BBC Radio 2’s listeners crown Sam Ryder’s Space Man their favourite ever Eurovision UK entry

BBC Radio 2’s listeners crown Sam Ryder’s Space Man their favourite ever Eurovision UK entry

Radio 2 has revealed that Space Man by Sam Ryder from 2022’s Eurovision Song Contest is Your Ultimate UK Eurovision Song following a listener vote to discover the nation’s favourite ever Eurovision UK entry.

Making Your Mind Up by Bucks Fizz (1981) is in second place, Ooh Aah…Just a Little Bit by Gina G (1996) is in third place, Love Shine a Light by Katrina and the Waves (1997) in fourth, and Save Your Kisses for Me by Brotherhood of Man (1976) rounded off the top five.

The full Top 40 countdown hosted by Steve Wright is available on BBC Sounds from Monday 24 April and broadcast on Radio 2 on Saturday 13 May, 1-3pm.

From Tuesday 21 March, listeners were asked to vote for up to five of their favourite songs of all the UK entrants that have competed in the Eurovision final since our first entry back in 1957 (with the exception of the cancelled 2020 contest and the 2023 entry). Voting closed on Tuesday 11 April, with the results compiled for this special show, Your Ultimate Eurovision Song.

Space Man represented the UK at the Eurovision Song Contest 2022 in Turin, Italy, after being internally selected through TaP Music and the BBC, the British broadcaster for the Eurovision Song Contest. It was co-written by Ryder alongside Amy Wadge and Max Wolfgang in London. At the contest in Turin, Ryder finished in second place with 466 points, becoming the highest scoring UK Eurovision entrant, winning the jury vote with 283 points, and scoring the third highest jury votes by a contestant. He scored the best UK their best result since 1998 and its first top three result since 2002. Space Man peaked at number two on the UK Singles Chart, becoming the highest-charting UK Eurovision entry since Gina G’s Ooh Aah… Just a Little Bit in 1996.

Sam Ryder says: “This is just bonkers! We went into that competition as fans and we thought it may be that we come absolutely dead last. But what we can achieve is holding ourselves with a certain grace and respect for being there in the first place, and gratitude first and foremost. When we were sat there on the night and those scores started coming in, we were looking at each other bursting out laughing because we didn’t have a clue that would happen. And now this result! I’m just so grateful. Thanks to all of the listeners who voted and everyone at Radio 2 who supported the song from day one – I really honestly appreciate it.”

Steve Wright says: “Sam Ryder’s Space Man has really taken off with Radio 2 listeners! I can’t wait to count down the rest of the chart and see who else has been blasting off into the hearts of Radio 2 listeners as we all look forward to this year’s Grand Final.”

Helen Thomas, Head of Radio 2, says: “We’re thrilled to see that Sam Ryder’s Space Man continues to resonate so strongly with our listeners. It’s testament to Sam’s exceptional talent as a songwriter and performer. I can’t wait for everyone to hear all the other stellar Eurovision specials which we have in store on Radio 2 and on BBC Sounds, from Sophie Ellis-Bextor’s Eurovision Kitchen Disco to OJ’s Eurovision After Party, not to mention our live coverage of the semi finals for the first time with Paddy O’Connell and the Grand Final commentary hosted by our own Scott Mills and Rylan.”

The Top 40, as voted by Radio 2 listeners:

  1. Sam Ryder – Space Man (2022)
  2. Bucks Fizz – Making Your Mind Up (1981)
  3. Gina G – Ooh Aah… Just a Little Bit (1996)
  4. Katrina and the Waves – Love Shine a Light (1997)
  5. Brotherhood of Man – Save Your Kisses for Me (1976)
  6. Sandie Shaw – Puppet on a String (1967)
  7. Cliff Richard – Congratulations (1968)
  8. The New Seekers – Beg, Steal or Borrow (1972)
  9. Lulu – Boom Bang-a-Bang (1969)
  10. Michael Ball – One Step Out of Time (1992)
  11. Sonia – Better the Devil You Know (1993)
  12. Bardo – One Step Further (1982)
  13. Scooch – Flying the Flag (For You) (2007)
  14. Mary Hopkin – Knock, Knock Who’s There? (1970)
  15. Imaani – Where Are You? (1998)
  16. Olivia Newton-John – Long Live Love (1974)
  17. Daz Sampson – Teenage Life (2006)
  18. Cliff Richard – Power to All Our Friends (1973)
  19. Lucie Jones – Never Give Up on You (2017)
  20. Lynsey de Paul & Mike Moran – Rock Bottom (1977)
  21. Love City Groove – Love City Groove (1995)
  22. Blue – I Can (2011)
  23. The Shadows – Let Me Be the One (1975)
  24. Clodagh Rodgers – Jack in the Box (1971)
  25. SuRie – Storm (2018)
  26. Frances Ruffelle – Lonely Symphony (We Will Be Free) (1994)
  27. The Allisons – Are You Sure? (1961)
  28. Molly – Children of the Universe (2014)
  29. Jade Ewen – It’s My Time (2009)
  30. Jessica Garlick – Come Back (2002)
  31. Precious – Say It Again (1999)
  32. James Newman – Embers (2021)
  33. Sweet Dreams – I’m Never Giving Up (1983)
  34. Co-Co – The Bad Old Days (1978)
  35. Belle and the Devotions – Love Games (1984)
  36. Scott Fitzgerald – Go (1988)
  37. Samantha Janus – A Message to Your Heart (1991)
  38. Jemini – Cry Baby (2003)
  39. Electro Velvet – Still in Love with You (2015)
  40. Bonnie Tyler – Believe in Me (2013)

