A Swede who lives in Finland and who is lost in Euroland - the wonderful world of Eurovision
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Thursday, January 27, 2011

Runner-up: United Kingdom 1981

Given the poor UK record of recent times it might be hard to remember, but back in the day even some big names took part in the British national finals from time to time.

In 1981, Liquid Gold was a firmly established disco act with chart success in America as well as a UK #2 hit single under their belt when they decided to give Eurovision a shot.

They didn't sound like your typical ESC output at the time and looked even less like it:

Liquid Gold - Don't Panic (UK NF 1981)

A real disco hit by a real disco band - that would have been something to enter in the 1981 Eurovision Song Contest, where far too many of the contestants were polite little songs more eager not to disturb rather than to entertain. A risky choice, but had Liquid Gold met success, it could have pushed Eurovision mainstream in a very different direction.

Instead, the juries went for a group created especially to perform at A Song for Europe: the happy clappy foursome that was Bucks Fizz.

Bucks Fizz - Making Your Mind Up (UK 1981)

Despite singing somewhat out of key in Dublin, ripping the skirts off worked wonders and Bucks Fizz not only scored a 4th victory for the UK but also went on to have a solid career with several top hits in the years to come.

What if the more established Liquid Gold had won the UK selection instead? What would the outcome have been in Dublin?

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