Sex Pistols’ lead singer John Lydon is set to compete for the chance to represent Ireland in Eurovision 2023.
The punk rocker – best known by his stage name Johnny Rotten – will bid for the spot alongside his band Public Image Ltd.
Initially formed in 1978 but later put on hiatus; John, 66, will now be joined by punk bandmates Lou Edmonds, Scott Firth and Bruce Smith.
Comeback: Sex Pistols’ lead singer John Lydon is set to compete for the chance to represent Ireland in Eurovision 2023, (pictured on stage in June 2022)
Announcing the news on Twitter, the band said they will compete with a previously unheard song titled Hawaii – dedicated to John’s wife Nora, who has Alzheimer’s.
Providing context to their choice of song, John shared: ‘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.’
John found fame with The Sex Pistols in the Seventies alongside guitarist Steve Jones, drummer Paul Cook and bassist Glen Matlock. Matlock was replaced by Sid Vicious in early 1977.
Tribute: Announcing the news on Twitter, the band said they will compete with a previously unheard song titled Hawaii – dedicated to John’s wife Nora, who has Alzheimer’s
Former glory: John found fame with The Sex Pistols in the Seventies alongside guitarist Steve Jones, drummer Paul Cook and bassist Glen Matlock. Matlock was replaced by Sid Vicious in early 1977
Lydon was the lead singer from 1975 to 1978, later fronting the band for various revivals during the 1990s and 2000s.
The Sex Pistols’ only album, Never Mind the B*****ks, Here’s the Sex Pistols (1977) — a UK number one — is now a staple record of punk rock.
But in 1978, John formed Public Image Ltd, with the first line-up of the band including bassist Jah Wobble and former Clash guitarist Keith Levene.
Now: The punk rocker – best known by his stage name Johnny Rotten – will bid for the spot at Eurovision 2023 alongside his band Public Image Ltd
In 1987, a new line-up was formed consisting of John, former Siouxsie and the Banshees guitarist John McGeoch, Allan Dias on bass guitar in addition to drummer Smith and Edmunds.
They were also joined by Curt Bisquera on drums and Gregg Arreguin on rhythm guitar for the album That What Is Not.
After the band wrote the song Criminal for the film Point Break and released an album in 1993, John put Public Image Ltd on indefinite hiatus.
Now and then: Public Image Ltd was initially formed in 1978 but was later put on hiatus by John, 66, who will now be joined by punk bandmates Lou Edmonds, Scott Firth and Bruce Smith
But now they are set for their return as they could see themselves at the Eurovision in Liverpool, after Sam Ryder’s second place in the 2022 contest.
John – whose mother is from County Cork and his father Galway – will see his band compete with the other entries, ADGY, CONNOLLY, Wild Youth, Leila Jane, and K Muni + ND.
In recent years the musician has distanced himself from The Sex Pistols – most recently last year following the death of Queen Elizabeth.
John accused his former band Sex Pistols of ‘tastelessly’ trying to ‘cash in’ on the Queen’s death with their punk single God Save The Queen.
Punk pioneers: (L-R) Johnny Rotten (John Lydon), Sid Vicious, Steve Jones and Paul Cook of The Sex Pistols during their final tour
The singer at the time said he was ‘distancing’ himself from any activity from the band which aims to promote their 1977 track, claiming it is ‘disrespectful’ to the Royal Family.
John penned the lyrics to God Save The Queen and the anti-royalist song was famously released just before the Queen’s Silver Jubilee.
In a series of tweets he alleged that the Sex Pistols have approved ‘a number of requests’ against his wishes, as he accused the band of trying to ‘cash in’ on Her Majesty’s death.
But a spokesperson for the Sex Pistols called John’s comments ‘baffling’ and said they did not understand what the singer was referring to in his tweets.
‘It’s tasteless’: The singer, 66, said he is ‘distancing’ himself from any activity from the band which aims to promote their 1977 track, claiming it is ‘disrespectful’ to the Royal Family
It is not the first time that John has come into conflict with his former band Sex Pistols, as he has previously slammed the band’s biopic, Pistol.
The punk rocker was highly critical of in the lead-up to the Disney+ miniseries and claimed he was intentionally excluded from the show, which his former bandmates Paul Cook and Steve Jones are involved in.
In May, just before its release, he doubled down on his comments while appearing on This Morning and accused Disney, director Danny Boyle and his former bandmates of ‘secrecy’ and ‘excluding him’ from the show.
Addressing John, host Alison Hammond read out a statement from the director, stating: ‘Danny Boyle has previously said, “I love Lydon for what he does and I don’t want him to like it. I think that he has an absolute right. Why would you change the habit of a lifetime?” That’s Danny Boyle.’
Targeted: The punk rocker has been highly critical of the upcoming Disney+ miniseries which has been helmed by Danny Boyle (pictured in May)
John quickly jumped in and remarked ‘You a***hole,’ prompting Alison and Dermot O’Leary to apologize for his colorful language.
John also said: ‘Danny Boyle… never made any effort to speak to me at all, so his behavior in this really is quite appalling.
‘It seems like a gargantuan effort to deny that I really do exist… Rather than deal with me they’ve gone into this fakery.
‘Now, by not showing me the script that tells me, secrecy. And secrecy to me implies lies.’
Despite everything, John said he would watch the show because he ‘has to’.
“It’s about me,” he said. ‘But it excludes me.’
Dermot included a right to reply from Disney, which claims that Danny contacted John’s management about the series ‘but direct contact was declined’.
Last year, Steve Jones hit back at John’s remarks and urged him to ‘grow up and move on’, saying he doesn’t understand why the singer is so upset about the series.
The rock guitarist, 66, insisted the show is about him and not John as it is based on his memoir Lonely Boy: Tales From A Sex Pistol.
“I ain’t got time for all that c**p any more,” he told The Sun.
You’ve just got to grow up and move on. The show is about me, it’s not about John, even though he is obviously a big part of it.’
Hitting back: Steve Jones (pictured right with Paul Cook) has urged his former bandmate John to ‘grow up and move on’ after he expressed his annoyance with the new Pistol series