All the pre-recorded specials are now available to hear on BBC Sounds as part of the Celebrating Eurovision season.

Listen to Your Ultimate UK Eurovision Song on BBC Sounds now below.

Celebrating Eurovision: Listen to a feast of Eurovision specials and music mixes on BBC Sounds now below.

Radio 2 is the home of Eurovision 2023 on UK radio, with programmes across the network covering the news and building up to the excitement of the live Eurovision Grand Final which will be hosted this year by Rylan and Scott Mills. They will be broadcasting live from the Liverpool Arena, introducing the 67th Eurovision Song Contest and bringing listeners each country’s performance. Hoping for UK Eurovision glory is UK entrant, Mae Muller, with I Wrote A Song (from 8pm until the end of the final, Saturday 13 May). And for the first time, Radio 2 will also be broadcasting the two Eurovision Semi-finals, presented live by Paddy O’Connell (8-10pm, Tuesday 9 and Thursday 11 May).

And Radio 2 Celebrates Eurovision also delivers: Scott and Rylan’s Epic Eurovision Battle, a Radio 2 commission for BBC Sounds in which the two hosts put their Eurovision knowledge to the test; Richie Anderson live from Liverpool on The Zoe Ball Breakfast Show (Tuesday 9th – Thursday 11 May, 6.30-9.30am), with Zoe and the Breakfast Show team live from Liverpool on Friday 12th May with a host of special guests to mark the eve of the Grand Final; Scott Mills live from Liverpool on Wednesday and Friday that week, with Richie Anderson sitting in on Tuesday and Thursday (as Scott prepares to host the semi-finals on BBC ONE and BBC iPlayer with Rylan); The Jeremy Vine Show (Friday 12 May, 12-2pm) will focus on what the event means to Ukraine and Ukrainians who have fled the war; Michelle Visage’s Handbag Hits (Friday 12 May, 7-9pm) will be devoted to non-stop Eurovision bops, culminating with a Eurovision edition of Lip Synch anthem. And kicking off Super Saturday, Dermot O’Leary (Saturday 13 May, 8-10am) celebrates the day of the Grand Final with 1969 UK Eurovision winner Lulu; Claudia Winkleman (1-3pm) continues the build-up with music and special guests; Sophie Ellis-Bextor’s Eurovision Kitchen Disco (Saturday 13 May, 3-6pm) across three hours brings Eurovision winning songs, the most famous names to compete in the contest, and the songs that came close to victory; Richie Anderson will host an All-request Eurovision Party (Saturday 13 May, 6-8pm); and OJ’s Eurovision After Party (Saturday 13 May, approx. 11.20pm-2am) will see OJ Borg live from Wogan House in London playing the hits of Eurovision past and present.

BBC Radio 2 is the UK’s most listened to radio station, with a weekly audience of 14.29 million (RAJAR Q4, 2022), and won Station Of The Year at the Music Week 2021 awards. The Zoe Ball Breakfast Show is most listened to breakfast show in the UK with an audience of 7.14 million (RAJAR Q4, 2022). The network’s presenters include Michael Ball, Zoe Ball, Rob Beckett, Tony Blackburn, OJ Borg, Rev. Kate Bottley, Rylan, Fearne Cotton, Sara Cox, Jamie Cullum, Gary Davies, Paul Gambaccini, Angela Griffin, Bob Harris, Vernon Kay, Cerys Matthews, Scott Mills, Jason Mohammad, Trevor Nelson, Dermot O’Leary, Elaine Paige, Mark Radcliffe, Romesh Ranganathan, DJ Spoony, Liza Tarbuck, Jeremy Vine, Michelle Visage, Johnnie Walker, Jo Whiley, Phil Williams, Claudia Winkleman, Steve Wright and Owain Wyn Evans.

BBC Radio 2

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