Ireland: Exclusive Interview with Linda MartinWritten by Marc Calleja Bayliss
Ireland holds the record for the most victories at the Eurovision Song Contest having managed to finish at the top of the scoreboard, a stunning seven times but their last victory came back in 1996 thanks to Eimear Quinn and her song The Voice but nevertheless, there has been renowned interest in the competition following the participation of the popular twins; Jedward at last years' showcase with the song Lipstick which reached eight place at the end of the evening, the best result for the Western country since 2000 when Eamonn Toal had reached sixth place with the song Millennium of Love. In recent years, the chair of the committee when it comes to selecting the songs for the national final has been none other than former winner of the event; Linda Martin and this year, she is actually the mentor of Jedward. We are proud to announce that our former Head of Communications; Garrett Mulhall has returned as a member of our editorial team collaborating between escflashmalta and Eurovision Ireland and he has managed to speak to the lady.
This years' national preselection for the Eurovision Song Contest was based on a system of mentors as was the case last year yet it is quite interesting that the broadcaster went for even higher profile names this time round. There were a number of attempts to attract a number of well known performers to the selection but due to the contending twins, this was somewhat impossible. A little bit of a background on Jedward shows that they were competitors on the popular British version of the X Factor where they were mentored by the renowned Irishman Louis Walsh, the man who has successful managed Westlife, Boyzone and JLS amongst others. Following their exit at the latter stages of the competition, there was a lot of interest by music companies for the twins and they signed a contract with Sony Music United Kingdom for a one song release and the track, a cover of Under Pressure (Ice Ice Baby) which peaked at number #1 in Ireland and number #2 in the United Kingdom. The contract was not extended but the day following their release of contract, Universal Music Ireland gobbled them up for a three album contract and it has been quite the ride with both albums; Planet Jedward and Victory peaking at number #1 in Ireland.
When they entered the selection for the Eurovision Song Contest las year, many had seen them as the automatic winners but there was a change in percentages of the voting because of an early release of the song Lipstick and therefore, a question arose, and that was whether their vocals would ultimately live up tot he expectation to be voted by the juries present during the evening. Ultimately, they managed victory by two points and in Europe, they were treated like true stars with their energy displayed throughout the fortnight. This year, working alongside their mentor Linda Martin and their manager Louis Walsh, they are ready to conquer Europe once more with the song Waterline written by Nick Jarl and also escflashmalta collaborator Sharon Vaughn. It is quite interesting that the former Eurovision Song Contest winner with the song Why Me? written by the renowned Johnny Logan is also managed by Louis Walsh as was her songwriter showcasing how the connections commence. Above you could see the interview that she gave to our very own Garrett Mulhall whilst a special exclusive message to www.escflashmalta.com can also be seen below. Remember Malta, get behind Jedward as you did last year when you awarded them eight points.
Special thanks to Garrett Mulhall