We all know that Eurovision is addictive for fans. And apparently it’s the same for some Eurovision artists, as we see familiar faces in the contest almost every year. In 2018 two artists return: Norway’s Alexander Rybak and the Netherlands’ Waylon.
Returning artists have had mixed results at Eurovision, with some performing worse than their first time. Many returning artists — including winner Dana International — have failed to qualify for the final on their second spin at the event.
In contrast, Poli Genova failed to qualify for the final in 2011, but achieved fourth place in 2016 — delivering Bulgaria’s best-ever result at the time. SunStroke Project achieved Moldova’s best-ever result last year, reaching third place. They previously finished 22nd in 2010.
And while Waylon and Alexander Rybak are thought to have a clear path to the final, they each face high expectations. Waylon was runner-up to Conchita Wurst in 2014 as part of the Common Linnets and Alexander famously won the contest in 2009. Repeating these sky-high results is no easy feat. And to do so they’ll have to push past the other.
Norway: Alexander Rybak – “That’s How You Write A Song”
Last time around Alexander served a delightful — if bittersweet — slice of Russo-Norwegian folk. Nine years later he’s oozing happiness and childish charm. He shows us that you’re never too old to believe in your dreams. That message never ages, nor does Alex, who shares his birthday with Eurovision legend Johnny Logan. Could he soon become only the second artist ever to win Eurovision twice?
The Netherlands: Waylon – “Outlaw In Em”
Shortly after the Common Linnets’ success at Eurovision 2014, Waylon went “solo”. In our interview with him at Eurovision in Concert last weekend, he said that he feels more free this time around. Singing on his own means no more disagreements with former duet partner Ilse! Singing the country-rock number “Outlaw In ‘Em”, he’s in a genre all his own at Eurovision. The message of the song — that everyone carries something unique and different — fits well with Waylon, who is known in the Netherlands for blazing his own trail. Will he soon become the first solo male artist to win for the Dutch?
Which returning artist at Eurovision 2018 is your favourite?
Do you think Alexander Rybak’s good ol’ charm will win the day? Or do you think Waylon will show him who’s boss with his country rock song? Let us know in the comments section below!
Pictures: NPO Radio 2 and DPA/FA Images