Two time Eurovision winner and Nenagh man Brendan Graham has added his congratulations to Molly Sterling on her Eurosong win with Playing With Numbers.
The man from Kickham Street, who won Eurovision in 1994 with Rock ‘n’ Roll Kids, sung by Paul Harrington, and again in 1996 with The Voice, performed by Eimear Quinn, told the Tipperary Star it was “good to see the flag being borne by a fellow Nenagh songwriter”.
“It was a well-deserved victory for Molly with Playing With Numbers, a fine song from herself and Greg French, both Irish songwriters,” said Brendan.
The man who has sold over 100 million units worldwide said Playing With Numbers had a freshness and integrity to it and was not trying to follow the obvious notion of the Eurovision song.
“Molly delivered the song with great character. She suited it. It suited her, and it has a catchy hook,” said Brendan.
Having been to Eurovision twice, he said that if there was anything about Eurovision that Molly felt he could put her mind at ease about, “then, I’d be happy to do that”.
“Whatever the outcome, apart from her performance and song writing skills, she will be an excellent representative for the country and that is such an important (sometimes overlooked) element to Eurovision. Congratulations to her and Greg. I wish them both the best for the big night ahead,” he said.
Apart from writing some of the best-known songs over the past two decades, Brendan Graham is a composer and novelist. As a songwriter, he was dubbed a “Musical Midas” by the Irish Times. Legendary Irish journalist Con Houlihan deemed him to be “touched by genius”.
His songs have been recorded by artists in almost every musical category, geography and language, amassing over a billion hits on YouTube and other online platforms.
Graham’s You Raise Me Up (music by Rolf Lovland) is one of the most successful songs ever written. It topped the American and UK charts and has been recorded by almost 1,000 artistes, including Josh Groban, Westlife, Kenny G, IL Divo, Susan Boyle, Mormon Tabernacle Choir, Andre Rieu, Daniel O’Donnell, Secret Garden, Brian Kennedy and Celtic Woman. It has been performed at the Nobel Peace Prize (twice); official Ground Zero 9/11 Commemorations (twice); Nelson Mandela Cape Town Commemoration; opening of the Northern Ireland Assembly; reopening of Martin Luther King National Civil Rights Museum; Olympic Games; Superbowl; the opening ceremony of the current World Cricket Cup in New Zealand; The White House (twice); Queen Elizabeth’s State visit to Ireland, among other hihg profile events.
Many of his other songs – such as Isle of Hope, Isle of Tears; O America! My Land; Across the Rio Grande (the Chieftains with Liam Neeson); The Voice; Winter, Fire & Snow , and Crucán na bPáiste – are known and loved throughout the world.
Hot Press has dubbed the Nenagh-born composer as “one of the most in-demand songwriters in the world”.
This January, 2015 he had a No.1 hit on Korea’s Classical Chart with the world-renowned diva and Grammy winner Sumi-Jo, and US rising star Nathan Pacheco released Stare Con Te, a song co-written by Graham with multi-Grammy winning David Foster on his Nathan Pacheco 11 album.
In February, 2015 Universal Music, Australia released Graham’s I Will Love You as the new single from Italian, crossover artiste, Patrizio Buanne.
He composed a lullaby for the first child of Britain’s Prince William and Kate Middleton.
The multi-talented Graham is also a novelist. His three documentary novels – the best-selling, The Whitest Flower; The Element of Fire; and The Brightest Day, The Darkest Night – about Ireland’s famine, emigration and the Irish in the American Civil War were published by HarperCollins and translated into a number of languages.