EUROVISION 2019: One last awesome hurrah

You thought the spectacle of Eurovision 2019 was over, buckos? GUESS AGAIN!

We cannot end without this incredible tribute to this year’s finals put together in METICULOUS detail by Alexandro Kroger..he posted this incredible labor of love on YouTube today, and everyone needs to see it!  We present the glory of…LEGO EUROVISION 2019!

VIRAL VIDEO: JACK’S BACK, BABY!!!

With very little fanfare or early notice to both his fans and the fans of the late, lamented Australia’s Got Talent, 2011 winner Jack Vidgen appeared unexpectedly as an auditionee during the blind auditions of The Voice Australia last week….and listen to the reaction of the fans…and of three of the four judges (poor Boy George had no idea WHO he was watching) on the show. Jack has never hidden WHY he left the business abruptly at age 17, but for the first time, he described it in detail…and OMG if this young man with the truly heaven-sent golden voice is ready for a comeback, then BRING IT ON BABY!  Watch the entire clip below…enjoy!

PODCAST: “The Kirkham Report” Special – 2019 Eurovision Grand Finals!

“The Kirkham Report” Special – 2019 Eurovision Grand Finals!

“The Kirkham Report” takes over the “Subject:CINEMA” feed for a special – coverage of the Grand Final of the 2019 Eurovision Song Contest! Join TC as he talks about each entry, the controversies, his opinions of each performance, each song, and what needs to be done to make Eurovision a success in the USA! Plus his ideas about the upcoming “American Song Contest” announced last Thursday!

COMMUNICATE WITH US! We want to hear from YOU!
Email – subjectcinema@pnrnetworks.com  <—NEW ADDRESS
Voicemail – TOLL FREE – call 888-269-9443
Speakpipe – https://www.speakpipe.com/SubjectCINEMA

Patreon Friends -join up now! We Need YOU! http://patreon.com/PNRNetworks

Subject:CINEMA App – NOW AVAILABLE!! YAY! Get your FREE app for Android RIGHT HERE!  iOS and Amazon Apps coming soon! Filled with great contacts and access to ALL FOUR S:C shows – Subject:CINEMA, Front Row Five And Ten, Three Minute Weekend, and Tuesday Digidex!

SPECIAL NOTE: When listening to PNRNetworks shows on ANY platform, don’t forget to LIKE them, Tweet them, and use the notification bell on YouTube – it helps our listenerships grow!!! PLEASE BE SURE TO LEAVE COMMENTS TOO!

NOTICE! NOTICE! NOTICE! NOTICE! NOTICE!

Patreon Patrons get THREE EXCLUSIVE podcast series at the $5/above level – Kaiju Korner, Subject:CINEMA’s Freeze Frame, and Subject:CINEMA’s Film Flash – and if you want to hear all of them (and we hope you do, too!), you MUST be a Patreon Patron at the $5 or above! If you do not become a Patron, you WILL NOT be able to listen to these great new shows – they WILL NOT be available on our regular outlets! Be sure to join as a Patron today so you don’t miss out! http://patreon.com/PNRNetworks

A CALL TO ARMS! SAVE THE INTERNET! IT’S NOT TOO LATE! The European Union HAS NOW enacted two new laws that will forever cripple the internet as it now operates, and we’re NOT exaggerating – the implementation of Articles 11 and 13 will DESTROY YouTube and other video services, will virtually outlaw all forms of parody including the beloved meme, could put THOUSANDS of podcasters (including US) out of business, and more! Article 13 will force anyone who links to a EU website to pay a fee to do so…even though that makes absolutely NO SENSE!  You MUST step up NOW to do your part! DO NOT REMAIN SILENT! If you do, the internet you love will soon cease to exist!  Go to http://dontbreakthe.net to sign up for updates and give you the info you need to FIGHT BACK!  DON’T DELAY!!!! #SAVETHEINTERNET

Please Subscribe To SUBJECT:Cinema!
iTunes | Google Play | iHeartRadio | Stitcher |TuneIn | Roku | RSS

SOCIAL MEDIA
Facebook
Twitter
YouTube
Pinterest
Tumblr

PNRNetworks Shows
Subject:CINEMA
Platinum Roses’ Garden (seasonal)
Cavebabble
Three Minute Weekend
Front Row Five And Ten
Tuesday Digidex
Catastrophe Vortex
Comic Grotto
Ring Around The Rosie
The Kirkham Report
Ant B’s Nerd Grotto

PNRNetworks sites
eCinemaOne
eCinemaBoston
Platinum Roses’ Garden
Cavebabble
Catastrophe Vortex
The Kirkham Report
Planet BiblioMusica
Comic Grotto
Ring Around The Rosie
PNRNetworks Original Production: Manhattan Hammerdown – As It Happened
PNRNetworks Original Production: War Of The Worlds 2018

BREAKING: The Netherlands’ “Arcade” takes Eurovision crown

Apologies to anyone who came by looking for our liveblog for today’s Eurovision finals; we were having severe technical difficulties most of the show, and were unable to get a second machine up without totally knocking the first offline. I wholeheartedly apologize, and this wouldn’t have happened if they had secured a US outlet in time for the finals, damn you Logo TV for dropping it!

It was damn close, but in the end, “Arcade” by Duncan Laurence of The Netherlands sprung ahead of Sweden’s John Lundvik and his song “Too Late For Love” in the televoting to take the 2019 Eurovision Song Contest crown. Sweden, who was leading at the end of the jury vote announcement, only managed a paltry 63 points from the televoting – a shocker, since it was one of the fan favorites, and fell to sixth place over all. Mahood‘s “Soldi” from Italy took second, while Russia’s Sergey Lazarev took third overall with his fiery ballad “Scream“. Switzerland and Norway rounded out the top five.

My personal #1 pick, North Macedonia’s entry, “Proud” by Tamara Todevska was in the runner-up slot at the end of the jury voting, but also didn’t do well with the televote, but still managed the country’s best ever finish in the contest, coming in eighth. Ditto for Serhat‘s jaunty and adorable “Say Na Na Na” which gave San Marino it’s first top twenty spot in the finals at #20.

I’ll have a complete run down of the show up on Sunday, so stay tuned! And we’ll see you next year, likely in Amsterdam!

LIVEBLOG: EuroVision Song Contest, Semi Final 2 – May 16 2019

Hi all – TC here, and I’ll be here starting at 3 PM US ET/12 PM US PT with live coverage of the second semi-final of the 2019 Eurovision Song Contest!  It’s my first time doing a live blog during the show, and it should be fun!

