Eurovision (ESC) Thursday – The Better Year 2021 or 2022

Word on the street is that we are less than 50 days away from Eurovision 2022. Man, I wish that I could attend, buuuuuut tickets for the show and the accommodations in Turin were way too damn high for my liking. In a regular situation (like if I was 28-33 years old), I’d probably through caution to the wind and attend. However, I guess that I should be an adult and handle my adult business. In the very near future, I/we are planning to purchase a car and move to a bigger place.

That said, now that we finally have all of ESC22’s songs, here are my updated rankings. Keep in mind that this list will probably change a few more times as we get closer to Eurovision.

Note that countries from 30 to 40 are at the bottom of my rankings because I have not heard a live vocal from these artists. Based on their music videos, I have a feeling that Belgium, the UK, and the Netherlands will slip into my top ten. The songs from Greece and Montenegro are already becoming earworms for me.

Who’s going to qualify?

With the exception of the Big 5 (France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and the UK), other countries must participate in a qualifying round, in which the top ten countries from each semifinal round will advance to advance to the finals. Also, now we know the running order for both semifinal rounds. While there is a drawing to determine which countries will perform in which semifinal round, the show’s producers select the running order for a more enjoyable show. For instance, they tend to pick a strong upbeat song to kick off the show. For the first semifinal round, I had a feeling that Albania was going to open or close the show because Ronela’s Sekret is such a bop. Also, they try to arrange the songs in a manner in which there will not be 5-6 slow ballads in a row. Also, if a country’s song has complicated staging, the performer(s) probably would perform after a break or near the middle/end of the show.

Many folks believe that the order of the performances can significantly affect how the public (and the national juries, I guess) will vote. While I think it has a role, I’m not too sure about how much it affects the qualification of a song.

My selections for the 1st semi-final round were pretty easy to make, but the 2nd semi-final round was really tough for me. For me, there are so many variables to could affect the 2nd semi-final round. North Macedonia (Andrea’s Circles) is in my top ten (for now) but after watching one of her live performances, the song probably will move out of my top ten. I think the song and Andrea’s live vocals are fine, but Andrea needs a better/stronger stage presence.

An interesting piece of ESC trivia: For the most part, ESC winners (unless they are one of the Big Five countries) tend to hail from the 1st semi-final round.

Feel free to check out some of the songs for ESC22

Shucks, Spotify does not list the countries with the songs. Here’s a cheat sheet: 1. the Netherlands, 2. Austria, 3. the UK, 4. Greece, 5. Sweden, 6. Belgium, 7. France, 8. Spain, 9. Norway, 10. Ukraine, 11. San Marino, 12. Italy, 13. Cyprus, 14. Poland, 15. Ireland, 16. Czech Republic, 17. Portugal, 18. Estonia,

19. Switzerland, 20. Romania, 21. Australia, 22. Germany, 23. Latvia, 24. Malta, 25. Lithuania, 26. Croatia, 27. Montenegro (welcome back to Eurovision), 28. Finland, 29. Albania, 30. Iceland, 31. Israel, 32. Denmark, 33. Moldova, 34. Serbia, and 35. Bulgaria.

Which is better ESC21 or ESC22?

As countries were selecting their songs, folks were saying that ESC21 was a stronger year than this year. Thanks to Tiermaker, I can test this theory myself. Keep in mind this is based on my preferences and not the popularity of the songs and artists.

Based on my preferences: I preferred ESC21 songs (23) over ESC22 songs (11). For me, this ranking does not mean that one year’s song from country A is bad and the other year’s song from country A is good. Looking at Lithuania as an example, I like the songs submitted in both 2021 and 2022, but I have a preference for this 2022’s song over 2021’s.

Eh, let’s see ESC20 vs ESC21 for sh*ts and giggles

ESC21 – I preferred 17 songs and ESC20 – I preferred 10 songs. Interestingly, I straddled the fence for more countries ESC20 v ESC21 (11 songs) than ESC21 vs ESC22 (4 songs). Since ESC20 did not happen because of the pandemic, I made these selections based on the released songs and not the live performances.

Looking at ESC20 and ESC21, I think the pandemic affected how submitted songs were received. Since ESC20 was canceled, I think dance/pop bops were more popular because folks were in more of a celebratory mode. Also, I think the cancelation of ESC20 gave countries and performers an extra year to submit stronger songs (or even stronger artists) for ESC21. There were several countries/performers that submitted ballads for ESC20 but decided to send more uptempo sounds for ESC21 (eg Lithuania, Moldova, and the Netherlands). While the submission of more uptempo songs in 21 made for a “better” more upbeat ESC, I think that it hurt some of the female performers because the votes were diluted. In ESC, voters distribute their points between 10 acts (points are distributed in the following manner: 12, 10, 8-1).

ESC2020 Songs

Cheatsheet: 1. Switzerland, 2. Iceland, 3. Lithuania, 4. Russia, 5. Random. 6. Malta, 7. Germany, 8. Bulgaria, 9. Norway, 10. Australia, 11. Azerbaijan, 12. Sweden, 13. Denmark, 14. the UK, 15. Finland, 16. Romania, 17. Italy, 18. the Netherlands, 19. France, 20. Ukraine, 21. Czech Republic, 22. Cyprus, 23. Spain, 24. Ireland, 25. Armenia, 26. Belarus, 27. Israel, 28. Georgia, 29. Greece, 30. Estonia, 31. Belgium, 32. Poland, 33. San Marino, 34. Croatia, 35. Latvia, 36. Portugal, 37. Albania, 38. Croatia (again?), 39. Moldova, 40. N. Macedonia, 41. Austria, 42. Serbia, 43. Slovenia

ESC2021 Songs

A little ESC humor regarding France’s entry.

Lyrics from the chorus

Social Media Plug:

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