So, over the last few weeks, Eurovision 2009: Your Country Needs You has been running on BBC1 – a show to find the UK’s entrant for this year’s Eurovision…of course…after a few utterly dismal years where the UK came low down in the rankings, or last, or finished with negative points, or something. So this Eurovision 2009: YCNY thing would find a brilliant singer (or singers) and then give them a song composed by Andrew Lloyd Webber and written by Diane Warren. The former I’m not overly excited about – sure, Sir Andrew has composed some good stuff, meh, whatever – but the latter, wow! Diane Warren is a prolific songwriter, having written some of the greatest hits of the last few decades, including all kinds of Grammy and Oscar-nominated songs. AND songs that haven’t been award-nominated but obviously should have been, including:
- If I Could Turn Back Time – Cher
- Don’t Want To Miss A Thing – Aerosmith
- How Can We Be Lovers – Michael Bolton
- Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now – Starship
So, this led me to believe we’d get some hair metal/80s-style song – awesome! Alas, we are left with this (performed by the Eurovision 2009 winner, Jade):
*sighs* Kind of boring, huh? And Jade’s clearly a good singer…but we already have Leona Lewis, we don’t really need another one. Bookies are already offering odds on her coming last in the Eurovision Song Contest. Maybe we should have gone down this route:
And all Jade would need to do would be to cut a few holes in her catsuit (see article below) and put on a leather jacket. Easy!
Criticised over the past few years for it’s stupid countries-for-their-neighbours thing, the Eurovision Song Contest is going to bring back voting by juries. Hooray! Because really, ordinary people can’t be trusted. We need experts judging this show. They know true musical genius when they hear it.
Clearly, though, the UK’s problem is that it doesn’t have many friends in Europe. Well, that and the fact that there’s not enough of a community of Brits in any one country for them to help out in voting. In this year’s contest, only Ireland and San Marino gave Britain votes. I guess that means San Marino has loads of Brits living in it?
Below is a video of all the funny moments in Eurovision voting history. It’s over eight and a half minutes long. You see how much hilarity has been created in the 52 years that the contest has been running? Superb.
Following on from my Eurovision post below, Sir Terry Wogan has announced that he may step down from commentating on the Eurovsion Song Contest. Terry, who as commentated on the Eurovision for the BBC since 1970, is protesting after the UK’s poor showing (again) and domination by Eastern European countries (again). He is quoted as saying:
I don’t want to be presiding over yet another debacle.
Do Europe realise what they’re doing to us? Half of the Eurovision fun is hearing Terry Wogan’s witty comments. The Queen clearly agrees with me – she gave Terry a knighthood for his services to the Eurovision Song Contest.* And you can tell he’s no stranger to the bottles of booze as the night goes on as there always comes a point when he babbles on and on. But fair play to him, who hasn’t downed a few Pinot Grigios one night in with friends in front of the telly and started to make what we think are the world’s wittiest comments.
But maybe the point is that Eurovision isn’t what it used to be. Nobody in Western Europe does well anymore, and the contest seems to be dominated by the Eastern European countries. There’s now so many countries participating that we need semi-finals. (43 countries took part overall.) There used to be a time when we used to tune in to see what our European neighbours would enter into the contest and laugh at their crazy interpretations of “pop music”. Nowadays we get entries produced by Timbaland. I think it all started going downhill when they got rid of the “here are the results of the UK jury” thing.
Oh Eurovision, I miss the proper “you”.
Here’s a great clip from 1981 from a show to decide the UK’s entry. Of course, it’s Bucks Fizz with Making Your Mind Up. And it’s even got Sir Terry at the beginning of the clip. I give you everything, I do.
BBC News: Wogan ‘may quit Eurovision role’
*This may not be true
Saturday night saw the 53rd Eurovision Song Contest take place in Belgrade, Serbia. Dima Belan for Russia came out on top with his song Believe which got a massive 272 points. Take a look at the performance below – it’s got over-the-top emotion, a violinist AND and an ice-skater – what’s not to like? Oh, and it’s produced by Timbaland. Not that you’d especially notice, listening to the song. Timbaland’s producing everything these days. I think it’s all with the aim of GLOBAL DOMINATION. He’s like the bad guy in a James Bond movie – he’s planning to take over the world through music production.
Poor old Andy Abraham, representing the UK, came last with only 14 points. His song’s really not that bad, trust me. It’s all down to tactical voting in the Eurovision – and considering the UK has no friends in Europe, well, that means it gets no votes!
Andy definitely didn’t deserve to come last. I mean come on! That awful Scooch song from last year (Flying The Flag) actually did better than he did – it came third from bottom.
Well, not quite. The actual Eurovision Song Contest will be held in Belgrade on 24th May, but during this past weekend the UK decided on their entry. It will be Even If by former X Factor contestant Andy Abraham. Click below to have a listen:
Hmmmm. I mean, it’s pleasant enough, but it’s not quite a winner, right? Although who knows what you need to do to be a Eurovision these days? Being Eastern European seems to help a lot and/or if you’re a transexual (1998 winner Dana International), Goth (2006 winners Lordi) or some sort of woman that looks like she’s been raised by wolves (2004 winner Ruslana).
Ooh! What about if you’re Eastern European and a transexual Goth wolf?? I might be on to something here!
Funniest thing about the Eurovision song-decider show on Saturday night was when they announced the winner. Down to the last two, Scooch and French singer Cyndi…dramatic pause for effect…then hosts Terry Wogan and Fearne Cotton both announced the winner, except each saying a different name. Cue confused audience, and double-y confused contestants. Scooch applaud gratiously, before being told that it was them that won, and they get a little bit more excited.
The UK entry for this year’s Eurovision Song Contest was chosen on Saturday night. The winning song was “Flying the Flag” by Scooch:
Hmmm, I’m undecided. Whilst I don’t doubt that this song is crazy Euro fun, is this the kind of thing that works at Eurovision anymore? This is important! They must do their country proud!!
Before the Making Your Mind Up show, hot favourites were Justin Hawkins and Beverlei Brown singing “They Don’t Make Em Like They Used To”.
This is kind of a fun song too, but gets a little bit high and screechy in places. And then only dogs can hear. And dogs can’t use the telephone to vote. And that’s why they didn’t win.
What I want to know is, why does this Making Your Mind Up competition always feature such has-beens? Justin Hawkins, Liz from Atomic Kitten, Brian Harvey…didn’t Scooch break up like 4 years ago? I suppose credibility is not a big feature at Eurovision…