Recently in Eurovision 2011 Category
News just in! On another media outlet. About 24 hours ago. But forgetting all that for a moment, Ireland's top 10-finishing act in Germany, those X-Factor botherers Jedward, have announced they're having another go at scooping the Eurovision Song Contest trophy in Azerbaijan next year.
In theory, this is not such a bad move, as their semi-success with Lipstick certainly boosted the brothers' profile in some parts of Europe. It makes more sense to capitalise on this now rather wait another five years. From the titbits floating about t'net, it seems the same team who composed Lipstick and a lot of the songs on Jedward's debut album, Victory, will produce a shortlist of tunes for the Jeds to perform on a national final (presumably another Late Late Show special) with the phone dialling fingers of the Irish viewers then deciding upon the tune for Baku.
Ey up. I'm not long back from Manchester where I pointed a mic at lots of nice people and they told me interesting things. You can listen to a streaming version of the report on the player above but if you'd rather download the podcast for your listening pleasure, you can do so by right-clicking here and then 'save as' to the desired nook and cranny of your hard drive.
Listeners of a gentle persuasion should be aware that this podcast contains the following words: 'nipple', 'rap' and 'Guinness'.
Has it really been more than a month? Slapped wrists for Boom Bang a Blog on the updating side of things but I do have a crumb of an excuse.
Not only is there little to tell you about in the immediate aftermath of any Contest (although it would appear our chums in Baku are purpose-building the venue for Eurovision 2012) but I have also been on my jolly hols with my other half.
And with our travels taking in four Baltic states, not to mention nations which embrace our favourite music competition in positive fashion, it was an ideal opportunity to have a bit of an investigate into all sorts of Eurovisiony things. Whenever the holiday itinerary allowed, I took a trip to venues which have staged the Contest itself, had a look at the CDs you can buy in this part of the world which you can't get in the UK and even the Eurovision-related stuff which can happen when you least expect it.
To make up for a lack of postage since May this entry is going to be a long one - but I hope you enjoy it for its different-ness. Are you ready, then? Let's get this show on the road with our first stop of the tour.
Ell & Nikki from Azerbaijan with Running Scared, the winning song of Eurovision 2011
Apologies that this reaction to last weekend's result has taken so long to post, the real world has been occupying a very large wodge of my life in the past two weeks but it has all settled down now. Anyway, as you can see by the picture on the left showing the blackboard in our hall which greeted our guests on Saturday evening, there was no jaunt to the Contest itself for Boom Bang a blog this year. Instead, we installed ourselves on the sofa at home with some chums and watched it all unfold on our telly screens. It was a far more enjoyable line-up than made it to the big Saturday night in Oslo last year and there really were 10-12 songs which could feasibly have clinched the trophy if the wind was blowing in a different direction.
I shall put my hand up and admit that the moment I heard Running Scared for the first time back in March my immediate reaction was 'brilliant intro, but it gets boring very quickly', however, the clever sould responsible for Ell & Nikki's staging helped lift both the song and disguise Nikki's rather weak vocal capabilities into something rather special. That halo of pyros which became a gentle firefall really was rather special and came at just the right moment. It also goes to show that this was destined to be a close-run year. The winning score of 221 from the 42 other voting countries is six points fewer than Katrina and the Waves scored 14 years ago when there were only 24 other nations eligible to vote for the UK. It would seem that runaway winners a'la Rybak will be few and far between as the years go on.
But enough number crunching, Eurovision is off to Baku for 2012.
A taster of what's to come on BBC One at 8pm tonight.
Tonight's the night when BBC One can do no wrong for me. What looks set to be a series-mythology-hugging episode of Doctor Who at 6.30pm is followed by the 56th Eurovision Song Contest at 8pm. Wahey.
Ever since the full line-up was known at the end of Thursday and the acts have been rehearsing as a complete run of competitors going for the trophy Jedward for Ireland are getting more and more headlines for Ireland (don't be surprised if this is win number 8 for Eire this evening) and how the twins' position between Hungary and Sweden in the final is destroying the chances of Kati Wolf and Eric Saade. Eric has been hitting back at Jedward, saying they are merely his 'warm-up act', and so it goes on, To be honest, a bit of backstage hostility between the contestants is just the thing Eurovision needs to attract the Heat-reading masses.
And as for Blue? Well, some are saying they got the biggest cheer of the night (barring hone girl Lena) in yesterday evening's jury final while others claim they couldn't sing their way out of an X-Factor boot camp. I suppose the only way to find out is to watch tonight but I hope that Blue's slide down the betting odds in the past seven days gives tham more of a chance to surprise people this evening. From the clips I've seen, I think the UK can be proud of its boys this evening wherever they may land on the scoreboard and I hope this level of thought and effort goes into our participation from Television Centre for a long time to come.
I was approached by my smashing colleague Neil MacDonald of the rather excellent ScyFi Love blog to record a podcast about my liking for all things Contesty which could appear on the website of the Liverpool Echo.
I did do just that and if you want to hear it for yourselves, you can do so right here. I hope it doesn't go on too long - and I must apologise for the moment shortly before the end where I knock the table and disturb my flow. I'm jiggered of ever becoming an extra in Torchwood if John Barrowman wraps his ears around it.
Right, the 10 qualifiers from this evening's semi-final have each pulled their draw number out of the bag and this is how the running order for Saturday's Eurovision Song Contest looks like:
02: Bosnia & Herzegovina
14: United Kingdom
Things have been a tad hectic since Tuesday so I haven't been able to do a post-match analysis of the first qualifier - or a fancy schmancy graphic to go with this particular post so I'm afriad it's back to basics with just words on a screen.
However, before the second line-up decimator gets underway, here are mine and Glyn's predictions again. He got eight right on Tuesday, I got seven...
Bosnia & Herzegovina, Austria, Slovakia, Ukraine, Moldova, Sweden, FYR Macedonia, Romania, Denmark, Ireland
Bosnia & Herzegovina, Austria, Ukraine, Moldova, Sweden, FYR Macedonia, Israel, Latvia, Denmark, Ireland
Before midnight tonight, we'll know the full line-up for the final of the 2011 Eurovision Song Contest, who's singing in which positions - and if Jedward are emerging as the serious contenders everyone in attendance at rehearsals has them marked down for.
Ooh... see you in a bit!
Then here's footgae of Blue's first rehearsal on the Eurovision Song Contest, filmed at the Esprit Arena on Saturday afternoon.
And you'll notice the beginning of the Contest version has a sudden stop/start thing going on that isn't on the single. Perhaps a cue for a shower of pyrotechnics?
Yes, it's that time of year when I lay it all on the line, based on what I've read about from the fans blogging away like good 'uns in the press centre and pick the ten nations I believe will progress from tonight's semi-final to the Eurovision Song Contest proper on Saturday night.
This year, to add a little variety to the proceedings, I've invited my other half, Glyn, to have a bit of a predict as well. You will see what we plumped for by clicking 'Continue Reading'.
Which of us is better at predicting? You'll find out this evening. The first semi-final (which UK viewers can vote in) is broadcast on BBC Three from 8pm.