Best of the Bunch: The Trials – Ireland

Through our Best of the Bunch series, we gave a recap on the Eurovision entries from 2006 to 2015 and gave you the opportunity to choose your Best of the Bunch. As you may remember, the current Best of the Bunch winners were put into our ‘Ultimate Eurovision’ but it’s time to see which of the latest three entries have remained as your favourites! In our Best of the Bunch: The Trials series, we are going to recap the entries from a certain nation starting with 2016 and continuing through to the latest Eurovision season of 2018. Your job is to simply enjoy the music, and vote for your Best of the Bunch winner!

Today we’ll be taking a closer look at the entries from the most successful Eurovision nation (well, for now) which is of course, Ireland! Although Ireland have won the most contests in the history of Eurovision, lately, it hasn’t been as positive for Ireland. We’ve seen the once successful nation struggle to qualify year after year, despite sending some real gems. Today the focus is on the last three entries from Ireland, and once we recap the entries, it will be up to you to decide the Best of the Bunch!

Ireland 2016

We are starting our journey today in 2016, where an internal selection decided the Irish act for Eurovision. It was revealed that former Westlife member Nicky Byrne would take to the stage solo with the mid-tempo entry Sunlight. It was a popular decision for fans of Westlife, but in the overall scheme of things, the track flew under the radar. Come Eurovision, it was unsure if Ireland could break their non-qualification streak of what was already two years, but unfortunately the streak continued. The song finished in 15th place with 46 points.

Ireland 2017

Ireland once again chose to internally select their act, and it seemed that Ireland were dying to break their non-qualification streak and finally reach the final. Puns aside, Ireland selected another former boyband member – Brendan Murray, who was formerly part of the band Hometown. The song was called Dying to Try, which was a very ‘Irish’ ballad reminiscent of the songs that Ireland once succeeded with, but unfortunately in the context of the 2017 contest, it just wasn’t strong enough. The song finished in 13th place with 86 points, meaning that it was the fourth consecutive non-qualification.

Ireland 2018

Although luck had not been on their side for a while, we were hopeful that this could be the year that the nation turns things around. Internally selected once again, the act chosen was another young artist, Ryan O’Shaughnessy. His song Together was in many ways similar to their previous entry, being an understated ballad. Seeing the fate of Brendan the year before, it was put in the non-qualification basket by many within the fan community however at Eurovision, there was a glimmer of hope. For the first time since 2013, Ireland was called out as one of the 10 qualifiers! The song qualified in at 6th place, then in the final finished in 16th place.

So now you’ve seen all three performances, it’s time to vote for your Best of the Bunch!

If you want more Best of the Bunch from Ireland, check out our original series:

If you want to check out who made our Ultimate Eurovision, check it out here:

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