From jungle-heavy percussion, da-dum-dee-dum-olé-olé
lyrics and wiggling backsides in 2010, to soaring Ravel-like
orchestration. elegant tenor vocal and calm... France's 2011
entry to the Eurovision Song contest could not be more different.
France's "Youngest Tenor"
In a move that has taken many industry pundits by surprise,
France has chosen a song and performer to represent the country
in May, that is a world away from the convential wisdom of the
Eurovision song contest... plenty of boom boom and, if you can't
sing in English, then make the lyrics er, international!
Sognu, performed by tenor Amaury Vassili, the official
French entry, not only flies in the face of such wisdom, but
the lyrics are in Corsican. Now that is a bit like asking Cliff
Richard to have sung Congratulations in Welsh, back in 1968.
Not even the French, understand Corsican, so quite what the
Maltese judge will make of this is anybody's guess!
Maybe it doesn't matter... just let this classic-pop crossover
of a song wash over you. You could always close your eyes and
imagine what the song means. In which case, Amaury Vassili
might just have la-la'd-dum-de-dahed over the orchestration
and have done with it.
Strange thing is, though, whether you are into classical music
or pop and no matter what your lingua-franca, Sognu grows
on you, the more you play it. It sticks in the mind, being a
song you can actually whistle. So maybe, just maybe, amidst
all the boom-boom and strobing lights... frenetic dancers and
razzmataz of the live broadcast on 14th May... maybe, just maybe,
France will have struck the right chord with the 2011 judges.
Now you've heard the French 2011 entry, just to remind you of
the 2010 French effort, you can access the video by clicking
the image below. Then you can better judge whether the French
have blundered or have made an inspired guess as to the mood
prevailing in today's very changed world.
What a difference a year makes.
Jesse Matador -France's 2010 Entry
- to view the video, click the image above -