A MUSICIAN who kept spirits lifted through online lockdown gigs has told how his childhood dream has come true as he prepares to release his first professional song.

During the week, Mike Carran works as a Tendring Council officer, but during Government restrictions he turned into a “lockdown legend” keeping audiences entertained during the pandemic.

He started singing on Zoom as a pastime to keep himself entertained but it quickly became a staple feature in people’s Saturday night routines.

And now he has seen the realisation of a bucket-list dream being ticked off as his single Surrounded by Heroes is released on Monday.

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To mark the occasion, Mike will also be performing at the Lighthouse Sports and Social Club in Dovercourt during a free event which will fill the night time with celebration and feel-good factor.

“It’s been a teenage dream of mine since I was younger playing in a band,” he said. “Now I can finally tick this off my list.

“The timing has worked out well, with restrictions now being fully lifted. Originally I thought the song was capturing a moment in time and the moment had now gone but actually it’s turned out really nicely.

“It also acts as a reminder that we shouldn’t forget all the amazing things people have done, the sacrifices they’ve made. We are all incredibly grateful for the amazing work the NHS and frontline workers have done.”

Sentimentality is at the heart of the single as it was two friends of Mike’s who inspired the meaning behind the song.

He explained how, during the first lockdown, he saw a Facebook post from a friend who works in A&E and though how difficult it must have been for her.

He then spoke to another friend in a supermarket about how challenging life was at that moment.

Upon returning home, he’d written the song within half an hour. The next day he was performing it live on an online concert.

“That’s the beauty of music,” he added. “You usually don’t know for a while if it’s going to be good or if people will like it, but I played it the next night and everyone said how appropriate it was and how they really liked it.

“The weekly performances were life changing for me. I’ve met people I had never spoken with before, really special people. They’re lifelong friends now.

“It was all a way for me to do something normal and to be able to connect with people during a time where this was restricted. When I reflect back now they were a big part in my life.

“One of the reasons for publishing this song is it will now forever be a landmark, a physical connection to a remarkable. Every time I play it I am transported back to the lockdown moments and that will be with me forever.”

Mike’s performance in Monday night will be free for all to attend from 6.45pm until 8.15pm.