A Swede who lives in Finland and who is lost in Euroland - the wonderful world of Eurovision
There is always some matter to discuss or just a song I want to share
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Monday, April 25, 2011

Songs only I like: Austria 1979

This one usually provokes a deep sigh from most eurofans. Too slow. Too long. Boring and depressing. Pathetic and pretentious. It's not that I don't see what they mean.

Christina Simon - Heute in Jerusalem (Austria 1979)

It is indeed too slow to be a hit in Eurovision. Had this been a bike, it would fall over before the first verse is over, due to the lack of speed.

And sending a song to Jerusalem, urging for peace, trying to be the voice of reason? Rather a cheap trick, isn't it?

But I can't help being very touched by the whole thing. I think Christina Simon is sincere, I think she means what she is singing. And she sings it beautifully. There is an air of honesty and dignity around the whole thing that the juries ignored completely.

To add insult to injury, it wasn't only shared last with Belgium, it was also beaten by at least one truly awful song. (If that was the best Monaco could cough up in 1979, they did us all a favour by withdrawing.)

But in many ways it is better to be last than 16th out of nineteen. You are more visible in the history books if you end in last place. And time has been kind to Christina and her song. If you like them too, please say so in a comment.


  1. Oh yes, I also love this one and have done so since the first time I heard it. I guess it´s the laid back and relaxed tone and feeling about it, compared to most of the other entries that night.

  2. Strange old lyrics. Very "Austria at Eurovision" of the 60s/70s, that whiff of pretentiousness about the whole thing. But I do like the song a lot.

  3. The 1979 year is in my book one of the best Eurovision years ever because of the variety of songs and the great orchestral arrangements many songs had. And this is one of the most touching songs of the evening. I simply love it.

    Do you know anything about the singer, did she have a carreer before or/and after the bad result in Jerusalem? Do you know if this song has been released on cd anywhere, I longing for a good recording of this rather special Eurovision moment.


  4. I hated this song back in 1979, found it depressive and weird. I preferred Dschingis Khan and Disco Tango. The sound was not very good in the live performance in Jerusalem, a bit out of tune you can easily say. But I bought the single, and now it's one of my all time favourites. The song itself it very beatiful, the lyric poetic, a message of peace but a little more sophistcated than Hallelujah or Ein bisschen Frieden.