Eurovision, the all-Europe song annual song contest, has always been somewhat politicized. While in the past, most post-contest arguments pertained to what nation voted for what candidate, recent developments indicate a new Cold War in Europe: that between Russia and some of it’s post-Soviet neighbors.
In 2007, Ukraine’s Verka Serduchka sang what s/he claimed to have been “Lasha Tumbai” (a meaningless combination of sounds, really), but everyone heard “Russia, Goodbye.”
In 2008, Russia responded with Dima Bilan, who sang alongside an Olympic golden medalist Yevgeniy Plyushchenko to the accompanying Hungarian violist Edvin Marton. Dima Bilan became the first Russian to have won the Eurovision (Ukraine has two victories under her belt).
As the preparations for the 2009 contest are on the way, things are getting political. While most countries have not held the qualifying finals for their participants, Georgia announced its candidate, the band Stephane&3G that was specifically tailored to enter Eurovision. The country has only been participating in the Eurovision since 2007. Here are some of the lyrics:
We don’t wanna put in
The negative move
It’s killin’ the groove
It certainly has a Eurovision winner potential: it is catchy, clearly inspired by American pop bands, and it has three girls with an exotic accent in tight PVC tops and mini-shorts. And it mentions drinking moonshine. That, along with the song’s message, will probably guarantee it many votes from the amused Western Europe and Russia-hating Eastern European countries.
Ironically, this year’s Eurovision will be held in Moscow (Russia’s Dima Bilan won last year), so “We Don’t Wanna Put In” will sound even more provocative. If the Eurovision organizing committee does allow this song to be performed (there were questions raised as to its appropriateness), I wonder what the Kremlin’s reaction will be.
I can see why the Georgians are so tongue-in-cheek regarding their behemoth neighbor, but that’s a petty way to deliver a protest, isn’t it? Georgia, if you are still mad over Abkhazia and Ossetia, go to a court of law, not the performance stage.