|Birth name||Brian Edward Patrick Kennedy|
|Born||12 October 1966|
Belfast, Northern Ireland
|Occupation(s)||Musician, songwriter, author|
|Instruments||Vocalist, guitarist, keyboardist|
|Associated acts||Van Morrison|
|Website||Brian Kennedy official site|
Brian Edward Patrick Kennedy (born 12 October 1966) is an Irish singer-songwriter and author from Belfast. He scored a number of hit singles and albums in the UK and Ireland during the 1990s and 2000s. He represented Ireland in the Eurovision Song Contest 2006 and finished in 10th place. Brian is the younger brother of the late musician Bap Kennedy.
Kennedy made his debut in 1988 as a chorus on the recordings of Van Morrison, an Irish singer / songwriter born in Northern Ireland. Kennedy came to prominence as one of Van Morrison's backing singers, appearing on a number of his albums, including A Night in San Francisco , Days Like This , The Healing Game and Back on Top and live in concert.
Around this time, he also scored a minor UK hit album of his own with The Great War of Words (1990). This album featured the lead single "Captured" which was a minor hit in both the UK and Irish charts.
In 1991, Kennedy was joined by Mark E. Nevin, formerly of Fairground Attraction, to form the duo Sweetmouth. Their album, Goodbye to Songtown, was released in August 1991 and featured the songs written by Nevin for a second Fairground Attraction album which was never realised.
In the mid 1990s, pop manager Simon Fuller took on Kennedy, signing him to RCA Records for his second solo album which saw greater success. Released in 1996, the album, A Better Man, reached No.19 in the UK and spawned the hit singles "A Better Man" (No.28), "Life Love and Happiness" (No.27) and "Put the Message in a Box" (No.37), which also all became top 20 hits in Ireland.This was followed in 1999 by the album Now That I Know What I Want, which met with less success.
In 2001, he released his fourth album Get On with Your Short Life, which rendered only a No.81 placing for its title track in the UK.Later that year, he performed on the original Secret Garden version of the song "You Raise Me Up", which went on to be recorded by many other artists, such as Josh Groban and Westlife. This was the song he sang at the funeral of the footballer George Best in late 2005. His version was released again in December 2005 and early the following year became his biggest hit, released as the EP "George Best - a Tribute" with Peter Corry. The single reached No.4 in the UK charts and No.3 in Ireland.
Kennedy was chosen as the Irish competitor for the 2006 Eurovision Song Contest in Athens, where he sang the self-penned "Every Song is a Cry for Love". His performance in the contest's semi-finals marked the 1000th songto feature in the history of the Eurovision competition. Following qualification, Kennedy finished tenth in the finals on 20 May, with 93 points. The song also performed well in the Irish charts, becoming a No.4 hit.
Kennedy performed at the opening of new studios for his local station Belfast CityBeat in 2006. In July 2008, he joined the judging panel of the Citybeat Young Star Search, Northern Ireland's biggest kids talent search.
On 23 August 2010, Kennedy played a version of 'Christopher Street' on a small Balcony overlooking Dame Street, Dublin for the music viral show BalconyTV.
Between 2011 and 12, Kennedy was a coach on the first series of The Voice of Ireland .The series screened on RTÉ during the early months of 2012 and Kennedy mentored the eventual runner-up in the final, Richie Hayes.
In October 2018, he started presenting a weekly programme on radio station Tipp FM.
Kennedy was born and grew up on the Falls Road in Belfast. As a child he suffered from Osgood–Schlatter disease in each leg.He has described in public the violence of The Troubles, during his childhood and teen years. He once described seeing a young man being chased and then shot dead by a soldier a few feet away from him. He also would harmonise with police, ambulance and fire engine sirens. Kennedy revealed in 2016 that he has been battling rectal cancer.
