A short opinion piece concerning the UK’s lack of success in the international song contest
The Eurovision song contest – that cacophony of the beautiful, the unusual, and the downright bizarre. Where reactions go from “This is pleasant,” to “What just happened? Did I really hear that?” in the space of a few minutes. Sometimes in the same song. It’s all in the name of entertainment, and often the strange moments are the best.
The United Kingdom has had it’s share of winners over the years, and in contrast to most people’s opinion has been very successful. These days, however, we constantly hear the public decrying the contest and complaining about the mutual voting of sympathetic countries. “That’s why we don’t win anymore,” the voices say, “all those countries voting for each other.”
Other reasons commonly championed as to why the UK hasn’t been successful include “No-one in Europe likes us”; and theories about the change in rules regarding singing in the national language.
So how is it possible that the nation that gave the world The Beatles, the Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, Bowie, the Clash (and on and on) – don’t win this contest hands down every year?
It’s because we don’t take it seriously.
I don’t mean we don’t take it seriously in a tongue-in-cheek, this is crap but what the hell post modern kind of way. That’s fine. Be ironic, have a laugh at the strange sounds and mangling of English phrases – that’s part of the fun.
No, by not taking it seriously I refer to the artists above. We don’t win Eurovision because every year the rest of Europe wants to see the UK field a superstar. A living legend like Bowie or Sir Paul, to lend their talents to the Greatest Music Competition in the World. They want to see some of the musical geniuses that have sprung from these shores show the rest of Europe what pop music is all about.
We know that’s never going to happen. Great fun as Eurovision is, it doesn’t have the cultural importance to tempt the like of Elton or Mick Jagger. Not going to happen.
But just imagine if we did? Imagine, if you will, a gleaming supergroup with Brian May on guitar, Roger Taylor on drums, Sir Paul on bass. Elt on the old joanna, and vocals from some one like Jessie J, or Adele, or Tom Jones. That’s what Europe want to see, and that’s what we need to win.
There was a rumour a few years ago (and I think it was just a rumour), of Morrissey being the United Kingdom’s entry for Eurovision. Now I’m no Morrissey fan, but maybe that would do the job? In the meantime, we have Bonnie Tyler to represent the country this year. A woman with considerable fame and success across Europe, not to mention her undoubted talent. Let’s see if she can do it.
Whoever wins, ignore the nay sayers and the whingers who complain because the UK doesn’t win. Enjoy the fun and the spectacle, whoever the winner is.