” in Darkroom/Interscope Records. Now at work on his label debut, Cian is keen to showcase his diverse talents as songwriter, vocalist and producer, with his pop-focused songwriting exploring revealing issues of love, loss, masculinity and frustration. Long gone are the days when Cian could be told to stay in a box.