It is the one event of the year where fetish men indulge their camp side and join with the ‘civilian’ non leather/rubber/sports/puppy/bear gay men in private parties or singing together in their local queer bars (There is even a Spanish gay fetish bar in Gran Canaria called ‘Wunderbar’ that only plays Eurovision songs on its big screens all year long,,,night after night 365 days 24/7.
For those readers of AT on other Continents ie Europe and Australasia that do not know the event held every May (Pandemic’s allowing) this is a massive live broadcast event from a different City each year attracting 600 million viewers annually. In the last two decades, it has consistently ranked among the most-watched live entertainment TV broadcasts worldwide, outside of sporting events. The Super Bowl is peanuts in viewing figures compared to Eurovision! The contest is now so big with so many entrants that they have 2 semi-finals the preceding week. The most notable winners are of course Abba with Waterloo in 1974, the biggest selling Eurovision song of all time is Save Your Kisses For me by the Brotherhood Of Man and the most famous song entry of all is the all-time classic written especially for the contest and since copied by almost every living singer ‘Volare or Nel blu, dipinto di blu” (The only Eurovision song to become a massive number one on the Billboard USA chart. Many other music stars have competed over the years including Celine Dion, Olivia Newton-John, Bonnie Tyler, Sir Cliff Richard, Lulu, Enya, Micahel Ball, Bucks Fizz, Baccara, Englebert Humperdinck, Jedward, Tatu, Dana, Blue and a singing turkey!. Half time shows have featured Madonna, Justin Timberlake, Aqua and Riverdance. In 2020 due to the pandemic the gay fetish world held their own online contest repeated again this year – see other articles on this website won by a couple of very entertaining geared up French fetish puppies.
1) After World War 2 it was decided that something was needed to bring Europe together again. The first of the 64 contests was in 1956 adapted from the San Remo Music festival which started five years earlier in ’51. So in fact it could be claimed that this is it’s 70th Anniversary.
2) Originally countries had two songs in each year’s contest.
3) It has regularly allowed in countries outside of Europe including Israel, Cyprus, Armenia even Morocco and most recently Australia. Also, countries only part in Europe such as Turkey, Russia, Georgia and Azerbaijan have been included. Tunisia withdrew and both Egypt and Libya have been invited but as yet have not taken part.
4) If Australia does ever win (It has come second) they will NOT host the following year as it will be co-hosted in Europe due to the cost to the other entrants.
5) The tradition of the previous year’s winning country hosting the next event has only been broken five times – every time due to the cost of running Eurovision. Four times the United Kingdom took on the extra host duties for Netherlands, France, Monaco and Luxembourg. The Dutch also took it on once for Israel.
6) Songs could be sung in any language up until 1977 when it was changed too only be in their native tongue. This is of course three years after Swedish entry Abba won singing in English. If the rules had been changed earlier, they may not have won and therefore no “Dancing Queen”, No Musical, No Movies etc.
7) “Waterloo” was Abba’s third attempt at Eurovision the first two times they never made it past the Swedish heat most notably not getting picked for what has become their well-known tune ‘Ring Ring’ which did sell Internationally and bigger than the eventual chosen song.
8) Two losing songs have gone on to be Number One singles – Cliff’s “Congratulations” and more stunningly the gay anthem Gina G’s “Ooh Aah Just a Little Bit”. Gina’s song became a massive International hit without winning Eurovision (because it’s damn good) it is the only losing song to make the Billboard top 20 in the States and it went on to win a Grammy Nomination.
9) Countries can use singers of any nationality, of course, Both Olivia and Gina G are Australian, Cliff was born in India, Katrina & The Waves America, Celine Dion Canada.
10) Ireland are the kings of Eurovision winning it a whopping 7 times starting with Dana’s All Kinds Of Everything.The UK has won five times but they have come runner up a whopping 15 other times twice by just one point namely Scott Fitzgerald to Celine Dion and “Congratulations” by Sir Cliff to some Spanish nonsense called “La La La”. Then it’s a massive jump down to 4 times runner up for each of Ireland, Germany and Spain. It is even tougher on little Malta who has come second twice and third twice but has never won. Neither Ireland or the UK has won it since the turn of the Millenium.
11) Each act is allowed a maximum of six performers on stage and no live animals (just like the best gay porn). The order is not done as many think by ballot but it is decided by the producers so as songs which sound similar are not next to each other. Songs are balloted either into part one or part two of the show that is the only element of chance.
12) Miss Dion representing Switzerland stormed to the trophy but it was not her breakthrough as it was four years before she had her first international hit with “Where Does My Heart Beat Now” & a clear decade before she set sail on Titanic
13) Abba, of course, took over the world as the most successful act to come from Eurovision but “Waterloo” only made it to number 6 in the States and they only had 4 more Top 10 songs there all with years in between and massively outsold by other European stars such as Aha, Nena, the Singing Nun and Roxette.
14) The biggest selling Eurovision song ever is in fact Brotherhood Of Man’s “Save Your Kisses For Me” it was also the most popular ever with all juries. It charted in every territory (which Abba didn’t) and was the first to get a Platinum disc which “Waterloo” also did not achieve. The poorest selling winner was Marie N’s 2002 trophy grabber which charted absolutely nowhere.
15) The first 19 years of the contest was always won by soloists (with one Duo). In 1974 Abba became the first group to win and ushered in the ‘Group era’ followed immediately by Teach-In, Brotherhood Of Man, Milk & Honey, Izhar Cohen & The AlphaBeta and Bucks Fizz.
16) Famously in 1969, there was a 4-way draw with the lowest point win ever just 18. Lulu with “Boom Bang a Bang” was one of the quartet but it was the only one that became an International hit. The system was changed thereafter to take into account the number of 12 or 10 points etc but there has only been one other draw since decided this way in 1991 when France and Sweden tied. In 1969 it took 18 points to win but in 2017 it took an incredible 758 points to get the same trophy.
17) Twenty Four countries have never won so come on Ireland share it around a bit. Two of the Irish wins were by Johnny Logan for “What’s Another Year” & “Hold Me Now” but he did not stop there, winning again in ’92 as the writer of “Why Me”. Three people have won the contest twice only Johnny has a hat trick. San Marino’s highest position ever was 24th
18) In 2016 35 of the 41 entries were sung in English. Of the last 20 wins, 16 have been in English and the all-time score to date across the 66 contests are 33 wins in English to 37 wins for every other European language put together.
19) Nicole was Germany’s biggest winner with “A Little Peace” in ’82. She wowed the audience at the reprise by singing every part of the song in a different European language it went on to sell very well right across the Continent.
20) The current system is 50% the public and 50% the juries which is very controversial; in 2016 Russia won the Juries over and Australia won the public but the win was given to the Ukraine – the public is always more responsive to politics than the juries. The UK entry in 2015 by Lucie Jones came 10th with the juries but an almost last with the public vote which was thought to be the high point of political voting…and then came Brexit!.
THIS YEARS EUROVISION SONG CONTEST IS COMING FROM ROTTERDAM, NETHERLANDS (fingers crossed) ON MAY 22nd