The year keeps getting better and better for Eurovision 2019 champ Duncan Laurence. After winning Eurovision and launching a sell-out international tour, he’s staying firmly in the spotlight. Part of that comes down to “Love Don’t Hate It” — his stunning follow-up to “Arcade”.
Since we reviewed the song Duncan has premiered the music video on the web site of Billboard — the magazine of record for the American music industry.
Speaking to Billboard, Duncan echoed his earlier sentiments from Instagram about the new single, which has already smashed over 1,000,000 steams on Spotify.
“[It’s] a song about fighting for who you are and who you choose to love because in the end it is always your choice to make. It’s my answer against the hate in the world, that will always keep trying to break down what we crave most: love.”
“There are no boundaries, no limits when it comes to love,” Laurence says. “It’s the purest thing we have in this world and yet so many people, including myself, have to fight for it every single day because of their looks, their beliefs, their gender, their sexuality. Because of what others judge them for.”
The intimate message of the song is framed by a similarly intimate video. Duncan sings while bathed in red and black light. Close crops of his face and sometimes his eyes create a somewhat frenetic atmosphere, and he’s deliberately blurred. It may reflect the confusion of the emotions he sings. It also gives the song a universality. As Duncan disappears from view, perhaps the listener starts to see themselves.
Billboard — the industry trade rag — has a relatively small circulation of 17,000 print readers per week. But for music insiders it’s the go-to-resource for the happenings in the world of music. Its popular web site reaches a much larger audience (around 15 million people a month). It’s perhaps best known as the body behind the American music charts, including the Hot 100 and Billboard 200, tracking the most popular songs and albums in different genres.
Of course, Eurovision is no stranger to Billboard. In recent years our very own editor William Lee Adams has written articles about Salvador Sobral, Jamala, Julia Samoylova, Madame Monsieur and others.
But what’s interesting and impressive about Duncan is that he’s being referenced in the aftermath of Eurovision for his follow-up single. Typically Eurostars get referenced and covered amid pre-contest hype or for political intrigue.
Interviews such as this can only help the “Eurovision” brand on the world stage. We often talk of Eurovision being the biggest music event in the world, but it’s still finding its place in the eyes of an American audience. The contest this year did not air on a major network there.
However, Netflix did release the 2019 edition of the contest for US streamers and earlier this year it emerged that an American Song Contest is in the works. And, of course, the Netflix film Eurovision is being led by American comedy film star Will Ferrell. Hopefully it’ll drop in the spring just before ESC.
What do you think of Duncan’s new song? What do you think Eurovision needs to do to break America? Tell us all in the comments section below.