14 May 2007

The Eurovision Song Contest 1956-2007

As A Dodo regrets to inform its readers that the following obituary for the much-loved Eurovision song contest was compiled for us by our popular music correspondent, who has now been invited to make use of the pearl-handled revolver we gave her or, even worse, apply to be Britain's entry in next year's competition.

The Eurovision Song Contest has met its Waterloo, warbling its last “boom-bang-a-le-boop-boop “ and fielding its final trans-gendered contestant dolled up in the kind of spangly costume not seen since Space 1999, after tactical voting saw Serbia snatch victory from more deserving musical talent ... and Britain’s Scooch.

The Eurovision Song Contest was born in the post-war years to foster European co-operation and unite a continent torn asunder by the First World War (started after Bosnian would be pop-idol Gavrilo "the artist formely known as" Princip assassinated Austria's Arch Duke Franz Ferdinand over the rights to their single "Take Me Out" [might need checking]) and the Second World War (when Germany and Britain fell out again over Nena's failure to use a razor and/or depilatory cream before making her video for "99 Luftballons" [Hmm ... might need checking too]).

It was in 1956 that Eurovision first chose to abandon the continent's vast musical heritage and take up the mittel-European oompah-oompah beat and the nonsensically onomatopoeic lyric in a seven-nation tussle in Switzerland – a contest won by the Swiss (thanks to strong support from a grateful German jury) with their enchanting rock ‘n’ yodel number “The Laughing Gnomes of Zurich”.

In its early years, winners of the Eurovision Song Contest were guaranteed to go on to even greater success as mature, ground-breaking songwriters and performers. The cream of popular musicians fought to take part in the contest with, for example, The Beatles proudly representing their country in 1969 with “All You Need Is Boom-Bang-A-Le-Boop-Boop Ob-La-Di, Love”. Although, sadly, they finished second to France who romped home with Jacques Brel’s up-tempo number “La Vie Est Mort” – thanks to douze points from his home country Belgium, and most of the permanently depressed Scandinavian nations. [Actually, I'm not too sure about this bit either]

Slowly, the sweet music of a harmonious musical competition began to be drowned out. The complex harmonies, sublime melodies and profound lyrical subtexts of the early Eurovision performers soon gave way to simple Euro-disco rhythms, grating vocals and inane choruses lifted from Esperanto greetings cards. Baltic states and former Soviet satellites shared out their votes in a collective fashion, Greece and Cyprus supported each other through thick and thin and everyone voted for Ireland time and time again in order to avoid the crippling financial burden of hosting the contest.

It was in Helsinki, however, that the once-great competition was finally reduced to a mockery. Throughout the evening, plucky Western European band after plucky Western European band was felled in its prime by the massed texted votes of the Eastern Voting Bloc. Even Scooch, Britain’s plucky band of crapck musicians, cunningly disguised as a bunch of Butlins redcoats dressed up as cabin stewards on Air Latex, received nul points after nul points, leaving Serbia to snatch the laurel crown. Thus was the death knell sounded (in the wrong key) and so Eurovision was no more.

The Eurovision Song Contest will be buried at the European Broadcasting Union Church of St Jude the Pointless. The service will be conducted by two perma-tanned celebrities you’ve never heard of, with a mocking audio commentary on their performance provided by the Reverend Wogan. The congregation will sing Hymn number 278 "Oobie-Shalala-Bim-Bam-Bom-De-Doo-Doo-Doo-De-Dah-Dah-Dah-
Awopbopaloobop-Doobie-Tra-la-la", accompanied by Mr Harris on the Church Souzaphone..

The Eurovison Song Contest is survived by Coldplay, U2, James Blunt, ringtones, advertising jingles, singing in the shower and laryngitis.

1 Comment:

Lionel said...

Esperanto is a beautiful language too and not only for postcards.
Don't be so cynical and discover some songs here :
Vinil Kosmo