Since the start of the Eurovision year on September 1st, we’ve had 19 entries for the 2021 Contest confirmed. That leaves, with just over nine days until the Heads of Delegation meeting, a total of 21 songs left to hear for the first time. Whilst I’m almost certain at this stage there’ll be someone holding off until past 15th March for the public presentation, we are going to hear most of these in the coming week and a bit. It’s fine whilst we’re all in lockdown and have a bit more time on our hands but if you do this next year there’s every chance I’ll hear one of the songs for the first time during it’s semi final. SPACE OUT YOUR PRESENTATIONS!

We’re all releasing the second week in March!

Mercifully though, the national finals have been somewhat evenly spread affairs. The fact this is only our second Saturday with more than three shows to keep an eye on at once says it all. Given we only have the Melfest final next Saturday, let’s all enjoy this multi-screen madness one last time in 2021!

ESTONIA 🇪🇪 – EESTI LAUL

Starting off the seven hour marathon (stay hydrated guys) we have the conclusion of Estonia’s Eesti Laul. After the canning of fan favourites Gram-of-Fun we now find ourselves with a three way shoot-out for the win. It’s the battle of the Estonian Eurovision bloke of the past… Pootsman v. Suviste v. Toome.

WANT: Uku Suviste

PREDICTION: Juri Pootsman

I think I’m one of five non-Estonians who actually enjoyed Uku’s entry from last year.. Then back he comes entering with a better song and performance to match. To me, he feels like the winner but I can see Juri just pipping him at the post. Pootsman has a very slick, cool entry this time around with clever camera work to boot. You can never count out ol’ Koit ‘smoulder eyes’ Toome but I think Pootsman has just just about enough to deliver.

Maybe just lay off the slight of hand this time Juri lad.

DENMARK 🇩🇰 – DANSK MELODI GRAND PRIX

Seriously Denmark, you rejected Ben & Tan’s entry in favour of this bunch? Like, why? Just internally select the artist, get a few lesser known acts a bit of telly exposure and let the votes do the rest? That’s just what Lithuania did, and look how happy they are! You FOOLS!

WANT: Ben & Ta…OK, fine. If I’ve gotta pick one I’ll go for the Cosmic Twins

PREDICTION: Chief 1 & Thomas Buttenschøn

Well if I have to plump for one of the eight then it has to be Silver Bullet from The Cosmic Twins. Yes, to us Eurofans it sounds a bit like Monsters and a bit like Spirit in the Sky but your average person watching in May ain’t gonna know that. Of the eight it’s the only one that has any kind of personality or gives me any inclination to get up and dance. But I reckon it’s going to be “Højt over skyerne”, it’s just about inoffensive enough to live up to the recent Danish entries (Rasmussen, excluded).

The Danish Eurovision selection committee in action…

SWEDEN 🇸🇪 – MELODIFESTIVALEN

Sometimes Christer Bjorkman doesn’t half make it hard to like him. There he’s sat in his SVT office, looking at the Andra Chansen lineup. Of the eight he’s got two proper “grand final improving” entries. One for it’s quality and being like nowt else in the competition and the other, probably the most entertaining three minutes of the whole national final season. Just stick them up against separate opposition and job’s a good ‘un. But…

WANT: Eva & Ewa and Clara to be in two different duels!

PREDICTION: Alvaro Estrella / Paul Rey / Eva & Ewa / Efraim Leo

In a move, that I just cannot fathom, Rema rama ding dong and Behöver inte dig idag find themselves going head to head for a place in next week’s final. This is why we can’t have nice things! I suppose you could say that on the bright side one is guaranteed a final slot but sod it, I’m going full Verucca Salt…I WANT THEM BOTH!!! I reckon on sheer entertainment value Eva & Ewa are going to edge it. Oh, and I just picked the blokes for the rest. Seems a decent bet for Melfest.

The Melfest final needs this, The Eurovision final needs this, we all need this.

PORTUGAL 🇵🇹 – FESTIVAL DA CANÇÃO

Eurovision’s most chill national final draws to a close. Given we’ve heard all the songs and seen all the performances the main thing I’m looking forward to is the return of this legend…

WANT: Karetus & Romeu Bairos

PREDICTION: NEEV

Since the start of FdC I’ve made no secret for my love of Saudade. Whilst I could never personally get on board with Telemoveis, I admired the weirdness and there being absolutely no compromise for Eurovision. I kinda feel Saudade occupies that space with a more accessible vibe. The live performance was vocally superb and staging delightfully odd enough to fit the song. Sadly though, I fear this year Portugal are going to send Neev’s Dancing in the Stars. It is, in all fairness, a pitch-perfect ballad with a beautiful vocal. I can’t fault it on merit. But it could come from anywhere, it just doesn’t have the Portuguese magic spark.

ITALY 🇮🇹 – SANREMO

Sanremo is scheduled to finish seven hours after the start of Eestil Laul. I reiterate, SCHEDULED. The likelihood is it’ll be nearer the eight hour mark on Saturday to find our Sanremo winner. Given I’m writing this on Friday morning all I’ve got to go off is the Demoscopic Jury & Orchestra votes, but let’s give it a shot…

WANT: Lo Stato Sociale, Francesca & Fedez or La Rappresentante di Lista

PREDICTION: Annalisa

As with every year at Sanremo there’s a handful of songs I’d happily see win. Francesca Michielin is just too pure for this world and, whilst not that instantaneous, her song with Fedez is a real grower. Then for that poppier sound to get you up and dancing there’s “the one shade fits all”, La Rappresentante di Lista and Lo Stato Sociale offer the lively fun, reminiscent of the Penguins from last year, but with added prop comedy. Imagine them in the same Contest as Jendrik. Wow.

Although Ermal Meta is currently running away with it (another winner I’d be quite happy with) there’s still a long way to go with the voting. Think John King at the CNN map wall during the US election, but with added sequins and “Allora”. I’m still going with Annalisa’s Dieci for the win. She and the song have more than enough there to come up on the outside and claim the golden lion. Of course, Ermal could win and then refuse the Eurovision ticket allowing RAI to choose Annalisa regardless. In that case I’m still claiming the prediction as a win. Or they could take Combat Pop to the Contest. A boy can dream…

And after seven or eight hours of fun we’ll have four more Eurovision entries confirmed and the final line up in place for Melodifestivalen. We’re so nearly there team, just buckle in for one last crazy week of internal selections…

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