Sunday, March 23, 2008

Crash Course In Eurovision: Don't Forget To Mention Norway

I'm very pleased to say that Eurocovers attracts visitors from all over the globe and understandably not every unsuspecting passer-by instantly gets what the fuss is all about. You may know the familiar songs, or even some of the artists, but what in Agnetha's name are these euro people on?
How ludricous is the idea to send songs to a competition? Why do some countries send the same song every year? Can three minutes really last that long? Why do the gays always get the most beautiful women?, Why does Ireland send a turkey?.
Well for those confused and all others, here's a crash course to Eurovision in three songs.

1. What are the rules
It's Only A Wind Up by Brown Ale is a coverversion of the winning song from 1981, Making Your Mind Up by Bucks Fizz. Tha Fizz enjoyed their bit of fame with some great hits like Land Of Make Believe, Piece Of The Action and the truly brilliant My Camera Never Lies.
Over the years the band has changed members more often than the average Eurovision act changes clothes but in Eurovision terms Bucks Fizz are a successtory of the quite successful category.

Brown Ale explain the rules of Eurovision in 2.36 minutes. How to write the song, how to form a group and how to not 'let the other artists take you from behind'.
Brown Ale was a project of Stephanie De Sykes, writer of arguably two of the worst UK entries of the last century Bad Old Days (Coco 1978) and Love Enough For Two (Primadonna 1980)
The Brown Ale single was withdrawn from the shops. (Radioactive RAD502)

2. What to do to get points
Marty Feldman (1934 - 1982) is a British comedian who probably needs no other introduction than his face. His Eurovision Song cunningly explains in one and a half minute how to suck up to the other countries and collect as many Douze Poings as possible*. Although had he lived and recorded an up to date version he would have needed more time with 43 countries and all that.

Like with Brown Ale, if you want to make a Eurovision spoof, you must mention Norway.

Eurovision Song is from his LP I Feel A Song Going Off (1969 Decca LP LK/SKL 4983) later re-issued as The Crazy World of Marty Feldman.
Special Thanks to Jim for this one!
(Sorry no Youtube link anymore)

3. What if you're pissed off with the results.
Taxi - EBU
There's only one winner (except in 1969, bless those days) and if you're hitch hiking home facing an angry mob with only trois poing to show for all the taxpayers money you spent, you have to take action.
You can blame the Diaspora, sue the camera people for not zooming in on your essentials, or accuse the winner of having raided your dressing room. Or you can write a song about it.
Romania sent a serious rock group to the 2000 Stockholm contest. The guys were called Taxi and their Song The Moon (Luna in it's Romanian version) bombed and reached 17th place. Every one is to blame except the Taxi drivers themselves and they vent their frustration at the E.B.U. (European Broadcasting Union, The Big Giant Head of Eurovision) in their song smartly titled E.B.U.. They threaten to send Dracula! but gracefully bleeped the F-word. You may need to listen a few times to understand the lyrics, but they are in English.

Links updated 2016
- Formerly of Bucks Fizz Website  -Taxi home page
- Stephanie De Sykes Wiki - Marty Feldman Wiki
And in this Eurocovers post you can see the Scottish Falsetto Sock Puppet Theatre's take on Eurovision from a tartan perspective.

Other recommended study material: (all youtubes)
Gimme Gimme Gimme - Party with Bucks Fizz
My Lovely Horse - from the Father Ted series
Papa Bendi - Steve Coogan

* Yes I know, The Douze Poing system wasn't introduced at the time of this recording.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I love Marty Feldman's "Eurovision Song" haha. Good times.