Yesterday we had a look at the countries that sent the wrong song to this year’s Eurovision Song Contest, leaving behind a more attractive song in their national selection process.
The other side of the coin is that many countries made the right choice, or at least the best choice they could have made given the circumstances. They deserve a little nod of appreciation and “you’ve done a man’s job” from Eddie James Olmos.
So, who do the ESC Insight team think got it right for Eurovision 2012? Let’s start with the easiest call of all.
Danny Saucedo would not have won Eurovision. Sean Banan would not have won Eurovision. Thorsten Flinck might have simply stared down the Babushkis until they withered and died, but that would have let Serbia win Eurovision. David Lindgreen would not have won Eurovision. Ulrik Munther would not have won Eurovision (although pay attention, 2013 might be a different matter). It was always Loreen’s to lose.
Melodi Grand Prix yet again sends a rather nice song from a selection of rather nice songs. Denmark didn’t have a huge variety to choose from this year, and much as I think Soluna’s song was slap bang in the middle of the road with staging that smacked of six arts students given a grant to buy a cello, it was the best of the bunch. I personally doubt Jesper Nohrstedr’s ‘Take Our Hearts’ would have made it out of the semi-final.
Forget the visuals for a moment, just listen to the three songs that were in the John de Mol’s National Final. It was always going to be Indiana Joan. While the silver and bronze songs were serviceable, ‘You and Me’ was head and shoulders the best song.
Two elements kept The Netherlands in the semi-final. Franka’s voice gave out before the live show on Thursday 24th, and they left the full native American head-dress on her head. I understand it’s a totem, but surely a single feather would have protected Joan and allowed everyone else in Europe to focus on the song, rather than dash for the Barbara Dex nomination forms?
Because the other choice was Konichiwa.
The artist was an internal selection, with the song choice up to a public/jury split vote, and the important thing was this… Cyprus qualified. That’s as good as a victory to the island. Given La La Love was the only other song to chart in the official Top 100 in the United Kingdom the week after the Song Contest (at number 77), and Adamou’s single became a strong bridesmaid to Loreen all over Europe shows this pop number managed to hit a nerve around the continent.
Dammit, why can’t Cypriot jury member Andrew Main be that accurate when he’s on Juke Box Jury duty?
Even though I’m for Duran Duran, and they’re clearly with Spandau Ballet, the boys brought their A-Game to the live shows just when they needed to, and it was enough. They can hold their heads up high, even though Terry Vision thinks it was rather bland.
It’s just that everything else was wrong!
Even though he’s not called Chiara, Kurt Calleja qualified. There were some real gems in the marathon that is Malta’s selection process, and I had my eye on a few other songs, but at the end of the day Kurt (and brother Kevin on lead guitar, never forget Kevin) brought a packed but not overly flashy staging, an energetic sing-a-long song, and a little bit of Eurovision magic to the stage. We salute Kurt “Epic Dance Man” Calleja.
Seriously, on the night, for that three minutes, she belted out a power ballad worthy of Celine Dion at the climax of her Las Vegas show. Frankly, this had winner projected all over it. You knew it, we knew it, and Ictimai knew it. So they added fifteen seconds of Alim Qasimov and some traditional Mugham music to the song. Mugham being the Azerbaijani phrase for “we have a good song, we just don’t want to host it next year.”
Who else nailed it with their song selection? Or do you think that someone here should have been in yesterday’s “When National Finals get it wrong?” Let us know!