Busking introduced him to a new circle of people—artists, singers, fellow musicians and songwriters.
Shortly after, Hansard earned his first record deal and was later cast in The —a film about musical misfits by Roddy Doyle, which became an international sensation.
Everything he’d encompassed—the struggling busker on the streets—almost died in a way the day he won the Oscar.
He was propelled into a new stage of life that he had to embrace.
We were friends who made music together, and then a film, and then the world responded in a really humbling way,” Hansard says.
“Maybe we could have done more to protect that privacy, but in some ways we got caught up in the tide.”After earning the Oscar, Hansard admits things for him went quite dark for a while.
”The first recording session set up for Didn’t He Ramble happened in Chicago with his touring band.
“No one plays like Thomas—he’s truly one of a kind,” he says.
“What he did for me on this record was challenge me to write better songs, which seems instinctive but on the last record, he was sort of a supporting character to the songs, whereas on this one, he was a guiding hand in pushing me to make them better.” From New York to Dublin, Chicago and France, the album was recorded in several cities that all offered their own unique perspectives.
That led to songs about work, living life, redemption,” he says.
“So yes, there was a conscious decision to convey the ideas of hope and satisfaction, and that if you work hard, success and happiness are attainable.