Long-lost audio of Mick McCarthy’s 1991 chart hit surfaces on the internet – and he’s prepared to take some stick!

Mick McCarthy and Linda Martin

Mick McCarthy and Linda Martin - Credit: Archant

Ipswich Town boss Mick McCarthy fully expects to be taking some stick off his staff and players this week after the long-lost audio of his little-known Irish chart hit ‘Did You Ever?’ surfaced on the internet.

The Yorkshireman recorded the duet – a cover of an old Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazelwood hit – with future Eurovision winner Linda Martin in 1991.

Its relatively low key success in Ireland meant it had been completely forgotten about. That was until someone uncovered a dusty casette case in their old collection and shared the image on Twitter...

That social media post sparked a hunt for the audio. It wasn’t easy, the record label which produced the track is now defunct, but Irish website Balls.ie managed to track down Martin via e-mail and she, after a few weeks, managed to find the tape and play it over the phone.

The result is this rather excellent YouTube clip.

While the search for the above was taking place, we at the EADT and Ipswich Star took a recent pre-match press conference down a different track and asked Mick ‘does the name Linda Martin mean anything to you?’

“Ah, me singing... yeah,” he replied with a smile. “I wondered when that might appear.


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“Boots were made for walking, was that it? (when corrected) ‘Did You Ever?’ That’s the one. She went on to win Eurovision you know? I’ve helped all sorts of people me!

“When the audio is found I’ll have the p*** ripped out of me I’m sure.

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“It was for charity. It’s just one of those things. When things are going well for you, someone comes and asks you if you’ll do it and you wonder at the time if it will come back to haunt you.

“Let me tell you, they had to feed me red wine to get me to sing!

“I was involved in the World Cup one as well playing the drums. That was perfect for me! At junior school they used to give me the recorder. I thought that was because I was good with the recorder, but it was because I couldn’t sing!”

Martin, speaking to Balls.ie via e-mail, said: “Isn’t it so funny that after 20 odd years a song pops back up? So around Italia 90 I worked with my band at a lot of corporate gigs which had frequent appearances by the Irish football team. So we got to know them.

“Louis Walsh was my manager at the time and he had the brainwave of recording with a footballer. Mick McCarthy was the chosen victim and he was up for a laugh.

“I’d no nerves about the project at all. Louis also found the song which had been a huge hit for Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazelwood.

“Mick flew in on a Sunday, we went into Westland Row with Barry Grace as the producer. Literally recorded it within a few hours. We celebrated in the Trocadero afterwards.

“Mick was totally brilliant, professional and great craic and if truth be known he has a very good voice.

“Yes it was a huge hit in Ireland and yes we talked about a follow up but I went off to do Eurovision etc and suddenly there was no time to record anything else. Yes, I saw a lot of Mick while he was in Ireland. He’s a lovely man.

“The last time I heard the song was when I gave a copy to Jason McAteer so as he could play it on the tour bus for the Ireland team. I believe Mick was destroyed.”

On the latter, McCarthy said: “Let me just tell you, he never played it. It’s probably just as well because he was hanging by a thread as it was!”

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