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    Damien Leith

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    Most Popular Songs (more)

    Leah lyrics
    I Still Miss Us lyrics
    3Let Me Be Your Rescue lyrics
    4I'll Be Your Baby Tonight lyrics
    Night Of My Life lyrics
    6Beautiful 2012 lyrics
    7All I Want Is You lyrics
    8If Tomorrow Never Comes lyrics
    9Unless You Say So lyrics
    10Got My Mind Set On You lyrics

    Most Popular Albums (more)

    1Now & Then [2012]
    2A Tribute To Roy Orbison [2011]
    Songs From Ireland [2015]


    Early life

    Leith was born in Dublin and raised in County Kildare, Ireland. His father travelled as part of his work as an engineer, and their family lived in countries including Libya and Botswana.

    As a teenager he formed a family band, Leaf, with his sister Aine and brothers Paul and Darren. Leaf recorded in New York and then again later under the new name Releaf, which made an appearance in the Irish Top 100.

    After moving to Sydney, he played in a number of high profile venues, as front-man for the band, Revelate. His first Australian performance was at The Basement in Sydney's Circular Quay.

    Before auditioning for Australian Idol, Leith worked in Sydney as a chemist with Pharmalab utilising the Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Chemistry he obtained from University College, Dublin and postgraduate experience within the Metallosupramolecular Research Group in the Chemistry Department of Trinity College, Dublin.

    Australian Idol

    Only following determined coaxing by friends, Leith auditioned for the 4th series of Network Ten's Australian Idol along with some 25,000 other contestants.

    Leith was selected by the judges as one of the final 24 contestants, and was the first person voted into the competition's top 12 as the result of a nationwide viewer vote. He was praised by the show's judges for his falsetto technique, which he used regularly in performances.

    For the first time, Australian Idol 2006 permitted contestants to perform with instruments, and Leith accompanied himself on guitar for his renditions of Chris Isaak's "Wicked Game", Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah", Alex Lloyd's "Never Meant to Fail" and Ben Harper's "Waiting On an Angel", and on piano for his rendition of Split Enz's "Message to My Girl". Leith also played piano for the non-competition round "Up Close and Personal" night, when he performed his original song "Sky".

    Despite adverse comments from judges Mark Holden and Kyle Sandilands in relation to Leith's appearance and a performance of Kool and the Gang's "Celebration" on the "Disco" theme night, which drew ridicule from Holden, the judges' assessments of Leith's performances were usually positive with Holden labelling him a 'darkhorse' early in the competition. His renditions of Chris Isaak's "Wicked Game", Roy Orbison's "Crying", Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah" and Puccini's "Nessun Dorma" each earned Leith a "Touchdown" from Mark Holden, a gesture which has come to be regarded as Holden's ultimate accolade for an excellent performance. Sandilands also stated that the family of Roy Orbison had contacted the Australian Idol producers requesting a copy of Leith's performance of "Crying". He, however, was not expected by betting agency Centrebet, to win.

    Leith was the last contestant in the 2006 season to be in the bottom 3, until the top 5 verdict night on October 30.

    On Sunday, November 26, during a live broadcast from the Sydney Opera House, Leith was announced the winner, over runner-up Jessica Mauboy.

    At age 30, Leith became the second oldest winner (The oldest known Idol winner is Steeve Estatof of France who won at age 31 years old in 2004) of any Idol series in the World, and in respect of the Australian contest, the only non-Australian citizen to have won.


    Leith signed a recording contract with Sony BMG and his debut single, "Night of My Life", was released as a paid digital download from Bigpondmusic soon after the conclusion of the grand finale, with an official CD release on November 28, which included an original composition written and produced by Leith titled "Come to Me".

    The single was certified "Gold" (35,000 copies sold) within 72 hours of its release. On December 3, 2006, the single debuted at #1 and continued to stay in that position for 4 weeks, having Platinum accreditation (70,000 copies shipped) awarded in the first week of release.

    It was the fastest-selling debut single released during 2006, and also the most added song to radio.

    The video of "Night of My Life" debuted on national television on Saturday December 9, 2006. Set in the urban streets of Chippendale, New South Wales, the video was produced by Cutting Edge Productions.

    Although with an official release date of December 9, on December 6, 2006, Leith's CD/DVD pack entitled The Winner's Journey with all his Idol performances and two original tracks began appearing in non-ARIA accredited stores. The release debuted at #3 with Platinum accreditation (70,000 copies shipped) on the ARIA Album Charts released on Sunday, December 10, 2006, and rose to #1 on the following week, with 89,000 units sold and certified platinum four times (280,000 copies shipped). It sold a 2006 record of 101,206 units in the pre-Christmas week and continued to stay in the same position of #1 for the next four weeks.

    In late December 2006, Leith signed with Sony BMG Ireland and on January 18, 2007 "Night of My Life" entered the Top 10 singles chart in Ireland. The next week it rose up two spots to the position of #8.

    Leith performed in a nationally televised concert, Australia Day Live, on the eve of Australia Day 2007, in the nation's capital, Canberra. Leith performed two songs, Peter Allen's "Tenterfield Saddler" with the Canberra Symphony Orchestra, and "Night of My Life".

    In late February 2007, Leith embarked on a two week, 14 show tour of major Australian East Coast cities. Labelled The Winner's Journey Tour, the concerts featured many of the songs performed by Leith during Australian Idol, as well as showcasing new original songs destined for his forthcoming studio album, including the folk/acoustic piece "Song for Jarvis", dedicated to his son, and "Beautiful", a band piece written by Leith during his trip to Ireland after winning Australian Idol.

    On 22 February 2007, Leith was presented with two ARIA No. 1 Chart Awards for his first single "Night of My Life" and first album The Winner's Journey. These awards are presented to Australian arists whose singles and albums reach no. 1 on the ARIA national single and album charts over the thirteen months from December 2005 to December 2006.

    In March 2007, Leith again performed "Night of My Life" and was nominated (unsuccessfully) for "Spankin' New Artist" and "Best Male Artist" awards at the MTV Australia Video Music Awards 2007.

    Leith's second single "22 Steps" is due for Australian release during May, 2007, and the studio album to follow. ( 26/5/07 The release of the single has be delayed due to scheduling problems. The video still needs to be filmed, however, it would require Damien to be away from home which he can not do as his wife is due to have their second baby)

    In February 2007, Leith also signed a book deal with Australian publishers, Harper Collins. His first novel, written three years before entering Australian Idol, has been described by Leith as a psychological thriller set in Nepal. To be titled, "One More Time", it will be released in October 2007.

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