Ireland: Eurovision 2012 /Jedward - Waterline
Jedward are an Irish pop duo comprising identical twins John and Edward Grimes (born 16 October 1991 in Dublin, Ireland). Widely known for their blond quiffs, they first appeared as John & Edward in the sixth series of The X Factor in 2009, generating a phenomenon described as "the Jedward paradox". They finished sixth and are now managed by Louis Walsh, who was their mentor during the show.
Jedward have released two albums, Planet Jedward and Victory, both of which went double platinum in Ireland. They have released seven singles, including "Under Pressure (Ice Ice Baby)" (a mash-up of "Under Pressure" by Queen and Vanilla Ice's track "Ice Ice Baby") and "Lipstick", the song with which they represented Ireland at the Eurovision Song Contest in 2011. Jedward are again representing Ireland at Eurovision 2012 with their song Waterline.
Jedward are also known for their television work, including hosting children's series Jedward's Big Adventure, OMG! Jedward's Dream Factory, and for participating in Celebrity Big Brother 2011.
Identical twin brothers John Paul Henry Daniel Richard Grimes and Edward Peter Anthony Kevin Patrick Grimes were born in Dublin, to teacher Susanna and computer expert John and were raised in Rathangan with their brother, law student Kevin. John is ten minutes older than Edward.
John and Edward's first school was Scoil Bhríde National School in Rathangan. They then attended King's Hospital School for four years, but were constantly bullied for standing out from the rest and their love of pop music, before being moved to the Dublin Institute of Education. The twins competed in school talent shows during their school years and were inspired by Justin Timberlake, Britney Spears and the Backstreet Boys. John and Edward were also members of the Lucan Harriers Athletic Club and Dundrum South Dublin atletics club and have competed in several Irish athletic tournaments. In addition, they briefly worked as games testers for Xbox 360 format holder Microsoft and support football clubs Newcastle United and Celtic.
The X Factor
Main article: The X Factor (UK series 6)
See also: List of The X Factor finalists (UK series 6)
In 2009, the twins auditioned in Glasgow as a group for the sixth series of The X Factor, under the name John & Edward. Despite being described by judge Simon Cowell as "not very good and incredibly annoying", the twins were put through to bootcamp, then made it to judges' houses, where Louis Walsh selected them for the final 12.
The twins' inclusion in the final 12 was a controversial decision, due to their lack of experience, but Walsh stood by them, saying "I don't know how people can hate two nice young kids from Ireland. They've been edited really badly and come across as the people everyone loves to hate... but they're just raw, naïve and innocent and they have the potential to be really good."
John & Edward became known for their unpolished but enthusiastic performances,famously including a version of Britney Spears' "Oops!... I Did It Again", during which they reenacted the Titanic monologue. It was during The X Factor that John & Edward's fans gave them the nickname "Jedward", which was popularised by the press. Despite their inexperience, they were only in the bottom two twice, the first time winning the sing-off against Lucie Jones, the second time being voted off in sixth place, in favour of eventual series runner-up Olly Murs.
After their departure from The X Factor, Jedward, now officially performing under that name, were signed to Modest! Management, however it was later announced that Louis Walsh had reached "an amicable agreement" with Modest!, which allowed him to take the twins on. From February until April 2010, they performed on the X Factor Live tour, where they were credited with the boost in demand for tickets, that led to an extension in the tour run.
Jedward signed a £90,000 one-single contract with Sony Music in January 2010, and shortly after their debut single "Under Pressure (Ice Ice Baby)" was release, a mashup of "Under Pressure" and "Ice Ice Baby", with Vanilla Ice contributing guest vocals. The song debuted at number one on the Irish Singles Chart and number 2 on the UK Singles Chart.On March Jedward's Sony contract was culminated, but the following day Universal Music Ireland signed them on a three-album contract.
In April 2010, Jedward began their first solo tour, a 27-date tour of Ireland called the Planet Jedward Tour. Due to popular demand, it was extended with a second 43-date leg in the UK and Ireland. The Irish Independent rated the tour positively, saying that "Jedwardmania is right up there with Beatlemania." In July 2010, Jedward appeared at T4 on the Beach in Weston-super-Mare. During a performance of "Ghostbusters", Edward fell and tore ligaments in his left knee, which eventually required corrective surgery.
Jedward's second single, a cover of the Blink-182 song "All the Small Things", was released in July 2010 and peaked at number 21 on the Irish charts and number 6 on the UK Indie Chart. The same week, Jedward released their debut album Planet Jedward, consisting of covers of a selection of pop, rock and rap songs. It which went straight to number one on the Irish Albums Chart and number 17 on the UK Albums Chart.