Here’s what to remember: 1) the live blog is only here at http://ecinemaone.com – the transcript of the live comments will be posted later to The Kirkham Report and Planet BiblioMusica, so if you want to see what i’m doing live, eCO is where to be! 2) newest comments will be on the bottom of the blog; hit ‘refresh’ to see the latest update!

Now for preshow commentary…..heh heh…

2:19 PM

Today’s semifinal is chock full of songs that deserve to go through, unlike Tuesday’s semi-final, which had most of the out and out CRAP in it, most of which we got rid of…thank goodness…

Now the problem is that there’s so MUCH that’s good, some favorites are going to get left behind. After checking out the video performances, and some of the videos from last nights dress rehearsal where the jury scores the semi-finals, I’m fairly confident that there are five countries that are pretty much a lock to get through to the Grand Final, and they are….drum roll….Switzerland, Malta, Albania, The Netherlands, and North Macedonia. Two others have about a 90% chance to get through – fan favorites Sweden and Azerbajian (the jury support may NOT be there as strong as the fans think it is on these two, if reactions from the dress rehearsal are an indication…but the televote will be HUGE for both of these tunes). And two more are edging 80-90% chance to get through – Armenia and Russia. Which leaves only ONE likely undetermined slot, barring a surprise upset (well to their fans, not to me one bit), as we had on Tuesday with fan favorites (but GOD AWFUL) Portugal and Belgium getting left behind along with the exquisite Hungary also getting left behind, most likely in favor of the turd from Iceland or the ‘meh’ from Czech Republic. The likely contenders for that tenth spot, and also potential spoilers for one or two if the above, are Denmark, Norway, Croatia, Moldova, Romania, Ireland, and Austria. I think there’s little chance for Latvia or Lithuania; both are good songs, but they simply don’t have the power – or fan support – the rest have.

If there’s going to be a MAJOR shock, it will be one or more of the fan power favorites – Malta, Switzerland, The Netherlands, Sweden, and Azerbaijan – getting the boot in favor of an unexpected choice. To be honest, I wouldn’t have a problem with any of the latter three getting bumped, I know they have huge fan support, and all are decent songs, but I personally think they are WAY overrated…we shall see, we’ll  know in just about 2.5 hours from now…heh heh heh…

3:00 PM

We are LIVE with Eurovision Semi FInal coverage! Starting with a recap of Tuesday’s semi final…and I”m having trouble staying connected again…arrgh…

Hosts are up, quality is SHIT…what the hell is going on…I am really getting PISSED OFF now…

Getting started – up first is Armenia, Srbuk, “Walking Out” – postcard is kinda weird..really weird…this girl is the REAL DEAL…she can match the vocal on the video and recording 100 percent.  Not crazy about the staging, though…this is one of the best songs of the entire contest this year, it better get through…she is AWESOME! The crowd seems into it as well, in a major way…

Next Up is Ireland, Sarah McTernan, “22”…again, very strange postcard…I hope this isn’t a trend…Good God I LOVE her voice…I wish the song was a tad better…staging is interesting, looks like a malt shop…I have this horrible feeling she’s going to miss the cut because of the song but I have a feeling she’s going to be a household name soon, that voice is GOLD…

Next up is Moldova, Ana Obobescu, “Stay”…OK, finally, a fun, kicky postcard to kick things off…oh. wow..I love the sand artist on stage with her…that’s original and very cool. incredible work…I love Ana’s voice as well. The passion of this song is really coming through…this staging absolutely ROCKS from beginning to end..best staging so far this year…WOW…she may have just pushed herself into real contention…

Next up, fan favorite Luca Hanni, from Switzerland, “She Got Me”…postcard fits his style very well…it doesn’t hurt that he’s extremely hunky for the ladies, who just love him…crowd reaction is huge…back to the camera tricks for staging, a la Lake Malawi on Tuesday…Damn, he is ON tonight…easy to see why he’s one of the favorites…great vocal, excellent dancing…he’s a true whole package, that’s for sure…yeah, he’s definitely on the way to the Finals on Saturday for SURE…

Next up Latvia, Carousel, “That Night”….postcard only enhances the fact that their guitarist is a dead ringer for Megadeth’s Dave Mustaine…nice pleasant staging…her voice is very beautiful, the song reminds me of a 1960s folk song…the performance is beautiful…they could be this year’s Serbia, who landed in the finals after a superb live performance of another folk song from their country…we’ll see..

Next up is Romania, Ester Peony, “On A Sunday”…postcard reminds me of a music box, fits her beautifully…staging is attempting to partially emulate the very weird but stylish video…I keep repeating myself, but I LOVE Ester’s voice, she’s got some incredible power behind it…I really love this, but I love the song, so i’m kinda biased.. i’m not sure it will make it through…

Host stuff now…Lucy and Assi plugging voting…Assi is now with Conchita Wurst…interesting look…hmmm…we’ll leave it at that…now Lucy is with Luca Hanni…

Next up is Denmark, Leonora, “Love Is Forever” – ballet postcard…wouldn’t figure skaters have been more appropriate? I mean she was a national champion in that…I’m just not sure about this song…I like it, but the song and the staging seem out of the 1970s or 1980s…the fans love her, though, no doubt about that…oh, she axtually has to CLIMB the ladder here…it came down to her level at the national final…the song is just too cutsy for it’s own good, but it’s fun too..,

Next up is Sweden, John Lundvik , rabid fan favorite “Too Late For Love”…roller blades and skateboards in the postcard…love it…this is a good song but I don’t get the rabid fan following it has…it’s nice enough, but nothing outstanding about it. John’s an outstanding vocalist, though…he’s gonna be someone I’m gonna be keeping an eye on, much like Michael Schulte from last year…staging is kind of dull, relying on light pulsation…I have to say though, he’s nailing the vocal spot on…he’s definitely a dynamic performer…it’s just this song that doesn’t do much for me. It’ going to go through, though. Performance is top notch…

Next up is Austria, Paenda, “Limits”…love the swingey, peppy postcard…I wish the song had that kind of energy…very stark staging for this lush ballad…but it’s not working for me…she needs SOMETHING to really kick it, and it’s just not happening. It’s a pretty song, but it’s just not quite right…her vocal is also weaker here than in the video except during the chorus…I’m sorry, I know it has it’s fans, but this song just puts me to sleep…and her performance isn’t doing anything for me either…

