Eurovision, the way we know it, is cancelled this year for obvious reasons. Usually there are two semi-finals sent Tuesday and Thursday followed by the big finale Saturday. Now that that’s not happening this year – at least not in the normal sense – I decided to try and spark some inner Eurovision joy by releasing three Eurovision posts: two for each semi-finale and one for the finale. Since Eurovision has been so kind as to release all of the 2020 songs that were supposed to compete I will end this week of Eurovision by picking my personal favourites out of the 41 songs.
Since I have some non-European readers I better start with explaining what the heck the Eurovision Song Contest is all about. Starting in 1956 the Eurovision Song Contest is an international song competition created as an attempt to bring Europeans together after the trauma of World War II. Each participating country submits an original song to be performed on live TV, then casts votes for the other countries’ songs to determine the winner. You cannot vote for your own country’s song.
It was held in Switzerland for the first time with participation from Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Switzerland itself. Since then a hell of a lot more countries have joined, the last one being Australia in 2015. To this date it is the longest running annual TV music competition.
Now, who’s ready for some music?
1. REFRAIN Lys Assia (Switzerland)
Is it just me or could this song have been featured in an old Disney film? I suppose it’s the sound they had back then but it sounds so magical. You almost expect fairy dust to gently rain onto the stage.
2. DANSEVISE Grethe & Jørgen Ingemann (Denmark)
Denmark joined Eurovision in 1957 alongside the UK and Austria, and this is Denmark’s first win. I will say it right now: there are going to be some Danish winners on my list and it is not because they are Danish but because I genuily like the songs. I cannot deny that I am somewhat biased since most of the Danish Eurovision songs have been present during my upbringing. This song in particular is just so genius in its simplicity.
3. NON HO L’ETÀ Gigliola Cinquetti (Italy)
It is just so angelic and even though I have no idea what the song is about it doesn’t really matter.
4. UN JOUR, UN ENFANT Frida Boccara (France)
Sooo, this year is a really fun one in Eurovision history. There was a tie between 4 countries: Spain, UK, France and the Netherlands. Because they’d never thought about what to do if this happened all 4 was declared winners. I had to do a lot of research to be able to write this post and so it was a fun surprise to come across. That said, I do really like this song (above). It is so damn French. It’s not always a good thing but in this case it works really well.
5. BOOM BANG A BANG Lulu (United Kingdom)
Oh my God! I laughed so hard when I first heard this song. It is so fun and bubbly, and her outfit could not be more 60s. That beehive, woof! I get why you ended up winning (like everyone else this year it seems *wink wink*).
6. ALL KINDS OF EVERYTHING Dana (Ireland)
Well done Ireland! You deserve a round of applause for that masterpiece. I kind of want to sing it to my kids as a lullaby.
7. WATERLOO ABBA (Sweden)
Sometimes I seriously forget that certain songs was written for Eurovision. When you say Eurovision you have to say ABBA. (As you’ll notice it is also around this time that Eurovision started to get a bit camp.) ABBA is probably the greatest gift Sweden has ever given the world.
8. SAVE YOUR KISSES FOR ME Brotherhood of Man (United Kingdom)
I LOVE THIS SONG! And apparently I’m not the only one. It’s one of the best selling Eurovision singles AND THE best selling Eurovision single EVER in the UK. That’s saying something!
9. WHAT’S ANOTHER YEAR Johnny Logan (Ireland)
If there’s any Irish people around: is it too much to call Johnny Logan a national treasure when it comes to Eurovision? Because I definitely think he is.
10. EIN BISSCHEN FRIEDEN Nicole (Germany)
Simple, catchy song. A true evergreen. I don’t really have much else to say. Good job Germany!
11. DIGGILOO DIGGILEY Herrey’s (Sweden)
Another great Swedish Eurovision classic. As far as I know Sweden is one of the most winning nations in Eurovision history.
12. LA DET SWINGE Bobbysocks (Norway)
Definitely one of the greatest Eurovision songs Norway has ever produced. It’s so 80s, I love it.
Is it just me or was there something magical about the time where most countries sang in their own language? I remember it being the case in my early childhood but then the rules suddenly got changed and almost everyone started singing in English. I must say that I find it incredibly charming that certain countries continues to perform in their own language. Anyhoo, I hope you enjoyed it. Stay tuned for part 2.
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What do you think about Eurovision?
Which songs are your personal favourites?