Ireland: Johnny Logan Raps His Way to Chart Success

What’s another year? Or 26? For that’s the length of time Johnny Logan has had to wait for his first post Eurovision hit in Ireland. The drought finally ended at midday on Friday last, 16th August, when it was revealed that Johnny’s latest release “Prayin” had entered the charts at number 3, just behind Ellie Goulding and Avicii. Not bad going for a 59 year old.

The song was released in conjunction with RTÉ show “The Hit”, a rather convoluted and overly complicated Friday night talent show, which you can read more about here. The success of “Prayin” means that he will be in the grand final in 2 weeks time on 30th August.

Speaking to the Irish Independent Logan expressed surprise at how well the song is doing:

For a person who has been around as long as I have, this is incredible. I feel like the singer Bill Nighy plays in the film Love Actually, the guy who tops the charts by accident.

Don’t be so modest Johnny! The reason for the song’s popularity is simple – it’s actually very good! “Prayin” is completely different to his previous work. It’s an anthemic rock song, which you could easily imagine being performed to a packed stadium. After a few listens it’s very hard not to sing along. And despite its somber themes of death and loss it is oddly uplifting.

The only criticism I would have is the rapping. It’s completely unnecessary and threatens to drag the song into novelty territory. Who thought it was a good idea to include it on the final cut? Maybe Johnny was looking for some extra street cred? Or perhaps it was a dare? Your guess is as good as mine. Thankfully he doesn’t have any aspirations to become Ireland’s answer to Jay-Z:

Snoop Dogg Logan I’m not. I did approach other rappers, but they all wanted to change the lyrics and I didn’t want to mess about with anything which is so personal to the writer involved.

Unfortunately, not everyone is reaching the dizzying heights atop the charts. Brian Kennedy, who participated for Ireland at Eurovision in 2006, is also taking part in “The Hit”. However, his effort “Try” only limped into the charts at number 15. So far this is the worst chart performance of any song to be featured in the series, as all the rest have broken into the top 10.

Padraig Jude contributed this report from Ireland. Follow him on Twitter at @PadraigJude. And while you’re at it, like our Facebook page to stay up-to-date with the latest Eurovision news and gossip.

Photo: RTÉ