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Ireland's National Song Contest

As stated earlier, Ireland's entry in Eurovision in 1965 heralded a new age for Showband talent. Competition to represent Ireland was a hot topic and in the early days, Ireland turned to its showband stars to help represent the country against Europe's finest.

The Irish National Song Contest has changed its format many times since starting in 1965. Early on the format consisted of heats from which three finalists would be picked, going through to the finals of the contest, which would included the best six-ten songs. In later years, Ireland would experiment with one singer singing all entries (a formula repeated in 2008 with little success).  As you can see from the list of entries below, most of the singers were from the ranks of the showbands and Ireland's folk scene in the early days, while in the mid to late 80's many songs were performed by the songwriters themselves.

Below is a listing of all the acts that competed in the Irish National Song Contest between 1965 and 1990!

Irish National Song Contest Site

Year Song Title Artist Place
1965 I'm Walking the Street in the rain Butch Moore 1st
1965 I stand still Patricia Cahil 2nd
1965 Yesterday's dream John Keogh 3rd
1965 Another star, another tear Joan Connolly 3rd
1965 Suddenly in love Brendan Bowyer 5th
1965 Another day, another dream Francis McDermott 6th
1965 I still love you Dickie Rock 7th
1965 You said you loved me Unknown  
1965 Concerto of love Unknown  
1965 House on the hill Unknown  
1965 Love me truly Jim Doherty Trio  
1965 On such a night Unknown  
1966 Come back to stay Dickie Rock 1st
1966 The wind thro' the rafters The Ludlows 2nd
1966 Why don't you say it's so Deidre Wynne 3rd
1966 Why don't I believe in her Butch Moore 4th
1966 There's no sense in being a fool Deidre Wynne 5th
1966 Haven't you Deidre Wynne 5th T
1966 Can't make up my mind Dickie Rock 5th T
1966 A sailor will sail The Ludlows 8th
1966 Oh why Dickie Rock 9th
1966 I see your face Butch Moore 10th T
1966 The menace from Ennis Sonny Knowles 10th T
1966 Chuaigh mé suas don chluiche mór Sonny Knowles 10th T
1967 If I could choose Sean Dunphy 1st
1967 Back to the hills Patricia Cahil 2nd
1967 Somebody of my own Johnny McEvoy 3rd
1967 Canavaun Patricia Cahil 4th
1967 Over the hill Johnny McEvoy 5th
1967 Never more be leaving Aedin Ní Choileain 6th
1967 The world outside Deidre O'Callaghan 7th
1967 Inisheer Aedin Ní Choileain 8th
1967 Faraway Deidre O'Callaghan 9th
1968 Chance of a lifetime Pat McGeegan 1st
1968 Kinsale Pat Lynch 2nd
1968 One love two Tina 3rd
1968 Give Me All Your Love Alma Carroll 4th
1968 Gleann na smol Anna McGoldrick 5th
1968 Bright butterfly Tony Kenny  
1968 Since the spring Francis McDermott  

