Well there we have it, the worst kept secret in Eurovision circles is finally out. Sam Ryder has been confirmed as the UK representative for the United Kingdom at the 2022 Eurovision Song Contest. Space Man is the song that will be bidding to reverse the UK’s fortunes at the Contest. After the last two Contests… the only way is up!
As the audience for the Contest continues to skew younger the influence of TikTok on Eurovision is becoming more important. Look at the recent success stories: Arcade, Think About Things, Shum and basically, the global phenomenon that is Måneskin. All of them owe their success in some part to TikTok. If an artist can find a way of breaking through on the app it can be a massive launchpad. Just a shame we never had the same from Vine back in 2013, Latvia would’ve loved an entry called “Fre sh A voca do”. That’s one for the millenials!
So it makes sense to get someone who not only knows the platform but also brings a significant following. I know Germany tried this with Jendrik last year but Sam’s follower count is nearly 10x that of the German. (No disrespect to Jendrik, I still love you dude!) There’s no guarantee of success on the app but if you’re bringing in a guy with a 12 million-plus established audience it’s a strong head start. I’m not saying TikTok is the be-all and end-all but with the influence it has over current music trends it’s a smart move for the BBC to use it to find their artist.
This is the first year of the collaboration between the TaP Music record label and the BBC. All the messaging thus far has broadly covered the same vibe we had with BMG two years ago. I suppose if TaP actually see out their three-year contract and don’t have a record of a single last place it’ll have been a step up from the previous venture. Success isn’t winning, no British Eurofan is expecting that. A solid mid-table placing from a good song with modern, fresh staging. Something we can be proud of come May 14th.
Is Space Man the entry to do this? Is it the song that can herald, if not a new era, at least a positive step in the right direction? Well yes, I genuinely believe it is. Granted, the field of emoti-blokes this year is a vast one but Space Man has the potential to stand out. In amongst all these sad lads none have the searing chorus to bring a more uplifting vibe than Sam does here. We’ve all heard him sing online, the lad has pipes! There’s no doubt in my mind that he will be able to deliver this live. If TaP can bring us some coherent staging to help the song stand out, in a positive way, then yes I do believe this could be a success.