Next up, Croatia, Roko, “The Dream” – Postcard is pleasant, but nothing more. DOesn’t fit his song at all, but then again, that’s the point to some extent. He’s wearing the damn wings again…oh wait a moment maybe not…it’s part of the video. I love this song, but it doesn’t have much support out there, which is a shame…he’s got power in his voice that reminds me of Poland’s Michel Szpak; he’s also got a range that no one else here seems to have, springing from octave to octave, and that’s not easy.  Ok, now he’s put the wings on…they’re gold this time. I wish he was going to have a shot at the gold, but fans are indifferent, I fear he’s going to be left on the sidelines…pity, he’s an incredible performer…

Next up, Malta, Michela, “Chameleon” – big fan favorite. Postcard is dull compared to her video for the song…not fond of the white outfit, I think they…oh wait a minute…the sleeves are transparent….ok, that’s different…the dancers add to it considerably… this is a huge fan favorite, and it’s really fun too. Michela is going to go a long way in the future I bet. Staging is pretty good, lights, dancers, backvideo…winner in that department…

Next up is Lithuania, Jurij Veklenco, “Run With The Lions”…ok, skydiving postcard, that’s original and different…this song is definitely good…very pleasant. He has an incredible range. I fear the song is not enough to get to the finals. He isn’t able to let loose like I think he might be able to do because the song isn’t right for it, and that is going to hurt his chances…staging is also deadly dull compared to the last couple of songs…

Now some host banter…Lucy is with Sara McTernan from Ireland…next we have Bar with John Lundvik of Sweden…

Next Up is Russia, Sergey Lazarev, “Scream” – postcard about Parkour…ok that’s different..gotta give them credit, they’re not boring this year… have to admit my bias, I ADORE Lazarev, he’s just one of the best vocalists in the WORLD right now…I also adore teh video for this song…creative as all hell…I’m not impressed with the staging though…this whole mirror thing…now he’s in a box…this is partially evoking the video…ok, now the staging is starting to work for me a bit more…black would have been more appropriate for the song rather than white…again with the white…STELLAR PERFORMANCE….LOVE IT…

Next up is Albania Jonida Maliqi  “Ktheju Tokes” – postcard was interesting. THis is one of my favorite songs this year, bar none…she is an incredible vocalist. Staging is sparse but gorgeous…the politically charged song has some real haters out there, but I’m not one of them. I don’t think we’re really getting a sequel to the video like it promised though…performance is mindblowingly AWESOME!

Next up is Norway, KEiiNO, “Spirit In The Sky”… postcard was very “meh”…this song hasn’t won me over yet…let’s see if their performance does, it’s a modest fan favorite…nope…still not feeling this song…it’s good, but very bland compared to other entries this year…vocals are good and then the bald guy starts and kicks it out from under the other two…I’m sorry, I just can’t get into it… the live audience sure is though…

Next up is The Netherlands, Duncan Laurence, “Arcade”…a lot of fans (not me) have this pegged as potential winner…what the HELL Is up with the “Macarena” styled postcard? YIkes….fans are already going NUTS…I just don’t get it…I mean it’s  GOOD song but NOT worthy of the huge praise it’s getting…it’s more of a modest mid-chart hit to me…I have to admit though, he’s got it live…he’s spot on, even if the staging is absolutely blah….Laurence is a stellar performer, that’s for sure..and I have to admit the performance is making me think a bit more about this song…

Next up is North Macedonia, Tamara Todevska, “Proud”…entertaining postcard…this is my personal #1 pick this year…this song is absolutely stupendous…this song is so utterly beautiful, and her performance is stellar…audience is into it..I do wish she had some of the ladies from the video on stage with her, it would make it even more powerful than it is. This song MUST get through….IT MUST!!!  This is THE Most important song in the contest this year, and women around the world NEED this anthem…OUTSTANDING!

Next up and Last act of the night, is Azerbaijan, Chingiz, “Truth” – postcard was different, ok…this song has utterly HUGE fan support, but I’m not sure about it. I like it quite a bit, but not as much as most fans. However, the intriguing and exciting staging is helping quite a bit…I love the laser heart, that was FUNKY AS HELL….He has the power behind the voice, so the video wasn’t all tricks and stuff. He’s got the goods, and should get through without a problem…

And now, it’s all over but the televote….time for the song recap…

Overall, I’d say Luca Hanni had the best performance tonight, followed by Tamara Todevska and Sergey Lazarev, but then again, I’m biased…I love all three of those songs…heh heh heh…everyone was very good tonight, we could see a few upsets if the jury voting went a different direction than expected…

Assi is back now…damn…Shalva Band is performing now…they are a favorite band in Israel, and it’s easy to see why…the music is gorgeous…OMB, I’m sitting here in tears….they are absolutely FANTASTIC….and the ladies have incredible voices…what a FUCKING AWESOME PERFORMANCE!

Bar now with mentalist Lior Suchard…what is this, a “Got Talent” show? Really? OH wow spoke too soon, that was AWESOME…if a bit hokey…

Another Televoting song recap…and now the televoting is closing…and it’s all over but the results…coming up soon…

Mans Zelmerlow is joining Erez on stage as we wait for the results..

Bar is with Duncan Laurence…now over to Assi and Erez on stage…introducing another new art video about Eurovision history…my biggest complaint about both of these videos… too damn much of smarmy Benjamin Ingrosso’s performance from 2018…eeeeeiiiiiiii…..

Back to the green room…plugging Madonna’s performance at the Grand Final….

Lucy is talking up the new Eurovision Choir competition…which made it’s debut this year…really lame joke, Lucy…sigh…

Interview time with the other three Big Five performers…Sisters (Germany), Michael Rice (UK) and Mahmood (Italy)…

A salute to the revelation of the “12 points” at past contests…

We are about to get the results for the second semi finals….here we go…Erez and Lucy are about to announce the results….the ten acts going through to the Grand Final are:

North Macedonia

The Netherlands

Albania

Sweden

Russia

Azerrbaijan

Denmark

Norway

Switzerland

Malta

Wow Denmark over Armenia….wow, that has my jaw on the floor….Still, got all five of my top predictions…DAMN I”M GOOD…LOL…We’ll see you on Saturday for the Grand Finals! Thanks for joining me…and that’s a wrap from Tel Aviv via Boston for tonight!

It’s finally happening…six decades late…”American Song Contest” to launch in 2021

Production company Brain Academy is going where no one has dared go before…mount a US version of the Eurovision Song Contest.

The Sweden-based company, best known for producing the Keanu Reeves POP-TV series Swedish Dicks, has picked up the rights to the format used by the European Broadcasting Union to launch the “American Song Contest” in 2021. No network has yet signed on to the project, which is being developed by Brain Academy’s Anders Lenhoff and Peter Settman alongside Christer Björkman and Ola Melzig, both long-term ESC veterans who have worked on over 20 Eurovision Song Contests between them.

