Eurovision 2010: Germany
Just because the BBC Eurovision website trumpets Germany’s entry being ‘a favourite with the bookies’ doesn’t necessarily make it so.
Which bookies do they mean? What snapshot in time are we relying on for that fact? Might things change tomorrow? Indeed, have things changed since the html page was uploaded to the web server?
Having done a bit of digging I can see that today at least (Wednesday 14 April 2010) and according to William Hill.com, Germany is indeed occupying a good place in the leader board – closely followed by Azerbaijan.
I’ve not heard Azerbaijan’s song as yet. I trust it’s something to look forward to. Still, a spot of basic research does seem to confirm that Germany’s song Satellite sung by Lena is a popular number.
If bets are a reliable popularity indicator, then that popularity must surely be deserved.
Combining a sound reminiscent of Lou Bega’s Mambo No.5, Lena’s Duffy-esque delivery exploits the twangy European english we’re usually left with when the artist can’t carry off an American accent.
It’s a spectacular illustration of ruthlessly effecient songwriting. Less than a second after the song has started up, the melody from the chorus is heard in an instrumental line in the backing track, subtly indicating the simplicity of the song – its that melodic idea which underpins the entire track.
A couple of seconds later and a repeat of the opening vocal line is enhanced with an unexpected but delicious descending base line effortlessly committing the listener to three minutes of music they know they’d quite like to go on for longer. Before 38 seconds is up, we’re into the chorus.
The lyrics are convincing because they’re telling a story instead of series of nauseating platitudes about making the world a better place. All of this is delivered by a fresh-faced utterly gorgeous looking singer who you’d want to have as your groovy younger sister.
Clearly the work of people who know about songwriting.
And so they should. Writing partnership Julie Frost and John Gordon have a pedigree. Gordon (represented by EMI) has a writing history in various countries in Europe. According to John Gordon’s EMI profile page, Chicago-based Frost has worked with a number of US stars. Not only that, the audio teaser section of producing team Valicon, offers an impressive array of plausible songs too. This is no fly by night operation by any means.
As one of the ‘big four’ countries, Germany doesn’t need to qualify for entry in the Eurovision final. If the efforts other members of the ‘big four’ (the UK, France and Spain) may yet again illicit calls for the rules on qualification to be changed, Germany will deservedly escape them. And if Germany actually win the contest it will be a reassuring return to the contest being about the song rather than the TV presentation.
We can but hope.