Thank you sexy, mystery drummer of Ireland. You have revealed the true point of Eurovision

The joy of Eurovision – in the UK at least - has never been derived from the deplorable music. The heady emotion-potion it offers is something altogether different


We had been bored by a parade of wailing banshees dressed as toilet roll dollies. We had been pummelled by the unforgivingly banal thought-burps of Scott Mills and Ana Matronic (bring back Paddy O’Connell) and we were treated to a papilio-punctuation of obligatory video inserts (papilio is Latin for butterfly…this makes me seem clever) which offered little and delivered nothing. Then, as I popped open my fourth beer and composed another withering tweet about this year's Eurovision experience, I noticed something from the corner of my eye…indeed, the rest of Europe did the same thing.

There, on screen, was a vision of almost breath-taking beauty. A shirtless Irishman in tight plastic trousers, covered in swirling tattoos, pounding a violent, thunderous beat on the taught goatskin of his bodhran drum.

He was a glistening, kinetic animal from the dawn of time, plucked from the rain-swept Comeragh Mountains. He was a lithe Celtic spirit, a muscled eel spat from the surging spray of the River Clanrye. He was a giant Irish elk, thrumming his powerful, glistening limbs against fate itself. There were two other drummers and a perma-tanned perma-flat singer, but no one cared. 

There was an almost instant Twittergasm. The entire British Eurovision audience (gays and women) went berserk. “Who is that muscled drummer boy?” tweets squeeled. “How do I get to be that drum?”

Here began my search for the true identity of that drummer. And now, after a night of ceaseless googling and telephone calls to agents and publicity Joannas, I can reveal him to be 23-year-old former pantomime performer Colm Farrell (not he of the famous fellatio video), a drummer and dancer from Dublin. In a recent interview he reveals: ‘I’m really looking forward to Friday night. It promises to be really good because it’s not just about the song and dancers, it’s about the whole package.’ You can say that again, Colm.

There are those who would question a singing contest where the main (or only) point of interest is a young, muscly bloke with his shirt off, doing suggestive things with a bodhran drum but I would counter that last night’s Eurovision foreplay and the subsequent drooling over Colm summed up the great joy of the competition…a joy that has never been derived from the deplorable music.

No. The joy of Eurovision – in the UK at least - comes from its power to unite people in their incredulity, confusion, sexual excitement, boredom and derision. For once, this heady emotion-potion comes from a song contest rather than our own pathetic sex lives.

The Irish entry manages to tick all of the above with gusto and that’s precisely why it stood out. The organisers from the Emerald Isle realised they had a terrible song so they stuck some eye-candy on stage to divert people’s attention. It is the diametric opposite of the British approach in 2013. We have some long-forgotten bird from Port Talbot in Miss Piggy’s wig growling through a lacklustre ballad and then (we are promised) being hoisted up into the air and swung about above the stage in touching homage to the Dambusters raid.

I must admit after last year’s utterly awful showing from Engleburp Downyerdrink and the continued tactical voting I vowed never to watch the programme again. But that’s the fun of it really isn’t it? The ability to gripe, mock, lust and moan together whilst slurping our Jacob’s Creek and revelling in how crass, insane and stupid other countries are.

I for one wish Bonnie (by name if not by aesthetic) and young Colm all the very best for Friday. I shall be watching and tweeting vigorously throughout. Social media means we can all share our thoughts instantly which adds a fantastically funny facet to the night. Doubtless Graham Norton will be forced to read out the most vapid tweets on the night: Jess from Wigan tweets: Loving that song. Loving Eurovision. Loving my face. Loving Loving LOL.

Just as the Olympics brought us all together in national pride, so the Eurovision Song Contest 2013 can bring us all together in international derision. How exciting!

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Massage Therapist / Sports Therapist / Physio / Osteopath

£12000 - £24000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An opportunity has arisen for o...

Recruitment Genius: Account Manager / Sales Executive - Contract Hire

£35000 - £60000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This industry leader provides c...

Recruitment Genius: Project Coordinator

£28000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Project Coordinator is requir...

Recruitment Genius: Area Sales Manager - Midlands

£20000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

Day In a Page

Read Next

Don’t pity me for eating alone, just give me a better table

Rosie Millard
Aerial view of planned third runway at Heathrow  

Heathrow expansion: This final 'conclusion' has simply fanned the airport flames

Chris Blackhurst
John Palmer: 'Goldfinger' of British crime was murdered, say police

Murder of the Brink’s-MAT mastermind

'Goldfinger' of British crime's life ended in a blaze of bullets, say police
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: An Algerian scientist adjusts to life working in a kebab shop

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

An Algerian scientist struggles to adjust to her new life working in a Scottish kebab shop
Bodyworlds museum: Dr Gunther von Hagens has battled legal threats, Parkinson's disease, and the threat of bankruptcy

Dying dream of Doctor Death

Dr Gunther von Hagens has battled legal threats, Parkinson's disease, and the threat of bankruptcy
UK heatwave: Temperature reaches 39.8 degrees on Central Line - the sweatiest place in London

39.8 degrees recorded on Tube

There's hot (London) and too damn hot (the Underground). Simon Usborne braved the Central line to discover what its passengers suffer
Kitchens go hi-tech: From robot chefs to recipe-shopping apps, computerised cooking is coming

Computerised cooking is coming

From apps that automatically make shopping lists from your recipe books to smart ovens and robot chefs, Kevin Maney rounds up innovations to make your mouth water
Jessie Cave interview: The Harry Potter star has published a feminist collection of cartoons

Jessie Cave's feminist cartoons

The Harry Potter star tells Alice Jones how a one-night stand changed her life
Football Beyond Borders: Even the most distruptive pupils score at homework club

Education: Football Beyond Borders

Add football to an after-school homework club, and even the naughtiest boys can score
10 best barbecue books

Fire up the barbie: 10 best barbecue books

We've got Bibles to get you grilling and smoking like a true south American pro
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - Junk balls and chop and slice are only way 5ft 1in Kurumi Nara can live with Petra Kvitova’s power

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon Files

Junk balls and chop and slice are only way 5ft 1in Kurumi Nara can live with Petra Kvitova’s power
Ron Dennis exclusive: ‘This is one of the best McLaren teams ever – we are going to do it’

‘This is one of the best McLaren teams ever – we are going to do it’

Ron Dennis shrugs off a poor start to the season in an exclusive interview, and says the glory days will come back
Seifeddine Rezgui: What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?

Making of a killer

What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?
UK Heatwave: Temperatures on the tube are going to exceed the legal limit for transporting cattle

Just when you thought your commute couldn't get any worse...

Heatwave will see temperatures on the Tube exceed legal limit for transporting cattle
Exclusive - The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Swapping Bucharest for London

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Meet the man who swapped Romania for the UK in a bid to provide for his family, only to discover that the home he left behind wasn't quite what it seemed
Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Solar power will help bring down electricity prices over the next five years, according to a new report. But it’s cheap imports of ‘dirty power’ that will lower them the most
Katy Perry prevented from buying California convent for $14.5m after nuns sell to local businesswoman instead

No grace of God for Katy Perry as sisters act to stop her buying convent

Archdiocese sues nuns who turned down star’s $14.5m because they don’t approve of her