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best-life Nicky Byrne of Westlife talks of new RTE show, lockdown and says says new 'album is in the oven, it’s cooking’

Nicky described the moment when lockdown first kicked in in Ireland as "scary times"

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Nicky Byrne used a mobile studio at his home to record new music

Nicky Byrne used a mobile studio at his home to record new music

Nicky Byrne used a mobile studio at his home to record new music

Westlife star Nicky Byrne says he would be delighted if the format of his new television show takes off in Ireland. 

But he says, “this could go far and beyond. I hope it does.”

Last Singer Standing is a new talent series which he is fronting, where singers from around the country compete to win a €25,000 prize. Pop superstars Nadine Coyle, Joe Fatone and Samantha Mumba will be joining the Saturday night show as panellists.

Details about it were unveiled yesterday by RTÉ, as part of its new season of programming.

He said he thinks the format of the show has the ability to appeal to other countries, including in Asia and the Far East.

Meanwhile, the host opened up about how he got on over lockdown. “If you go back to March 2020 when it all kicked off in Ireland, scary times.

"We were battening down the hatches, watching The Late Late Show wondering what we would do next.

“When you look back on that, we have come a long way thankfully. We seem to be heading in the right direction.

"The summer weather-wise was good, so everyone got to go on their walks and keep themselves sane.

"So it’s been a weird time for everybody. There’s no doubt about that. For me personally, this is the longest I’ve been out of work so to speak, I’ve never sat around for this length of time,” he said.

“But this was all for the right reason, for the health and safety of myself, my family, the country. Everybody was the same, but I’m like everyone dying to get back into some sort of more normality.”

He said Westlife started a new album from home “which has brought its own challenges as well.”

"The album is in the oven, it’s cooking, it’s recorded vocally.

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“We are very excited. Lockdown has thrown up different situations. We worked from home with a mobile studio. We have got some great songs, worked with some great producers."

However, he said that with a new show happening and a small audience “thankfully it feels like baby steps in the right direction.”

This month he returned from a family holiday in Kerry. “We went out on a couple of boats and we saw dolphins and whales. It was just lovely, considering the year everybody has had."

"It was lovely to share it with family,” he said.

"It feels like we are getting back to some sort of normality. Love The Kingdom - loads of banter down there with all the Kerry locals about Dublin GAA. Nice to go back.”

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