At Eurovision 2010 her song “Ik ben verliefd (Sha-la-lie)” crashed out of the semi-finals, but became the first Dutch Eurovision song to top the Dutch Single Top 100 charts anyway.
And six years on Sieneke has dropped a new album entitled De Liefde Die Lacht (The love that laughs).
Showcasing Sieneke’s evolving sound, the album explores the experiences of women across love and loss and is perhaps best encapsulated in her new single “Donkere Dagen” (meaning “Dark Days”), for which she published an official video at the end of August.
The music video sees a downcast Sieneke walking around a black-and-white world and sitting at an empty table, while she sings about her former lover who she can’t let go of. She begs him to tell her the truth and hopes she can carry on, even if the days are cold, dark and empty. Pass the tissues!
While better produced than her Eurovision track, the song retains the very old-school Dutch sound that she adores. It’s clear that Sieneke wants to keep making music that’s true to her and her style, rather than listening to critics who have suggested she needs to modernise.
Sieneke on Eurovision 2010
Sieneke’s Eurovision adventure was a rocky one from the very start.
Supported by singer Marianne Weber — a popular singer of the “levenslied” (a Dutch ballad style) — Sieneke won the nerve-wracking Nationaal Songfestival 2010, which had one of the most dramatic endings in Eurovision national finals history.
Afterwards, and owing to strong support from Eurovision 1984 participant Marga Bult and Sieneke’s local radio station Radio Gelderland, the song got a lot of airplay on the main Dutch radio stations.
While promoting her new single in August, Sieneke opened up about her experiences at Eurovision 2010.
Speaking to AD, she said that she doesn’t remember much about Eurovision, though she does remember it being an emotional roller coaster.
“Imagine: an 18-year old girl, in a foreign country for the first time. I even studied with nuns for two weeks, to better my English, all just for the press conferences in Oslo. I had to sleep in a hotel room next to Marianne Weber away from my parents. During the evenings, we sat on the bed with a glass of alcohol and some cocktail nuts. We ignored all parties.”
Her failure to advance from the semi-final of Eurovision 2010 did not come as a surprise, as the song catered to a Dutch, rather than a European, audience.
However, both the song and Sieneke received negative feedback afterwards, mostly because of the dated stage performance involving a traditional barrel organ. Sieneke isn’t sure what the fuss was about.
“I didn’t get the commotion about the song so much. We really did choose for a Dutch atmosphere. Because of that, we used a barrel organ as well. If you want a rock version, don’t take me.”
What do you think about Sieneke’s new music? Were you a fan of her 2010 entry and staging? Let us know in the comments section below!