Continuing on from Part 1, I’m listing out really great singers that, for one reason or another, either didn’t get the result they were hoping for, or were more deserving of a better score in the Eurovision Song Contest. Here are some artists that I’d really love to see back on the Eurovision stage:
Ines was the hot favourite to win the 2000 Eurovision Song Contest with the song Once In A Lifetime. It was a catchy, uplifting number but nerves and bad styling quickly stifled any chances of victory. Fast forward to the present day and Ines has now become one of Estonia’s most popular singers and is just plain stunning. Here’s a recent video of her performing Once In A Lifetime:
Widely touted as Austria’s very own Ricky Martin, Manuel Ortega took to the stage in Tallin and gave a spirited performance of his song Say A Word. While it was definetly a crowd pleaser, I thought the song failed to excite with the chorus being rather repetitive. I’d really like to see Manuel back with a fiery ethno/Latin-inspired number. Given the success that has been granted to this genre on the scoreboard, I think Austria could definetly pull off a Top 10 placing.
France had one of the best songs in 2004. A Chaque Pas was beautiful, wonderfully performed and continued the great tradition of French balladry at the Eurovision Song Contest. Unfortunately, it also fell into another tradition of gimmicks. Using ‘Le Petit Prince’ as inspiration, France had a contortionist atop a pair of stilts. Suffice it to say, people paid more attention to the lofty gyrating antics. Next time Jonatan, please come solo. With feet planted firmly on the stage.
Shiri’s breathtaking performance of Hasheket Shenish’ar (The Silence That Remains) is Eurovision at its best. A talented songstress in a gorgeous dress singing a beautiful ballad. Give the girl another ballad, throw her in an evening gown and let her do her thing again Israel! This was, in my opinion, was one of Israel’s more finer entries this decade and never fails to remind me of Contests of decades past.
Hungary got everyone’s feet tapping with their entry Forogj, világ!, featuring tap dancing and powerful vocals in the mystical Hungarian language. The song is really catchy and it was a pity that they were drawn first, for had they performed in the second half, I’m sure they would have done better in the scoring. NOX ought to enter again with the same formula but they should do what Kati Wolf did this year and keep the song mainly in English with a verse in Hungarian.
Here’s a quick roundup on what’s been happening in Euroland over the weekend.
The Netherlands: The Dutch national selection just became one of the most hotly anticipated of the 2012 season with the announcement that media baron John de Mol will be heading the selection. John de Mol is well known for having created some of television’s most popular shows including ‘Big Brother’, ‘Deal Or No Deal’ and most recently, ‘The Voice’. This is amazing news and just the sort of media savy and expertise that The Netherlands needs to revamp its approach to the Eurovision Song Contest. No doubt de Mol’s involvement will create alot of international buzz too.
Israel: Despite initial reservations, Israel have confirmed that they will indeed be participating in the 2012 Eurovision Song Contest. With the preliminary dates clashing with the Jewish holiday of Shavu’ot, broadcaster IBA originally stated that participation may not be in the cards for Israel next year. However, they have appeared to have ironed out these issues and now we can happily look forward to an Israeli entry next year.
Bosnia & Herzegovina: The usual rumours about artists touted to represent their countries are all healthily rife and the latest comes from B&H. Balkan superstar Hari Mati Hari has been tipped as the one to wave the country’s flag next year, having already reported to be in discussions with BHRT. Hari Mati Hari is ofcourse no stranger to the contest, having previously done the honours in 2006 with the song Leijla and gave B&H its best placing to date: third place. Will he do better this time around? Let’s wait and see.
Slovenia: Taking a leaf out of Germany’s book, Slovenia have modified their national selection to include a singer selection in the style of ‘Unser Star Für…’ entitled ‘Misija Evrovizija’ (‘Mission Eurovision’). The culmination will be the traditional EMA to select the song. This week, the dates for the audition have been released with a tour across the country scheduled to take place. Citzens of Slovenia and the EU are eligible to participate. For more info, click here. After this year’s relatively successful run, I’m interested to see what changes Slovenia will bring to EMA, which in my opinion is one of the more enjoyable selections in the National Finals Season.
And that was some of the news!
The latest in my series of self-designed album art, here’s the fabulous Dana International doing the business with her song Ding Dong. In the aftermath of the contest, I’ve really taken a liking to it. Some said it was a tad old-fashioned, but I say its classic Dana with a bit of a David Guetta flavouring thrown in to bring it up to speed.
And of course, who doesn’t love a good old-fashioned hands-in-the-air Eurovision anthem you can point and strut to?