Kennedy came out as gay in 2009.
|Year||Album details||Peak chart positions|
| UK |
|1990||The Great War of Words||64|
|1996||A Better Man||19|
|1999||Now That I Know What I Want||—|
|2001||Get on With Your Short Life||—|
|2004||Live in Belfast||—|
|2005||On Song 2 (Red Sails in the Sunset)||—|
|2010||The Very Best Of Brian Kennedy||—|
|2013||A Love Letter to Joni||—|
|2017||Live at Vicar Street||—|
|Year||Title||Peak chart positions||Album|
| IRE || UK |
|1990||"Captured"||26||77||The Great War of Words|
|1991||"Fear Is the Enemy of Love" (Sweetmouth with Brian Kennedy)||—||—||Goodbye to Songtown|
|1996||"A Better Man"||6||28||A Better Man|
|"Life Love and Happiness"||16||27|
|1997||"Put the Message in the Box"||18||37|
|1999||"These Days" (with Ronan Keating)||4||—||Now That I Know What I Want|
|"Playin' With My Heart"||—||—|
|2000||"Back In Your Arms" / "I Hope That I Don't Fall in Love With You"||—||—|
|2001||"Get on With Your Short Life"||—||81||Get on With Your Short Life|
|"So What if It Rains"||—||—|
|2002||"Only Love Can Break Your Heart"||—||—|
|2003||"You Raise Me Up"||—||91||On Song|
|2005||"The Island" (featuring Juliet Turner)||—||—||non-album single|
|"George Best – A Tribute" (with Peter Corry)||3||4||non-album single|
|2006||"Every Song Is a Cry for Love"||4||—||Homebird|
|"If You Don't Believe in Me"||—||—|
|2011||"Ireland's Call" (with Paul Byrom)||—||—||The Official Rugby World Cup 2011|
|"Life, Love & Happiness" (Stereolove with Brian Kennedy)||—||—||non-album single|
Seán Patrick Michael Sherrard, better known by his stage name Johnny Logan, is an Irish singer and composer. He is known as being the only performer to have won the Eurovision Song Contest twice, in 1980 and 1987. He also composed the winning song in 1992.
Philip Coulter is an Irish musician, songwriter and record producer from Derry, Northern Ireland. He was awarded the Gold Badge from the British Academy of Songwriters, Composers and Authors in October 2009.
Eurovision: You Decide is the most recent name of a BBC television programme that was broadcast annually to select the United Kingdom's entry into the Eurovision Song Contest. The show had previously gone under several other names, including Festival of British Popular Songs (1957), Eurovision Song Contest British Final (1959–1960), The Great British Song Contest (1996–1999), Eurovision: Making Your Mind Up (2004–2007), Eurovision: Your Decision (2008), and Eurovision: Your Country Needs You (2009–2010), but was known, for most of its history, as A Song for Europe.
Linda Martin is a singer and television presenter from Northern Ireland. She is best known in Europe as the winner of the 1992 Eurovision Song Contest with the song "Why Me?", and in Ireland as a member of the 1970s/1980s band Chips.
Fairground Attraction were a London based folk and soft rock band. They are notable for the 1988 hit songs "Perfect" and "Find My Love", both taken from the group's multi-platinum selling debut album, The First of a Million Kisses. The band won two Brit Awards in 1989, but split the following year. Lead vocalist Eddi Reader subsequently launched a solo career.
"Perfect" is the debut single by Fairground Attraction, released on 28 March 1988. It was written by Mark Nevin.
Kenneth McKellar was a Scottish tenor.
Ronnie Carroll was a Northern Irish singer, entertainer and political candidate.
"All Kinds of Everything" is a song written by Derry Lindsay and Jackie Smith; as performed by Dana, it won the Eurovision Song Contest 1970. "All Kinds of Everything" represented a return to the ballad form from the more energetic performances which had dominated Eurovision the previous years. Dana sings about all the things which remind her of her sweetheart with the admission at the end of every verse that "all kinds of everything remind me of you". The recording by Dana became an international hit.
"L'amour est bleu" is a song whose music was composed by André Popp, and whose lyrics were written by Pierre Cour, in 1967. Bryan Blackburn later wrote English-language lyrics for it. First performed in French by Greek singer Vicky Leandros as the Luxembourgish entry in the Eurovision Song Contest 1967, it has since been recorded by many other musicians, most notably French orchestra leader Paul Mauriat, whose familiar instrumental version became the only number-one hit by a French lead artist to top the Billboard Hot 100 in America.
"Diggi-Loo Diggi-Ley" was the winning song in the Eurovision Song Contest 1984 performed in Swedish by a trio of brothers named Herrey's. Lyrics were written by Britt Lindeborg, and the tune by Torgny Söderberg. It was produced by Anders Engberg and Torgny Söderberg.
