Sam Ryder: 'I've been a Eurovision fan for years'
Ahead of his performance this Saturday, Sam Ryder sat down with Apple Music 1 host Rebecca Judd to discuss what it means to represent the UK, why he thinks it’s time to ‘turn the tide’ of recent low scores, how he’s dealing with his competitors and more.
Sam Ryder Tells Apple Music What It Means To Him To Represent The UK In Eurovision… I’m so excited. Because you know what, Rebecca, I’ve been a fan for years. Watching it with my family growing up and stuff like that. When I got the offer, of course, my heart immediately was like, “Yeah, do it.” It’s just such a once in a lifetime opportunity. And 200 million people watch this thing. You have an opportunity to sing a song that you wrote. And I wrote the song for ‘’Spaceman’ a year and a half ago. It was never intended, I’d never imagined I’d be in this position, getting ready to perform at Eurovision, but somehow, serendipitously, with some magic in the air, it got to the BBC, I guess. And they called me up in January and asked. They said, “I heard your song, Spaceman. And how’d you feel about singing it at Eurovision?” And I was like, “Yes please.”
Sam Ryder Tells Apple Music That He Thinks It’s Time To ‘Turn The Tide’…
Look, I know there’s going to be people listening to this being like, “Eh, but are you sure?” But listen, if you’re a fan, I’ve been following this for a long time. I know, I can see the opportunities in it and it is a matter of time. I firmly believe that no matter the situation, there’s always a time for a turn in the tide. And a positive outlook on that can sway whether it’s a negative turn or a positive turn. I just feel that whatever happens this year, it’s how the person who does it carries themself and how they sing. What’s the intention behind it? What’s the energy behind it? What an opportunity? It isn’t just singing for three minutes. It is a test of how you are going to deal with a situation like that. That’s what music’s about to me. And what singing is about to me. It’s not just singing notes or singing someone’s chorus or something like that. Or singing your own chorus. It’s a lot more.
Sam Ryder Tells Apple Music About Not Comparing Himself To The Competition…
You know what? What I did, was when I said yes, at the beginning, I promised myself, I wasn’t going to look at anything online because like you, that can be, it can really sketch you out and mess with you. Also, I didn’t want to listen to any of the songs until I saw them live. I don’t know if you know, you get to do these pre-parties. I did one in London, Amsterdam and Madrid. I waited until the London show to see all the artists that flew over to do that one, I saw their songs live and it was amazing, Rebecca, because I got to meet them all first. You’re checking in, you’re literally standing in line at the hotel desk, waiting to check in. You get to meet people like, “Hey, I’ve seen you.” And then you chat to them.
And then that evening, when you see them sing their song, you are way more invested in them as a person. Not just, you don’t look at them as like, oh, that’s your competition or that’s the person I’m doing battle with. Because that’s bad energy, it’s bad intention.…It was really sick and I’d definitely recommend anyone doing it in the future. It’s a good way to do it because you just root for everyone and that’s a good way to enjoy the experience, otherwise you’re just stressed out all the time.
Sam Ryder Tells Apple Music About Embracing His Eurovision Styling…
I’ve been working on the outfits and staging and styling and all that sort of stuff and since I said yes. Because it’s such a huge part of Eurovision. It’s not just the song. There’s so much more that goes into it. It is pure entertainment. You need to lean into that.
Sam Ryder Tells Apple Music About His Favourite Eurovision Performances…
Well, I’ve got a lot of love for loads of different UK artists that have been not just brave enough, but you know what I mean? Talented enough and just willing enough to be a part of it. Big up James last year and also Lucy Jones, wicked singer. She did amazing for us. Probably one of my favorite vocalists here in the UK. She’s an absolute formidable talent and such a lovely person as well. We were chatting the other day, actually. Bumped into each other at this radio interview. Which I say that casually now, but that’s mad that things have since being in the corner of my shed. I’m so grateful. Do you know what I mean? I get to say sentences like that.
Rebecca: Do you know what song I remember? Do you remember the one that was like, “We’re flying the flag?”
Sam Ryder: Oh, Scooch. Legendary. Ah, I watched that performance. I was down a YouTube Eurovision rabbit hole. And I watched that again. Anyone listening, doesn’t matter if you are into Eurovision or not, just look for that song because you will, if you’re feeling bad, it’ll change it. It’ll just switch it about and yeah, I urge ya. But my favorite Eurovision song ever, is Hard Rock Hallelujah by Lordi, the best moment ever. So good.