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It's Nice To Be In Love Again (single cover).

Swarbriggs Plus Two
It's Nice
To Be In Love Again

single cover)

Love Is A Song (single cover).

The New Seekers
(line-up featuring
Nicola Kerr)
pictured on the
sleeve of their
Love Is A Song
single in 1979.


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New Seekers: Nicola Kerr

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Nicola Kerr was a member of the New Seekers for about a year in 1979-80. She had previously sung with the Irish band Chips and had represented Ireland in the 1977 Eurovision Song Contest as a member of the Swarbriggs Plus Two.




Nicola Kerr joined the New Seekers in 1979 after the departure of Vivien Banks. Well-known in Ireland as a session singer and for her roles in musical theatre, Nicola had previously sung alongside singer-songwriter Paul Lyttle in a group called Chips. One of the other members of the group was Linda Martin, who later represented Ireland in the Eurovision Song Contest, coming second in 1984 with a Johnny Logan song, Terminal Three, and winning in 1992 with another Johnny Logan song, Why Me?

Long after Nicola had left Chips Decca released an album by the group on the Rex label. Nicola's place was taken by Irene McElroy, who is pictured on the album sleeve.

After leaving Chips Nicola joined Tommy and Jimmy Swarbrigg to represent Ireland in the 1977 Eurovision Song Contest. Billed as the Swarbriggs Plus Two, the two girl / two boy line-up was Ireland's answer to the UK's Brotherhood of Man - Eurovision winners the previous year with Save Your Kisses For Me. The fourth member of the group was Alma Carroll, who had previously competed to represent Ireland in 1968 and 1973.

The 1977 contest to select Ireland's entry was held at the RTE television studios in Dublin on 20th February and was hosted by Mike Murphy. The Swarbriggs Plus Two were up against seven other entries, including Chips. After listening to the songs ten regional juries cast their votes, placing Chips in 4th place with 13 points and the Swarbriggs Plus Two in first place with 25 points. Their winning song, It's Nice To Be In Love Again, was arranged by future Riverdance composer Bill Whelan.

Eurovision Song Contest 1977
Irish National Final

Artist / Song Points Pos.
Swarbriggs Plus Two
It's Nice To Be In Love Again
25 1st
Jamie Stone
If I Give My Love
19 2nd
Colm C.T. Wilkinson
There Was A Dream
18 3rd
Goodbye, Goodbye
13 4th
Denis Allen
Da-Dum-Da-Dum-Da I Love You So
12 5th
Dickie Rock
I Can't Go On Without You
8 6th
D.J. Curtin
You Can Not Stop The Music
5 7th
Look Before You Leap
0 8th

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The Eurovision Song Contest was held at the Wembley Conference Centre on 7th May and was presented by Angela Rippon. Although It's Nice To Be In Love Again was in the lead as the final few juries came to give their votes, the Swarbriggs Plus Two were edged into third place (with 119 points) behind the UK entry, Rock Bottom by Lynsey de Paul and Mike Moran (with 121 points) and the French winner, L'Oiseau Et L'Enfant by Marie Myriam (with 136 points).

After working with the Swarbriggs Nicola sang for a short while with the jazz-based band Stacc, which also had a stab at Eurovision glory. You Put The Love In My Heart, written by J. Drummond and produced by Stacc, came 2nd in the Irish National Finals to find the country's 1978 Eurovision entry. The contest was broadcast on 5th March 1978 and was again hosted by Mike Murphy. Colm T. Wilkinson was the runaway winner on this occasion, having finished 3rd the year before. Chips again finished fourth.