Did not qualify for final

1968 You Can't Have Everything Gregory  
1968 If You Love Me Tommy Drennan  
1968 Ballad To A Boy Anne Bushnell  
1968 Look For Love Roly Daniels  
1968 You're Not There At All Frankie McBride  
1968 Happy Leslie Cooke  
1968 Woman Beside the Phone Deidre Wynne  
1968 Grown Up World Joan Connelly  
1968 Why Dawn Knight  
1969 Wages of love Muriel Day 1st
1969 Look around Dana 2nd
1969 Now do you believe me Dickie Rock 3rd
1969 Johnny Dreamer Pat McGeegan 4th
1969 Paper boats Sean Dunphy 5th T
1969 Talking to myself  Eleanor Nodwell 5th T
1969 1959 Fiorenza Viani-Nolan 5th T
1969 Too late Butch Moore 8th
1970 All kinds of everything Dana 1st
1970 Things you hear about me Maxi, Dick & Twink 2nd
1970 Cé'n fáth ná graíonn tú mé Pat & Jean 8th
1970 Dá sheoilfainn an domhan Anna McGoldrick  
1970 An Irish love John McNally  
1970 D'imigh an ghrian We Four  
1970 No time like summertime Tony Kenny  
1970 She meant everything Tony O'Leary  
1971 One day love Angela Farrell 1st
1971 Going away Red Hurley 2nd
1971 Tic-Tac-A-Toc The Coterie 9 3rd
1971 3 Words Danny Doyle 4th
1971 Éist liom (Listen to me) Maureen Miller 5th T
1971 An sean seanchaí (The old story-teller) Brian Byrne 5th T
1971 The sad sound Des Smyth 7th
1971 An fhaid a mhairim Sonny Knowles 8th
1972 Ceol an ghrá (Music of Love) Sandie Jones 1st
1972 Let's Be Thankful Des Smyth 2nd
1972 Óro Áine (Precious Anne) Lola 3rd T
1972 They Take Me Back D.J. Curtin 3rd T
1972 Don't Need Your Sympathy Tina 3rd T
1972 Certain Sunday The McLynns 6th
1972 It Would Take A Miracle Twink 6th T
1972 Tar liom (Come With Me) Paddy Murphy & Maire O'Shea 8th T
1972 Bualadh bos (Clap Your Hands) The Farrells 10th
1972 Ma dhuachas Dún na ngall (My Lovely Donegal) Joe Cuddy 8th T
1973 Do I Dream Maxi 1st
1973 Love Is Grand Alma Carroll 2nd
1973 Colours Of Our Mind Danny Doyle 3rd
1973 Fadó fadó (Long Long Ago) The Branagans 4th
1973 An speirling (The Wind) Golden Dawn 5th
1973 An phairc (The Park) Clannad 6th T
1973 I'll Remember Family Pride 6th T
1973 An chéad ghrá (The First Love) Barbara Dickson 8th
1974 Cross your heart Tina 1st
1974 Is liom é (It belongs to me) Tina 2nd
1974 My world Tina 3rd
1974 Tiocfaidh mé ar ais (I will come back) Tina 4th
1974 Music man Tina 5th
1974 Never again Tina 6th
1974 Cinnte (Certainly) Tina 7th
1974 Nach aisteach mar ealionn an ghrá (Isn't it strange how love is) Tina 8th
1975 That's what friends are for Swarbriggs 1st
1975 Goodbye to goodbye Swarbriggs 2nd
1975 Come and keep me warm Swarbriggs 3rd
1975 This is our very own song Swarbriggs 4th
1975 Lady in blue Swarbriggs 5th
1975 Blathín (Florence) Swarbriggs 6th
1975 Babaró dederó Swarbriggs 6th
1975 Butterfly morning Swarbriggs 8th
1976 When Red Hurley 1st
1976 We can fly Chips 2nd
1976 Cá bhfuil ghrá (Where is love) Mary Clifford 3rd
1976 Danny Cathal Dunne 4th
1976 The way of love Swarbriggs 5th
1976 Old fashioned song The McWilliams 6th
1976 If I had your love Cahir O'Doherty 7th T
1976 C'én fá a taim in ghrá (Why am I in love) Trinity 7th T
1977 It's nice to be in love again Swarbriggs Plus Two 1st
1977 If I give my love Jamie Stone 2nd
1977 There was a dream Colm Wilkinson 3rd
1977 Goodbye goodbye Chips 4th
1977 Da-dum-da-dum-da I love you so Denis Allen 5th
1977 I can't go on without you Dickie Rock 6th
1977 You cannot stop the music D.J. Curtin 7th
1977 Look before you leap Sunshine 8th
1978 Born to sing Colm Wilkinson 1st
1978 You put the love in my heart Stacc 2nd
1978 All fall down Gemma Craven 3rd
1978 Happy days Chips 4th
1978 You gotta get up Reform 5th
1978 It's amazing what love can do Sheeba 6th
1978 Over again Jamie Stone 7th
1978 Lonely now Danny Doyle 8th
1979 Happy man Cathal Dunne 1st
1979 Too Much Is Going On The Miami 2nd
1979 Angie Johnny Logan 3rd
1979 The Main Attraction The Memories 4th
1979 No Restrictions Tweed 5th
1979 Goodbye Andersoon 6th
1979 Superstar Catriona Walsh 6th
