Why Ruel should compete at 'Eurovision - Australia Decides'
Now that the 2022 Eurovision Song Contest season is well and truly over, we are starting to look forward to 2023, and in particular to whom Australia should send as our representative next year.
Here at Aussievision, some of our team members have been advocating for Australian artists who they think would be great choices to compete at the 2023 edition of 'Eurovision - Australia Decides'.
Today, I am pleased to being making the case for the young Australian artist Ruel.
So, why should Ruel take part?
A contemporary voice
Ruel has a great live vocal, which we all know is something needed at Eurovision. Elton John described it back in 2017 as "the most amazing voice that I’ve ever heard from a male singer at 14 years of age."
However, Ruel doesn't just have a great voice; his vocal style is also very current and commercial.
In a year where Harry Styles has dominated the charts, he doesn't just match that contemporary sound, he adds layers of soul that give him a more diverse range.
Ruel has said in the past that he has gravitated towards and been influenced by artists such as Amy Winehouse, Stevie Wonder, Frank Ocean, Childish Gambino, Ed Sheeran and James Blake.
That mix of styles in his musical taste is also something that comes through in his voice too.
A popular package
Ruel is 19 years old and very much fits the bill of a burgeoning popstar.
He has been on the music scene for many years already and, although he is popular internationally (he won Best Australian Act at the MTV Europe Music Awards in 2019), he has mainly tasted success in Australia and New Zealand.
His single 'Painkiller' reached no.35 on the ARIA Charts and his album 'Free Time' peaked at no.3 in 2019.
Add in his 1.5 million YouTube subscribers, 1.3 million Instagram followers and songs with hundreds millions of views, and he certainly has a strong fanbase.
He offers all the ingredients to become hugely popular overseas, and Eurovision could be the perfect platform for him to achieve that goal.
Ruel's full name is Ruel Vincent van Dijk and he was born in the United Kingdom to a British mother and a Dutch-New Zealander father. The family moved to Australia when Ruel was just three years old.
Although Ruel doesn't speak Dutch, those ties to Europe would be something he - and Australia - could leverage in the artist/song promotion before and during the Contest.
He writes his own songs
Ruel isn't just a great vocalist and performer, he also writes his own music.
He has been a co-contributor to the writing of all his hits and has been rewarded for his talents.
He was nominated for Breakthrough Songwriter of the Year at the APRA Awards in 2020 and finished 3rd in the prestigious Vanda & Young Global Songwriting Competition in 2020 with his track 'Painkiller'.
He represents the Australian music industry
Entries at Eurovision are often rewarded when they are truly representative of their home music industry.
That "authenticity" has been shown to be victorious over the theatre-style, novelty or formulaic entries of Eurovision Contests in the recent past.
Ruel has a foot in both the mainstream commercial camp as well as the more alternative side of the industry, winning over Triple J listeners and festival goers, a demographic from which many successful Australian artists have emerged.
Potential for both jury and televote love
Australia needs a Eurovision entry that can prove popular with the European voting public, but we can not forget where we have most of our success: the jury votes.
Although it would be amazing to send a classic Aussie rock song, such an entry would no doubt struggle to attract points from European juries. We need something that can "sing" to both audiences.
Ruel serves up contemporary, commercial music with great vocals that juries would lap up, while presenting as a young, marketable and popular package that should get at least some Europeans to take notice.
Whether Ruel would take up an opportunity to compete for a spot on the Eurovision stage is, of course, a big question. But ultimately it is something that could continue to propel his career forward, while also providing Australia with a star entrant who could see us notch up another a high position at Eurovision.
You can find out more about Ruel via:
Read the cases made by other Aussievision team members for:
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