Eurovision 1984: Ireland’s Linda Martin in focus

By 1984, Ireland had won the Eurovision Song Contest twice. They hoped for the hat trick when they sent Linda Martin to Luxembourg, with ‘Terminal 3’,  composed by their previous winner, Johnny Logan.

On March 31, 1984, Irish Television (RTE), held a National Final to find its representative at the Eurovision Song Contest 1984. Ireland did not participate in 1983.

From the RTE studios in Dublin, Gay Byrne hosted a contest of 8 songs, of which past entrants Sheeba, and future winner, Charlie McGettigan took part. However, the winner was Song 6, sung by Linda Martin.

The song, Terminal 3 went on to represent Ireland at Eurovision 1984, finishing second with 137 points, gaining top marks from Belgium, Italy, Sweden and Switzerland.

Terminal 3 – opinions from fans

In order to find out what Eurovision fans today think of this Irish entry from 1984,  we asked our Eurovision Fan Panel. It includes team members as well as fans from all over the world.

Paul K. – This is a really good song. There’s a reason why Ireland were a powerhouse back in the 80s and then the 90’s, and it’s because we delivered a good amount of quality that saw us getting amazing results. This second place was truly deserved and her win 8 years later was also deserved. I hope we can get results like these soon and cement our spot as one of, if not the best country in the history of Eurovision.

Charlotte J. – Can any Eurovison fan, above a certain age, go through an airport of a decent size without thinking about this song? I can’t. 1984 was the year, I became a fan. I was 8 years old, and the songs that appealed to me back then still have a place in my heart. That includes Linda Martin’s Terminal 3. After all those years, it’s still stuck in my head. Very catchy, and certainly one I enjoy.

Alvaro S. – I like the chorus of this song. This entry looks to me that it could have made a good soundtrack for a film from the 80s decade. Linda’s movements when she says the epic title line is cool. I love it.

Michael O. – while I don’t have anything against this song, I was rather surprised it finished second, and nearly even won. I had it mid table as a pleasant enough entry, but nothing remarkable. I loathed the different earrings she wore and the colour she’d dyed her hair, which was the total extreme to the classy performance she gave in 1992 with Why Me?.

John D. – To be honest I didn’t rate this at the time. In a very poor year I only thought that the Netherlands had a chance with their much underrated entry. However, I was glad to see that our Linda was able to give the awful Diggi Loo Diggi Ley a run to the finish line. If she won, I wonder would she have gone on to win again in 92. Some record that would have been for Mr Logan and herself. Terminal 3 turned out to be where Ireland lifted off to making history in the 90’s.

Martti I. – I wonder how to Be nice…Linda Martin is one of My favourite Irish artists. I just dislike this song as much now as I did back then. Song has some nice catchy elements, but not enough. The song fills 3 minutes in a contest and is forgotten when the last note finishes. Sorry.

Josef S. – Linda Martin’s first ESC participation is actually pretty interesting. I know Why Me from 1992 with which she won but Terminal 3 is a new song for me. It’s completely different from Why Me and I think it’s really good. It is an uptempo song, so it gives Linda other possibilities, rather than a usual ballad. Maybe it lost to Sweden just because it sounds more dark than a happy Diggy-loo diggy-lei from Sweden. But Terminal 3 should not be forgotten, so I am glad it was pulled out this time as it is a good song choice.

Kat H. – Eurovision 1984 is dear to my heart as it is the year I was born, and this is absolutely my favourite from this year. I also (a bit controversially) think it is 100% better than her winning entry from 1992. I really enjoy the whimsical nature of this song and the catchy chorus. She delivered it well, and I personally believe that Linda was robbed when she finished 7points behind Herreys.

Grace W. – To be honest it pales in comparison to Why Me, but it’s still good. It’s my fourth overall from 1984.

Linda Martin – a brief biography

Linda Martin was born in Belfast on the 27th of March 1952. In 1969 Linda joined the group Chips.They scored four hits in Ireland, the first being in 1975 with Love Matters . However, their biggest hit came in 1977 when Goodbye Goodbye went to number two.

Linda began a solo career in 1983 scoring her first hit with Edge Of The Universe. After trying to represent Ireland with the group Chips, four times she made her debut attempt in 1984 with the song Terminal 3. She won the contest and represented Ireland at the Eurovision Song Contest 1984 where she placed second.

In total Linda has tried to represent Ireland at the Eurovision Song Contest nine times. Her most successful attempt was in 1992 when she represented Ireland, for the second time, with the song Why Me and actually won the Eurovision Song Contest.

Since 1992 Linda has continued to appear on Irish television, pantomime and stage. She continues to be a great ambassador for the Eurovision Song Contest.

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