Voting for the annual ESC 250 celebration closed on the 4th of December 2022, and now we have a nervous wait to find out the results! The event is hosted by songfestival.be, with the results revealed from 11:00CET on 31st December 2022 on ESC Radio to close out the year. Find out more about it here!
While we wait to find out the official results, members of the TES team will be sharing their votes for this year and explaining the reason for their picks. This time it’s Euan’s turn to reveal how he voted.
Unlike a lot of eurofans who typically cast their votes the second the voting opens, I have in previous years pondered and put off the vote right up until the last moment. Though that pondering was seldom fruitful and virtually every single time I panicked right before the deadline and I think for the last four years I ended up with the same ten in a different order. This year I really wanted to put some effort into considering my votes and really make sure my top ten reflected my actual top ten, and so I went through all the songs and created a proper shortlist of entries… Unfortunately the shortlist contained 414 songs. So because of this I decided to set myself the rule of no duplicate countries, and no duplicate years.
1 point: ‘Tu te reconnaîtras” – Anne-Marie David (Luxembourg, 1973)
Starting off my list with class and elegance. It makes me exceptionally happy that Anne-Marie is still the best performing winner of all time. Each and every note, from every single instrument builds in the most perfect manner and never fails to put a smile on my face before the first lyric is even sung. I was fortunate enough to see her live a few years ago and even now her charm and majesty still shines through.
2 points: “River” – Ochman (Poland, 2022)
If you I were to write a list of everything I love most in an ESC song; a strong male balladeer, heavy focus on a piano, sombre tone, fantastic dark staging, then this takes every one and takes it to the next level. I don’t think there is a song that has shot up to the first place in my top and stayed there as fast as this. The atmosphere that Ochman creates is unparalleled. The operatic long notes in the second half of the song are just *chef’s kiss*. Also, this is not even the only song Ashley Hicklin authored song on this list which I just find fun.
3 points: “Соловей” – Go_A (Ukraine, 2020)
I was deeply uninvested in 2020’s contest even prior to ‘events’ and had only bothered to listen to a handful of entries. That drastically changed after listening to Go_A. This one song revitalised my interest in both the year and the contest itself. The way Kateryna and Ihor’s voices harmonise and create such powerful and evocative depth is (and I’m sorry for how frequent I use this word) magical. It’s a song that’s simultaneously in your face and aggressive, but also soft and intimate in how it depicts the heartbreak through the narrative. Seeing this live was the closest I’ve come to having a religious experience, and there was an energy that no other concert or festival could compare to. I want the words “Соловей, соловей не співай раненько, А мені на серденьку знов не веселенько” etched onto my heart. Hell this song was so good that it kickstarted not only my interest and love of folktronica (what I now regard as my favourite genre of music), but of the Ukrainian language and was one of the reasons I starter to learn it. I know at this point I am just rambling, but fuck me do I love this song.
4 points: “Anouschka” – Inge Brück (Germany, 1967)
Now any eurofan who’s knows me, knows one important thing; I am an absolute slut for the 60s. What I love the most about this era of Eurovision is just how intimate and captivating so many of the performances are, and when I first heard Inge I was completely enthralled. Its lyrics tell of Inge consoling someone young who’s experiencing heartbreak, and Inge’s phenomenal stage presence and evocative voice makes it difficult to not feel the warmth and compassion she’s trying to convey. Also, the horns at the start absolutely slap.
5 points: “Boum-Badaboum” – Minouche (Monaco, 1967)
OK so when I said I’d only do one song per year I did have to make an exception for ’67 because far too much of it absolutely slaps. I have submitted five ’67 in the past so forgive me for obsessing about this year. I talk more in depth about this in the upcoming 1967 retrospective, but I love the frankness of declaring how much you want to live your life in any way that you want and embrace it in the face of potential nuclear Armageddon. I don’t get why this has had a sudden resurgence of hatred towards it in the fandom of late. Minouche deserves the iconic recognition she deserves.
6 points: “Rock Me” – Riva (Yugoslavia, 1989)
To be honest I shouldn’t like this. I typically hate the 80s and 90s. It’s cheesy, repetitive, and doesn’t push the boat out much, but by god is it not one of the best damn winners the contest has ever had. Listening to it makes me want to get shoulder pads and a disco ball and just dance the night away.
7 points: “Thunder and Lightning” – Vukašin Brajić (Bosnia & Herzegovina, 2010)
This song will always hold a deep place in my heart, and I think will always feature in my 250 vote because it’s the song that turned me into a Eurofan. This was the first song that I became obsessed with after my first contest in 2010. I think I’m still chasing the ESC-high of having a rock song this good in Eurovision.
8 points: “Run With The Lions” – Jurijus Veklenko (Lithuania, 2019)
Trying to pick my favourite entry from my favourite country was… difficult to say the least. Jurijus beat out all the others because frankly I listen to this almost every day. Eurovizija Atranka that year was the (and I know I’m prone to hyperbole) greatest national final that I had ever seen, and even though it wasn’t my favourite in the selection, in hindsight I’m so happy that it did win. There’s an infectious happiness and warmth he brought to the contest that year, and I’m still bitter that he didn’t qualify. (Also the second Hicklin song in my top ten so I really hope he’s submitting more entries this year).
10 points: “Yo soy aquél” – Raphael (Spain, 1966)
The grip this performance has over me is ridiculous. The way he gazes into the camera, the energy of his performance, the raw depth of his voice; God this man is magical and honestly we need him back in Eurovision. I don’t care how out of date it is.
As I’ve already stated, getting to this final 10 was difficult so I’d like to give a special shout out to some entries that I couldn’t vote for:
- Virtually the entirety of 1967, Lithuania, and Yugoslavia. My darlings I love you all, but I can’t have a voting list with all of you on here
- Requiem – Alma (France, 2017): My ‘I’ve just had three sips of wine and want to start singing’ anthem
- Terra – Tanxugueiras (Rightful Spanish entry, 2022): Non Hai Fronteiras ✊
And Euan’s 12 points go to… “Heroes” – Måns Zelmerlöw (Sweden, 2015)
Trying to write about my favourite entry is difficult for me. Trying to explain why this song is important to me is like trying to explain why oxygen is important to me. This song means so much that it is a literal part of me (that’s a literal literal too, I’ve even got a Heroes tattoo because I loved it so much). The hope (and glory) he sings about is truly infectious and words cannot express how much I adore this.
Listen to our collective ESC 250 playlist on Spotify
Enjoy our collective ESC 250 playlist on YouTube
Now that Euan has revealed his votes for ESC 250 this year, what do you think of their picks? Who received your 12 points this year? As always, please let us know what you think by commenting below. Be sure to follow ‘THAT Eurovision Site’ on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok for all of the latest Eurovision news.
News Source: That Eurovision Site
Photo Credit: EBU / Andres Putting