Tomorrow is a big day in Eurovision world. The 20th Junior Eurovision Song Contest is being held in Yerevan, Armenia. This week, the 16 contestants attended the opening ceremony and held their rehearsals. With that being said, I’m going to briefly talk about the running order and my final rankings before the big show
The running order was done after the opening ceremony. Netherlands and Ukraine were chosen to start and finish the contest, while Armenia picked their number. Here is the running order for reference
I got to listen to the 16 entries a couple of weeks back while I took a break from blogging, and I’m impressed with the quality of the songs this year. Without further ado, here’s my top 16
I’m taking a break from posting on WordPress, but next week, I’ll be channeling my energy into reviewing the 16 entries for the upcoming Junior Eurovision Song Contest in Armenia. For now, I’ll be enjoying the Thanksgiving holiday and you should start seeing some posts here by next Monday
New artists come into the fray and that’s pretty much it for this edition.
4 new artists for Junior Eurovision
4 more countries added their singers to the 20th edition. Ireland and Albania did it through the national finals, while Armenia and France chose internally. Sophie Lennon, Kejtlin Gjata, Nare, and Lissandro will be respectively representing these countries in Yerevan in December. Lissandro’s song is already out. I’ll be reacting to that and other songs when the time comes
Junior Eurovision Song Contest 2015 Recap
Today I’ll be watching the 2015 contest, the 13th edition in the lineup. This one will be like watching it brand new because around that same time, I was bombarded with bad energy after bad energy. 2015 was not a good year for me and I could not enjoy this contest at the time. Now, after almost 7 years, I’m going to enjoy it, with no one stopping me. Anyway, the contest was held in Bulgaria with 17 countries taking part, and I cannot wait to watch it in full with a much better mood
All 40 countries had voted by the deadline so now the real preparation starts. You can follow along here
Favorite Tracks of the Week
As always, we end it with some of my favorite tracks of the week
Rihanna feat Chris Brown — Birthday Cake (I found out it’s a remix and also yikes, but I like this song, okay)
Andrew Lambrou was chosen by Cyprus’ TV station CyBC to represent the country in Liverpool next year. He is the second artist to be selected to compete in Liverpool after Israel chose Noa Kirel over the summer. Lambrou is Greek-Cypriot-Aussie and competed in Australia’s national selection in 2022.
The European Broadcasting Union released the list of 37 countries that will be competing in Liverpool, with Cyprus and Israel among them. However, as mentioned last week, Montenegro, Bulgaria, and North Macedonia dropped out (although Bulgaria tried to walk back). This is the lowest number of participants since 2014. Although Kazakhstan is eyeing a debut so we might or might not see them in Liverpool, who knows.
Junior Eurovision 2014 Rewatch
Tonight, I’m rewatching one of my favorite editions of JESC, and it’s the 2014 edition in Malta. 16 countries competed, up 4 from the previous two years. Italy debuted and won the contest, with Bulgaria (who hosted the next contest) in second. The hosting venue is pretty much a continuation of the shipyard aesthetic that Copenhagen undertook some months earlier. This will be a fun one, so I can’t wait to watch it again
Totallympics Open Song Contest Update
The voting period will end on October 28, but I have already made my decision to secure my country’s entry. I don’t know if my teammate voted yet, but I’m sure he’s working on it. Anyway, that’s pretty much the only update I have this week
Favorite Tracks of the Week
As always, we end it with some of my favorite tracks of the week
Gromee feat Lukas Meijer — Light Me Up
Ronela Hajati — Sekret
Jeremie Makiese — Miss You
Alvan & Ahez — Fulenn
Now United — All Night Long
Taylor Swift — Lavender Haze
Waka Flocka Flame feat Roscoe Dash & Wale — No Hands
Yeah, it’s heating up, and we got another rundown to get to.
Junior Eurovision 2013 Rewatch
I’m watching Junior Eurovision 2013 to start the second half of rewatching every edition in the lead-up to the 20th edition in December. This one also has 12 countries competing, joining 2012 and 2020 for probably the shortest contest ever, so this should be fun
I’m also starting to rate the other 40 songs competing in this online contest that I’m taking part in. The voting ends next Saturday, so I’m taking the weekend to give points to my favorites to send to the forum member hosting the contest.
