The first and only press conference for the United Kingdom was held this evening by James Fox, who represents his country with Hold on to our love. Accompanied on stage by his four backing singers, and playing his guitar, he sung a ballad version of Waterloo for the journalists.
James Fox started his conference by saying how impressed he had been, he thought the organisation was magnificent, everyone was very friendly, and that he had never had the opportunity before to play in such a large venue.
He has the opportunity to meet former British entrants, as he toured with Lulu recently, and appeared on The Weakest Link special with ex contestants. All of them had given him plenty of goodwill, saying that it will be the best week of his life! This from artists who maybe had been in it ten years ago or so, still consider it to be the best experience, and so far it was living up to that!
His previous experience was on Fame Academy, so what had that been like? He had made a lot of friends, and he now shares a flat with one of his fellow contestants. It had also been a fantastic experience to appear live on television each week, he has many “happy memories” of the show.
His musical influences are Sting, Elton John, Billy Joel and Travis, and would love to record a duo with Sting, should he ever get the chance.
Was there any pressure on him after last years' result, or non result? “I couldn't do any worse, so there is no pressure! As to whether he had any favourite Eurovision songs from the past, he recalled Abba, Sertab Erener, The Shadows, Cliff Richard, Gina G and he loves the Swedish song from this year!
His Welsh background came up several times. Firstly could he sing any Welsh for the audience? “No I'm sorry I don't speak Welsh!” was the quick answer to that one. As to the Welsh connection with the composer of this years' French entry, he hoped that maybe “I wouldn't mind France coming second!”
If someone had told him five years ago he would one day be in the Eurovision Song Contest, what would his reaction have been? “Unbelievable. In fact it has been an unbelievable year, with Fame Academy and now the Eurovision Song Contest!”
While congratulating the BBC on broadcasting the qualifying round, unlike a few other countries, on their digital channel BBC3, what sort of ratings would it take for it to be on BBC1 or BBC2 next year? This drew some applause from the audience as the Head of Delegation replied “That's an interesting question. We didn't want to take anything away from the main final, so that's why it is on BBC3. As to next year, we will have to wait and see what happens”
What goes through his mind when singing? “The lyrics!” was the instant reply “besides that, not a lot, a strange feeling, just busy performing, delivering the song”.
The press conferences concluded with another performance of his entry Hold on to our love.
As one of the big four countries, the United Kingdom participates in the final on 15th May.