Eurovision Song Contest 1978
Irish National Final

Artist / Song Points Pos.
Colm C.T. Wilkinson
Born To Sing
46 1st
You Put The Love In My Heart
16 2nd
Gemma Craven
All Fall Down
12 3rd
Happy Days
8 4th
You Gotta Get Up
7 5th
It's Amazing What Love Can Do
6 6th
Jamie Stone
Over Again
4 7th
Danny Doyle
Lonely Now
1 8th

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While she was a member of Stacc, Nicola met and worked with Caitriona Walsh. In a scenario reminiscent of the one in 1970 where Lyn Paul followed Eve Graham from The Nocturnes to the New Seekers, Caitriona would soon follow Nicola into the New Seekers as well.

Nicola and Caitriona recorded three singles with the New Seekers - Love Is A Song, Tell Me and California Nights. While they were with the group Nicola and Caitriona also sang with Eurovision star Johnny Logan, recording backing vocals on a song called Hollywood.

Nicola Kerr and Kathy Ann Rae

Nicola Kerr (left) pictured with Kathy Ann Rae of the New Seekers.

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Nicola left the New Seekers in August 1980. In September she turned her talents to hosting a TV programme, Hot Shot, for Ulster Television. Over the Christmas and New Year period (9th December - 31st January), she starred with Frank Carson in Cinderella at the Grand Opera House, Belfast.

In 1981 Nicola tried her luck at Eurovision again, taking part in the contest to find Ireland's Eurovision entry with a song called The One In My Life. In a keenly fought contest Nicola finished in joint fifth place with a creditable 14 points.

Eurovision Song Contest 1981
Irish National Final

Artist / Song Points Pos.
21 1st
My Pet Parrot
18 2nd
Duskey Sisters
Where Does That Love Come From
16 3rd
Tony Kenny
Can't Be Without You
16 3rd
Helen Jordan
Share My Love
14 5th
Nicola Kerr
The One In My Life
14 5th
Not Tonight Josephine
1 7th
Sylvia McFaddon
Don't Walk Away
0 8th

Top. Up. Down. Bottom.

Three-and-a-half years later, in November 1984, Nicola made it into the charts singing backing vocals on Murray Head's hit single One Night In Bangkok (RCA CHESS 1). Taken from the ABBA musical Chess, the single got to number 12 in the UK charts. Nicola appeared with Murray Head on Top Of The Pops and travelled the world promoting the song.

In 1989 Nicola again entered the contest to find Ireland's entry for the Eurovision Song Contest. On this occasion she tied in third place with Noelle.

Eurovision Song Contest 1989
Irish National Final

Artist / Song Points Pos.
Kiev Connolly & The Missing Passengers
The Real Me
104 1st
Honor Heffernan
97 2nd
Nicola Kerr
This Isn't War (It's Revolution)
79 3rd
It Was Meant To Be
79 3rd
Jenny Newman
Angel Eyes
77 5th
Linda Martin
Here We Go
71 5th
Dave Lalor
Song For You
68 7th
Barry Rowland
48 8th

Top. Up. Down. Bottom.

Little was heard of Nicola after this, but on 2nd May 1997 the Daily Mirror published an article by Richie Taylor about Ireland's past entries in the Eurovision Song Contest: "Nicola" we were told "is still involved in the music business in London."

On 23rd May 1999 the Daily Mirror published another article (this time by Anne Boylan) which covered the same ground: "The first winner was in 1970 when Dana sang All Kinds Of Everything, and most people remember the double success of Johnny Logan in 1980 and 1987. But what happened to the rest of the Ireland's contenders?"

"1977: France won. Alma Carroll, Nicola Kerr and Tommy and Jimmy Swarbrigg finished third with It's Nice To Be In Love Again ... Nicola now lives in London where she works in musicals. Alma Carroll runs a successful PR company in Dublin." (Daily Mirror, 23rd May 1999, page 6)

In 2008 Nicola released an album titled Sleepytime Lullabies. a mix of traditional lullabies, cradle songs and nature sounds to help parents calm and soothe their babies and infants. Mother & Baby magazine said of it: "Parents will enjoy it even after their baby has nodded off!"

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Sleepytime Lullabies (CD cover).

