Following a phenomenal talent search featuring a genre-blending selection of acts from right across the country, Hot Press and the Independent Broadcasters of Ireland (IBI) are thrilled to present our six national finalists for A New Local Hero.



The six finalists are:

Brad Heidi (Galway Bay FM),

Darian June (Red FM),

Negro Impacto (LMFM),

Temi (FM104),

Paddy Keyes (Ocean FM)

& Eva Campbell (SPIN 1038)


Tickets for the live finale of A New Local Hero are available to buy now here


However there is still a chance for the other 19 artists who didn’t make the final six, including Daragh Daly who was representing iRadio, to get into the final as a Wild Card which will be voted for by the public. The Wild Card winner will be awarded a €2,500 bursary.


You can vote for Daragh to make the final HERE

& listen to his song here:



As one of the central features of Irish Music Month, A New Local Hero is a major call to arms for Irish musicians and bands – with all 25 participating radio stations having reached out for submissions as part of the talent search. Every participating radio station selected four finalists each – giving them the chance to play live on air, and paying them for their performance, thanks to the support of the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland, under its Sound & Vision scheme.


From there, the station’s four finalists were whittled down to one ‘Local Hero’ from each – a major honour in itself, which will serve as a huge milestone in the career of the selected 25 artists.


All of that has led us here, to the national stage of the journey. From the 25 artists selected locally, an industry judging panel has chosen six acts to go forward to play at the special showcase event in Dublin. “It has been really exciting, hearing the cream of the new artists who are coming through all over Ireland,” Hot Press editor Niall Stokes said. “I know that the judges were faced with some enormously difficult calls. But there was also a very strong unanimity in relation to the six that have now been shortlisted that these are very special acts with the potential to really flourish in the long run. There can be only one artist selected as A New Local Hero 2023, but it is very clear, from the music that we have been hearing, that we are on the right track here in Ireland at the moment, producing artists of real calibre across all genres. Long may it continue.”

The A New Local Hero campaign will ultimately see over €100,000 paid directly to Irish artists – and one worthy overall winner selected, who will get to record a single at the prestigious Camden Recording Studios in Dublin and release the single on the famed Irish independent record label Rubyworks. As already noted, this year’s edition will also include a special new element – with all 25 regional finalists still in with a chance to be crowned the Wild Card winner, voted by the public. The Wild Card winner will be awarded a €2,500 bursary.

All twenty-five finalists will also be invited to take part in a special series of mentoring sessions and photoshoots on the day of the finale.

Irish Music Month is a partnership between Hot Press and the Independent Broadcasters of Ireland. It is supported by the newly established Coimisiún na Mean, which has incorporated the role of the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland under the Sound & Vision scheme, and by MCD Productions, IMRO, RAAP, Rubyworks and Camden Recording Studios.

The judges for A New Local Hero were Cian Boylan (Camden Recording Studios), Ruth-Anne Cunningham (artist and songwriter), Keith Johnson (IMRO), Roisin O’Reilly (artist and songwriter/ RAAP), Lucy O’Toole (Hot Press) and Roger Quail (Rubyworks).

The full list of radio stations participating in Irish Music Month is as follows: 98FM, Clare FM, Classic Hits, Cork’s 96FM, Cork’s RedFM, East Coast FM, FM104, Galway Bay FM, Highland Radio, iRadio, KCLR, KFM, Live95, LMFM, Midlands 103, Midwest Radio, Ocean FM, Radio Kerry, Radio Nova, Shannonside/Northern Sound, South East Radio, SPIN 1038, SPIN South West, Tipp FM, WLR FM

For more information, contact Niall Stoke, Hot Press: