Bonjour, everyone, and Happy Easter! I’m finally back from what feels like a year-long (involuntary) break from blogging. In reality, it was just over a week, but I’ve got so much stuff lined up to do in the few weeks left to Düsseldorf, that when I couldn’t do it, time went very very slowly.
You may have noticed a subtle change in this blog upon your arrival today. Gone are the candy stripes and merry flags of yesterday, giving way to sophistication and rainbows…which then gave way to candy stripes and merry flags once again. Still, it’s a little more streamlined now. I’m easily bored with the aesthetics of things, and so I thought I’d try something new – let me know what you think! And don’t be surprised if EBJ looks completely different next time you drop by…
I’m kicking off with a brand new top 10 today. In case the title didn’t give it away, the topic is my top 10 Eurovision songs that could have entered (and possibly succeeded in) its precocious younger sibling, Junior Eurovision! To save myself a lot of time I decided to look at ESC songs from 2003 onwards – that is, those that literally could have competed in the first ever JESC in Copenhagen (although there would have been some stellar contenders prior to that year…Boom Boom Boomerang, perhaps, eh Austria?). Note that this list isn’t intended to rubbish JESC or the songs that make it – I love the mini version of Eurovision very much, and I think a lot of the kids in it could do a better job of writing good songs than the “seasoned professionals” penning for the big ESC (I’m definitely in favour of Armenia drafting in 12-year-old Vladimir Arzumanyan to write their 2012 entry). Anyway, no more stalling!
My top 10 ESC to JESC entries are:
10. Leto Svet by Kreisiraadio (Estonia 2008) – Summer light, it’s summer light…Subtract the trio of tubby, middle-aged men with receding hairlines and primary-coloured polyester suits from the equation and add in a trio of under-tens clad in sequins, as well as a few more flash cards of onions and cakes, and you’ve got yourself a JESC triumph! This song failed miserably in its 2008 semi final, as it should have, but if taken toCypruslater that year, I reckon it could have stolen the victory right out of the Georgian bumblebees’ feelers.
9. Salvem El Mon by Anonymous (Andorra 2007) – Left, right, up and down, turned up and down, that’s how we treat the world right now…I really like this song, but I feel it was just too ‘young’ for Helsinki. It puts me in mind of Anders, the catchy soft-rock track performed byBelgium’s Trust at JESC the same year, which fared about as well then as Anonymous had in May. The tweenage girls inRotterdam would have adored it.
8. Let’s Get Happy by Lou (Germany 2003) – Let’s get happy and let’s be friends, for tomorrow never ever ends…Apart from the fact that the average JESC entrant should not be observing the goings-on in a discotheque (at least, none that I know of) this song fits Eurovision’s younger sibling like a glove that has an irritatingly chirpy mantra embroidered onto it.
7. That Sounds Good To Me by Josh Dubovie (UK 2010) – You bring the sunshine, I’ll bring the good times…I think we all knew that the UK was destined to bring up the rear of the scoreboard last year inOslo. But perhaps if Josh had enlisted his younger brother (whether he actually has one or not, I can’t say) to jet over toMinskand belt it out whilst attempting some clever choreography, it could have fared better.
6. Teenage Life by Daz Sampson (UK 2006) – “What did you learn at school today?”…A catchy song about school days, performed by a bouncy, smiley artist in a track suit, surrounded by girls in uniform, blackboards and wooden desks? If that bouncy, smiley artist hadn’t been Daz “I’m steadily approaching middle age but trying to fool you into thinking I’m not” Sampson, the Russian twins may have been pipped at the post.
5. Weil Der Mensch Zählt by Alf Poier (Austria 2003) – Little hares have short noses and little cats have soft paws…You may think the reggae-to-rock sound of this song – and Alf himself – too frightening for JESC. But think back to the Belarusian entry from 2009, which was about a magic rabbit but sounded more like a song about the devil attacking you in bed and eating your soul as a midnight snack.
4. Ik Ben Verliefd (Shalalie) by Sieneke (Netherlands 2010) – Shalalie, shalala, I can’t get it out of my head…There’s been plenty of retro, cutesy stuff at Junior over the years, though none with a Smurf connection. Maybe that should change? The Dutch won it in 2009 with a song that included the lyrics ‘Wha-oh-wha-oh, ba-daba-di-do, ba-daba-di-do yeah. Tikkeditak, tikkeditak click clack!’ (one of my favourites) so a bit of ‘Shalalie shalala’ wouldn’t go astray, in my opinion.
3. Let’s Get Loud by Suntribe (Estonia 2005) – Come on girls sing along that song, shake the house till the early morning, boring yesterday is gone…Just writing those lyrics has got the chorus stuck in my head!Estoniahas never participated in JESC, but if they do, let’s hope they send something like this. Cartoon T-shirts and coloured boots included!
2. Coisas De Nada by Nonstop (Portugal 2006) – Gonna make you dance, gonna make you smile, I’ll make you stop thinking sad things for a while…This is more harmless, inoffensive and dated than downright bad. I think it would have fared exponentially better on the Junior stage, so long as there were more pants involved.
1. Celebrate! by Piero and the Music Stars (Switzerland 2004) – Clap your hands, oh clap your hands, have a wonderful time…I want to say this song sounds like it was written by a 10-year-old, but most of the 10-year-olds in JESC are more eloquent and less clichéd. This bunch look like Hi-5 (or The Wiggles in those multi-coloured shirts) – Australians will know what I mean. Everything about them and this entry (which, may I remind you garnered ZERO points in the semi final) screams ‘Kids entertainment troupe’ – and yet, I can’t even see the kids liking this one.