Richard Irwin – Biography
Richard Irwin (Richard M.S. Irwin b. 1955) started composing as a child and attended Music School in Huddersfield, England before taking his degree. Although a successful career in technology took precedence until recently, music remained a central part of his life. He has to date published a number of albums and singles which are available through most on-line music stores. He records his music mainly under the name of Richard M.S. Irwin to avoid confusion with another artist.
In 2007, at the prompting of his father-in-law, a Lay Minister in the Church of England, who was disappointed with the quality of existing CDs and ‘Hymn machines’, Richard began producing music for use is churches where they do not have an organist or other musicians and these are now used by many thousands worldwide.
His website HymnsWithoutWords.com as a free resource, offering music at no cost to the user. This has been visited by millions of people and has hundreds of tracks available for free download.
The number of hymns available is increasing almost daily as Richard receives requests for new recordings from around the world. He has written his own hymns and worked with writers such as Verna Penn Moll and Colin Gordon-Farleigh to create new hymns using both existing and newly composed tunes.
Each recording is performed to meet the requirements of congregational singers, with an appropriate choice of instrumentation in such a way as to match the meaning and breathing requirements of the words. Choirs can also take advantage of being able to download SATB arrangements of many of these new hymns.
In 2013 Richard started to write meditation music, inspired by a fusion of both Eastern and Western spiritual teachings. Together these works are collectively known as ‘Meditations of The Angels’ and have been played as experiential meditations to audiences as well as being available to download.
In 2017, he was commissioned to make arrangements of songs written by Colin Gordon-Farleigh of Sheer Joy Music with both original compositions and by composers such as Greg Sheer. One of Richard’s original songs ‘Hold You One More Time”, recorded with soprano Victoria Paterson, won the Akademia Best Classic Song Award May 2019 and got to #50 in the iTunes charts.
Richard is currently busy with commissions and with adding ever more recordings to his considerable repertoire, including the complete Preludes and Fugues by Johann Sebastian Bach. He composed and arranged the music for “A Better Word” 2022.
Richard Irwin lives in a house on an organic farm in Wiltshire with his wife Nicky.
Richard Irwin – Discography
Richard has performed 100’s of hymns, most of which are instrumental and designed to accompany singers in choirs and congregations. A complete list can be found here on Hymns Without Words.