Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Once Again I Am Off (Sorry)

Once again I find myself heading off on Holidays. I am off to mainland Europe.

At this time of year it is unusual to be going holidays. September normally represents a time of year that for me represents change. It is also a change for Eurovision. In my opinion the definite point where we move from one ESC to another is September. It now the time when songs may be released and you start to notice the news pages picking up again.

I hope that ESC 2012 brings you many great moments and memories. I also hope you have enjoyed ESC 2011 and understand that while you may not have overly liked the results the winner of the public vote was ultimately the process was democratic.

I also thank you for following this blog and hope you will come back again

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

To Baku And Beyond

As I am sure you know has reported that the reference group are to travel to Baku this week to take care of various aspects of business including receiving official assurances about the contest. Following all this they will give the green light to Azerbaijan for next years contest. I will be looking very carefully at the results of this meeting. I have made my views on Azerbaijan hosting known on many occasions and I won't be repeating myself. However I am calling on the EBU to be very careful in allowing Azerbaijan host ESC 2012

Latvia have announced their National Final will have an internet round and the Final show will be on 18th February. A jury will then decide who exactly will go into the National Final, interesting....or not....I never really follow Latvian selection

Monday, August 29, 2011

Malta's In! (But no word from Albania)

Malta has declared that it intends to go to ESC 2012 and is to have their national final on the 28th January. I am looking forward to it. Malta as extended the rule for repeat appearances from three years to five. Which I think is very harsh. I've always have a soft spot for Malta though.

Albania is to hold Fesival I Kenges but so far have not stated if they are going to Eurovision. 

Sunday, August 28, 2011

And The Winner Of Eurovision 2012 Is.....?: Part 12

Having come 9th in the last two contests Georgia is certainly able to score votes even though they have not sent the most outstanding of songs. They have as good a chance of getting votes from the same pool as Azerbaijan, a win is possible. However Georgia does not appear to be actively trying to win the contest at the moment, which is their biggest disadvantage. They also may not stand out if Azerbaijan and Armenia have good songs. It also should be noted that Georgia won the USSR Block (Russia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuanua, Georgia, Belarus and Ukraine) for the last 2 years in spite of only coming 9th/10th.
Tbilisi 2013? Given that Armenia may not be in the next ESC due to the location and Azerbaijan may not have a winning song on show it is conceivable but they must up their game.

Friday, August 26, 2011

How Many More Venues?

One cannot help but notice that the number of venues for Azerbaijan is starting to outnumber the number of months left to build it. There is only really a seven month building window left. (Assuming the stage will need to be started around April 15th). Really you can only afford to pick a venue, see if it needs an upgrade and then proceed to make preparations for the arrivals. Hosting Eurovision is not the Olympics. You not have seven years  notice after a comprehensive bid. It is just a large TV show which you have a year to prepare for. So far there is no attempt to construct a venue or even reveal what the plan B is. My guess is sometime in February word will come through that we are moving venues. Then it will be off to Copenhagen or Stockholm. (More than likely the latter). 

Thursday, August 25, 2011

And The Winner Of Eurovision 2012 Is.....?: Part 11

Due to the lack of news I continue with the in depth series trying to see who might win ESC 2012.    

Bosnia and Herzegovina
It is difficult to say with Bosnia +Herezegovina whether they got votes as their song is good or if they just got a lot of neighbourly votes. However each year they choose a song through internal selection and really have only let us down in 2010. They are a very difficult country to predict as they could send anything to the contest. However their attitude of sending a song they like rather than a song for Eurovision is a refreshing attitude.

Sarajevo 2013? Very hard to call but I would be surprised if B+H win. In recent years the trendhas moved away from ethnic songs and to more main stream. But the drop in ethnic songs could lead to a very ethnic and do quite well. They also rely on no neighbour putting in a good song, which would be an odd year. But it is possible.

Monday, August 22, 2011

And One More Thing

In continuing to recap on the news around Eurovision I shall endure to continue:

The Cypriot song this year will be sung in English. This is not surprising as the singer will most likely bring a very contempory sound from Cyprus, but still they have entered 2 songs in their own language in the last 4 years.

DMGP has won an award for their excellent programme that attracts many viewers each year, and had a 70% share of viewers this year. The album of the songs in DMGP charted well in Denmark. It is one of the best National Finals on the go, both in terms of quality of the music and general staging. Unfortunately due to the high intensity of the National finals I overlooked DMGP in favour of Melodifestivalen. When I came back to it I realised just how good it was and I am delighted to see it receive an award. I'm also delighted to hear DMGP is to occur in late January when there is a less intense national final season.

