Why Finland Won the 2006 Eurovision Song Contest
Created 2006-05-21. Last update 2007-05-15.
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Finland's Eurovision 2006 Song Contest win is not even one day old. But
already there is debate of why the monster rock group Lordi won and how this
will change the song contest. I've decided to analyze the finalists in
ranking order to see if we can find a reason why our contestant got more points
than anyone ever.
Legend: Each entry contains the position in the final, performer number,
points in the final, country name and song name. An asterisk
(*) is added if there is lots of skin / pelvic thrusts /
arse jiggling etc in the performance.
- 17. 292 points, Finland: Rock'N'Roll Hallelujah
A song that might have made in the 1980's if Kiss,
Dio and Twisted Sister had put their efforts
together. Yet, a quarter of a century later this is
ground-breaking and 100% fresh in the Eurovision Song
Contest which is still living the 1970's.
With 20/20 hindsight, how fitting the following lyrics are:
"On the day of Rockoning / It's who dares, wins /
You will see the jokers / soon'll be the new kings".
Is this song the best song ever? Hell no, it's just bubble-gum
heavy-pop. Is the song catchy?
Certainly. Was it by far the best song of this year's contest
and deserving of the highest Eurovision points ever?
- 10. 248 points, Russia: Never Let You Go
Boring song with some half-interesting rhythms but completely
bland love ballad lyrics. The ballerinas
that enter the stage at the very moment we can hear
scratch samples from the soundtrack are a nice touch.
Came second because there are so many Slavic nations in
Eurovision these days. Nevertheless, ballerinas win
- 13. 229 points, Bosnia and Herzegovina: Lejla
Slightly forgettable, but touching low-key song with an
equally low-key performance. I could listen to this song
again, so I'm happy to say that me and my wife gave our
first ever Eurovision votes to it. Obviously we were not
alone as Finland gave this song 10 points.
- 12. 172 points, Romania: Tornerò
Pure 1980's Italo disco hit material. Twenty years ago the Italians
made this song so many times one would have thought the idea
would have been beaten to death. One thing though:
this is one of the perhaps three songs that were
genuinely catchy. I don't understand why, but so it is.
- 22. 170 points, Sweden: Invincible
The members of Abba should
sue Carola for ripping The Winner Takes It All.
Carola obviously can still sing but really, this is not
the 1970's anymore.
I'll tell you a story about Carola. She is supposedly deeply
religious, wanting to cure homosexuals with prayer and
so on. I remember a picture I saw in the early 1980's when
she was hot news for the first time. In that photo
Carola is kneeling in a church being pious and everything.
And the shorts and t-shirt she was wearing were really
small and tight. Bah!
- 14. 162 points, Lithuania: We Are the Winners
The seminal protest song. But, notice to other contestants:
there are many things done absolutely right in this
song. First of all, the song doesn't take a minute to start.
Second, as annoying and simplistic as the tune is, I
actually rememberer it after first hearing!
The song is not bland,
so you will remember it by voting time!
This must have been one of the reasons for its success.
Another reason I'd like to think is that it didn't have
arse-jigglers in it, and there was energy in the performance.
And the third reason
must be that they obviously had hired
Kekkonen to the band (just look at the performance
of the bald guy).
- 18. 145 points, Ukraine, *: Show Me Your Love
Pseudo-latino song with considerably open cleavage and some
arse-jiggling. Had the misfortune of being performed
right after Hard Rock Hallelujah.
- 24. 129 points, Armenia: Without Your Love
First-time performer didn't do bad at all. But what were the
four women doing on stage? Oh, they were dancers and
completely peripheral to the actual song. Ok.
- 16. 128 points, Greece: Everything
Very basic, uplifting love ballad. Performance with only
one woman on stage with wind machines, very much like Carola.
Broke Eurovision's rules set to Lordi by using some
pyrotechnics in the final although they didn't do such a thing
when practising. (Lordi had to pay an exorbitant sum because
it was required that if they wanted pyrotechics in their
performance they should also be used in practise. And they
weren't allowed to use their own pyros, but they had to buy
them from the Official Source, for a hefty price.
