Saturday, May 16, 2009

Eurovision Song Contest

I have a very important post for you today. The subject matter is extremely culturally sensitive, and I'm sure that many people have been hurt through the years because of disputes that arose from it.

Eurovision Song Contest.

Usually, the word strikes fear into the hearts of most Danish people. It is one of the things that Danes love to hate, and hate to admit loving. Most people outside of Europe have no idea what it is. Let me tell you. In post-WW2, and pre-European Union Europe, the contest was started as a way of getting the European countries to bond together across the continent, by sitting in front of their televisions once a year to watch a friendly competition. Over the years it has expanded to include countries that are not usually considered European, ie Turkey, Israel, Russia, and Azerbajian to name a few. The winning country gets to host the next year's event, bringing thousands of new tourists to their part of the world. A very coveted prize indeed for the economy of the entire country.

During the past many years, this competition has become a cult event, kinds like The Rocky Horror Picture Show (but not really). People gather to watch it together, do their own voting and cheer their favorite songs/countries on. It can be quite a riot (a minimum of alcohol is required). Tonight is such a night. I can feel the excitement!

Let's face it - it's cheasy. But in a really great way. I love how you can always count on the Swedes for having some Britney Spears worthy pop song, with tone shifts and everything. How the Slavic countries always have dancers dressed like Kossacks, revolving around a lone violinist. Finland is dependable in that every year they re-invent themselves with something awful yet awe inspiring. Portugal, Spain and Italy haven't produced a good tune to this day. Israel is good at drag queens, or at least female singers that look like one. Denmark is usually pretty folksy, and kind of bland. There's always a Joker, as in, one country at least does something completely wacky and even gets voted to the top three as a result.

Like Ukraine, in 2007. My favorite Eurovision song ever. EVER! They got second place in 2007.

Or Finland. They friggin' WON in 2006 with this entry!!

And Denmark won in Stockholm in 2000 with this little ditty. We were pretty amazed that a couple of semi-old farts could win for us!

Well that was a little run down of the past. For tonight, I've got my money on these two - Norway, and Moldavia.

The first one is reeeeaaally cheasy. Perfect for Eurovision.

And the Moldovan song is a blatant advertisement for their country. But I love the pseudo- Gogol Bordello sound.

May the best song win!!! You know I'll be watching with a big bowl of popcorn and a cardboard box of rosé.


June said...

Molvodia is a REAl country..i always thought it was a fake the one you hear about in "princess diaries"

Jennie said...

I know - isn't it amazing? I'm pretty sure it's a cess pool of corruption, but they seem to have a good sense of their own national identity in the shadows of their neighboring countries. Who knew?

'Babs' said...

I'm with you on the Ukraine song. Perfect Eurovision. I want that outfit!

Jennie said...

Isn't it great? And I googled him - he's quite a fine looking heterosexual male when he's not in a silver cossie! I would wear that hat/head piece every day, just for kicks...