We’ve reached the deadline to withdraw without paying the fee (the EBU sets a deadline to a date in mid-October for countries to withdraw from Eurovision without paying a penalty. Think of this as a “last chance” call), and within a span of hours, three countries noped out of next year’s contest. Montenegro and North Macedonia because of costs, and Bulgaria because the TV station isn’t interested anymore (they’re still salty about last year when they sent a band fronted by someone with a warrant to Turin. Did they think no one would notice?). Although, North Macedonia had wanted to withdraw anyway because of how their 2022 representative Andrea acted during the opening ceremony. Bosnia & Herzegovina hadn’t participated in several years, so this is a continuation
My favorite pre-contest party is back for another year and they are now selling tickets for the April 15 show. I, however, am looking forward to watching it online. This is my favorite pre-contest party because usually it attracts about 75% of participants and a few guests to Amsterdam
JESC Stage Design
Earlier this week, Armenia’s TV station released the design for the stage and it’s… beautiful. It fits with the spinning top theme that they have going on. The center stage is a large spinning circle and a standing space. But for those who watched Eurovision 2022, you would know this… no sun of death
Serbia chooses JESC 2022 Singer
Serbia is sending 12-year-old Katarina Savić to Yerevan, and we have the song title (“Svet bez granica” or “World Without Borders”). We’re still waiting for the song, but it will be out soon, so stay tuned. She was chosen internally by Serbia’s RTS after an open call. I’ll be reviewing this song as well as the others when the time comes
Favorite Tracks of the Week
I didn’t get to listen to a lot of tracks, but for the ones I did listen to, here’s the very short list:
16 kids took part in the Maltese national final for Junior Eurovision, but in the end, it was Gaia Gambuzza who will fly the flag to Yerevan with “Diamonds in the Skies”. I’ll be reviewing this and other songs in the coming weeks
Over in Spain, they are sending Carlos Higes to the contest with the song and music video possibly coming within the next month. He has competed on La Voz Kids and Idol Kids, and even auditioned with Armenia’s 2019 JESC entry “Colors of Your Dream” so I think he’s a contender
Ukraine is holding its national final Vidbir on December 17, 2022, at a metro station (a TBD spot for now). Of course, you’re wondering why I titled the heading that way. That’s because Albania usually holds its national final around Christmas time, and unless another country decides to hold a national final in December, Albania ends up choosing the first song of the new contest. However, 2023 won’t be the first year this has happened. I will have to warn you, though… some Eurovision fans will make their “Top 1” videos (honestly, why do they do this). Look for those in December when Ukraine chooses their entry
Junior Eurovision 2012 Rewatch
This week, I’ll be watching Junior Eurovision 2012, which marks the halfway point in my quest to watch each edition in existence. This is also tied for the shortest rewatch with just 12 countries competing. I don’t quite remember exactly what happened before the contest, but I do remember that it was at its low, so this should be fun
I’m taking part in an online international song contest
I did mention in an earlier blog post that there are online song contests out there and that I take part in one of them. Well, a few weeks ago, I said yes to taking part in an online song contest on a sports forum called Totallympics, and I am one of two players representing the United States. We have chosen our song for the open contest (we run two contests a year — annual and open). If you want to follow along, I will leave the link here and I will also post the US entry for the contest here. We’ll be competing with former American Idol winner Jordin Sparks, hailing from Phoenix, Arizona, with Battlefield
Liverpool. They made the announcement last night their time (around 2pm my time) and while I was Team Glasgow through and through, Liverpool delivered a better campaign, and their twinning with Odesa, Ukraine, probably sealed the deal to host the contest on May 9-13, 2023, so congrats, Liverpool.
Favorite Tracks of the Week
Alright, let’s close this episode with my favorite tracks of the week, Eurovision or not
I was gonna do a straight-up music review, but both Eurovision and Junior Eurovision (and Hurricane Ian) had other plans, so let’s go
16 Countries competing in Junior Eurovision 2022
On Monday, the European Broadcasting Union released the names of 16 countries that will compete at the 20th Junior Eurovision Song Contest in Yerevan, Armenia this December. That is a drop from 19 countries that took part in Paris last year. The United Kingdom is back after 17 years, but 4 countries dipped out this year… Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Germany, and Russia. Even though they got 16 countries in, there is always a possibility of adding and/or subtracting one more.
The Netherlands has selected Luna to represent them with La Festa, beating out three other acts.
