Thursday, March 22, 2018


Isabelle Aubret was a regular in the French Eurovision song contest selections. She first took part in 1961 with Le gars n'importe óu finishing second. The year after she was back with Un premiere amour , won and went on to win also Eurovision song contest 1962.
The ex-gymnastic had a great star for her career and all was going fine and she had hits and was also offered the leading role in the film Les parapluies de Cherbourg (that then went to Catherine Deneuve) but a car accident ended that. She had several operations and it took awhile before she was able to come back to business. 

She made her comeback in the French selection 1968 with La source and won again, and finished 3rd in Eurovision behind Massiel and Cliff Richard. The song was a very daring one at the tme, dealing with rape.....
But she didn't stop there and tried to get back to contest a few times: Oliver, Olivia in 1970 (2nd), Je te conneis déjà (6th in semifinal) in 1976 and finally France, France in 1983 (3rd).
Her career became international and she toured the world so the second Eurovision only did good to her. Until she was hit by another accident in 1981 when doing a flying trapeze number. She breaks both her legs and remains disabled for a long time. 
Since 1986 she's been active again, and released her latest and 39th studio album in 2016. 
At the moment she's touring France with her last tour titled Age tendre at the tender age of 79 (she'll be 80 this summer). A true Eurovision legend, maybe a little forgotten and negletted by the fandom....

Wednesday, March 21, 2018


Better late than never, here comes Armenia's video for Sevak Khanagyan's Qami, one of the finest songs this yeear if you ask this blogger. And the video fits perfectly with the mood of the song.... The last shot alone makes me want to visit Armenia....

Քամի, քամի
Այդ ո՞ւր ես տարել տաք իմ հուշերը,
Քամի, քամի
Դու տո՛ւր ինձ թևեր, որ հետևեմ քեզ
ՔամիԵս փակում եմ իմ աչքերը,
Ու թվում է, թե տեսնում եմ
Այն ուղին, որ դեպի քեզ է բերում


Now what can I say? Carola is one of my favorite artists, an ultimate Eurovision Diva and we go back a long time. Flashback summer 1983: I was spending summer at my aunt's in Sweden. And Sweden was all about Carola after her Melodifestivalen win (full marks from each and every jury - for the first and last time ever) and 3rd place in Eurovision (6,1 million Swedes watched her there!!!) with Främling (fate is I was also in Sweden when the Mello took place and saw it live on tv. However then I was all for runner up Kikki Danielsson's Varför är kärleken röd...) Her album was the best selling album in Sweden ever (over 1.000.000 copies). She was everywhere, including a Folketspark near Fagersta where I saw her live. The tour broke all previous records in 24 out of 25 parks. The year after I saw her live in Finland. And again in the years to come. But then Carola, a controversial figure retired after 3-4 years of success and even an album with the BeeGees in the USA to study bible, so when she was back to Melodifestivalen in 1990 with Mitt i ett äventyr some people were afraid she would start to preaching in live television. Yeah, for real! Strangely the tv-screens went black in parts of Sweden just when she was on.... Sabotage? Coincidence? Edin-Ådahl won only to bomb in Eurovision (for Swedish standards at least) and she ended 2nd. 
The year after she was back with "a little ballad" as she described  Fångad av en stormvind before anyone heard it and stormed to victory (78 vs runner ups 45). She struggled then in Rome by finishing with a tie with France's Amina. An Eurovision first since 1969 chaos ending but this time EBU was prepaired and there were rules. Both had four times 12 but Carola had five times 10 versus Amina's only two so she was declared the winner.... Her legend blossomed and continued....
She almost returned to contest in 2003 with När löven faller, that she co-wrote but pulled out the last minute as she didn't want to perform the song herself (as in the demo that qualified) and it was disqualified. But she got to perform as interval act, and has done that several times over the years, besides co-hosting the show. 
In 2006 she made her comeback with Evighet that became Invincible for Athens Eurovision. Invicible she wasn't as the scary Finnish monsters ate her as breakfast and she finished respectable 5th. 
Her last try to date is One love from 2008 with Andreas Johnnson that became a real disaster. First it failed to qualify directly to the final and in the second chance it failed to qualify for the final at all.... But that is forgotten. She's a legend and nothing seems to hurt her career. Not even her controversial ideas of homosexuality and other nonsense she talks time to time, all flavored with strong beliefs based on religion.... Lately she's been helping refugees in the southern shores of Mediterranean, hosting them at home, adopting a daughter from South Africa and doing other charity work....
This said, I wouldn't bee surprised we'd see her in Eurovision again. After all she is Eurovision.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018


Francesca Michielin has released Bolivia, already a third single off her latest album 2640 following Vulcano and Io non abito al mare. Great song and very inteeresting video.... your guess is as good as mine what it is all about...?!


