Sunday, May 27, 2012

Eurovision 2012: Spanish power and Baltic sincerity

The greatest Eurovision song contest ever? Well,certainly since I can remember.

This year’s contest was notable for a number of reasons. Apart from the involvement of Azerbaijani military and government family members on screen, there was a startling amount of quality singing, songwriting and overall music production.

In the past many people (including me) have laregely associated the word “Eurovison” with tack, crass and excrement. 2012 was decidedly different. I cringed and laughed quite rarely over the 2 hour show, held in the city of Baku in the “Land of Fire,” [ie. Azerbaijan.]
One of the personifications of this step up in quality was the stunning and tastefully forceful performance of Spain’s Pastora Soler singing Quédate Conmigo [Stay With Me.]

 A 17 year veteran from Seville, she only made 10th place but that is hardly the point. The contest was won by Sweden and their song was also a fine bit of work, as was Albania, Estonia, Germany (!) Ukraine and even Romania did a pretty good job entertaining the worldwide TV audience.

I just couldn’t help wondering why this year Eurovision was so much better. I theorise that musicians and songwriters who would usually avoid the yearly contest were this time brought forward by the hard economic times across the entire region.

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