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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Sunday, January 4, 2015

Runner-up: France 1990

After winning in 1965 and placing 5th in 1967, French music legend Serge Gainsbourg entered Eurovision a third time, less than a year before his death. True to his own style, and very much like during his previous attempts, he was determined to again push the limits for what you could get away with in this competition.

What he achieved was nothing less than a revolution. In the past, ethnic and exotic entries had been praised for being "genuine" and "real" before getting completely ignored by the juries who left them to crash and burn and the end of the results.

Joëlle Ursull deemed the original title "Black Lolita" unnecessarily provocative, thinking the set-up in itself being rather risky. Never before had a non-white performer been trusted to represent France at Eurovision and Gainsbourg agreed to alter the lyrics.

"White And Black Blues" entered the contest the way a tropical storm would. Not only was it very different but it also felt modern and hit-friendly and the juries almost bought it.

A deserved 2nd place?
Yes. In retrospect it's a bit of a shame that Joëlle Ursull didn't win but at that time, a good placing for a breakaway entry like this was as good as a victory. Also it would broaden people's idea of what kind of song could work at Eurovision, paving the way for a lot of modern, inspiring and successful etno-songs in the years to come.

The video can not be embedded but you can watch it here.

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