Nicola Kerr
Sleepytime Lullabies
(CD cover)






Love Matters
/ Gentle Teacher
(Decca FR 13574) April 1975

Twice A Week / Reelin' In The Years
(Decca FR 13604) September 1975

I'm A Song (Sing Me) / Living Is Ours
(Decca FR 13632) 1976

Shine A Light / Living Is Ours
(Decca F 13687) February 1977

It’s Over / Our Love Will Grow And Grow
(Decca F 13756) March 1978

Sooner The Better / I Want To Celebrate Our Love
(Decca F 13802) 1978



(Rex SPR 1018) 1978

Side 1: Love Matters | Empty Days | Reelin' In The Years | People Like You | Twice A Week | (I'm A Song) Sing Me
Side 2: Walk Your Feet In The Sunshine | Game Of Love | Head Over Heels | Living Is Ours | I Ain't Giving Up | We Can Fly

Chips (album cover).

Chips pictured on the sleeve of their 1978 album
after Nicola Kerr had left the group.

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Nicola Kerr


The Best Of Both Worlds


Sleepytime Lullabies: get to sleep programme for babies and infants

(Nik Productions) 29th February 2008

A mix of traditional and modern cradle songs specifically designed to put babies and infants to sleep.

CD 1: Lullaby in Ragtime | My Curly Headed Babby | Goodnight | Lullaby and Goodnight | Skye Boat Song | The Sand Man (Part 1)
CD 2: Little Man You’ve Had A... | Christopher Robin Is Saying... | Lulla Lulla Lullaby | All The Pretty Little Horses | The Sandman (Part 2)

The Swarbriggs Plus Two


It's Nice To Be In Love Again
/ Here We Go Again
(EMI 2606) 1977

Compilation CD (Various Artists)

Sounds Of The Seventies: 1977

(Reader's Digest RDCD4681-3) 2005

A three-CD compilation featuring I Wanna Go Back by the New Seekers and It's Nice To Be In Love Again by the Swarbriggs Plus Two.



You Put The Love In My Heart
/ Holy Smoke
(Epic S EPC 6482) 30th June 1978

Johnny Logan

The song Hollywood which features backing vocals by Nicola Kerr is available on the following albums by Johnny Logan:

The Johnny Logan Album (Holland) 1980
What's Another Year (Holland) 1989
What's Another Year Erfolge (Germany) 1990

Murray Head

Nicola Kerr sings backing vocals on two albums by Murray Head:

(Mercury 6313 045 / Headcase GAH108CD) Originally released: 1980

Side 1: Last Days Of An Empire | Affair Across A Crowded Room | Hey Lady | On Your Own Again | Time On The Line
Side 2: Chance Encounter | Children Only Play (Do You Remember?) | Old Soho | A Tree | Going Home

(Virgin V 2305 / Headcase GAH114CD) Originally released: 1984

Side 1: When You’re In Love | Catching Eddie At It | Modern Boy | Peril In Venice | Salvation (Missionary Madness)
Side 2: Mario | African Tourists | Hold Me | I Don’t Care | Maybe Tomorrow

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The Swarbriggs Plus Two at the Eurovision Song Contest.

Swarbriggs Plus Two,
It's Nice To Be In Love Again
Eurovision Song Contest

YouTube video clip.

Nicola Kerr,
This Isn't War
(It's Revolution)

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Sound and Vision

Compilation Albums
Song By Song

Collectors' Items
Fan Clubs
Top Of The Pops
Videos / DVDs


Vivien Banks
Chris Barrington
Peter Doyle
Brian Engel
Danny Finn
Mick Flinn
Eve Graham
Sally Graham
Mark Hankins
Laurie Heath

Vikki James
Donna Jones
Nicola Kerr
Marty Kristian
Paul Layton
Peter Oliver
Keith Potger
Kathy Ann Rae
Francine Rees
Caitriona Walsh


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