My last post focused on looking back, a retrospective on a fantastic national final season. However, now we have our full list of songs it’s all about looking forward. May might seem like it’s an age away, but it will creep up quick. Get excited now because we’re set for an absolute classic.
1. The show must go on. As with my last post the very first thing worth a mention has to be the simple fact it’s happening at all. 365 days ago we had confirmation of the inevitable, we were to lose the 2020 Contest. However so much work has been put in by the EBU, by AVROTROS and all the national broadcasters to make sure Eurovision 2021 remains on track. For that, we must all be forever grateful to everyone involved.
2. Variety is the spice of life. If the organisers wished to drop “Open Up” at the last minute then the tagline for the 2021 Contest could be, “There’s Something For Everyone”. The real mixture of styles and genres across the 39 strong list is as wide as we’ve ever seen. Bravo! And we have plenty of…
3. BANGERS! Largely it would seem the national finals and internal selections have read the room. We may not be allowed on the dance floor just yet, but when we do we’ve got so many new songs to get all hot and sweaty to!
4. We don’t know the winners, of Eurovision, we don’t we don’t, we don’t we don’t! From all the song choices & reveals we never got that game changing moment. There hasn’t been an equivalent to when we first heard ‘Toy’ or ‘Arcade’. At no point have I thought “Yeah, that’s your winner”, it’s been more of a case of “aye, add that to the list”. Unless someone has the staging that stands head and shoulders (not you Cyprus) above the rest we’re going to hit 22:30 BST on Saturday 22nd May with no idea who will take the crown. Just as it should be.
5. San Marino. Senhit. Flo Rida. Adrenalina. Nuff said.
6. Big 5 living up to their automatic qualifier status. Italy is quite rightly in amongst the bookies favourites for the win. As is France, holding it’s ground as one of the early leaders. Germany are actually taking a risk adding something different to the Contest and the UK have happily stepped up their game. Spain…well as Meatloaf didn’t once say, 4 out of 5 ain’t bad.
7. Risks are being taken. As well as the aforementioned Germany we’re seeing a number of internally selected returning acts pushing the boundaries. Jeangu has gone in a completely different direction with Birth of a New Age for the home entry. Australia’s Montaigne has adopted a wonderful hyperpop style for 2021 with Technicolour and Benny Cristo has brought a dancier sound for the Czech Republic in Omaga. Class of 2020, take a bow!
8. “Just like Cleopatra”. Going in the exact opposite direction we have Azerbaijan’s Efendi bringing Cleop…Mata Hari. Whilst some have gone for a similar style from their 2020 effort none have gone for such a blatant carbon copy as the Azeris. And thanks to that knowing opening line, I kind of admire it in an odd way.
9. Lenny Kuhr & Getty Kapsers of Teach-In will be performing in the grand final interval act. Sadly the old global pandemic has put paid to the 2020 plans of bringing back many past Eurovision winners. But, if we assume we’re also going to get Duncan Laurence back in some flavour we’ll have all the living Dutch winners involved in a performing capacity. Good effort.
10. Yu no man broko mi. In this line of Sranan Tongo we can add another language to those sung on the Eurovision stage. And what a wonderful line it is! Thank you Jeangu for bringing such a powerful, uplifting message in 2021.
11. A shock result. Look at semi final one, it’s STACKED. There’s going to be some kind of unexpected result whatever happens. It could be a 100% qualification record falling by the wayside or a nation written off making the final. If you call all 10 out of 10 qualifiers on the Tuesday then please let me know that week’s Norwegian lottery numbers too!
12. NikkieTutorials & Edsilia Rombley. Nothing against the other two but I’m pretty sure we’re going to be adding Nikkie & Edsilia to the list of truly great Contest hosts after May.
13. The 80s Revolution. Despite being young enough to barely remember the 00s, Stefania will bring us the sounds of her parents‘ youth. Then there’s Hurricane’s video too. It’s so 1980s one half expects Max Headroom to pop up about half way through necking a can of New Coke.
14. Måneskin. I know I mentioned the big 5 earlier but this mob are reason enough to warrant their own entry here. You just know that it’s going to be an incredible three minutes of music broadcasting. Bit of glam here, bit of real gritty anger there and a swaggering lead singer fronting the whole thing. I’m getting excited just typing this.
15. A British song to be proud of. The partnership between the BBC & BMG continues to push the UK at Eurovision in the right direction. This year we have a modern sound, reflecting the current charts. It’s what so many of us have been asking for for all these years. We know from last year, in James Newman, we have an act we can whole-heartedly get behind. Now…more adorable rabbit based content please James!
16. BMX and ballet. Semi final 2’s interval act is an…interesting mix. Surprised we aren’t getting breakdancing in amongst it too, but that may be giving the broadcaster flashbacks to that 100 day live stream.
17. Jendrik’s journey to the Contest. With no pre-parties to speak of there will be a lack of the usual fun we get from these events. Therefore, a certain act taking us behind the scenes, on his journey to the grand final is most welcome. Love or hate the song, Jendrik is a one man content creation machine. Other acts, take note!
18. The Roop. Full disclosure here, I never took to On Fire. It just never landed with me. But with Discoteque they have hit on something very special. The song and performance is a welcome tonic to the past twelve months. If even a small portion of the home support in Lithuania can be reflected Continent wide then they’ll walk it.
19. The French staging. Assuming it’s the same or similar to the national final…that’s going to be a ‘WOW’ moment.
20. Albania staying in Albanian. It may be a little thing, but it makes all the difference! Especially when it comes to their chances of qualifying for the final.
21. Rylan. Whilst not yet confirmed by the BBC, one assumes after his semi commentary in 2018 & 19 and voicing the A-Z of Eurovision last year he will be returning for more of the same in 2021. His double act with Scott is fast becoming some of my favourite Contest content.
22. Jon Ola can just chill out. Having precised over a Contest cancellation and not getting a proper send off, the fiery ball of Norwegian charisma will just get to sit back and enjoy the show with the rest of us. Mr Österdahl…take it away.
23. Someone’s going to win. Big Dunc’s reign as the longest serving Eurovision winner will finally come to an end. As of the early hours of Sunday 23rd May we can start to contemplate a new host country and potential new host cities. Unless Jeangu can do the double and make it the Rotterdam treble.
24. We COULD get a first time winner. The feeling that we were about to enjoy a debut win last year has returned once again. Whilst not the overwhelming favourite it was last year you cannot discount Iceland, Bulgaria are still in with a chance, as discussed Lithuania still sits as a strong favourite for me. And then…
25. Excuse my French. Much like the songs themselves I’m saving the best till last. The Maltese song and singer have combined to create a lively, upbeat fun entry with a strong message. You know there’s more than enough in there for Destiny to deliver an absolute sucker punch of a performance. And that one line? Tres bien. *chef’s kiss*