Every year at Eurovision, at least one Scandinavian nation does really well—and from time to time one of them even wins the contest. But there is one Nordic country that has failed to win the contest: the tiny and annoyingly volcanic Iceland.
Iceland—population 319,000—is one of the smaller nations that takes part in the contest and joined relatively recently in 1986. It hasn’t had an enviable history in the contest and even suffered a “nul points” result back in 1989. During the “lowest score out” format of the 90’s and early 00’s, they were relegated out of the contest twice due to low scores. (As if Iceland wasn’t isolated enough). Their luck didn’t improve when the semi-finals were introduced: from 2005 to 2007 they failed to qualify. (Just skimming over these years brings back Sylvia Night memories, BEST TROLL EVER ha-ha! WARNING: Potty mouth alert!)
Iceland has had a few good results over the years, coming second on two occasions. But, in a cruel European twist, each time they came second they lost to another Scandinavian nation. In 1999 Selma came runner up to Charlotte Perrelli (then Nilsson) of Sweden, and in 2009 the beautiful Yohanna had to settle for 2nd to the (overrated in my opinion) Alexander Rybak of Norway.
Iceland’s highest scoring entry ever, and rightfully so. This is pure class.
Since 2008, excluding their 2009 peak, Iceland has had what one could call a “disappointingly average” set of results. They have managed to qualify for the final every year, but in the final they have remained on the right-hand side of the scoreboard. Even pre-contest favorites like Hera Björk and Greta Salóme & Jónsi have tanked in the final. So what can Iceland do to get themselves out of this slump? This writer has an idea that might come as a shock.
Iceland needs to send an artist (who would compete in their national selection, the name of which I am NOT typing out in full) who is largely recognizable in Europe, but isn’t so famous that Eurovision would be career suicide. One name comes to my mind instantly: Björk (not Hera). Björk is probably one of, if not the most, recognizable Icelandic music artists, mainly due to her bold fashion statements, and eclectic musical style. However, her career peaked in the 90’s with her magnum opus Homogenic, so a stint at Eurovision probably wouldn’t be too detrimental to her career. She’s still a well known name in Europe, as well as the U.S., so her participation in the contest would bring plenty of interest.
A song like Jóga could be a fresh start for Iceland.
Björk, in my opinion, might just be exactly what Iceland needs. Her music style is extremely unique, mixing cool electronic tones with powerhouse but simple vocals. She always creates entrancing pieces of art. While unique entries are sometimes overlooked by tele-voters, I have a feeling that Björk would have the same effect as the brilliant Urban Symphony in 2009. Sadly, Björk has never really mentioned Eurovision as a priority or interest, but this American fan has his fingers crossed that she decides to go for it! It’s not like she ever revealed that she wanted to be an actress before being nominated for an Academy Award.
What do you think? Do you think Björk would go the distance? Or could another artist bring the trophy to Iceland? Let us know with a comment!
Zachary Thomas is Wisconsin-based correspondent for WiwiBloggs.com. Follow him on Twitter @CheerZach. Then follow the team from wiwibloggs.com on Twitter at @wiwibloggs to keep up with the latest Eurovision news and gossip!