Wednesday, November 07, 2007


It seems that Ràdio Televisió d'Andorra are gonna bite the bullet and enter Eurovision for the 5th time in 2008. They probably reckon on balance that with the new two semi-final system they've got a better chance of qualifying. Fair play I say.

So, it appears they've recently been on the lookout for an act to represent Andorra in Belgrade and the name that keeps cropping up on the rumour mill is that of Gisela.

She's a young lass from Barcelona and took part in the first edition of Operación Triunfo in Spain in 2002. You know, the one that Rosa won, yeah remember that? Well Gisela actually also went to Eurovision then in Tallinn as well, albeit as one of Rosa's backing singers. It looks as though RTVA are actively courting her to be their representative in 2008.

Here's a couple of vids of her.

Turu Turu


Tu Voz Se Apagará

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Ins and outs in 2008

The other day it was confirmed that AZTV (or Azerbaijani telly) won't be able to enter the 2008 Eurovision as they are too close to the Azerbaijan government. Thank fuck is all I can say to that. I mean their votes would be so predictable I can already give their top 5 without hearing any songs for 2008. Turkey (cultural), Georgia (neighbours), Armenia (Nagorno-Karabakh Armenian diaspora), Russia (history), Ukraine (history)!!!!!

So far the only other country that looks seriously likely to not take part in 2008 is Israel. The head dude of Israeli telly says that the Contest doesn't fit in with what he sees as his channel. It pretty much looks like he's gonna get his way and that Israel's about to do an 'Italy' or a 'Luxembourg'. Maybe one of the other Israeli TV channels will step into the void, but first they'd have to join the EBU so 2007 could see Israel's last participation for quite some time.

Other countries have said they're thinking of pulling out due to bloc voting:- Andorra, Denmark, Ireland, Malta. Of these Malta has now confirmed they'll definitely be in Belgrade.

I think Ireland will now look on balance and say ok we got top ten in 2006 so it's not impossible to do well... if Malta's taking part then so will we.

If Danish TV can get around their money issues then I don't really think they'll be wanting to spoil the party and will take part as well.

That leaves Andorra and I think if Monaco decide to come back in 2008 (which is pretty possible), then Andorra will enter again.

About Monaco, well they had a bit of a hissy fit last year and withdrew, but they screened the final live in 2007, which is the prerequisite to competing the next year so it seems they're keeping their options open. I really hope Monaco do come back as they've got such a great history in this contest.

It also seems that Slovakia might make a return in 2008 under pressure from Czech TV to rejoin. Slovakia last took part in 1998 and I guess the Czechs want them to rejoin the madness and swap 12 points!!
Countries that have confirmed they'll definitely be in Belgrade are:-
Serbia (obviously)
United Kingdom
Czech Republic

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Serbia at Eurovision

Serbia may have won Eurovision in 2007 on their debut as an independent country, but it wasn't the first time that Serbian singers have entered the contest. In fact the first time Serbia took part in Eurovision was as part of Yugoslavia, when a Serb sang the debut Yugoslav entry in 1961. Here's a look at Serbia's past attempts...


1) 1961 - Љиљaнa Пeтpoвић - Heкe Дaвнe Звeздe (Some Distant Stars)

Ljiljana, who comes from Novi Sad, sang the first Yugoslav entry. She was 17 years old when she entered Eurovision gaining a respectable 8th place, with this traditional ballad. Today she's a bit of a recluse and doesn't perform in public anymore.

2) 1962 - Лoлa Hoвaкoвић - He Пaли Cвeтлa У Cyмpaк (Don't Turn On The Lights At Twilight)

Lola sang the second Yugoslav entry and came joint 4th with the United Kingdom. She was born in Belgrade in 1935 and was a popular singer in Yugoslavia during the 60's.

3) 1974 - Кopни - Гeнepaциja '42 (Generation '42)

The third Serb entry at Eurovision came in 1974 (the year ABBA won), when Korni represented Yugoslavia and came 12th. Unfortunately, the orchestra in Brighton virtually killed all the low-key charm of the studio version, by blaring out a load of brass, knocking out the moog that runs through the whole song. The song itself is about being born in 1942 during the hardest part of the Second World War in Yugoslavia (particularly in Serbia, which suffered extreme hardship during the years of the puppet Croatian nationalist government).