1979 Hiding Behind Our Smile Red Hurley and Tina 8th
1980 What's another year Johnny Logan 1st
1980 Stepping Stones Peter Beckett 2nd
1980 Loving Won't Let You Down Roy Taylor and Karen Black 3rd
1980 The Saddest Show on Earth Eileen Reid 4th
1980 You're So Cheeky Peter Eades and the Miami 5th
1980 Love is All there is Roe-mance 5th
1980 You Have The Jadacs 7th
1980 Take Me Back Again Ray Doherty 8th
1981 Horoscopes Sheeba 1st
1981 My Pet Parrot Nevada 2nd
1981 Can't be without you Tony Kenny 3rd
1981 Where does that love come from Duskey Sisters 3rd
1981 The one in my life Nicola Kerr 5th T
1981 Share my love Helen Jordan 5th T
1981 Not tonight Josephine Tara 7th
1981 Don't walk away Sylvia McFadden 8th
1982 Here today gone tomorrow Duskey Sisters 1st
1982 Is there anyone out there Jody McStravick 2nd
1982 All over again Deuce of Hearts 3rd
1982 Qu'il passe (Let him come past) Iain Freeman 4th
1982 Goodbye to loneliness Heads 5th
1982 Wherever you go Tony Kenny 6th
1982 Go raibh maith agat Sheeba 7th
1982 Tissue of lies Chips 8th
1984 Terminal 3 Linda Martin 1st
1984 This is for you Flo McSweeney 2nd
1984 Bee bop delight Charlie Mcgettigan 3rd
1984 My love and you Sheeba 4th
1984 April won't be here 'till September Thomas McPartland 5th
1984 Problems Girl Talk 6th T
1984 The show is over Rob Strong 6th T
1984 Don't take my dreams away Aileen Pringle 6th T
1985 Wait until the weekend comes Maria Christian 1st
1985 Two hearts Carol Ann 2nd
1985 Long before Jane Cassidy 3rd
1985 Couldn't live my life Jody McStravick 4th
1985 Hold her now Trish O'Brien 4th
1985 Only a fantasy Marion Fossett 6th
1985 The circus song Jacinta Whyte 7th
1985 Hearts Mike Sherrard 8th
1986 You can count on me Luv Bug 1st
1986 Johnny, where are you now? Loudest Whisper 2nd
1986 Honey Honor Heffernan 3rd
1986 If I can change your mind Linda Martin 4th
1986 Here in the night Fran Meen 5th
1986 Life in the city The Rockets 6th
1986 Ringo John Spillane & Mandy Murphy 6th
1986 Only the lonely survive Therese Lowe 8th
1986 I'll Never Love Again Jim Walsh 9th
1987 Hold me Now Johnny Logan 1st
1987 Every single move she makes Paul Duffy 2nd
1987 Are you shy Charlie Mcgettigan 3rd
1987 Ó d'imigh tú úiam Valerie Armstrong 4th
1987 All of my life Spyder Sympson 5th
1987 You're not around Jenni Stanley 6th
1987 I'm in a tizzy Rosie Hunter 7th
1987 Louise Jody McStravick 8th
1987 Whisper whisper Loudest Whisper 9th
1988 Take him home Jump The Gun 1st
1988 Lifeline Liam Reilly 2nd
1988 Stop messin' around Paul Duffy 3rd
1988 In and out of love Leanna and Hotline 4th
1988 Friends forever Timara Galassi 5th
1988 Tar liom anois Grace Dunne 6th
1988 Tearing up my heart Tranz-Am 7th
1988 Dance to my own tune Fabienne 8th
1989 The real me Kiev Connolly 1st
1989 Easy Honor Heffernan 2nd
1989 This isn't war (it's revolution) Nicola Kerr 3rd
1989 It was meant to be Noelle 3rd
1989 Angel eyes Jenny Newman 5th
1989 Here we go Linda Martin 6th
1989 Song for you Dave Lalor 7th
1989 Uaigneach Barry Rowland 8th
1990 Somewhere in Europe Liam Reilly 1st
1990 All the people in the world Linda Martin and Friends 2nd
1990 Count on me Conor Stevens 3rd
1990 Oh darling Ann Breen 4th
1990 Sin sin (That's that) Dreams 5th
1990 Say that you love me Fran Meen 6th
1990 Feed him with love Maggie Toal 7th
1990 If it means losing you The Memories 8th

For a complete listing of all the entries and winners from all the countries from 1956 through 2005, click here to go to the site which is managed by Arne Eilers. If hyperlink doesn't work, copy and past this: into your web browser.

To hear the complete song versions of all the Irish entries into the Eurovision, click here. Our thanks to Keith Mills who maintains a great website dedicated to the Eurovision song contest. His site features every Eurovision entry ever!


© 2002-2017 GMS Productions

In Loving Memory of Grant Gallagher: Sept. 21, 1990 - Nov. 18, 2006