Ahead of the Eurovision 2022 final on Saturday 14th May, the BBC have caught up with the United Kingdom's representative, Sam Ryder.
How are you feeling about representing the UK for Eurovision 2022?
“I’m excited, I’m trying to be focused about it and just getting nice and practiced singing wise and getting in the right headspace for it. It’s really hectic in the lead up, so I think it’s important just to try and find that focus and balance, and just remember that it’s all about the singing, three minutes of singing!”
Tell us about your song “Space Man” and what it means to you.
“It means a lot to me because it’s the song that got me to the next stage of my career, at the time when Tik Tok and everything on social media was kicking off. That was so amazing, and it definitely opened doors for me, but it wasn’t until SPACE MAN was written, that labels offered me deals and it sort of elevated everything to the next level. So for that to be the song that I’m singing at Eurovision is really cool because it has that sort of special moment.”
Have you spoken to any of the previous UK entrants and did they give you any advice?
“I’m friends with a couple of the previous UK entrants and they are amazing, talented musicians in their own right and lovely people. So of course they gave me some tips and pointers and the main thing that keeps coming back is to just enjoy every moment of it, because it’s such a wonderful circus being a part of Eurovision and it’s unlike anything else in the world that you can do. So I’m trying my best like I said at the beginning, to stay focused and present and not getting too overwhelmed by the nerves. So that I can breathe in every moment.”
Which past Eurovision artists would you most like to duet with?
“ABBA and Lordi together!”
What is your first memory of Eurovision? And how do you usually celebrate?
“My earliest memories of Eurovision are just sitting around the TV with my family eating pizzas and oven food and just like random picky bits of tea. It was always such a joyful time watching something like that on the TV. I never have any memories of the scoreboards or the winners or anything like that. It was always just about the music and how much fun the audience and the musicians themselves and the commentators had on that night.”
Do you have any rituals before performing? Will you be taking any Lucky Charms with you to Turin?
“Is hairspray a lucky charm?”
Have you had a listen to the competition and what do you think?
“I first heard all of the other songs during the pre-parties, so I got to see everyone play their songs live, which was really cool because it meant I got a chance to meet the acts who are representing their countries on a personal level before I heard their song. So that competitive spirit wasn’t really there as it was just a celebration and encouragement of enjoyment of listening to them sing their song.”
What is your favourite song of all time?
“Lordi – Hard Rock Hallelujah!”
Sam Ryder will perform “Space Man” for the United Kingdom at the Eurovision 2022 grand final on Saturday May 14th. The show will be broadcast live on BBC One, on the official Eurovision YouTube channel, and will be available to listen to live on Radio 2 with Ken Bruce.