In an unexpected twist based on his aggressive punk-era persona, John Lydon and his band Public Image Ltd. plan to compete to represent Ireland in the 2023 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest with a song about the former Sex Pistols frontman’s wife of 43 years, Nora Forster, who is suffering from the degenerative brain disease Alzheimer’s.
The sweet and almost childlike “Hawaii,” which references a locale where the couple have spent many happy moments, is described as “as close as John will ever come to bearing his soul.” The lyric “Remember me / I remember you” will resonate with anyone whose life has been touched by Alzheimer’s, with Lydon, 66, commenting, “It is dedicated to everyone going through tough times on the journey of life, with the person they care for the most. It’s also a message of hope that ultimately love conquers all.”
The Ireland-specific portion of Eurovision will take place on Feb. 3 on The Late Late Show and can be streamed here. The semifinal rounds will be held May 9 and 11 in Liverpool, England, with the winner to be chosen on May 13. Thirty-seven countries are participating this year, including the 2022 winner Ukraine.
As for Public Image Ltd., which Lydon formed almost immediately after the demise of the Sex Pistols, the group will release a new album this year, its first since 2015’s What the World Needs Now… Public Image Ltd. returned to the road in 2022 after having not played live for four years but has not yet announced any live activity for this year.