Preview: Ireland’s “Eurosong 2014”

LateLate09_RTE-FullClr Ireland, despite holding the record for the most Eurovision wins (a whopping seven, including an unprecedented three-peat back in the 90’s), has had a spot of bumpy luck recently at the Contest.  In their last ten participations, the country has had two last-place finishes in the Final (2007 and 2013), three non-qualifiers (2005, 2008, & 2009), and only two Top Ten placements (10th in 2006 and 8th in 2011).  Can tonight’s Eurosong Final, a special presentation of the Late Late Show on RTÉ, give us a song that can bring the Emerald Isle back to its former glory? Read the rest of this entry

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Poland’s Pick: Donatan & Cleo’s “My Słowianie”

cleo-i-donatanThere’s been a conspicuous hole in the Eurovision participation map since Poland withdrew following the 2011 Contest, when Magdalena Tul (undeservingly) took home the wooden spoon for “Jestem“.  Fans pined for the country that gave us Edyta Górniak, Anna Maria Jopek, and Ich Troje…and were thrilled in December when news of the country’s return arrived.  But who would carry the white and red for the nation in Copenhagen? Read the rest of this entry

András Kállay-Saunders: “Running” for the Win in Hungary

Kallay_Saunders_AndrasAlso decided on Saturday was the winner of “A Dal”, the Hungarian National Final.  From the original 30 songs, a series of heats and semifinals winnowed the selection down to eight finalists, all vying for the chance to follow ByeAlex’s “Kedvesem” into the ESC history books, and hopefully surpass his impressive Top 10 finish.  There were quite a few A Dal alums and fresh faces reaching for the title, but, of course, only one could win. Read the rest of this entry

A Sweet Surprise in Latvia: Aarzemnieki

Aarzemnieki This weekend saw the finale of 2014’s Dziesma, the Latvian national final for Copenhagen.  Held once again in the Baltic coastal town of Ventspils, this year’s theme was “Made in Latvia”, with the stipulation that only residents of the country were permitted to send songs to the contest.  A dozen songs duked it out for the chance to go to Denmark, and hopefully bring the country its first ticket to the Finals since “Wolves of the Sea” in 2008. Read the rest of this entry

Ruth Lorenzo wins (or “Dancing in the Rain” in Spain is mainly not so plain!)

ruth-lorenzo It was an emotional National Final in Spain on Saturday, as five singers went to bat in Barcelona for the chance to represent the country in Copenhagen.  After each performance, interviews with the artists and their families brought most contestants to tears, especially after each one opened a sentimental gift from home.  A picture, a necklace, a vinyl of the Little Mermaid…it was “The X-Factor” meets “This Is Your Life”.

But, let’s face it, we were really there for the music. Read the rest of this entry

Macedonia: Tijana Dapčević unveils “To The Sky”

tijana-dapcevicOn Saturday, after months of anticipation, Macedonian entrant Tijana Dapčević finally released her song for Copenhagen.  On a special edition of MRT’s music program Hit na mesecot featuring performances by Eurovision alumnas Elena Risteska and Karolina Gočeva, Tijana gave us both versions of her entry: “To the Sky” in English, and “Tamu kaj što pripagjam (There where I belong)”. Read the rest of this entry

Preview: Spain’s “Mira quién va a Eurovisión”

spain Tonight at 22:00 CET, live from Barcelona, Spanish broadcaster TVE will host their national final, “Mira quién va a Eurovisión (Look Who’s Going to Eurovision)”.  Five singers are vying for the ticket to Denmark, but only one will clinch the title and try to bring Spain their first Eurovision victory since the infamous four-way tie of 1969.

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Preview: A Dal Final in Hungary

adal The second of four songs that we’ll have added to the Eurovision roster this Saturday will come from Hungary, as the successful A Dal system culminates its third year.  Will the show that gave us Compact Disco and ByeAlex give us the country’s fourth consecutive qualifier?  Read the rest of this entry

Preview: Dziesma 2014 Finals in Latvia

dziesma-2014After two semifinals whittled down the competition from 24 entrants to 12, Latvia will host the Final of Dziesma 2014 this Saturday live from the Juras Varti Theatre in Ventspils.  Latvia has had a run of hard luck, failing to make it out of the Eurovision Semifinals every year since “Wolves of the Sea” in 2008, and coming in last place in their semifinal three out of the past five years.  That being said, this year’s National Final actually contains a number of talented and interesting contenders, many of whom have the potential to bring the country their first Top Ten placement since Walters and Kazha in 2005.

Let’s take a look at the roster, shall we? Read the rest of this entry

Pollapönk takes the win in Iceland

pollapönk It was another exciting Söngvakeppnin in Reykjavik yesterday, with six songs duking it out for the ticket to Copenhagen.  We saw a wide variety of genres in the half-dozen participants: opera, disco-twinged pop, Gatsby-era flappers, twee ukulele playing, and a smoldering, soulful bit of theatricality.  But only one song could clinch the victory…

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