Send Lee to Russia with Love! Kerry Restaurateur Lee Bradshaw - finalist for Eurovision Contest

Send Lee to Russia with Love! Kerry Restaurateur Lee Bradshaw - finalist for Eurovision Contest

13 February 2009

Man of many talents, Lee Bradshaw, of The Station House Bar & Grill, Tralee, Co. Kerry, was this week announced as one of the six finalists in the search for Ireland's Eurovision Song Contest entry to represent us in Moscow later this year.

Experienced song writers Kevin Breathnach and Billy Larkin wrote the song "So What", and having worked with Lee in the past, decided to reunite and have him sing, what Lee describes as "A big ballad that brings us back to the roots of Irish Eurovision and what made us so popular in Europe and kept us winning the Eurovision." Kevin and Billy each have over 20 years experience in the music industry, and in 2001 they were runners-up in the search to find Ireland's Eurovision entry. Today, Kevin owns Avondale Studios in Merrion Square, where he and Billy write and produce music for TV, films and commercials.

Former Eurovision winner, Linda Martin will mentor Lee in the build up to the final, which will air on the Late Late Show on Friday 20th February. The final choice of the act to represent Ireland will be by public vote on the night of the 20th and will be announced live on air. 

Already there is strong support building for Lee throughout the country. In fact a big party is already being planned at The Station House in Tralee on the night of the 20th, where the show will be broadcast on Big Screens and all of Lee's many Kerry friends and customers will be packing the venue, cheering Lee on and texting their votes in support.

Lee, originally from Careysford Avenue in Blackrock, Co. Dublin, is well known in Kerry as an extremely talented and charismatic chef and restaurateur, but his colourful background may not be so well known. This isn't Lee's first experience of the music industry; with a lifelong interest in music, and a spell in a boyband 'Men2B' which earned Lee a record contract with President records in London. At just 17, Lee toured Europe with Men2B promoting their single 'Love Satisfaction' with Hazel Deane.

At this time Lee also became interested in acting and appeared in Productions in the Gaiety, as well as many TV commercials for companies such as O2 and Coca Cola. Lee then moved into modelling, becoming Assets top male model working for John Rocha, Louis Copeland and taking part in the Brown Thomas Supermodel fashion show.

Lee's fascination with food developed early when on summer holidays and weekends while he went to Careysford National School, in Blackrock, he would watch his mother cook and learn from her in her Dublin restaurant, Spinnakers. This interest led to a part-time job in the kitchen as a teenager, while a student at Colaiste Eoin in Stillorgan; however spotting more lucrative employment outside the kitchen, Lee took over as front of house manager in Spinnakers for a couple of years; and in 2004 Lee opened his first restaurant 'SHX' on Dorset Street in Dublin.

In 2006 Lee made the big move to Co. Kerry, where initially he opened 'Restaurant Twenty' in the Killarney Golf and Fishing Club. And in March 2007, Lee opened his 3rd restaurant, the very popular The Station House Bar and Grill and twentyone Restaurant in Blennerville, Tralee.

Despite his busy schedule, Lee regularly appears in RTE's The Restaurant and on top of that Lee was recently voted as Best Dressed Man in The RSVP Style Awards.