So they almost decided they can't come, but luckily
two heavy-metal festivals quickly collected the missing dough.
But back to the Greek entry.) Only one word is needed:
- 21. 93 points, Ireland: Every Song is a Cry for Love
This could have been called Every Song Like This Is a Cry for
I mean, how boring can you make a song this short?
- 23. 91 points, Turkey, *: Süperstar
The all-too-short dress of the lead singer has been compensated
for by a four-member boy dancer group in the background.
The song has energy but no point. Using hands to form
a star during the performance was a nice touch.
- 11. 56 points, Macedonia, *: Ninanajna
Not completely bad song, but had the cleavage of the lead
singer been one centimeter more open, her thingies
would have fallen out. Serious multi-woman arse-jiggling
towards the end of the song.
- 20. 56 points, Croatia, *: Moja Stikla
Not that bad but the folkish song is destroyed before it even
starts because the lead singer opens her long skirt so
that you can almost see her youknowwhat.
And then she drops the skirt completely. Why, oh why destroy
a perfectly acceptable folk performance this way?
- 5. 36 points, Norway: Alvedansen
Song contains many same elements as the song Vandraren by
the very popular Swedish heavy-metal-turned-folk singer
Nordman. The difference is that the
elements are presented boringly so that it will be
impossible to remember anything about the song afterwards.
Just makes me think how high Nordman could have scored
if he had participated when Vandraren was hot.
All in all, not a completely loser song, but it would
have needed more oomph.
- 8. 36 points, Germany: No No Never
Totally gay country & western song that we've heard
a million times before. Makes you miss the good old
days when Germans produced Eurovision performers like
Dschinghis Khan. Ok, Dschinghis Khan was also totally
gay, but it was fun, their entry rocked and Khan is
still played and covered today.
- 4. 30 points, Latvia: I Hear Your Heart
Six-member a cappella group performing a perfectly
forgettable song. Couldn't they have tried something
with at least half a ball in it? I mean other than
the cute robot.
- 1. 30 points, Switzerland: If We All Give a Little
Very classical Eurovision song with wishy-washy lyrics.
The dragging song goes nowhere.
- 9. 26 points, Denmark, *: Twist of Love
Oh, a twist song. With the word "twist" in the name. How
original. We've heard this song only one gazillion times
before. "Luckily" there are five scantily-clothed women
jumping around. And the breakdancer.
- 15. 25 points, United Kingdom, ***: Teenage Life
The most obnoxious performance of the whole show. I am not
so much inclined to paedophilia that I'd enjoy looking at a
performance where you are supposed to peek below the
skirts of 30-year old "school girls". This performance ended up
as being one of the very last in the list. It should have,
however, ended up in court.
(PS. I've now (060524) read tons of UK and Irish banter about
how rigged the Eurovision contest is and how UK has absolutely
no chance of winning because of block voting. In the
light that the winner this year was a country that
has consistently ended up in the bottom 5, how about
simply admitting that your entry was garbage and then
(PS2. (070515) Ok, in 2007 UK made a brave attempt to
end up even worse. Congratulations for your success!)
- 2. 22 points, Moldova, *: Loca
Dragging love song. One of the performers has one of the smallest
bras in the contest. Also contains arse-jiggling.
I am the Antipope would have bettered this. "Long live
Molvania, long live space race!"
- 6. 18 points, Spain, *: Bloody Mary
A song that we've heard by the same group several times before.
The tomato sauce girls can't sing but try to compensate
with some minor arse-jiggling and by being kissed by a bald
- 19. 5 points, France: Il était temps
Proof that you don't need arse-jiggling to end up at the
end of the point scale. This song isn't actually as bad
as the points would indicate. There's just nothing to
remember in it.
- 3. 4 points, Israel: Together We Are One
Israel is not known for its negro gospel singers. This
song may show us a reason why.
- 7. 1 point, Malta, *: I Do
Forgettable song with arse-jiggling dancer girls.