Now in its 64th year, the Eurovision Song Contest brings countries together every spring – this year’s contest is this week, in fact – to decide on which country has submitted the best entry of the year. This year’s festivities are being held in Tel Aviv, Israel after last year’s entry from the country, “Toy” by pop hip hop dance artist Netta, won the contest in 2018. The finals for this year’s contest will be held this Saturday, but will NOT be airing in the United States this year, as Logo TV declined to renew its broadcast rights to the contest; the cable network gave ESC its first-ever airing in 2016, and also carried it in 2017 and 2018. There was some hope that Netflix might stream the finals to the US due to an upcoming Eurovision-based comedy movie from Will Ferrell set to air on the streaming service later this year, but nothing has been worked out as yet. As it stands now, US residents can catch the second semi-final live today, at 3 PM ET/12 PM PT and the finals on Saturday, same time slots, only on the internet, and then only if they have VPN service or if they can find an EBU member who is not geo-blocking their feed of the show, such as Sweden’s SVT network; otherwise, the show (and much of the official Eurovision YouTube output) is blocked from US viewing.

Although I was aware of ESC as early as 1974, when Spain’s Mocedades had a US top ten hit with their song “Eres Tu” after finishing in second place at Eurovision the previous spring, I didn’t really become a huge fan until the show began airing in the US in 2016, but as our readers and listeners know, I’ve gone full metal gonzo on the contest each year since then, immersing myself in the history of the contest,  featuring daily or near-daily posts with extensive profiles of each song and artist being posted right here as well as two of our sister sites, The Kirkham Report and Planet BiblioMusica, and this year, I began offering liveblog coverage during both semi-finals and the Grand Final on Saturday, right here on eCinemaOne (transcripts posted to the other two sites shortly after live coverage ends).

I for one remain skeptical that the format will work in the US now – the US TV networks are more interested in ratings than tradition, and something like this will need a HUGE commitment – probably a minimum of TEN YEARS guaranteed coverage – in order to get over here. Hey, CW Network – here’s your chance to move beyond those “I Heart Radio” specials and make something of your own to commit to; I’d love to see you team up with the producers and help try and make this work here. Of course, you’ll have to get clearances from your affiliates for prime time to go past 10 PM on each telecast, but three times a year all in one week – two semi finals and one final, that wouldn’t be so bad, would it?  But then again, if you do the state finals too…then you’re probably talking about a HUGE commitment here…and that’s what it’s going to take to make this work in the US…

Also, here’s a suggestion – take it a slightly different direction than what you plan now – don’t make it about the 50 states…make it about “America”- as in North, Central and South America – something like that might actually work…

However they decide to go, I wish nothing but the best of luck to “American Song Contest” – we’ll track it’s progress and keep you informed on what’s going on here and on our  two sister sites The Kirkham Report and Planet Bibliomusica as well.

LIVEBLOG: EuroVision Song Contest, Semi Final 1 – May 14 2019

Hi all – TC here, and I’ll be here starting at 3 PM US ET/12 PM US PT with coverage of the first semi-final of the 2019 Eurovision Song Contest!  It’s my first time doing a live blog during the show, and it should be fun!

Here’s what to remember: 1) the live blog is only here at http://ecinemaone.com – the transcript of the live comments will be posted later to The Kirkham Report and Planet BiblioMusica, so if you want to see what i’m doing live, eCO is where to be! 2) newest comments will be on the bottom of the blog; hit ‘refresh’ to see the latest update!

Now for preshow commentary…..heh heh…

2:42 PM

If you’ve been reading my ESCOuntdown this year, you know I have my favorites and loathing songs this year like everyone else – the three songs I absolutely LOATHE this year are ALL in the first semi-final today – it’s probably too much to ask, but can we PLEASE get rid of Iceland, Belgium, and Portugal RIGHT AWAY? OMG, please – I can’t believe the amount of support that turd of a song from Portugal has – what is it with people liking crap like this? Iceland’s song might be fine any other time, but a song called “Hatred Will Prevail” (English translation) has NO PLACE in Eurovision, which is SUPPOSED to be about promoting peace and harmony through music and songwriting….this does NEITHER. And Belgium–I like Eliot, the performer, but the song is a SNOOZEFEST from beginning to end, and I am completely at a loss to understand the HUGE fan support of this turkey….”Wake UP”? Not likely…..:;snore::

2:50 PM

It will be a crime if San Marino and Hungary are eliminated today, although having watched Serhat’s rehearsal, I have a feeling even that usually locked-in-the-final last performance spot may not do it for him…that song is AWESOME and deserves so much more than the shit people are giving it…it’s so happy and fun. And Joci Papai’s beautiful “Az en apam” is getting neglected by so many…and it’s so damn good it hurts…I wish his staging had included the two young actors in the video…it would have helped it A LOT in it’s chances for the Grand Finals…

My predictions on record now – I think the following countries have a LOCK to the Grand Final: Cypress, Slovenia, Serbia, Australia, Estonia, and Greece. Belarus and Georgia might also pull it off. The rest….it’s a true crapshoot…we’ll see as the afternoon/evening goes on…

3:01 PM

We Are LIVE with Eurovision Semifinal #1 for 2019! Show is opening with Netta’s new version of “Toy” and Welcome to Tel Aviv- the audience is HUGE and HOT tonight!  I love the set from this year’s show – awesome. Netta just emerged from a gigantic blinking Meowth….interesting outfit….wow….

You gotta give Netta credit – she knows how to please a crowd – this is an awesome opening for this year’s show, without a doubt. They’ve done some spectacular work at the venue – it is really fantastic looking!

Netta’s taking her bows, and the crowd is going nuts….

The festivities are underway as the hosts take the stage….running down the order of the songs tonight, the rules, and reminding us that only ten acts will go through to Saturday’s Grand Finals….

And here we go…first up is Cypress – Tamta, “Replay”….Her postcard is really cute…I like this song a lot, but the staging is rather bland compared to some of the other acts I’ve seen during the dress rehearsals. She’s very good live. and she’s got some really good dancers on the stage with her for this…not bad, but it could have been better…

Next up – Montenegro, D Mol, “Heaven” – these teenagers are fun, and obviously enjoying being here at Eurovision. The staging is deadly boring, though…I liked what they did at their national final better…I miss the stringplayer from the video. They definitely have the chops live as well, although their harmonies aren’t QUITE there…they’re giving it a good shot though….I am not fond of that sea of white outfits either…they don’t stand out at all…I think they’re going to be left behind…good, but not great…it’s much better in the recording, but they are really great together…

Next Up is FInland – Darude featuring Sebastian Rejman -“Look Away” – their postcard is the most interesting so far….Reiman opened completely FLAT…not good….now he’s kicking into gear…those low opening notes were really BAD…and the chorus of this song is just repetition…I’m not terribly fond of this song anyway, but I’d hoped for more exciting staging…but it’s not working at all for me…several other social justice songs work way better than this one does…Nope…not working at all for me live. It’s much better on the recording as well….

