Scots taxi driver who rose to fame on Eurovision after 'UFO sighting' over the M8

With the 68th edition of the Eurovision Song Contest final set to take place in Sweden this weekend, North Yorkshire born singer Olly Alexander is getting ready to represent Great Britain in the competition with his single 'Dizzy'.

Over the years, we have seen some Scottish contestants represent the UK, most notably the 1960s popstar Lulu who won the competition back in 1969 with her single 'Boom Bang-a-Bang' in a four way tie with Spain, France and the Netherlands.

However, Glaswegian born taxi driver, Rikki Peebles, who was tipped to win the Eurovision Crown in 1987 was not so lucky in the competition.

The now 68-year-old represented the UK back in the 80s, admitting that he hadn't even heard of the contest before he walked into a recording studio one day.

The Glasgow Cabbie claimed to have witnessed an extra-terrestrial experience in his hometown that had inspired him to write the song 'Only The Light' which was what he sang in Eurovision.

Three years before taking to the stage at the Eurovision grand finale in Brussels, claimed to have seen a UFO over the M8 motorway in Scotland.

He previously told BBC Radio Scotland's Drivetime programme: "It was about 1984 and I was in my car driving on the new M8 motorway. I sat at a junction after coming off.

"I looked up and I saw this massive light in the sky but it moved from my left, right across my vision to the right and then slowly disappeared.

"I thought I had to report this to authorities. I did and the next day the same thing had been seen over parts of Wales. I knew it wasn’t just me. This was something not of this earth."

Rikki was considered joint favourite to win Eurovision with the late BBC commentator, Terry Wogan saying: "We've got a Eurovision winner here!" as telly judges selected Rikki Peebles' Only The Light to represent the UK that year.

The Scots singer was also tipped to be offered a bumper £250,000 recording contract with CBS.

He took to the stage in Brussels, patriotically dressed in tartan to perform his ballad to a television audience of 250 million on May 9.

However, it wasn't meant to be as he failed to charm Europe and Rikki came in at 13th place, earning just 47 points for the UK, which was a record breaking low for a British Eurovision hopeful.

At the time, it was the worst scoring that a UK contestant had received on the contest to date although future performances on behalf of Britain would eventually strip Peebles of that unfortunate title.

Previously speaking of his failure in 1987, Rikki confessed: "I cried. I thought I had let my country down in front of all those millions of viewers. I would never, ever do it again."

Only The Light briefly entered the UK charts at No.96 before it disappeared without a trace, leaving the one hit wonder popstar's dreams in ruins.

The singer later said: "After the show every door slammed in my face. The CBS contract just disappeared."

Despite his big loss, Rikki continued on to make a decent living as he performed in pubs and would also often write tracks for other artists, including established groups such as Middle of the Road.

Richard Peebles Eurovision performance can be found on YouTube with divided opinions in the comments over whether or not the Glasgow born singer should've been awarded a higher place.

Despite his short lived success now being almost 37 years ago, it seems Rikki is still very proud of his Eurovision days as he has shared multiple throwback snaps of himself singing on the show under his Instagram handle @rikki_eurovision87.

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