The Highs and Lows of the U.K. in Eurovision

The United Kingdom first entered Eurovision in 1957 and has been a permanent fixture ever since. It has taken home the crown five times in its history

Much beloved and revered, Sandie Shaw took the top prize in 1967 with “Puppet on a String”. One of the most commercially successful female singers in Britain, she was known for singing barefoot, and people thought it was a gimmick. It was really because she had size 7 feet but could only find size 6 shoes, so she took them off when she sang. She was very much a 60s icon and deservedly so.

Lulu is another British household name. She is one of those celebrities who shows up in every variety and game show there is. You may know her voice from a couple of movie theme tunes: “To Sir, With Love” and “The Man with the Golden Gun”. Well, two years later in 1969, she gained Eurovision glory with “Boom Bang-a-Bang”.

This win from 1976 is a much debated one. The Brotherhood of Man’s song “Save Your Kisses for Me” provides an interesting twist at end.

You see, the subject of the song is the singer’s niece! Ah!

That leaves two camps. Is it a song sung by a devoted and loving aunt or uncle? Or is it a song sung by a pervy aunt or uncle? The fight has been continuing for almost 40 years. This is the Eurovision War of the Roses, folks. Which side are you on?

Next, Bucks Fizz and their less controversial tune of “Making Your Mind Up” struck the viewers’ hearts in 1981.  I am sure the dance routine involving the skirt ripping helped their cause too.  At least, that’s what most people seem to remember about the performance.

Katrina and the Waves, yes the “Walking on Sunshine” people, captured the title in 1997 with “Love, Shine a Light”. At least they finally made a song that makes Wagner’s Ring Cycle sound less appealing.  (My apologies, but, being a child of the 80s, “Walking on Sunshine” was an overplayed craptastrophy that, to this day, still sends me into eye twitches and aneurysms.)

I really hate to do this, but with the highlights have to come the lowlights.

The most infamous finish was the “nul points” Jemini received in 2003 for “Cry Baby”. By most accounts, the reason for this poor showing was Jemini’s performance being off-key, a general anti-British feeling for their involvement in the second Iraq war, and not having the right type of song for the contest.

Sometimes the judging is just unfair.  Andy Abraham came in last in 2005 with “Even If,” and I am still scratching my head why.

Sometimes, the song and performance is just plain awful. Come listen to Josh Dubovie’s 80s throwback last place finish in 2010. The out-of-tune background vocals add that miserable touch that leave you running to the bathroom with the dry heaves.

I could keep loading videos and have you miss important deadlines at work all day, but I will leave it here. Remember Saturday is the big day in Vienna. It starts at 9:00 PM Central European Summer Time. What does that mean in the States? If you are on the East Coast, that’s six hours behind, so it starts at 3:00 PM. That’s 2:00 PM in my neck of the woods. I even did the math. No excuses. Have fun!

7 thoughts on “The Highs and Lows of the U.K. in Eurovision

  1. lets hope they sing in tune on saturday night and their clothes light up ! I don’t mind not winning but I hate it when we embarrass ourselves with a rubbish performance.

    Liked by 1 person

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