Next Up – Poland, Tulia – “Fire Of Love (Pali Sie)” – Love their postcard, very traditional and fun….Yeesh those outfits, are those considered tradition folk outfits?  The whole staging is on a revolving platform, with some background visuals that aren’t really striking…this song isn’t my cup of tea…never has been…and the live performance makes it sound even more like whining to a tune….not impressed at all…it’s just there….the hand choreography is interesting…and yes, that’s sarcasm….this is just not working AT ALL at least for me….it’s too damn shrill…

Whoops, expected a host break, instead Slovenia is up, Zala Kralj and Gasper Santi, with “Sebi” – Postcard was very cutesy…this is one of my favorite songs, let’s see how they do…more white outfits….yikes, what is up with that…very stark staging, just the two of them on stage, surrounded by stars and galaxies in the backdrops…love this, it works completely here…I love her voice…it’s so soft and smooth, very silky, very similar to Ieva Zasamauskaite last year…but again, those all white outfits…come on, wardrobe people, can’t you come up with something more exciting…top notch performance all the way around….crowd loves it…

Next up Czech Republic, Lake Malawi, “Friend Of A Friend” –  postcard is very cutsy again….they need a really strong live performance to get into the Final…the song is just ok, nice video work on the director’s part, little Brady Bunch boxes, I like it. They’re a likeable band, but the song is so bland…I just don’t know if it has what it takes to get through. The performance is top notch…they may have pushed their way into the top ten….too early to tell yet…but this was fun and fresh, it might just get there….

Host segment now…male host is talking to Tanta from Cypress…what the hell kind of stupid ass question is that? Now female host is with Tulia asking about their clothes…Tulia doing more live singing…yikes…I hate host segments, let’s get back to the music…

Next up is Hungary…Joci Papai, “Az en apam” – GO JOCI! GET THROUGH TO THE FINALS!!! Love the postcard, it’s awesome! Dark stage, solo vocal…OMG, I adore this song. Top notch vocals from Joci….he’s been here before in 2017, he knows what the drill is…I also love the fact that he performs barefoot…he did this on the Hungarian national final as well. The song about his father is just utterly beautiful. How can anyone NOT fall for this song. I have to say again though that I wish he’d brought the two boys from the video for this live performance….it could only help it along. I also miss the whistling from the original mix of the song. Stark staging really makes his performance shine. PLEASE let him get through, please please PLEASE!!

Next up is Belarus, Zena, “Like It” – Postcard is too “Baby One More Time” for me….background video is interesting and surreal, even more so than what was done in the video. She’s good for just 16 years old, but like I said in my review a couple weeks ago, she reminds me too much of Britney Spears…she needs to find her own groove. I love the flamenco-style instrumentation during the verses of the song, though….I don’t know if she’s done enough to make it through though. Likeable for sure…but not a showstopper by any means…

Next is Serbia, Nevena Bozovic, “Kruna” – this postcard is funny and fresh – very swing sounding, fun. She’s good too, and she could have what it takes to get through, she’s got a lot of fan support on her side. I’m not fond of that outfit…vocals are stupendous, as I thought they would be…she’s got one hell of a great voice…stark staging is also working for her, with just a mininum of video action on the floor and backdrop…very smooth and stylish…I think she’s going to pull off a finals trip with this number….she is just really amazing live…it’s even better than the video performance, which was awesome…

Next up is Belgium, Eliot, “Wake Up” – he needs to do something to really floor me, because I really loathe this song. And it’s not starting with the bland and boring postcard. He reminds me of what you might get if Rick Astley and Clay Aiken had a baby, both in looks and his style…staging is too static, but his vocal life is far more interesting life than on the video, although he’s flat and sharp in place, at least there’s more life to it here….The crowd is really loving this song, which continues to leave me utterly perplexed…this song is NOT VERY GOOD AT ALL…the performance is better than I expected, I’ll give him that much. I like this kid, but there’s just something about this song that I just cant’ stand, although the live performance has much more life in it than the horrible snoozy video….unfortunately he might pull off a finals slot, but I still don’t think he deserves to get through…

Next up, Georgia, Oto Nemsadze, “Keep On Going”….he comes off as way less creepy in his postcard, heh heh…this song is just…I don’t know….it’s creepy, it sounds like it should have been in a Halloween movie or something…He’s a stellar singer,but I can’t get into this song, and his background singers….shudder….they’re like a devil’s chorus….yikes….this man never relaxes, does he? Wow….his eyes look like they’re filled with something other than music. The background videos are interesting and intriguing. I hate to use this word again, but this song is almost TOO intense….despite myself, I just can’t get into this song… I just can’t….

Australia is next, Kate Miller-Heidke, “Zero Gravity” – postcard is fun, love all the drumming…lots of fun. I’m not a huge opera fan, but she is STELLAR in what she does…that dress is a riot though…I don’t know how she balances on that thing…love the video effects they’re using both stage and background…very surreal and appropriate for the lyrics…she has the crowd loudly behind her, and she’s going to go through for sure, I think only a real shocker could knock her out…the actual choreography is kinda funky and offputting at the same time…I keep feeling like she’s going to tip over in that thing….I love her mix of opera and dance sounds but that pole swinging…yikes…

More host segments…back in the green room….hostess Lucy Ayoub is with Lake Malawi…inane interview with plug plug plug using the song title as the answer to the questions….yikes…now we get a story about how depressed he was when he broke up with his girlfriend…and now Bar Rafaeli is with Eliot….now back to the songs…

OH god, it’s ICELAND….Hatari with “Hatred Will Prevail” (English title)….these guys are pretty out there, but you will NEVER convince me that this song deserves to be here simply because it’s subject matter is completely contrary to the spirit of the contest overall.. postcard was interesting….I’m sorry, I really HATE HATE HATE this song….so I guess that means they’re glad how I feel, given the content of the song, right? I will give them props for being ….um…original? I also don’t think the S&M stuff has anyplace in a family show like Eurovision, but I suppose that makes me a American prude….hey, what they do in their own home is fine, but on a worldwide TV spectacular? YIKES…. Please don’t go through.. please don’t go through…you’ll be knocking something that DESERVES to be here out….hey, at least they can do this live…it’s not just in the recording…