It is a widely accepted fact that sex sells. And more sex sells more.
Of the 24 finalists, there were 9 performances with sexual innuendo (even
more so in the semi-finals).
However, if sex sells so well, how can it be that of the top-8
performances there was only one with sex elements in it?
All other seven top-8 performers relied on other ways to make a show.
In the bottom-8 there are five performances with sexual content,
including the revolting UK number that should have been banned (where
were the religious fanatics with this one?).
So, all in all: if there is too much skin, you grow tired of it and
you vote something else. Like, say, cool monsters who didn't calculate
their coreography with Excel.
Song and Performance
One of the reasons Finland has not made it even in the top half in
the Eurovision contest in the last quarter century is that we
had not understood that the Eurovision Song Contest is really not
a song contest. It is a song and performance contest. So when we
finally had a group with both a song and a performance, that
The other reason for Finland's bad success has of course been that our
songs have been crap. If there have been interesting
entries in the national semifinals, they've been voted down by
the middle-aged majority. I still wonder how Lordi got out of his
cage this year. Perhaps because his song was not a Eurovision song
by design: it's just a track from the group's newest album. For instance
our internationally acclaimed operatic heavy metal group Nightwish
failed a few years ago the national semifinals partly because they
made their entry conform with the Eurovision formula: it was boring. Oh,
and then there was this "expert panel" that voted Nighwish's song out
although it was the clear favourite of the people. Luckily this year
there were no expert votes.
The Semifinal Advantage
I strongly believe that songs that go through the semifinals have
an advantage. A catchy tune has a chance to become familiar
during semi-finals. So in the final you have already heard the
song and, again, if the tune is catchy, you have a chance to
reinforce your familiarity with the audience. And if there is
controversy, you have more time to deal with it. This certainly
worked to the advantage to Lordi.
The corollary is, of course, that the countries who had paid for
their seat in the finals (UK, France, Germany and Spain) are
doing themselves a great disservice. They don't need to struggle
to get to the finals so there is little incentive to create the
best songs. Also they don't get their songs known in the semifinals.
How to prove this is so? This year's positions for the four big countries
were 15, 19, 21 and 22 (of 24 finalists). Do yourself a
favour: don't require that you get a place in the finals just
because you pay more than others.
Eurovision A.L. (After Lordi)
When I was a kid my family always watched the Eurovision Song Contest.
We tuned our TV and radio on the contest channel to be able to hear
everything in glorious stereo. And we watched.
However, sometime during the late 1980's I stopped watching because
the contest clearly wasn't going anywhere. The songs were just as
interesting as 292 bricks in a wall. I had
better things to do with my life.
Now, suddenly, there is an off-chance that the Eurovision Song
Contest might again be a place where new interesting music will
emerge. This will happen if only we can encourage diversity instead of
the conformity that we've seen in the contest during the last 20 years.
Thanks for your votes, Europe. We'll meet next year
in Finland and hopefully we'll see a new kind of Eurovision Song Contest
with many exciting new groups and performances.
But please, no Lordi clones. You should try someting
different, not the same old. A change in the Eurovision
Song Contest has begun. Let's change it for good.
As much as I've critisized Sony BMG for their evil copy protection
schemes, the facts of this case is as follows: it was Sony BMG's
representative who had the daring idea of inviting Lordi to the
national semifinals. There. It wasn't that hard to admit.
The newest Lordi album, The Arockalypse,
is reportedly not copy protected but a real, actual CD.
Thus I'm going to buy it as soon as I have
the chance. Not that I like Lordi so much that I would really need the album,
but I like to put my money where my mouth is. So off to the record store.
I am now a proud owner of The Arockalypse. As suspected, it
wasn't really to my taste. And, as is usual with modern music, the CD is
compressed to hell so it doesn't sound that good either.
Nevertheless, Lordi's win made me go to the
Sauna Open Air festival where, in addition to Lordi, the old farts
Wasp and Twisted Sister gave superb performances.
©2006 Henrik Herranen