The big story that I forgot to report on over the last week was that is reporting that the Spice Girls are considering to try to go to Baku. Normally I would dismiss this as speculation, however is quite a reliable source. While I have nothing against the Spice Girls I would warn the BBC and UK against allowing them directly through to Eurovision without any form of National Final. I believe this was key in Blues somewhat failure to break the Top 5 at Eurovision. At least the national final puts artists under an amount of pressure.

Ukraine has announced their plans for 2012, which involves a talent show style National Final. However you never really know with Ukraine. Ani Lorak and Filipp Kirkorov are thought to be involved.

So that brings the news articles to an end. Tomorrow I will continue with the And The Winner Of Eurovision 2012 is........ series. 

In other news, Saturday night saw the return of X Factor on TV. (Being in Ireland I can see it.) I was very impressed with an Irish girl - Janet Devlin. You can see her performance here.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Some more titbits of news

To continue with the news from my last post:

I am delighted to hear that A Friend In London is to bring out their new album on Monday. They were my favorite act in this years contest so I am really looking forward to it. Verka Seduchka also has release a new album. In other album news t.a.T.u. have split and one of them have released a solo album. I am far from their biggest fan and don't really.

In Switzerland the Italian broadcaster has lauched a plan to find two acts to put into the national final and have asked the Swiss public for songs.

Finally, Gün.Az reports that 42 countries are ready to confirm for Azerbaijan 2012. This is largly speculation but we shall see if they are proved right. The list claims Czech Republic is to return, which is no surprise.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Back to Blogger

So I'm finally back from my holidays. They have been great fun. Anyway so much as happened in the land of Eurovision. Azerbaijan now looks like it has EBU approval but we cannot say anything for sure yet. They have produced a plan B anyway. The saga goes on......

To recap other news, the main headlines while I was away:
David Hasselhoff was rumoured to be entering the Dutch national final. This was since rejected as just rumour. He claimed it would be unfair on young budding contestants. That is over blowing your trumpet.

Hari Mata Hari are rumoured to be making a return to Eurovision. I personally hope they return I loved their 2006 entry.

Denmark set their national final date for 21st January. This earlier than normal and  I really like the music in the Danish MGP so I hope I will be able to blog from it live (I hope to have a twitter account set up by then). Perviously it has always been clashing with Melodifestivalen or MGP in Norway.

More news tomorrow but please note that I am in a very stressful and busy period at the moment. So I will do my best to blog.

Friday, August 12, 2011

I'm Back! (For A Day)

So not very much has happened in the last week. Cyprus annonuced it will be sending Ivi Adamou to ESC 2012. She looks like a reasonably good choice.

Netherlands has asked John de Mol to produce the National Final next year. This is a big name to be bringing in and shows the dutch commitment to the contest.

Also we come to a time of mourning for Schlager as Alcazar played there final gig at Stockholm Pride recently.

There is a great article on Azerbaijan over on ESCInsight. Well worth a read. Back properly on Tuesday

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Ukraine JESC song review

This year Ukraine has picked a strong song to send to Armenia. They are sending Kristal with the song Evropa. I think this is the strongest song picked so far as it has a good beat to it, compared to the other songs, however it is not my favorite. I also think that she needs a better costume as the one she is wearing just looks poor. They also need to change the gap between chorus and verse.

In other news, it is claimed that Cyprus will send Ivi Adamou to ESC 2012.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Stop The Press!!

According to the Irish Eurovision website Cyprus will announce their singer for 2012. This will be the first  singer/songwriter to be announced for 2012. No other information is available at this time but hopefully there will be some news tomorrow. 

And The Winner Of Eurovision 2012 Is.....?: Part 10

In my opinion, August is by far and away the quietest month for ESC. Largely caused by everyone being on holidays. The biggest news is that Ukraine has picked their song for JESC 2011 but unfortunately I can't make up my mind about it. So I will have a review for you tomorrow. Until then Germany is up on the And the winner is series.

You cannot deny that Germany is one of the most successful countries in ESC in the last two years. However, after two years of Lena Meyer-Landrut, the big question is who or what will represent them next year? Assuming they use the same X-Factor-ish format as 2010, there is little question of its ability to find a winner. [Even without Stefan Raab I expect the format to remain largely the same]. However in a country as big as Germany there is the talent, it’s more about whether they can find it.

Dusseldorf 2013? Most unlikely, while Germany may win the contest again in the next 5/6 years the trend is the previous host does not usually do as well as expected.