Estonia is next, Victor Crone, “Storm” – postcard is too cute again…he shaved…wow, I think he looked better with the kinda half beard…damn, he is SHARP in places, he’s having trouble with the high notes…staging is virtually identical to the national final…he’s really not pulling this off live AT ALL….we could be seeing another Gromee from last year…he’s a favorite to get through, but I don’t think he’s going to make it with this performance…it’s just not very good…too bad, it’s a pretty decent song even if it’s too similar, right down to the title, as UK’s entry last year…wow, this performance is just BAD all the way around…I think he just blew his chance at the finals…

next up is Portugal, Conan Osirus, “Telenoveis”…Postcard terrible…song terrible…costumes ridiculous…what is the fandom THINKING with this one…this song SUCKS SO BAD IT”S SCARY…..why does it have so much support? Is it PITY?  I can’t fathom any other reason why this song has even ONE OUNCE of support…it’s pure SHIT FROM START TO FINISH…yes, I know it’s satire…and really bad satire at that….does Eurovision have a hook? USE IT NOW!  Oh god it’s still going on….AAAAAAHHHH!

Next up is Greece, Katherine Duska, and “Better Love” – ok, a librarian postcard, that’s different…just noticing how much Duska looks like actress Kat Dennings….why does she sound like she’s singing through her nose? What is happening? She didn’t sound like this in the video? OK, we’re to the chorus, that’s better…I thought maybe she was having voice problems…man, she is just NOT there vocally live today…I’m hearing a woman who is really straining to hit those notes…and not QUITE making them…not completely crazy about the staging either, althought it’s better than the video, which I had issues with…what the hell is up with the sabres? Nothing says love like swordplay?  Wow….should have been much much better….

Next and Last  San Marino, Serhat, “Say Na Na Na” – Postcard is typical Serhat,,,gotta love it.  Already I don’t like the staging…and Serhat has problem staying on key when he’s singing live…DAMMIT!  He’s completely off key – he’s got to be having problems with his headset…he’s completely off…worse than he’s ever been before…NOOOOOOO!!!  OK he’s recovered for the second verse -he’s back on key…I dont’know what happened, but he just kissed his possible trip to the finals good bye, I think, Dammit DAMMIT!!! Son of a bitch….this should have been one of the best performances of the night…and it’s totally ruined…it’s another 2018 Poland….he just BIT THE DUST BIGTIME…..SHIT

The songs are done….now we get the annoying guy host – televoting is now beginning….

I am having a hell of a time staying connected – I keep getting huge buffering no matter what country I hook up with…

The song reminders are now playing , then it will be time for more host shenanigans and hopefully a good interval performance…

Based on the live performances, I think both Estonia and Greece may have knocked themselves out of real contention for a spot in the Grand Final, San Marino is (DAMMIT) a foregone conclusion…we’ll see…come on, forget what you saw, televoters, give Serhat some love….

Dana International (winner, Israel, 1999) is performing now…terrific interpretation of Bruno Mars’ “Just The Way You Are”…she is so fantastic…they’re spotlighting people in the audience in the Eurovision heart logo, it’s really cute…

My connection is back – switched to my main computer for the feed. Now I’m going to switch the blog to my laptop…can’t do both on one browser….hehh heh…

Great performance from Dana International. Lucy is now talking to the winner of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest, Roksana Wegiel of Poland.

Set piece about a previous winner now…this year’s competitors dancing to ths song…before my Eurovision time, I don’t know it at all, sorry…but the video of the dancing from this year’s performers is pretty damn cool…they all look like they’re having all kinds of fun…back to the televoting coverage…looked it up it was “A-Ba-Na-Bi” by Itzar Cohen and the Alphabeta….

OF tonights performers, I think Lake Malawi and Kate Miller-Heidke had the best staging…creative and fun…

The televoting is about to close…let’s see who gets through…TELEVOTING IS CLOSED…it’s all over but the results..Lucy is with VIctor Crone now…and now Conan Osirus is with annoying guy. Ok, Assi Azar is his name..sorry..he’s ANNOYING…

World premiere of a video about the history of Eurovision…should be interesting…they need to put this up on the YouTube site it’s AWESOME!

Hawking the DVD releases…then to the green room for more interviews…then the results…talking with finalists Miki (Spain), Kobi Marimi, (Israel) and Bilal Hassani (France)…with clips of their rehearsals…

Here we go…going through to the Grand Final….

Greece

Belarus

Serbia

Cypress

Estonia

Czech Republic

Australia

Iceland

San Marino

Slovenia

WOW! I am SHOCKED Serhat made it through! WOO HOO! Sorry for Hungary and disgusted about Iceland…and that’s all folks…see you on Thursday, same time, same website….GOODNIGHT EUROVISION FANS!

ESCountdown 2019: #1 – “Proud” by Tamara Todevska, North Macedonia

IT’S THAT TIME OF YEAR AGAIN! Welcome to my ESCountdown 2019, presented by eCinemaOne, The Kirkham Report, and Planet BiblioMusica! Between April 7 and May 12, I will countdown my picks of the entries in the Eurovision Song Contest 2019! There are 41 countries participating this year, and we’ll bring you each and every entry from them all!

At this point in time we are now less than ONE WEEK away from the Grand Final for 2018, and only three days from the first semi final. Today, I will wrap up this year’s ESCountdown, bringing you my top five picks. As always, I know the ESC fandom community is a rabid one, and fans are all over the road with their own personal tastes and choices, so as always with my personal picks, your mileage may vary…:-)

THIS IS IT FOLKS! WE’VE REACHED THE TOP OF THE PICKS!

In at #1 on my countdown this year is the official entry from North Macedonia, “Proud” by Tamara Todevska, music by Darko Dimitrov, Robert Bibliov, and Lazar Cvetkoski, lyrics by Kosta Petrov and Sanja Popovska. The song is performed in English, and will be performed 17th on the second semi-final on May 16th.

Tamara Todevska’s career started with a simple single release done with her sister at the age of ELEVEN, and she’s been singing ever since, breaking through in 2003. She’s been to Eurovision before as well, performing with Rade Vrchakovski and Adrian Gaxha in 2008; their song, “Let Me Love You“, finished tenth in their semi-final and fell just short of qualification for the finals.