4) 1982 - Acкa - Xaлo Xaлo (Hello Hello)

Serbia got their next attempt in 1982 at Harrogate, when the girl group Aska represented Yugoslavia and they came 14th. The song's asking about where the girls' lovers might be now and is a typical 80's schlager pop song. Again the BBC orchestra can't match the bounce of the studio version, but the three singers are so wooden and look like they really don't want to be there. Not Yugoslavia's finest hour!

5) 1991 - Бeби Дoл - Бpaзил (Brazil)

Baby Doll was unleashed upon the unsuspecting European public as Yugoslavia's 1991 entry. The Yugoslavs tried to turn Rome into Latin America for three minutes, with what can only be described as drag on acid (even though she's actually a real woman!). The song is about creating a new kind of dance, with the end result of the partakers getting naked!!! Thankfully the language rule in place at the time ensured most people didn't get this! The dancing is atrocious and Baby Doll herself is totally out of tune. The RAI orchestra didn't help matters and massacred the song completely (not the only time that night they did so) and turned the guitar solo into a joke. If anyone laments the loss of the orchestra at Eurovision, 1991 is a great year to show how bad some of the orchestras have been in the past. The camera director also thinks that half-way through the song's proceedings would be a great time to show off the Italian film set used as the stage!!! Yugoslavia came second last with 1 point! All in all, car crash telly at its best!


1) 1992 - Eкcтpa Heнa - Љyбим Te Пecмaмa (I'm Kissing You With My Songs)

As Yugoslavia was haemorrhaging its constituent parts at an alarming rate and with the Bosnian War having broke out the previous month, JRT soldiered on regardless and kept its promise to enter the 1992 contest. When the deadline to confirm entry had been set in 1991, Yugoslavia was still intact, but even by the time they had come to their national final, Slovenia and Croatia had broken away. At the time of the contest, in May, both Bosnia and Macedonia had also declared themselves independent states. Extra Nena went to Malmö representing an area effectively the same as Serbia and Montenegro, but even though she sang well and the song was well arranged, there was no way on God's earth that the juries were ever going to let this song win, which is a shame as it's possibly the best song that Serbia entered to the contest, whilst they were a part of Yugoslavia. They came 13th with 44 points. As for the following year, well JRT was expelled from the EBU after the 1992 contest in protest of the wars in the former Yugoslavia and Serbia wouldn't be able to enter the contest until after the revolution, which ousted Milošević from power.


1) 2004 - Жeљкo Joкcимoвић & Ad Hoc Orchestra - Лaнe Moje (My Dear)

Serbia returned to the Eurovision in 2004 with the introduction of the semi-final as a part of the new country of Serbia & Montenegro. Željko sang his heart out in Istanbul and won the semi-final, but was defeated in the final by some Ukrainian Miss Whiplash! They came 2nd gaining points from every other participating country. To me this is a better song than Molitva, which won for Serbia in 2007, but it obviously wasn't to be. Željko himself is a big star in his homeland and is famous across the former Yugoslavia. Serbia & Montenegro found themselves automatically in the 2005 final where they were represented by Montenegrin boyband No Name, who came 7th. Automatically qualified to the 2006 final, Serbia & Montenegro couldn't pick a winner of their national selection with the Serbs blaming the Montenegrins of vote fixing and demanding a re-run of the national contest. Despite appeals to the EBU, the deadline for 2006 came and went without an agreement on who should represent Serbia & Montenegro. They were disqualified from the 2006 contest, although still retained their voting rights. The day after the Athens contest, Montenegro held a referendum on independence, which agreed to the peaceful division of Serbia & Montenegro into two seperate countries.


1) 2007 - Mapиja Шepифoвић - Moлитвa (Prayer)

Serbia returned to the 2007 Eurovision semi-final as an independent country and proceded to win the entire thing. It's not my favourite song in the 2007 contest and not my favourite Serbian entry, but I can see it's appeal, even though Marija sounds a bit histrionic live. It's not the best winner ever, by a long shot, but at least it kept Ukraine's drag queen from winning, which is a good thing by me!!! It also goes to prove that a ballad can win Eurovision and that you can also win the contest by singing in your own language and not in English. Let's see what Belgrade has in store for us in 2008.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Eurovision 2007 DVD

The DVD of the 2007 contest arrived on my doormat the other day courtesy of (a snip at £9,99!). Not watched it all yet as I'm not sure I can cope with seeing that Serbian dyke win again or watch Andorra fail to qualify to the final, but no doubt in time I'll overcome my fear... it was still a great week after all!