Thank the Lord it’s Friday and the weekend is almost here! Eurovision Ireland are happy to bring back our ‘Eurovision Friday Favourites’ where we bring you random Eurovision related songs that put a smile on our face for either being #Amazing or down right #Bonkers. To start back we are going to delve into the Eurovision history books of the United Kingdom.
The United Kingdom are one of the most successful countries at Eurovision and along the way and they have claimed 5 victories and a staggering 15 second place finishes. It could have been the annual Eurovision Song Contest from the BBC. However along they way they given us some cracking songs but more importantly some fashion statements to boot.
The year was 1984 and the singers were Belle and the Devotions. The sang of playing ‘Love Games’ but I can distinctly remember my Dad playing with the television aerial saying “their hair cannot be that colour”. Oh yes even for a colourblind kid like myself I knew that is wasn’t a normal hair colour. Only my Gran had a blue rinse hair colour and that was the strangest I had seen at the tender age of 11. Belle and the Devotions introduced me to Neon in a big way.
People think that the Russian Tolmachevy Sisters were the first to get a boo at Eurovision – eh no. There have been plenty but this reserved boo from the audience in Luxembourg is a bone of contention amongst many people. I remember my Mother being adamant that the reason for the booing was that the 2 dancing members of The Devotions were miming and that the real singing was done by the singers to the side of the stage who were never shown. So much was made of the singers off camera that the BBC were forced to make a statement saying the reason for the hidden singers was that one of them was pregnant. Imagine the shame of showing a pregnant woman on tv. It was just never heard of back in the day. But didn’t the stork deliver new babies at night – that is what I was told about my younger brother whom had recently arrived. The birds and the bees were just not discussed in Ireland back then.
The second reason given for the booing came from my Father and that was prior to the contest British football hooligans had gone on the rampage in Luxembourg after being knocked out of some football competition (I have a short attention span when it comes to football). Well if you mess in my ‘hood’ then expect me to go all ghetto on you with some polite ‘booing’ at Eurovision were the sentiments of the residents from Luxembourg . Remember people still wore ball gowns and tuxedos to Eurovision back then. Belle was shown some devotion from Europe and placed a very respectable 7th in the contest and went #11 in the UK charts.
However the UK’s national selection that year had a pop diva in waiting. Yes the ‘So Macho’ Sinitta performed in the BBC’s ‘Song For Europe’ with the song ‘Imagination’ and placed 4th. Can I just say that she was robbed! Take a look at her live performance. Much respect to the woman. Did you see her jumping across that stage in high heels and spinning around like a dog chasing its tail on ice after a few bottles of Babycham and she didn’t miss a note once! I swear the camera man did a good job of not showing us too much on the night with what can only be described as a micro skirt aka a belt!
However did you know that one of the writers of Sinitta’s song was Tony Hiller who wrote and co-wrote most of The Brotherhood of Man’s hits including their Eurovision winner ‘Save All Your Kisses For Me’. Despite not making it to Eurovision, Sinitta went on the following year to have her smash hit – and I like to think an homage to my good self – ‘So Macho’. She resurfaced again in the late 1980’s and had several albums produced by those hit makers of Stock, Aitken and Waterman. Did you know that Sinitta outsold Madonna in the late 1980’s in Japan? You just can’t make this stuff up!
However as we are going to Vienna next year for Eurovision then it would a good time to go all Stevie Wonder on you and get very ‘Superstitious’. When did the UK first win the Eurovision? Yes it was back in 1967. And where did they win the contest? Oh yes it was in Vienna. And who started the whole Eurovision barefoot craze? Oh it was Sandie Shaw for her performance of ‘Puppet on a String’. So Sertab Erener and Emmelie de Forest owe there success to Ms Shaw. Unlike Emmelie, Sandie has progressed to actually wearing footwear these days. Will someone buy Emmelie a sensible pair of Clarks shoes – please!
Will 2015 be a ‘Making Your Mind Up’ or ‘Bye Bye Baby’ moment for the UK at Eurovision? Will they bring back neon? Will they go barefoot or will they get Sinitta to wear her infamous palm leaf bikini again – Good luck ORF in hiding her ‘Big Red G.T.O’ during that performance.
Either way its a ‘Eurovision Friday Favourite’ with The United Kingdom.
Author/Editor in Chief Garrett Mulhall
Source : Eurovision Ireland