Memo to whatever record label is handling “Proud” for North Macedonia at Eurovision- send demos of this song to the higher ups at the #MeToo headquarters and other female empowerment groups that have begun to finally speak up about things here in the US, and also suggest they pass it on to an American record label – if you can get the backing of people like Rose McGowan, Ellen Page, Alyssa Milano, Jennifer Lawrence, Frances McDormand, and the many other celebs who have come out for various issues involving the treatment of women both in the US and around the world, I will guarantee you will have a NUMBER ONE hit in the US – “Proud” will be to this generation what Helen Reddy‘s anthemic “I Am Woman” was to the Women’s Liberation movement, regardless of how it performs at EuroVision. I knew the second I heard it, and it sent chills down my spine, that I was hearing a song destined for greatness. Sadly, European women don’t seem to embrace the kind of movements going on here in the US right now, and it’s reflecting on the song’s popularity; although support has started to swell up just a tiny bit over the last couple of weeks, it may not be enough to help take it to the grand final, even though it absolutely should and NEEDS TO BE THERE next Saturday. This is a powerful song, reminding those women who made the sacrifices they have made in coming forward about sexual abuse, discrimination, job inequality, and more that there are others out there, both men and women, who will stand by them and support them all the way. Some of these movements are held in disdain by some because a few of them are pushing too hard, trying to go nuclear on things that could have serious consequences on the innocent. That is somewhat understandable, up to a point, because it has been so long since someone had the guts to stand up to those who would take advantage of them in any situation. It NEEDS to be done, but has to be done without the alienation of either sex, and without taking the innocent down as well – if not, the entire movement will backfire badly and perhaps make things worse than they have been. With this song to remind everyone WHY people are speaking out, perhaps it will help bring people together in what is very definitely a just and needed cause, when done correctly. And more power to those who can help get it there, including the songwriters and Tamara Todevska’s brilliantly understated performance of this powerful anthemic song that deserves better than the ESC fans are taking the time to give it…

North Macedonia has been around in EuroVision since 1998; until this year, they have competed as FYR Macedonia. and unfortunately, they have not fared very well in the eighteen times they’ve participated thus far. Their best showing has been 12th, in 2006. They have missed the last six Grand Finals in a row…hopefully enough people will vote for this powerful and important song so that it does not become their seventh miss in a row…because it deserves FAR FAR BETTER…

Please please PLEASE get behind this song and what it stands for. Even if the song doesn’t make the finals, it deserves to be heard the world over…

And those are my personal choices for favorite songs in the 2018 EuroVision Song Contest! Join eCinemaOne, The Kirkham Report, and Planet BiblioMusica each day through this year’s finals on May 18!

I will be LIVE BLOGGING during both semi-finals and the finals this week – coverage will start at just before 3 PM Eastern/12 PM Pacific in the US – I suck at time zones so you’ll have to figure that out if you’re not in the US – where I will comment on each performance, the ongoing spectacle, the hosts, the crowd, the performers, and everything else. Please check it out at http://ecinemaone.com !

If you like my Eurovision coverage (or anything else we at PNRNetworks do, of course), please take the time to become a Patreon Patron! We have a TON of great perks available, three Patron-only podcasts available to patrons at the $5/month level and above, and more! Be sure to check us out and help us be able to bring you all kinds of great coverage of music, movies, television, and much more! Become a Patron today at http://patreon.com/pnrnetworks!

Catch all the official EuroVision action at their official Website and on their official YouTube channel! It’s gonna be a FUN FUN FUN WEEK!  See YA!

ESCountdown 2019: #2 – “Az en apam” by Joci Papai, Hungary

IT’S THAT TIME OF YEAR AGAIN! Welcome to my ESCountdown 2019, presented by eCinemaOne, The Kirkham Report, and Planet BiblioMusica! Between April 7 and May 12, I will countdown my picks of the entries in the Eurovision Song Contest 2019! There are 41 countries participating this year, and we’ll bring you each and every entry from them all!

At this point in time we are now less than ONE WEEK away from the Grand Final for 2018, and only three days from the first semi final. Today, I will wrap up this year’s ESCountdown, bringing you my top five picks. As always, I know the ESC fandom community is a rabid one, and fans are all over the road with their own personal tastes and choices, so as always with my personal picks, your mileage may vary…:-)

In at #2 on my countdown this year is the official entry from Hungary, “Az en apam” by Joci Papai, written by József Pápai and Ferenc Molnár Caramel. The song is performed in Hungarian , and will be performed 7th on the first semi-final on May 14th.

This is Joci Papai‘s second trip to Eurovision; he represented Hungary in 2017 with his song “Origo“, which finished eighth overall. Like many Eurovision representatives these days, he got his big break on a talent show, in this case the Hungarian series Megasztar back in 2005; although eliminated early on, he gained a following and has been a rising star in his homeland since.

For some unknown reason, the ESC Fan community is totally ignoring this beautiful tribute song; in English, the title translates to “My Father” or “Of My Father“, depending on the source you look at, and is a clearly autobiographical song about Papai‘s childhood. It also holds the distinction of being the ONLY video from the contest this year that makes me cry. I don’t speak Papai’s native tongue, but his passion and fire about the love of his father comes through loud and clear. And if anyone can PLEASE help me find out the name of the young actor in the video I would really appreciate it – this kid has the most passive and yet expressive face I’ve ever seen, and I want to give him proper props for it. The young man who is the focal point of the video captures the mood of the song perfectly as he wants to do something to properly remember his father, who appears to no longer be in the picture, as he is carrying around a photo of him. There is a scene about two-thirds of the way through the video where the young man is sitting on top of the heavy trunk he’s been pulling around town, trying to get to a specific place; he’s resting a bit as he watches a young boy and his father across the street from him climb into their car together. The young man and the boy lock eyes for a brief second, and the looks on both their faces says everything, and the tears just start pouring down my face…just like they are doing right now just thinking about it  (::sniff::)  I guess it might be “daddy issues” with me – I never had a true father figure in my life – my father decided he didn’t want to be a family man anymore when I was four or five, and my stepfather, who was around for just a few years when I was under 12, was much younger than my mother, and didn’t really get being a dad either, although I know he loved me and I loved him as well while they were together. My mother, whom l lost at age 85 just a year ago last week, was both a mother and father to me and despite her beliefs excelled at doing both. She always thought I needed a man in my life, though, and she tried one last time for a few months with another man before giving it up, and I can’t fault her for giving it the effort. But that’s neither here nor there about this song, which is just beautiful, and the video completely destroys me every time I see it; Papai is so fortunate to have had a father he loves or loved that much. You have to get past one completely illogical bit in the visual – there is NO WAY IN HELL you can play guitar in thick biker gloves, although Papai manages to look convincing when he tries – but beyond that, this video rips through my heart, and so does the song. I hope he does better than I believe he’s going to, because I really really REALLY want this amazingly beautiful song to make it through to the finals…please please PLEASE….

