Thursday, 24 May 2012

Guilty Pleasure - Eurovision Special: The Final Instalment

Here it is folks, my final tribute to all things Eurovision and what better way to end this spectacular special than with my favourite two acts to come out of the competition.

Consisting of Cheryl Baker, Jay Aston, Mike Nolan and Bobby G, Bucks Fizz represented the UK in the 1981 contest with Making Your Mind Up and won.

How Bucks Fizz managed to win the competition is beyond me. The singing was off key, the dancing amateurish and let's not even go there on the costumes. Despite this blot in Eurovision history, I am awfully glad they did win. If not for the competition, they would not have gone on to have a very successful career.

I turned 14 in 1981 and Bucks Fizz were without a doubt my favourite band and remained so for many years.
They released many singles, with three of them reaching number one in the UK. They were also very successful throughout Europe and even as far afield as Australia.

Of all the albums Bucks Fizz released, my favourite is Hand Cut which was released in 1983.

The artwork alone was worth the price I paid. Of all their album sleeves, this to me is the one that is the most visually stunning.

The reason I love this one the most is down to one track alone. That track is "I'd Like to Say I Love You".
It is such a beautiful song and I cannot believe the record company did not feel it worthy of a single release.
I am sure it would have proved to be a massive hit for them if they had.

Bucks Fizz are still performing, though they are now two separate groups. They have not had a hit single or album for years. Personally I think their demise from the charts was due to over exposure in the early 80's (Rihanna take heed) which resulted in the fans turning away from their music.
I was not one of those fans and continued to buy and listen to their music.

Of all the tracks Bucks Fizz recorded I have chosen my favourite three and they are:

Number 1 - I'd Like to Say I Love You
Number 2 - Tears on the Ballroom Floor
Number 3 - Golden Days

Whilst I love Bucks Fizz as a group, Cheryl Baker has always been my favourite and it was a travesty that her one attempt at a solo pop career went unnoticed. She released a fantastic version of "If Paradise is Half as Nice" and it should have been a massive hit for her.
I think I was one of the few that bought it and I still own it along with all my other Bucks Fizz albums and cd's.

I have two Bucks Fizz related dreams. One is to meet the original members of the group. The other is to write a musical based around their songs. I already have an outline for it and who knows, one day it may just happen

And so to the act who joins Bucks Fizz as my favourite to come out of Eurovision and who else could it be but the amazing Abba.
Consisting of Agnetha Faltskog, Anni-frid Lynstag, Benny Andersonn and Bjorn Ulveaus, they represented Sweden in the 1974 contest and won with Waterloo.

Abba went on to become one of the most successful acts to ever come out of Eurovision and one of the most successful bands in the world.
Selling millions of singles and albums, they were Sweden's biggest export for years.They are famous throughout the world and have influenced many of today's artists with their music.
How anyone can not like Abba is a mystery to me. Their music is ridiculously good and can be enjoyed by any age.

Of course, they have a huge gay following but I do not love Abba because I am gay. To me, ones sexual orientation does not determine who you will like music wise. That is not what music is about. Music is how it makes you feel inside. With their music, Abba have the ability to make you feel happy, sad, excited and many other feelings.

Abba split up many years ago and that alone is proof of how good they are as their music still sells by the millions.
There is always talk of a reunion and I know that if a concert were to be announced, it would sell out in an instant. One can hope that maybe one day they will make that announcement.

Choosing my favourite three Abba tracks was a difficult task. There are just so many that I love. Nevertheless I have managed it and here they are:

Number 1 - The Winner Takes it All
Number 2 - Thank You for the Music
Number 3 - Happy New Year

There is only one word to describe this song and that word is "perfection".

So there favourite two acts from the many years of the contest.
I hope you have enjoyed reading my Eurovision Special. I have absolutely adored writing it and looking back at the many highlights.
If you agree or disagree with my choices, please feel free to send me a message or maybe even a comment about my blog in general. If you really like the blog then pass the link onto your friends. Whilst my specials have been for all ages, some of my earlier blogs are a little on the rude side so please be cautious if you do pass the link on.

All that is left for me to say is tune in Saturday 26th for the 2012 Eurovision Contest from Baku and wherever you are in the world, I hope you enjoy the show.

Until next time, I bid thee farewell.

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Guilty Pleasure - Eurovision Special. The Sequel

As promised folks, here is who I believe should finish in the top 3 for this years Eurovision Song Contest being held in Baku.

In reverse order we start with:

Number 3 - Love Will Set You Free by Engelbert Humperdinck (UK)

At 75, Mr Humperdinck is one of the oldest artists to represent the UK in the contest.
Though I think he will struggle with the high note at the end, I still think the UK will do well with this beautiful ballad.

Number 2 - Standing Still by Roman Lob (Germany)

This song has already been a huge hit in Germany, reaching number 3 in the charts.
If it does well on the night,I can see it charting quite highly over here in the UK.
Mr Lob has the full package -  stunning looks, amazing voice and a lovely song. The only downside is the video is quite similar to one by the not as amazing Daniel Beddingfield.

Number 1 - La La Love by Ivi Adamou (Cyprus)

I do love my dance music and this entry from Cyprus is superb.It should do well with the gay audience and who knows, maybe this could be the year we see quite a few Eurovision hopefuls do well in the UK pop charts.

That's my top 3 for you. Do you agree with my choices or have I got it completely wrong?
There is only one way to find out and that is by tuning in to BBC1 on Saturday 26th May.

Until next time, I bid thee farewell.

Sunday, 6 May 2012

Guilty Pleasure - Eurovision Special

So here it is folks. My all time favourite Eurovision song and I think quite a lot of you are going to think "really". Hopefully a few of you will also agree with my choice.

Number 1 - La Voix by Malena Ernman (Sweden)

That's right folks, La Voix is top of my Eurovision chart. I absolutely love this song. So much so,  I have listened to it on my ipod 238 times. More times than any other Eurovision song. Now that has to be some kind of record?

Malena represented Sweden in the 2009 contest. An opera singer, very famous in her home country and other parts of Europe, her coloratura mezzo-soprano vocals were put to good use in the song and to a dance soundtrack too. The whole thing blended perfectly to reveal what I believe to be a Eurovision classic.
Unfortunately, I think I was only person to think this as the song finished in 21st place. It failed to score with quite a few countries and only received low scores from those that did. Even the UK only gave it 1 point and that was probably courtesy of the gay audience.
I don't think it helped Sweden with Ms Ernman giving only an adequate performance on the night. On the high notes she was perfect but it was when she had to sing notes in a lower key that she had a few issues.
Here is the actual pop video to show you how it should have sounded.

I think you will agree that that sounds so much better doesn't it?

Despite the disastrous result in the contest, the song was released on download and cd.It reached number 2 in Sweden, number 19 in Finland, number 20 in Norway and 138 in the UK. Really UK..138? The UK position was, again, probably due to myself and a few more gays.

One thing that has surprised me the most is the lack of drag queens that have failed to incorporate this song into their routine. A lovely dress, blonde wig and a few scantily clad male dancers and hey presto, you have the start of a perfect nights entertainment.

I hope you have enjoyed my Eurovision Special as much as I have enjoyed looking back at the contest and writing about it. I've liked it so much, I have decided not to end on this edition of my blog.
Tune in next time when I will highlight my favourite three entries for this years Eurovision.

Until next time, I bid thee farewell.