Meanwhile, Poland is sending Laura Bączkiewic to Yerevan with the song To The Moon. Both songs as well as Ukraine’s entry will be reviewed in due course. Malta will choose their entry tomorrow, so stay tuned for next week’s recap
Junior Eurovision 2011 Rewatch
This week, I’ll be watching Junior Eurovision 2011, which was held in *drumroll* Yerevan, Armenia. And, yes, it was held at the Karen Demirchyan Sports and Concerts Complex, which is the same venue hosting this year’s contest. So, be it that it’s 11 years apart, this might be cool and a bit weird. But I’m gonna watch it
Glasgow or Liverpool
Going to Eurovision, the BBC announced on Tuesday that Glasgow and Liverpool are the host city finalists for the 2023 contest. Glasgow was my first choice, so I’m happy with this update. I never really saw Liverpool as a front-runner, though I was expecting Birmingham to take the cut. If you’re curious about which other cities were previously in the running, you can read one of my earlier blog posts here
Favorite Non-Eurovision Tracks of the Week
And finally, some favorite tracks outside of the contests this week are below
Meet Zlata Dzyunka, Ukraine’s choice for the upcoming Junior Eurovision Song Contest. While she isn’t the first artist known to compete this year, she presents the first competing song, so I’ll leave it here
Meanwhile, the Netherlands will pick their JESC entry tonight.
Junior Eurovision 2010 Rewatch
Today, I’ll be watching the 2010 edition of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest, the first of two to take place in Minsk, Belarus (the other is 2018). The contest is available on the official JESC YouTube channel, so that’s where I will be this afternoon. Being that this is the 8th edition, I’m 12 weeks away from finishing this series
Various countries announcing their national/internal selection dates
It’s Eurovision Roundup Saturday, and this week, I’ll be reacting to the latest Eurovision news plus some other music I have on repeat this week
Junior Eurovision 2009 Rewatch
I’m rewatching Junior Eurovision 2009 later today. JESC 2009 was the first junior contest that I watched, so I cannot wait to go down memory lane (because tbh, I forgot how it went or the songs that competed)
If that’s the case, I’m totally on board. I have watched FiK since 2010 and they did have a televoting component, but not since 2016. Most of the winners since the very first edition in 1962 were chosen by a jury panel. It has been used for Eurovision since 2003. I am optimistic about this news. I feel like it’s about time Albanian viewers pick their favorites. I’ll be watching it over the Christmas holiday to see how it goes.
One of the aspects of being a fan of Eurovision is following national finals. I haven’t really followed them as much as I used to, but I know that right around February and March, multiple countries tend to hold their final selections the same night. Both Denmark and Estonia announced their national final selections for February 11, 2023. 8 songs will compete in the Dansk Melodi Grand Prix, but in Eesti Laul, where they normally had quarter-finals… they won’t have them. The 2 semi-finals will take place in January.
OGAE International decided that their Russian branch can still be a part of the club despite the Ukrainian OGAE club’s complaint. As a result… Ukraine withdrew from the OGAE Song Contest 2022, and now so do Germany and United Kingdom.
Finally, some songs I’ve listened to this week
Wacka Flocka Flame featuring Roscoe Dash and Wale — No Hands
Todrick Hall featuring Dance Moms — Freaks Like Me
Now that Eurovision has entered a “new” year on September 1, maybe I should comment briefly on what’s been happening weekly.
In the absence of Eurovision, I’ll find something entertainment-related to comment about, so here we go
I’m rewatching Junior Eurovision 2008 later today. The 6th edition took place in Limassol, Cyprus on November 22, 2008, and 15 countries competed. This will be the last one that I have not seen in full as I have seen every edition since 2009. I am still planning to watch the rest, so stay tuned
Ukraine had already announced earlier that they will be selecting their 2023 representative by the end of the year, so we’ll see what comes out of it.
I mentioned in my 14 Things post that online song contests are a thing. This is the OGAE song contest where OGAE clubs (read: official Eurovision fan clubs) send a song that has not competed at the main contest or in the national finals and then have other clubs vote for it. This runs for almost two months and is being hosted by the club’s Australian branch.
The bid proposals from the 7 cities have passed, although I haven’t heard back since Queen Elizabeth II died that same day
Finally, some non-Eurovision songs I’ve been listening to this week:
Bebe Rexha feat David Guetta — I’m Good
Nicki Minaj — Super Freaky Girl
BLACKPINK — Pink Venom
Wacka Flocka Flame feat Roscoe Dash and Wale — No Hands