John Lydon calls Eurovision “disgusting” and “phoney” despite PiL’s bid to represent Ireland in 2023

11 January 2023, 13:53 | Updated: 11 January 2023, 15:55

PiL Performs At The O2 Forum Kentish Town in 2022
PiL's John Lydon has given his views on Eurovision. Picture: Gus Stewart/Redferns

By Jenny Mensah

The Public Image Ltd frontman has admitted he thinks the Eurovision Song Contest is “awful despite his band's potential entry.

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READ MORE: UK to host Eurovision Song Contest 2023 on behalf of Ukraine

John Lydon has branded the Eurovision Song Contest as “disgusting” and “awful”.

The PiL frontman hit the headlines this week when it was revealed the post-punk pioneers were competing to represent Ireland at the competition, which will be held in Liverpool this year.

As reported by Metro, speaking to Cormac Ó hEadhra on RTE’s Radio 1, he said: “It’s absolutely awful, the songs. The whole thing of it is disgusting to me. I’m a songwriter, I perform live, and these shows just come across as so dreadfully phoney to me.”

The Rise singer added: “But look, we’re giving it a chance to break out of that mould.”

Despite his honesty about the contest, the Sex Pistols rocker did express his gratitude for being given the opportunity, adding: "What a fantastic opportunity these people have given me".

The news comes after the band announced that they would be competing with various artists for the chance to represent Ireland in the competition, with their Hawaii single.


READ MORE: Public Image Ltd will compete to represent Ireland at Eurovision 2023

The song is dedicated to Lydon’s wife Nora, who suffers from Alzheimer’s.

Talking about the track in a statement, the Sex Pistols rocker said: “It is dedicated to everyone going through tough times on the journey of life, with the person they care for the most.”

He added: “It’s also a message of hope that ultimately love conquers all.”

Despite his misgivings about the contest in the past, Lydon believes the performance will be "rewarding" just for his wife's reaction.

“My wife when she sees this, it’s going to melt her, Alzheimer’s or not, It’s the most rewarding thing.”

Asked what he would do if the band do represent Ireland this year, the This Is Not A Love Song singer mused: “I’ve no idea. Apparently, I have to do karaoke over a backing track.”

READ MORE: Why did the Sex Pistols split up?

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