All the most recent countries to select their entries for ESC 2013 have made the same choice, a female singer. Especially if you look at the top of the betting boards right now, where the top three are female singers from Norway, Denmark and Germany. Germany chose their entry Thursday, and it is nominally a band, Cascada, though no one much sees anyone but Natalie onstage.
Cascada’s “Glorious” featured here on the blog a few weeks ago when I remarked on its similarity to last year’s triumphant “Euphoria”. That being said, the song is a powerhouse that will be at the top of the charts across Europe by the time that Eurovision rolls around in May.
Slovenia announced another dancefloor stomper as the song for its previously chosen artist, American-born Hannah Mancini. “Straight Into Love” is catchy and powerfullyy voiced by Mancini, and should get Slovenia back into the finals this year.
Meanwhile, a third Central European nation chose its entry Friday, when Austria decided its strongest choice is Natalia Kelly (yet another American-born singer). Earlier I had dismissed “Shine” as a bit too Idol-winner’s coronation song to go far in Eurovision, but Kelly’s contest performance far outpaced her competition.
And little Cyprus also unveiled its entry, as Despina Olympiou’s song for ESC was revealed to be anthemic mid-tempo ballad “An Me Thimase”. Well-sung and powerful, it remains to be seen if a ballad in Greek still has the appeal to voters Cyprus needs to reach the finals.
Latvia will be choosing its entry tonight, and has some strong entries from bands and solo singers male and female. I think their national final is the strongest they have offered in years, so I am hopeful for their final choice.
And finally, Italy revealed which of the contestants at San Remo would be the choice for Eurovision, and the winner is a talented and very photogenic 24-year old MALE singer, Marco Mengoni. His Eurovision song has not yet been decided, but here is his San Remo prize-winning competition song “L’Essenziale”.