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All Kinds Of Everything for Eurovision

The build-up to the 57th Eurovision Song Contest in Baku

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Back in my hotel.
Keith Mills
akoe07

Once I heard the dreadful result I decided to avoid the Winners Press Conference. I'd seen enough Eastern European back slapping for one day.there's really only one story in town and that's the Eastern European walkover. the majority of them may have deserved to qualify and I think Latvia and Hungary may well have made it on Western rather than Eastern votes, but this result stinks.

No one can tell me that the best ten songs or performances made it. Neighbourly voting which has always been a problem in the contest, but it has now gone beyond a joke.

I have a ticket for the After Show party but I see nothing to celebrate. I think I might make an early departure from Helsinki. If as I suspect Ukraine wins on Saturday then I see think the end of the contest at least in anything like it's current format is near.



Feel the same

(Anonymous)
Loved it , followed it, annoyed my wife with it, even entered it. I did not destroy it but i watched its destruction. Its become a kitsch balkan love in.

who really wants to blow there holiday money in Kiev next year on the back of a sad old tranny. those that laugh at the joke will have long forgotten it. Us that soar on molitva to eres tu to une arbe une rue will despair.

Its time for an internet petition to the change this crap.

(Deleted comment)

DON'T YOU PEOPLE GET IT?

(Anonymous)
In the West we vote for our own songs but also those we like from countries in the East. In the East they vote for their own. That's it!

spot on keith. it's taking the fun out of the event - we all have diappointments (me UK) and I'm sure you for Ireland but the andorra failure was a disgrace, cyprus was poor as well. I'm actually getting to the point with the likes of Turkey and Moldova that they should be given a bye - then we wouldn't have to listen o some of the tired tunelss crap that they poor out on a fairly regular basis. Georgia? don't get me started. keep your chin up..

I think Georgia is the best song this year. Honestly. Personally voted for it (only for it) and I have no sentiments for the country as such at all.

(no subject) (Anonymous) Expand
I think it's not that important who's in the finals, I am only interested if the show is entertaining, and looking good so far. I hope some new country wins on Sat, some outside the 'blocks'. Or, would be happy to return to Helsinki too :)

These horrible results may be the best thing to happen to this contest; they will lead to much-needed reforms.

The West should just boycott it next year and let the East finance it.

Hear Hear Hear (Anonymous) Expand
(no subject) (Anonymous) Expand

Semi-final

(Anonymous)
I think we are all a bit shocked here too! The semi did not come across well on TV; no atmosphere, camera shots showing empty seats and some rotten performances. Some countries (Switzerland and Cyprus especially) were grim and didn't deserve to qualify. I feel that Andorra, Netherlands and Malta shoudl have gone through - great performances. Instead we are left with Timberlake-lite from Turkey and another shoe-in for Macedonia. A few beers on Saturday for me - especially if the man-in-a-frock looks like winning!!

Big, big thanks for all the reports this week; I've been hooked and have enjoyed every minute.

David Bridgman

Eastern Block!

(Anonymous)
Keith, I'm following this contest since the 1960's and although I can see your point here, I actually picked out 7 of the 10 qualifiers tonight. Surpises for me where Gerogia & Bulgaria which both sounded dreadful on TV. Best vocals tonight were, Serbia, Moldova, Hungary, Macedonia, Slovenia, Albania, Norway & Latvia. Andorra sounded absolutely dreadful as did Cyprus, Bulgaria, Croatia & Switzerland. Can most countries not send performers who can actually sing live??? I am convinced that Saturdays final will be between Latvia & Ukraine. Picked out the Ulranian song from the very first time I heard it. I can't say I like it BUT it is instantly memorable & catchy, so much so that my 5 year old son kept asking me to play it for him over & over again. the YouTube of the Ukranian rehearsal looked excellent and faultless too.Latvia was so melodic tonight, it was like a breath of fresh air after some of the rubbish and bad singing I'd had to endure for the previous 2 hours. Norway deserved a place in the final, well sung, well performed. Lets enjoy Saturday night, I'm sure it will be excellent no matter who wins.

Re: Eastern Block!

(Anonymous)
The performance for Norway looked and sounded OK, but they needed a better SONG. Likewise for the Netherlands. Edsilia just couldn't pull off a Tina Karol (carry an ordinary song across the finish line). Most of the other western failures came for poor vocals as you admit. Bulgaria sounded different than anything. Maybe Georgia shouldn't have qualified, but who in the west really got robbed (a great performance AND a great song AND didn't qualify)? Nobody.

I'm so sad... Andorra... Oh my good... Happy because Hungary, but really very dissapointed with this, anyone could tell me what the hell is doing Macedonia in the final? I undesrtand Keith's reaction, I am in the same mood...

