Since the end of the national final season I haven’t dedicated as much time as I’d have liked to all the pre-Contest fun. Due to some tricky circumstances ‘real life’ has taken up far more time than I’d have liked in April. However, now all is well it’s time to take a look at my own top ten for Tel Aviv. Using the marvellous Eurovision Sorter from Mr. Gerbear I have my definitive 2019 pre-rehearsals list. So before the entries become intrinsically linked with their stagings I wanted to dish out some praise based just on song & singer.

#10 – 🇸🇪 SWEDEN

John Lundvik – Too Late For Love

You want to not like the Swedish song. You want to not fall for their cynical conveyor belt of ready made pop hits. But, you do. Having taken the televote hit for basically putting a music video on stage in 2018 the Swedes have returned to making a live performance feel like it’s exactly that. Lundvik himself is a charismatic performer but the reveal of the choral backing singers heading into the last minute raises this as a stage show. To be honest the story of the American backing singer is reason alone to back a 7th Swedish win.

#9 – 🇸🇲 SAN MARINO 

Serhat – Say Na Na Na

As a fully paid up member of Team #Serhat4Saturday it’s no surprise this returning  act has found his way into my top ten. In fact, the only surprise was he didn’t find himself any higher. Given most of the younger male soloists are going for full EmotiFest 2019 it’s nice to have something fun for fun’s sake. Serhat dragged a far inferior song to 12th in 2016, so it surely can’t take much for the infectiously joyful Say Na Na Na to find it’s way into the final. For the love of all that’s Saturday night light entertainment, VOTE FOR SERHAT!

#8 – 🇵🇱 POLAND

Tulia – Pali Się

If you’d told me when Pali Się was first released it would feature in my top ten I’d have been incredibly surprised. I liked the song initially but my interest certainly has grown more and more in the subsequent weeks. Whilst other arresting and powerful entries have captured the attention elsewhere, Tulia have repeatedly turned out perfect pre-party performances. The verses have the feel of ‘I Am Walrus’ and the chorus is as catchy as any other you’ll find at this year’s Contest. Given just how bland their entry was last year, fair play to Poland for opting for something a little more risky. One can only hope it pays off.

#7 – 🇨🇭 SWITZERLAND

Luca Hänni – She Got Me

Who’d have thought we’d be considering Switzerland for an actual Eurovision victory in 2019. They’ve gone from perennial non-qualifiers to actual contenders. If you want to know why I rank this song among my favourites, I’ll direct you ESC Insight’s Juke Box Jury. I end up comparing She Got Me to a Baked Bean Pizza, it’ll make sense when you listen. I think. 

#6 – 🇦🇺 AUSTRALIA

Kate Miller-Heidke – Zero Gravity

I make no apologies for the fact I’ve been a fan of all the operatic entries from recent Contests. Zero Gravity is no exception. In fact, it was one of the very few entries from this year’s NF playlists that immediately grabbed me by the jaffas. The thumping beat, the uplifting final minute and most importantly Kate’s enchanting vocal all enticed me from the first listen. We know the staging will be changing from Australia Decides so how SBS choose to visualise this delight is one of things I’m looking forward to most about the next two weeks. Nothing’s holding you down Kate!

Top 5 coming tomorrow…

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