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Friday, 2 March 2012

The Artist

"Please Release Me", "The Last Waltz", "La Bicyclette de Belsize". What titles, what songs, what rubbish.

It's a shocking irony, a huge cosmic joke that in the week a shining star of the 60's dies, the undead should be announced as the UK singer for the Eurovision Song Contest. Engelbert Humperdink , infamously known for keeping "Strawberry Fields Forever" off the top spot in 1967, is to be our representative at this year's contest in Baku, Azerbaijan. Well someone else has to suffer besides us in hosting naff competitions this year.

In a sense Engelbert and The Eurovision Song Contest are made for each other. Both are way past their sell by date, both wear ludicrous costumes: all lace and lurex and both are found performing at the outer reaches of civilisation. Las Vegas and Baku.

It is a huge achievement that Abba should have won the 1970 Euro song contest yet went on to be really quite good. Other winners tend to either be at the fag end of their careers or are killed off by their appearances on that ghastly show.

Cliff Richard, when he finally meets his Maker, should be plunged into the lowest circle of Hell as punishment for the agony he inflicted on millions upon millions of innocents who have had the misfortune of seeing his excruciating performance of "Congratulations" back in the late 60's.

Mind you we never did light up the sky with our entries in the 60's, although some might say that in terms of chart placings (but not artistic quality) that was our most successful period. Who can forget Pearl Carr and Teddy Johnson's "Sing Little Birdy Sing" (1959), Bryan Johnson's "High, High, High" (1960), The Allisons "Are You Sure?" (1961), Ronnie Carroll "Ring A Ding Girl"(1962), Matt Monroe's "The Little Things" (1964), Kathy Kirby "I Belong" (1965)  and we've not reached Sir Cliff yet.

Kenneth McKellar set all our hearts a stirring with "A Man Without Love" in 1966 and "Barefoot in the Park and elsewhere" Sandie Shore with "Puppet on a String" in 1967. Then there was Cliff, Lulu and the 70's were heralded in (I use the term advisedly) by Mary Hopkins.

Later we only had any success if you lost the lower half of your clothes "Making Your Mind Up" or sported outrageous moustaches "Save You Kisses For Me".

No, on reflection Englebert is the perfect choice. A retread from the '60's who may rekindle our Eurosong 60's relative success.

Not 'alf, pop pickers.

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

The standard improved in the 70s

Who can forget Power to All Our Friends or Beg Steal or Borrow?

Steve said...

Cliff Richard plunged into hell?

I salute you, sir. You have seen my heart and given it voice.

Harry said...

Hey guys what did I do wrong?

Looking cool for 50 years and dating Sue whaterserface is not a crime!

Chill guys!

C

Marginalia said...

Dear Anon, better than very bad is not very good.

Dear Steve, Well what do you expect after "Devil Woman".

Dear Sir Cliff, you know you're a national institution. Hopefully there's also one we can put you in.

Benedictus PP. XVI said...

I think you mean SAINT Cliff don't you?

Marginalia said...

Dear Your Holiness, I suppose you should know being in the loop so to speak.

Winkelpicker said...

A sixties pop picker like you should be grateful that a name from that era has been picked to fly the flag in this year's euro. Right on daddio!

Harry said...

Thanks M

I expect to be invited into the Palace after my Diamond Jubilee gig performance on the Mall. Not a bad institution to be associated with!

My mates Tom and Paul will be there too.

Once in every lifetime.....

C

P.R.E Leaseme said...

In a multi cultural society Eng is the perfect candidate to represent GB. Born in Madras and raised in Leicester. He has recorded everything from the most romantic ballads to the platinum-selling theme song "Lesbian Seagull" for the latest Beavis and Butthead movie. So there!

Albert S said...

An older geezer like you should be supporting a "mature" candidate like EH. Too many snake hipped youngsters gyrating and singing sh*t on these shows for my taste. Bah!

Marginalia said...

Dear H, I'm so glad you've found some sort of closure. Frankly I'd rather been boiled in pitch then share a stage with the second best Beatle and a piece of Welsh slate.

Dear WP, I bet your toes pinch!

Dear Nearly a (bad)song title we will.

Marginalia said...

Dear Albert, the crooner Englebert certainly brings out the living and long dead.

You must be coining it what with the price of metal and the entrepenurial skills of our criminal classes.

Albert S said...

Arold! There is a blogger in the yard. Cheeky beggar. Make sure the orse is OK.

Herman said...

Englebert ist ein politischer Gegenwert Ihres Leiters Cameron. Kein ernster Spieler in Europa!