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|Birth name||Nicholas Dominick Ryan|
|Born||1949 (age 67–68)
|Occupation(s)||Music producer, recording engineer, manager|
|Associated acts||Enya, Clannad|
Nicholas Dominick "Nicky" Ryan (born 1949) is an Irish music producer, recording engineer, and manager. He is best known as the longtime business and recording partner for the singer, songwriter and musician Enya alongside his wife, poet and lyricist Roma Ryan. Born and raised in Dublin, Ryan gained initial recognition in the 1970s and 1980s for his work with several artists including Gary Moore, Planxty, Christy Moore and Clannad.
Nicholas Dominick Ryan was born in 1949 in Dublin, Ireland. As a youngster, he won a song contest with a rendition of "In the Mood" by Glenn Miller for which the prize was to meet the Beatles, one of his favourite bands. However, Ryan could not claim the prize as he could not afford the fare to England to see them.
After finishing school, Ryan worked as a teacher at St. Mary's School for Deaf Girls in Dublin, where he experimented with sound engineering to to create a way for the deaf children to "hear" music. He designed a speaker system based on the lower end of a pipe organ that allowed for considerable bass to travel across a spring floor in the school's dance room and in their chests, so they can detect the rhythm. "It was an upright speaker consisting of a 14in square box, about six feet tall, and about six inches from the floor – with a 12in speaker facing upwards, and a three inch port below that. And it worked very well. ... The floor shook – and the kids danced away, as they were entitled to."
Ryan was introduced to the family Celtic band Clannad by their manager Fachtna O'Kelly. In 1975, he became the sound engineer for the family band Clannad and from 1976, their new manager along with his wife Roma Ryan after O'Kelly left to manage The Boomtown Rats. In 1980, Ryan persuaded Enya, the younger sister of siblings Máire, Pól and Ciarán Brennan, to join the band with them and twin uncles, Noel and Pádraig Duggan. During her two-year stint in the group, Ryan and Enya often discussed his idea of recording many vocal tracks and layering them to create a sound effect inspired by the wall of sound technique developed by Phil Spector.
In 1982, the Ryans left Clannad and formed a partnership with Enya after the latter wished to pursue a solo career,with Ryan her producer and arranger and Roma her lyricist. For the next two years, Enya lived with the Ryans who then lived in Artane, a northern Dublin suburb while she practised her music skills and recorded a selection of demos. In September 1983, the three became directors of their music company Aigle Music, with "aigle" being the French word for "eagle". Using a mixing board originally made for Clannad, the three constructed a home recording facility and named it Aigle Studio.
- 1978 — Clannad in Concert - Clannad
- 1978 — Live in Dublin — Christy Moore
- 1985 — The Frog Prince: The Original Soundtrack Recording — Enya and other artists
- 1987 — Stony Steps — Matt Molloy
- 1987 — Cosa Gan Bhróga - Eithne Ní Uallacháin, Gerry O'Connor & Desi Wilkinson
- 1987 — Enya — Enya
- 1988 — Watermark — Enya
- 1989 — Lead the Knave — Nollaig Casey
- 1991 — Shepherd Moons — Enya
- 1995 — Take the Air — Sean Ryan
- 1995 — The Memory of Trees — Enya
- 1999 — Across the Bridge of Hope
- 2000 — A Day Without Rain — Enya
- 2000 — Srenga Oir — John Feeley
- 2001 — The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring [Original Motion Picture Soundtrack]
- 2005 — Amarantine — Enya
- 2008 — And Winter Came... — Enya
- 2009 — The Very Best of Enya — Enya
- 2015 — Dark Sky Island — Enya