A Swede who lives in Finland and who is lost in Euroland - the wonderful world of Eurovision
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Monday, April 9, 2012

Nul points: Norway 1978

The good people of EBU really thought it would be impossible not to score with the new points system introduced in 1975, and it did work well until Jahn Teigen bumped into the construction and wrecked the whole thing.

Possible sensing that his song lacked international appeal to score in its own right - there is quite a good song going on here with a pretty nice set of lyrics - Jahn decided to add a few extra touches in order not to get forgotten by the juries.

Legend has it he also managed to enrage certain important people at Norweigan television, who swore he would never be allowed back on screen if he went ahead with his planned performance.

I seriously don't think Jahn aimed not to score. I think he seriously expected just to stand out from the rest and gain a few more points than the Norweigan contributions tended to do at the time, but as the end of the voting came closer and he was still yet to score, the air lifted in the green room - Jahn has told the tale himself afterwards.

Since everybody knew Israel was going to win and could not be beaten anymore, everyone started cheering for Norway, hoping for Jahn to keep the zero, thus writing himself into the history books. Not even neighbour country Sweden, last country to vote, had any points to spare and the success was a fact. Depending on how you see it.

Nul points?

Absolutely! The song is pleasant and catchy and completely eclipsed by the flamboyant performance. Under normal circumstances, a song like this would have scored 14 points and nobody would remember it apart from the real hardcore fans.

Being the first "real" nul-pointer of all time, it has been given eternal life and it keeps popping up here and there as soon as anyone makes a collage of memorable moments at the ESC. Well done, Jahn.

Jahn Teigen - Mil etter mil (Norway 1978)

1 comment:

  1. To me one of the best songs of 1978 and an absolutely sublime orchestral arrangement (that is lacking completely from the recorded version). A song with an oboe passage cannot be bad.