Brendan Murray appears in semi-final 2 of The Eurovision Song Contest on Thursday, May 11, RTÉ2, 8pm.
Irish Eurovision hopeful Brendan Murray hit the ground running on Monday when he started an impromptu gig for the Ukrainian press in the bagging area after touching down in Kyiv.
Not a man to stand on ceremony, the 20-year-old Tuam native pulled out his guitar and performed his ballad Dying To Try.
If this charm offensive is anything to go by, there’s every chance the former member of boy band HomeTown will get a strong response when he takes the stage next week for the semi-finals of the The Eurovision Song Contest.
What shape are you in?
I joined the gym in January — this is my first year properly doing gym work.
I always played a lot of sport growing up in primary school. I did a lot of athletics, I did cross country, I did shot putt and then football kicked in.
When I was in the band HomeTown I gave up football and stuck to a bit of running. That’s how I try to keep fit.
In the last five months, I’ve been going to the gym about five or six days a week.
There was a time in particular in 2015 and I got really rundown. I wasn’t getting enough sleep. I wasn’t exercising enough or eating properly. I got the flu. My immune system was just gone.
I was sick for about three weeks, I had to take plenty of fish oils and plenty of water. Ever since then I’ve looked after myself. I try and get plenty of sleep a night and eat healthy-ish.
What are your healthiest eating habits?
Sometimes I’ll have porridge in the morning with mixed fruit. I also love poached eggs or scrambled eggs and toast.
I normally go to the gym in the morning from about 11 to 1. Afterwards, I try to have as much protein as I can.
During the day, I’ll always find myself eating a bit of chocolate or something like that. Then during the evening I’ll try and have a dinner. I try my best not to eat at night.
There was a week there when I was really healthy, I was going to the gym twice a day.
There was one shake I’d have in the morning — I got it off my personal trainer — spinach, mixed fruit, banana, yoghurt, coconut water, chia seeds, honey, and coconut. It was lovely.
What would keep you awake at night?
My phone. I tend to flick through it — Twitter or I might be Snapchatting.
If I can’t sleep I’ll listen to music but that will actually keep me up longer. I try and doze off.
How do you relax?
I play the guitar. I watch telly. I’ve only watched one series — Breaking Bad
— on Netflix. After 15 minutes, I’d be distracted by my phone.
I listen to music. I go for a run — it takes my mind off a lot of things.
Who would you invite to your dream dinner party?
Ed Sheeran because I’d love to duet with him, even to write a song with him would be incredible.
Kevin Hart — I’d let him entertain me for the night. Jessica Alba — she was my first celebrity crush. Charlie Sheen because I was a big fan of Two and a Half Men
What’s your favourite smell?
Mint. When I was in second class there were green notice boards in the hall with a mint scent. Me and the lads used to sniff the notice boards, which sounds strange but it was actually a lovely smell.
What would you like to change about your appearance?
I go to the gym every day, I eat healthy-ish, I drink plenty of water. I’m kind of happy the way I am.
When is the last time you cried?
It’s in the family genes. I’ve three brothers and one sister. Two of us didn’t get the crying gene and the other three did.
When we played the Eurovision song for Ireland this year, my mam started crying. I think it’s in her genes as well. I probably get my genes from my dad’s side. There won’t be tears from me.
What traits do you least like in others?
I don’t mind competitiveness in any way. It’s good to be competitive because it drives you. But I don’t like [when others] step on people’s toes.
What traits do you least like about yourself?
I can be indecisive at times. If I was going to do a gig or perform a few songs for a show, I’d always change a song in the middle — just before I’m about to sing it. That’s just me.
Do you pray?
I don’t. I go to Mass for Easter, Christmas and Holy Communions. I’m not big into religion but there’s a belief there.
What would cheer up your day?
Winning the Eurovision! If I’m at home I love to play guitar in the kitchen. And I love when the lads come over, and chatting with them. I also like going to matches, gigs and shopping.
The simple things.
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