"The Voice" was the winner of the Eurovision Song Contest 1996, performed in English by Eimear Quinn representing Ireland. The music was composed, and the lyrics were written, by Brendan Graham, who had also written and composed "Rock 'N' Roll Kids," the Irish winner from the 1994 Contest. The victory, which was Ireland's fourth in five years, was their seventh Contest victory, which remains a record for the most contests won by a single country.
"Save Your Kisses for Me" was the winning song of the Eurovision Song Contest 1976, performed for the United Kingdom by Brotherhood of Man in The Hague, Netherlands. The lyrics and music were written by Tony Hiller, Lee Sheriden, and Martin Lee, the latter two being members of the band. The song became a worldwide hit, reaching No. 1 in many countries, including the UK, where it became the biggest-selling song of the year. Overall, it remains one of the biggest-selling Eurovision winners ever, and the biggest such seller in the UK. The song's melody bears a strong resemblance to "Tie a Yellow Ribbon Round The Ole Oak Tree", released by Tony Orlando & Dawn in 1973. The Brotherhood of Man covered that song on an album in 2006.
Marc Roberts is an Irish singer, best known for representing Ireland in the Eurovision Song Contest in 1997. His song, "Mysterious Woman", finished in second place and reached number two on the Irish Singles Chart. He is originally from Crossmolina, County Mayo, and now based in Galway, where he presents a local radio show as well as continuing his singing career. He has to date released six studio albums.
"Better the Devil You Know" is a pop song written by Brian Teasdale and Dean Collinson for English singer Sonia. The single was released in April 1993 as the second and final single from Sonia's third album, Better the Devil You Know. The song was the United Kingdom's entry at the Eurovision Song Contest 1993, finishing in second place.
Eoghan Karl Christopher Quigg is a footballer and pop singer from Dungiven, Northern Ireland, who finished third in the fifth series of the British television music talent contest The X Factor in 2008. As a result of his X Factor success, Quigg was due to be signed by Simon Cowell, X Factor creator/producer and owner and CEO of Syco Records, but was instead signed to RCA after Cowell pulled out. Quigg released an eponymous studio album in 2009, to strongly negative reviews. Quigg competed in the Irish national selection for the chance to represent Ireland in 2014 at the Eurovision Song Contest but finished second.
"Rock Bottom" was the British entry in the Eurovision Song Contest 1977, performed in English by Lynsey de Paul and Mike Moran. It was also written and produced by de Paul and Moran and released on the Polydor record label. Originally it was written for the group Blue Mink; and submitted unbeknown to de Paul and Moran as an entry for "A Song For Europe" by the publishers and when it was selected, de Paul agreed to perform the song if Moran would join her. On 9 March 1977, "Rock Bottom" was selected to represent the UK at the "A Song for Europe 1977" event held at the New London Theatre, presented by Terry Wogan.
Sandie Shaw, is an English singer. One of the most successful British female singers of the 1960s, she had three UK number one singles with "(There's) Always Something There to Remind Me" (1964), "Long Live Love" (1965) and "Puppet on a String" (1967). With "Puppet on a String", she became the first British entry to win the Eurovision Song Contest. She returned to the UK top 40, for the first time in 15 years, with her 1984 cover of the Smiths song "Hand in Glove". Shaw announced her retirement from the music industry in 2013.
Ryan O'Shaughnessy is an Irish singer-songwriter and former actor from Loughshinny, Skerries, Dublin. He portrayed Mark Halpin in the popular TV series Fair City for nine years (2001–2010). In January 2012, he appeared in the inaugurative season of The Voice of Ireland and in May 2012, he took part in sixth series of Britain's Got Talent making it to the final and finishing fifth place. He represented Ireland in the Eurovision Song Contest 2018 with the song "Together" finishing 16th.
James Richard Newman is a British singer-songwriter based in London. At the 2014 Brit Awards, Newman won the Brit Award for British Single of the Year as a co-writer of "Waiting All Night", a song by English drum and bass band Rudimental. Newman was chosen to represent the United Kingdom in the Eurovision Song Contest 2020 with the song, "My Last Breath" before its cancellation. Newman instead represented the United Kingdom in the Eurovision Song Contest 2021 with the song "Embers”, which came in last place with nul points.
|Awards and achievements|
Donna & Joe
| Ireland in the Eurovision Song Contest |
with "They Can't Stop The Spring"