Later in July, the twins appeared on the Channel 4 reality show Big Brother and performed "All the Small Things" in the garden as part the housemates' task to "ignore the obvious".
In August 2010, Jedward appeared in their own ITV2 documentary, entitled Jedward: Let Loose, a three-part series in which they moved out of their home for ten days. Jedward: Let Loose covered the launch of their debut album Planet Jedward and also documented Edward's injury at T4 on the Beach and the production of the music videos for "Under Pressure (Ice Ice Baby)" and "All the Small Things". In September, they appeared in OMG! It's Jedward!, a one-hour special on RTE, taking a similar fly-on-the-wall look at the twins.
Celebrity Big Brother and Victory
On 12 February 2011, Jedward released their third single "Lipstick". The song peaked at number one in Ireland and later charted in 10 other European countries. Jedward successfully qualified from the second Eurovision semi-final, eventually finishing in eighth place. Jedward performed in front of an audience of 60,000 people at College Green in Dublin City ahead of a speech by visiting U.S. President Barack Obama.In April 2011, Jedward began their second tour, the Bad Behaviour Tour, with a series of dates across Ireland. Jedward's next single "Bad Behaviour" was released in July and reached number one in the Irish charts. This was followed two weeks later by their second album Victory, consisting entirely of original tracks. A new version of Planet Jedward was released by the German branch of Universal Music in July, featuring a mix of tracks from Planet Jedward and new songs from Victory.
On 31 July, the twins began the first leg of their third tour, The Carnival Tour, with 12 shows across Ireland and Northern Ireland.In September Jedward played their first European tour, with dates in Sweden and Germany, followed by a UK tour.
Three days after the first leg finished, Jedward entered the Celebrity Big Brother 8 house. They made it to the final, eventually finishing in third place behind runner-up Kerry Katona and winner Paddy Doherty. The third single from Victory, "Wow Oh Wow" was released in August 2011, with a music video featuring their Celebrity Big Brother housemate Tara Reid.
In December, Jedward starred in the pantomime Jedward and the Beanstalk, a musical comedy version of the fairytale Jack and the Beanstalk. Staged at the Olympia Theatre in Dublin, all sessions sold out.
In January 2012, Jedward embarked on the European leg of their Victory Tour, playing in Austria, Germany, Sweden, Finland and Estonia, followed by Irish dates.
In January and March, the twins recorded new songs for their third album, which they later announced would be titled Young Love, also the name of an album track. The album is due to be released on 1 June 2012. In May, Jedward released charity single and "unofficial" Irish UEFA Euro 2012 song "Put the Green Cape On". With lyrics by RTÉ 2fm DJ Colm Hayes, the song is a reworking of "Lipstick". All proceeds from the single go to Irish children's charity the ISPCC.
Jedward performing "Lipstick" at the Eurovision Song Contest 2011
Jedward were one of five acts bidding to represent Ireland at the Eurovision Song Contest 2011 in Germany with their entry "Lipstick". On 11 February 2011, they won the national selection, beating runner-up Nikki Kavanagh by two points. On 12 May, Jedward performed in the second semi-final in Düsseldorf, and were voted through to the final, which took place on 14 May. They finished in 8th position overall, with 119 points which is Ireland's best result since 2000. They also won the Marcel Bezençon Artistic Award as voted for by the 43 event commentators.
After the contest, "Lipstick" was released digitally across Europe, where it charted in many countries such as Belgium, Sweden, Germany and most notably Austria where it peaked at number 3. The song also peaked at number 8 in the South Korea's international artists' chart."Lipstick" had featured in a Hyundai advertising campaign in South East Asia.
Shortly after Eurovision, on 23 May, Jedward performed in front of an audience of 60,000 people at College Green in Dublin City ahead of a speech by visiting U.S. President Barack Obama.
In October 2011, Jedward told MTV that they were interested in again representing Ireland at the Eurovision Song Contest 2012, to be held in Baku, Azerbaijan. In November 2011, RTÉ announced that Jedward would participate in Eurosong 2012. Their mentor this time was the Eurovision winner Linda Martin. In early February, their entry was revealed to be a pop rock song titled "Waterline". On 24 February, Jedward won Eurosong, winning both the jury and the public vote. In doing do, they are the first act to represent Ireland in Eurovision for two consecutive years. On 22 May 2012 they qualified for the Eurovision final due to take place on Saturday, 27 May 2012.