The highly-anticipated reality music show with a twist, The Hit, aired on the small screen last night - and boy-oh-boy did it knock the socks of The X-Factor.
There was something extremely refreshing about watching a talent search show that consisted of Irish musicians showcasing their creativity and availing of a platform to flaunt their impressive writing skills. It was also a pleasure to get to meet songwriters who often never receive any credit for making most chart-topping bands who they are today.
So what is the show all about? Hosted by the stunning Laura Whitmore, The Hit is a real music competition that gives fledgling songwriters a chance to have chart success with an established star.
From hundreds of submissions Grammy Award-winning music producer Steve Lillywhite, who has produced bands such as The Rolling Stones, The Pogues and U2, select a shortlist of songs that will then be pitched to two established stars – Brian McFadden and Royseven's Paul Walsh (swoon).
The Pitching Rooms: Waiting anxiously in room eight was Ruby from Cork, who discovered her songwriting talent when she was forced to abandon a childhood passion. Following an unfortunate horse-riding incident, Ruby was left housebound for her summer holidays. Ruby's song was positive and uplifting with the central message that when you get knocked off that horse, you must get back up again (no pun intended!). It was a catchy little number, but Brian and Paul both decided to walk away.
Andrea, a public service worker from Tyrone, had the voice of an angel. Her visual impairment encouraged her to express her feelings and emotions via music. Andrea's stunning song centred on a special somebody who she had strong feelings for a few years back. It was an incredibly moving song full of passion. I couldn't imagine anyone else singing this ballad better than Andrea. I can only imagine how difficult it was for Brian and Paul to walk away from this heartfelt track.
In pitching room 7, Michael the secret songwriter, who is a director in an engineer company, performed his hooky track about taking a girl for granted and pleading to get her back. For a guy who only started singing/writing three years ago, Michael has serious talent. He may be a natural born performer, but it wasn't Michael's time to shine just yet. Watch this space!
Adam's friends were right when they said that he didn't realise how talented he was. I fell in love with his uplifting and positive song about life. His song brought a smile to my face and I even found myself singing along to the catchy lyrics. Hopefully Adam will take heed of his own lyrics and keep on knocking on doors until someone puts him in the spotlight.
The Final Four: Pitching in room three was Patrick, a teacher from Skerries. This songwriter is a big romantic at heart and appeared to wear his emotions on his sleeve. His honest and vulnerable lyrics made his song Defender a powerful ballad. I could completely understand why Brian came back and locked this song in. Good luck with the wedding and the new baby Patrick and Gillian!I admired Patrick for breaking the music norms and steering away from a typical pop sounding repetitive chorus. But in this case his risk turned out to be his downfall, as Brian couldn’t figure out how to market the song.
Good luck with the wedding and the new baby Patrick and Gillian!
I instantly warmed to Graham and Greg who met each other on a songwriting course when Graham's business was forced to close shop. Their song has a lot of personal sentiment to it and really took the audience on a journey. However, in this case I felt like the story attached to the song could only be done justice if it was performed by the writers themselves. Paul was weary of tampering too much with the lyrics and taking away from the meaningful lyrics. With the fear of such raw and beautiful lyrics being chopped, I respected Paul's decision to walk away.
The Final Two: I absolutely adored Shane and Ian. They are an incredibly talented bunch of guys. They may have had a fair few doors closed on them in the past, but boy-oh-boy has their time to shine arrived! They certainly won't be invisible for long as they managed to impress Brian and music fans nationwide with their catchy chorus and heartfelt lyrics. It was a terrific song and by far my favourite! Shane and Ian couldn't have been more deserving of their No.3 iTune position today. True legends and true stars -Well done lads, all of your hard work has paid off!
The live audience said Stephen and Ed's song Sidelines was their favourite and now the voting public have officially crowned this song as a chart-topping success. Congratulations to Royseven and the songwriters for coming in at NO1 on iTunes. What an achievement!