Hungary made its EuroVision debut in 1994 and has participated 15 times thus far. They have yet to take a Grand Final – their best showing has thus far been fourth, in their debut year. They withdrew from the contest for six years, 1999-2004, and missed a couple of other years as well. Their entry last year, the incredible gut-wrenching screamcore rocker “Vislat Nyar” by AWS, also another father tribute in it’s own way, was one of my favorites in the contest, and wish it had done better, finishing 21st overall…

Please please PLEASE watch this video and get behind it- I defy ANYONE watching it not to be moved to tears…and I was completely serious above – if ANYONE knows the name of the young actor in the video, please GET IN TOUCH with me via email or instant messaging on Twitter or Facebook – I desperately want to know who he is….he is just amazing in this video…

Join eCinemaOne, The Kirkham Report, and Planet BiblioMusica each day through this year’s finals on May 18 – be sure to check each site, because some of the features will be exclusive to just one of the sites! My daily song countdown will appear on all three sites, with some additional material coming to both Planet BM and TKR in the days and weeks’  ahead. I missed a few days due to personal issues, so I’m playing catch-up now, and will have two or three entries per day with my #1 pick being revealed on Sunday May 12.

I will be LIVE BLOGGING during both semi-finals and the finals this week – coverage will start at 3 PM Eastern/12 PM Pacific in the US – I suck at time zones so you’ll have to figure that out if you’re not in the US – where I will comment on each performance, the ongoing spectacle, the hosts, the crowd, the performers, and everything else. Please check it out at http://ecinemaone.com !

If you like my Eurovision coverage (or anything else we at PNRNetworks do, of course), please take the time to become a Patreon Patron! We have a TON of great perks available, three Patron-only podcasts available to patrons at the $5/month level and above, and more! Be sure to check us out and help us be able to bring you all kinds of great coverage of music, movies, television, and much more! Become a Patron today at http://patreon.com/pnrnetworks!

Catch all the official EuroVision action at their official Website and on their official YouTube channel!

ESCountdown 2019: #3 – “Scream” by Sergey Lazarev, Russia

IT’S THAT TIME OF YEAR AGAIN! Welcome to my ESCountdown 2019, presented by eCinemaOne, The Kirkham Report, and Planet BiblioMusica! Between April 7 and May 12, I will countdown my picks of the entries in the Eurovision Song Contest 2019! There are 41 countries participating this year, and we’ll bring you each and every entry from them all!

At this point in time we are now less than ONE WEEK away from the Grand Final for 2018, and only three days from the first semi final. Today, I will wrap up this year’s ESCountdown, bringing you my top five picks. As always, I know the ESC fandom community is a rabid one, and fans are all over the road with their own personal tastes and choices, so as always with my personal picks, your mileage may vary…:-)

In at #3 on my countdown this year is the official entry from Russia, “Scream” by Sergey Lazarev, written by Philip Kirkorov and Dimitris Kontopoulos. The song is performed in Englis , and will be performed 13th on the second semi-final on May 16th.

Can someone please explain to me why Sergey Lazarev isn’t a worldwide superstar by this point in his career? He rose to fame as a member of the group Smash! in the early 2000’s and since it’s breakup in 2006, he has been performing solo, becoming one of the most popular performers in Russia, and throughout Europe as well; he’s also been acting off and on since he was a child. Hie is fluent in more than one language, including English, and there’s no logical reason that Lazarev hasn’t broken out worldwide as yet. This is his second trip to Eurovision; his 2016 fan favorite song “You Are The Only One“, which featured a dynamic and mind-blowing on-stage performance, finished fifth.

This song is hauntingly beautiful, but it’s a bit difficult to describe adequately. The lyrics reflect that of someone giving up the person they truly love for some reason or another – it’s never made clear why, but it may have had something to do with a betrayal of some sort if I’m interpreting the bridge of the song correctly –  and the pain of intense loss such an action causes. The video, however, turns it a bit askew and changes direction a bit, with it’s beautifully dark and brooding story of two children, a young boy, a wanna-be pirate or knight, protecting the little girl he loves from the dragons that threaten them; you can feel the inspiration from “Game Of Thrones” throughout the onscreen action. Beautifully executed with a mix of live action and pristine paper-cut animation and shadow art, and lushly dark, with the pounding orchestral score of the song, punctuated by Lazarev’s observations of the goings-on with his stark, outstanding vocals, and he later taking the place of the boy as an older man…WOW. This is my wife’s favorite video this year, and it’s right up there on my list as well. The song’s brooding instrumentation underscores the pain of the lyrics amazingly well, and Lazarev, who is just one of the best vocalists in the WORLD right now,  rips through your heart with his wrenching performance. Just unbelievably exquisite. I’m completely gastiflabbered, and utterly astonished that much of the fan community seems to have inexplicably turned its nose up at this one-of-a-kind gem…

Russia debuted in EuroVision in 1994 and has competed twenty-one times thus far. They missed the 2017 contest, held in Kiev, Ukraine, when the country barred chosen performer Julia Samoylova after she allegedly traveled illegally to Crimea. As a result, Russian withdrew and didn’t even televise the contest. They won the Grand Final in 2008 with “Believe” by Dima BIlan, and had made it to the finals every year since the semi-finals were introduced in 2004 until last year; their entry came in 16th in their semi-final and didn’t make the cut.

This is quite possibly the most underrated song and music video of this year’s contest…check it out and see if you find the amazingly stark magic I see in it…


Join eCinemaOne, The Kirkham Report, and Planet BiblioMusica each day through this year’s finals on May 18 – be sure to check each site, because some of the features will be exclusive to just one of the sites! My daily song countdown will appear on all three sites, with some additional material coming to both Planet BM and TKR in the days and weeks’  ahead. I missed a few days due to personal issues, so I’m playing catch-up now, and will have two or three entries per day with my #1 pick being revealed on Sunday May 12.

I will be LIVE BLOGGING during both semi-finals and the finals this week – coverage will start at 3 PM Eastern/12 PM Pacific in the US – I suck at time zones so you’ll have to figure that out if you’re not in the US – where I will comment on each performance, the ongoing spectacle, the hosts, the crowd, the performers, and everything else. Please check it out at http://ecinemaone.com !

If you like my Eurovision coverage (or anything else we at PNRNetworks do, of course), please take the time to become a Patreon Patron! We have a TON of great perks available, three Patron-only podcasts available to patrons at the $5/month level and above, and more! Be sure to check us out and help us be able to bring you all kinds of great coverage of music, movies, television, and much more! Become a Patron today at http://patreon.com/pnrnetworks!

Catch all the official EuroVision action at their official Website and on their official YouTube channel!