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June 1, 2012

Nicky: Meeting Bertie was terrifying

NICKY admits that he was indimidated when he met his future father-in-law for the first time as a teenager.

And he revealed that his mum had tried to teach him about table settings before the first meeting with the former Taoiseach Bertie Ahern – dad of his wife Georgina.

The happy couple have five-year-old twin sons called Rocco Bertie Byrne and Jay Nicky Byrne.

“We have been together since we were 16 and he was Minister of Finance back then,” Nicky recalled.

“The first date was intimidating certainly. We went to a hotel for lunch and my mum had gone through the whole cutlery process, from the outside in and make sure to take everything from the left but it was far too much for me to remember.

“We got in and he broke a bread roll and dunked it in his soup and I thought happy days! He was cool and I got on really well with him!”

Being the son-in-law of a statesman held Nicky in good stead when he met Bill Clinton and Barack Obama.

He recalled: “We performed at the Nobel Peace Prize and we met Barack Obama afterwards. In the queue to meet him there was ourselves, Donna Summer, Will Smith and his wife.

“The hotel was in complete lockdown for about six miles radius and you had to go through about 27 airport beepers before you even got to the hotel. Then you are up in a lift and you see him in the room about 30 feet away and there are CIA people everywhere – it’s mad, exactly what you would imagine it to be like in the movies.

“We met him again when he came to Ireland last year. He said he loved Ireland and that we have a great relationship and I said my wife’s dad just stepped down, Bertie Ahern and he said, “Oh, what a man. Please tell him I said hello.”

“You could tell he meant it and that he had a geunine fondness for Ireland.”

Another highlight was working with Mariah Carey.

“You’re 21 and you’re told you’re recording with Mariah Carey and you’re thinking ‘holy sh*t’,” Nicky said.

“We were sitting at this outdoor restaurant and she just appeared in this dress she looked like a princess – she almost floated to the table.

“She was amazing, she was cool. She was Mariah Carey. She can’t really walk in wearing a tracksuit and a cap, can she?

“She gave us all a kiss and sat down and she was brilliant.

“We did a list recently of some of the people we have sung with: Sinead O’Connor, Donna Summer, Diana Ross.

“It’s just incredible when you think about what you’ve done.”

Credit/Source: Sunday Life / Thanks Maya and Chrissy for the scans | Westlife.GR

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