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Six songs to watch out for at the first Eurovision semi-final

Six songs to watch out for at the first Eurovision semi-final

A hunky Russian, a Turkish dentist, and a Moldovan astronaut! It can only be Eurovision.

Sweden last hosted the Eurovision Song Contest in 2013, when we at Gay Star News proclaimed it the “gayest Eurovision ever”. Sweden are once again hosting this year for the 61st Eurovision Song Contest in Stockholm and they have promised us it will be “just as gay“!  With a theme of “Come Together” you can bet we are in for another LGBT-inclusive broadcast.

It’s time for the first semi-final and tonight 18 countries fight for one of 10 places available in the illustrious final on Saturday, May 14.

Here’s our 6 songs to watch in the first semi-final:

Finland – Sing It Away

The show gets off to a cracking start as Sandhja and her five female backing singers and dancers invite us to “sing it away, all my troubles away” in an upbeat disco number. We’ve seen the girls partying at the Euroclub here in Stockholm and they certainly know how to have fun!


Greece – Utopian Land

Only Russia and Greece have never failed to qualify from the semi-finals since their introduction back in 2004 but there is a feeling this may the year that the Greeks miss out on the final. The video is smoldering and sexy but the mix of folk and rap make this the least loved Greek entry for many years.

Netherlands – Slow Down

Following years of failing to qualify for the final, The Netherlands finished in the top 10 twice in the past three years. Their 2nd place in 2013 with the folk-inspired “Calm After the Storm” is followed up this year with openly bisexual singer Douwe Bob, known for his country songs which he brings to the Eurovision stage with “Slow Down”.

Douwe Bob came out on an interview with OUTTV stating his most notable gay trait is “sex with men”. He has also opened his own pop-up bar in Stockholm and promises lots of mischief!

San Marino – I Didn’t Know

The smallest country in Eurovision has chosen Turkish singer and TV game show host/dentist Serhat to be their representative with “I Didn’t Know”. When the song was first released it was considered to be so awful that last placed seemed inevitable. Someone in the San Marino then had a moment of genius and added a 70s disco backing track evoking memories of Studio 54 which has made it the cheesiest song of the year and many now hope that San Marino can qualify for only the 2nd time in their short Eurovision history.

Austria – Loin D’ici

With all but three songs sung fully or partly in English in 2016, Austria have taken the surprising step and have the only song completely in French (even France’s song has an English chorus)!

Zoe will be hoping to do better than Austria’s entry in 2015 by The MakeMakes which was Austria’s fourth “nil points” and the first host country to receive the dreaded zero in modern Eurovision history.

Bosnia – Ljubav Je…

Who can forget Eurovision 2004 when Deen gave one of the campest performances during his rendition of “In the Disco”?

Well, Deen is back for Bosnia but has lost the tight pink t-shirt and platinum blond hair (actually all his hair has gone) as he is part of a quartet delivering a fusion of Balkan folk and rap which doesn’t quite work. Deen will be hard pushed to match his 8th place in 2004.

Oh, yes, there is also an amazing song from Russia.  But we’ll profile that more later this week – as it’s certain to get into the final.

Our Eurovision coverage will continue throughout the week. If you have a favorite Eurovision song from this year, let us know.