Thursday, March 10, 2011

Corsica to the rescue

I was encouraged to learn on a few blogs that France had pulled a late rabbit out of the hat in what thus far has looked like being the worst Eurovision since the 1999 contest in Jerusalem. Having had a listen to Sognu, I'd agree it's probably the best song in a very weak field, surpassing my previous favourite Taken by a Stranger (Germany). And I'll actually be able to vote for my favourite this time, because that won't transgress my long-standing personal rule of only voting for songs not performed in English. Better still, it's not even sung in French, but in the Italian-sounding Corsican language, which is the rough equivalent of the UK putting forward a Gaelic-language entry. I think we can safely assume that will never happen, given that it's difficult enough for Scottish acts to even get into the UK national selection - just one since 1997, with the last Scot to actually go on to represent the UK being Scott Fitzgerald way back in 1988. Indeed, on recent form, Scots have a much better chance of representing France or Cyprus than the UK!

The last remaining pieces of this year's Eurovision jigsaw are the Swedish Melodifestivalen final at the weekend, and the long-awaited presentation of Blue's UK entry on Friday night. As far as the latter goes, we're promised something wonderfully anthemic, and the best entry in years. Hmmm. I'll keep an open mind until I actually hear it, but as a reality-check it's worth bearing in mind that Pete Waterman honestly seemed to believe he'd crafted a potential winner last year...

UPDATE : The UK song has now been leaked, 24 hours ahead of its official unveiling, and the reaction so far seems to be overwhelmingly positive. It's not my cup of tea, it's not as distinctive as the French song, and it's not as imaginative as the German song. But, whether by luck or judgement, it's just possible that the powers-that-be have stumbled across the formula to take the UK to a second top-five finish in three years. Credit where it's due!

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