After seeing the comments on Peters latest blog report....and this western european strop seems a bit much to me to be honest (and I'm speaking as an Irishman!). As I was watching the semi with my girlfriend, my gut feeling was that there were going to be a considerable number of countries disappointed to be left out (hence the booing in my opinion ie. 18 countries out, 10 left in. Will the cheering or the booing win out?), simply because almost every country gave it a decent shot.

Admittedly I didn't see either Georgia or Macedonia making it, but in my opinion no one can argue with Belarus, Slovenia, Hungary, Latvia, Serbia, Turkey or Moldova making it. I seem to be in the minority as regards Andorra, cos I'm delighted it didn't make it (the last thing we need is another Simple Plan...).

To me a lot Eastern European / former Soviet states (call them what you will) have caught up with the West in terms of contemporary music & basically have stolen our thunder, and now we want our ball back? I don't buy into it personally. Did anyone see Estonia storming into the final because they have good neighbours? They have as much reason to be disappointed as Holland in my eyes. Have we forgotten that Finland & Greece have won it recently?? So much for a conspiracy! And Keith, I have a lot of admiration for what you do, but I'm sorry, going back to the hotel in a huff over the results ain't what journalistic integrity is about.

Congrats to the semi-final qualifiers, with top marks to Moldova and in particular Hungary for having the guts to reply purely on the ability of the singer to pull them through. So much for needing lots of gimmicks in present-day Eurovision! Roll on the final.

Estonia don't have many friends in the former SSR's but they'll give votes for Russia and Co. due to large Russian population now living there.

(no subject) (Anonymous) Expand
I really do think we should wait to see the scoreboards before making any judgements.

Let's remember that ALL of the 10 were seen as deserving of qualifying beforehand - the problem was, 28 songs, maybe 18 potential qualifiers - 8 had to miss out !

We ought to see who the Western countries voted for before we decide it has all gone to the dogs. I am personally gutted about Andorra and Switzerland, but am thrilled Moldova made it through.

BenUKFR

I'm not really sure what you are dissapointed at? Western countries failed to produce decent music and the best songs won the ticket to the final. Switzerland and Andorra came up with very weak vocal performances and songs from Iceland and Netherlands were not the same after the switch to english version. Eastern countries offered great ethnical sound in their original languages and any other result wouldn't be fair. As a reporter from the competition you should stay objective and be able to see things as they are, crying over neighbours voting for each other is under any decent level for a journalist, this is populist crap from western people who in majority also voted for eastern songs ofcouse.

outraged!,

(Anonymous)
I am totally outraged! No Cyprus? No Netherlands? No Andora? No Switzerland? instead 3 ex yugoslavian and 4 ex soviet! That leaves 3 spots for the rest 21 countries? what the hell! If Cyprus song was sung for any ex yugo or ex soviet it would have sailed to the final. That says it all.

I think if 6-7 western and med. countries should drop out to make a statement. in my opinion non of: Fyrom Slovenia Georgia Moldova deserved to qualify

Re: outraged!,

(Anonymous)
Slovenia had the best vocal performance of the night. How can you even compare it to the crap that was offered by Switzerland.

Re: outraged!, (Anonymous) Expand
Re: outraged!, (Anonymous) Expand
Eastern block, Eastern block. All right. What is this raving all about? The last country to win was Finland and before that it was Greece. Do they belong to the Eastern block? Or do you think that a weak vocal performance done by Swiss should actually qualify? There are about 50% of the Western countries in ESC, so I think everyone should calm down. Eastern countries brought lots of diversity to the contest making it more "user friendly" and not some ABBA-fans friendly. It's time to move on and it's time to enjoy ESC as it is, I think.

Don't get this

(Anonymous)
I am from the uK and voted for three Eastern countries - Hungary, serbia and georgia. Most Western countries put in bad songs


Re: Don't get this

(Anonymous)
I hoped for Iceland, Holland, Cyprus, Austria and Hungary in the final. Its really disappointing, especially Turkey was just terrible. I really hope they are going to change the contest, otherwise it's just no longer fun watching.

Thanks for this site; its great work.

Re: Don't get this (Anonymous) Expand
Re: Don't get this (Anonymous) Expand
First of all thanks guys for all your reports and photos...I've been reading you since last year and although I disagree most times with your views, I find your site extremely informative,live and quite alternative compared to other totally "comme il faut" ones!
Now, I totally agree with about the disgusting result of this year's Semi and I hope some serious action will be taken to avoid similar results in the future-if countries will continue to participate in the next years or finally withdraw, as very wisely Italy did many years ago.

What action? Will the western countries finally provide good songs?

(no subject) (Anonymous) Expand
(no subject) (Anonymous) Expand
(no subject) (Anonymous) Expand