Israel took a surprise and easy win in the Eurovision song contest 1978 (no matter what Jordanian television think) with their sixth participation, with Izhar Cohen & The Alphabeta group and their groovy and catchy A-ba-ni-bi. (However that nearly didn't happen as in the national final there was a tie with Belev echad by Chedva Amrani & Pilpel Lavan. Hmmm, who knows if they had sent that one instead...?)
Six times 12 out of 19 possible, and 32 points lead on runner up Belgium. They also set the trend for the Israeli entries that continued well into the 1990's: lead singer and highly choreographed group with a catchy up tempo tune. Between 1978-1985 with six participation they scored two wins, two runner ups and 5th and 7th place. Not bad. 
Incidently Izhar started this run and also ended it in 1985 when he returned with Olé, Olé! placing 5th. Again in white and white a vry energetic backing group. Today the participation is propably best remembered for the backing singer's vocals... :-)
He has tried to get to Eurovision also in 1982 with El ha'or (7th), in 1987 with his sister Vardina with Musika hi neshika la'netzach (5th) and finally in 1996 with Alon Jan and Alpa'im (10th) ) but has since late 1990's  concentrated on jewellery desing and has a jewellery store in Haifa these days.

This blogger has a little bit soft spot to this. The 1978 contest is the first one I remember clearly watching, loving and getting hooked to the contest. I loved A-ba-ni-bi (even if my parents thought it was nonsense) and come 1985, I loved Olé, olé! as well. Among many others. 

Monday, March 19, 2018


The winter is dragging on and spring is delayed, but Nina Zilli brings us some summer moods with her latest single 1xUnAttimo, that translates to One for a moment, with a very colorful video. I'd love to be one with summer's heat for a moment....


Eurovision song contests 1956-58 have two artists in common, Swiss Lys Assia and Dutch Corry Brokken. Lys managed to win in 1956 but Corry only placed 7th (apparently) with Voorgoed voorbij
But she was back the year after and won with Net als toen. She was a runaway winner with her 31 points vs runner up's 17. (Lys only scored 5 and placed 8th out of 10). 
But Corry didn't stop there. She was back again for the third time in a row in 1958 as previous winner with Heel de wereld and got only one point and shared last place. This didn't have any effect in her succesful career in the 1950's and 1960's. She stopped her musical career and started studying law and became an attorney in late 1970's, after having presented the Eurovision song contest 1976 in The Hague. She was also the Dutch spokesperson in 1997 after a brief comeback to music business with an album Nooit geedacht in 1996 and performing live again.
She died in 2016 at the age of 83. 

Sunday, March 18, 2018


Every now and then Eurovision song contest winners come back to the contest and looking back quite often it hasn't been such a good idea. A total of 14 previous winners have managed to return (and even more have tried but failed to win the national final. Latest of them is Swedish Loreen last year). In this series I have a brief look at them and how did it go.....
19 years old Lena Meyer-Landrut came from nowhere and after winning the German national final in 2010 went on to win the Eurovision song contest as well with her Satellite. She wasn't quite a favorite but once the votes started rolling in she took a convincing surprise win over Turkey's maNga (246 vs 170) scoring top-3 from 18 countries including nine 12s. 
Her album went to #1 in Germany and Satellite charted all over Europe making it one of the most succesful Eurovision winners of recent years. Her momemtum carried all the way to the next year's contest when it was announced she would do the 50's, aka defend her crown in 2011 as internally choseen artist.
Taken by a stranger was chosen for her and eventually it finished 10th  in the international final with 107 points scoting only once 10, and four times 8 points. However it was a decent placement for Germany and her success continues even today. Her latest single If I wasn't your daughter

Saturday, March 17, 2018


Every now and then Eurovision song contest winners come back to the contest and looking back quite often it hasn't been such a good idea. A total of 14 previous winners have managed to return (and even more have tried but failed to win the national final. Latest of them is Swedish Loreen last year). In this series I have a brief look at them and how did it go.....

French theater, television and movie actor, comedian, imitator, author, singer and fashion designer for Dior, Jean-Claude Pascal (1927-1992) won the Eurovision song contest 1961 for Luxembourg with Nous les amoureux. The Croix de guerre awarded war hero was a popular star at the time, and later was awarded also Commendeur des Arts et des Lettres medal. He took an easy win beating UK to the second place with 31 points vs 24. 
He released 17 albums between 1960-84, several tv-movie and tv-series, nearly 40 movies between 1949-73.  He was voted the most elegent man of France several times.
In 1981 he was back in the contest with C'est peut-être pas l'Amérique, a song he co-write. It placed a disappointing 11th place with 47 points. He would die of cancer 11 years later at the age of 64. His ashes were placed in Mont Saint-Michel and Hammamet in Tunis. 
Was a comeback worth it? I remember his comments after the contest. He had hoped better as a farewell for his career and was not very happy how it ended. He started writing books instead and managed to release 8 of them between 1986-1991....

Friday, March 16, 2018


Les derniers seront les premiers, as Céline Dion sings and it's quite incredible that Albania releases their entry only now. The revamped and shortened Eurovision version I mean. Eugent Bushpepa won the national final already December 23 last year, and we haven't heard of Mall since. Today, as the very last Eurovision entry it was officially released. 


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