There’s no denying that the United Kingdom has one of the largest music industries in the world. Yet over the last decade its average position at Eurovision has been 21st. There are many possible reasons for the lack of success from the Brits. But it’s up to the BBC to come up with a solution.
In September 2019, the broadcaster announced a refreshed selection method, going internal for the first time since Electro Velvet were selected in 2015 with their electro-swing effort “Still In Love With You“.
This will be achieved through a partnership with BMG, who’s stable hosts a series of world famous UK acts. Naturally, fans have started thinking and dreaming.
We’ve had radio-silence from the UK delegation for a while now, but as we’re getting closer to the 2020 deadline to submit entries, rumours are hotting up.
Some are over-analysing tweets from artists; some have BMG’s artists page one too many times in their search history and some are just asking artists outright on social media to partake in the contest.
Truth be told we’ve been doing all three, so here’s a wish list of BMG artists and others we’d love to see fly the Union Jack at Rotterdam 2020
United Kingdom Wishlist for Eurovision 2020 — BMG Artists
I’ve seen so many of the fans contests where foxes has ‘represented the uk’ and done really well… so like, let’s just make that happen? Yeah? #Eurovision #Eurovision2020 #Foxes #UnitedKingdom pic.twitter.com/gXYeIi9O9d
— ESCLuke??????? (@escluke13) June 9, 2019
Foxes (real name Louisa Allen) is probably best known for “Clarity”, her collaboration with Russian-German EDM star Zedd. The track has over 200 million views on YouTube, and charted across the continent. Many an X Factor contestant has cracked out the acoustic version for their auditions.
Away from this mega-hit though, Foxes has had phenomenal success with her albums Glorious and All I Need, as well as singles “Let Go For Tonight”, “Youth” and “Body Talk”. She also made a stunning appearance in an episode of the sci-fi drama Doctor Who, performing her take on Queen’s “Don’t Stop Me Now”.
UK fans have been keen on Foxes for quite some time. It’s been a while since we heard from her, but as she’s still on BMG. Could Foxes be the perfect person to bring the trophy back to Britain?
Bloc Party / Kele Okereke
Noughties indie-icons Bloc Party have four UK top ten albums under their belt and a whole catalogue of anthemic tracks with famous hooks and crack out the air guitar. This would certainly be an unexpected choice, and would show a more risky style from the BBC.
However, both Bloc Party and their lead singer Kele Okereke (for solo projects) have recording contracts with BMG so there’s room to explore a new genre for the broadcaster. A large criticism of Team UK in recent years has been the safe choice of songs, so perhaps this could be a good way to make a statement?
British-Swedish singer Mabel is signed to BMG for publishing. She’s had quite the stellar year as she rose to the big leagues in 2019 with two top ten hits on the UK charts in 2019 (“Don’t Call Me Up” and “Mad Love”).
It’s unlikely she’d go for Eurovision any time soon as she’s at the beginning of a huge peak in her career, but this is a wishlist and we can dream. With her Swedish roots (her mother is Swedish artist Neneh Cherry), with a hint of Spainish flair (she was born in Malaga) maybe there’s more love for the contest than one would expect.
Either way, she’s producing smash after smash right now and we can keep hoping she’ll consider one day.
United Kingdom Wishlist for Eurovision 2020 — The Rumour Mill
Possibly, one day maybe. Do you really think so? Xx https://t.co/TcQyeyICId
— FLEUR EAST (@FleurEast) January 13, 2020
“Possibly, one day maybe. Do you really think so? Xx”, so tweeted Fleur East when asked by @cardwella92 if she’d consider doing Eurovision. Well, it’s certainly not a no.
In fact, Fleur seems rather open to it, asking fans what they think. One look at the replies, and it’s clear the answer is an overwhelming “yes”.
West came second in The X Factor in 2014 after some memorable performances, including a cover of “Uptown Funk” which was so popular that Mark Ronson brought the release date of the track forward.
Her debut release “Sax” got her a top three finish in the charts and more fame. She’s since had singles “Favourite Thing” and “Size”. Both are high-quality pop which would be a refreshing change for the UK in Eurovision.
please can we send @thisisili to eurovision cause i’d stan
— liv (@Liv_Liv_Liv__) December 15, 2019
Glaswegian ili (real name Emily Middlemas) is a fellow The X Factor alumni, though from 2016. She came fourth.
She’s since re-branded, putting out modern pop tinged with minimalism and great bass lines, like in “Plastic Knife”. Her EP Changes seems to be the beginning of great things for ili, and the UK Eurofans are out in force watching for clues on her Twitter feed.
RuPaul’s Drag Race UK had a hugely successful first season, with a highlight being when the queens were tasked with performing as two girl-bands. Drag queens Baga Chipz, Divina De Campo, and Blu Hydrangea became Frock Destroyers with the utter bop that is “Break Up (Bye Bye)”. The single released from the show even broke into the lower end of the top 40.
Since then, Northern Irish star of the show Blu teased fans on Twitter to get things started for Eurovision, and fans were lapping it up. Could we the world of RuPaul merge with Eurovision? A pre-Christmas petition gained significant traction.
Right, who do I contact to get the Frock Destroyers on Eurovision? I’m not even joking!!!!
— Blu Hydrangea (@BluHydrangea_) January 2, 2020
Those were our favourites from rifling through less than subtle hints from artists, and BMG’s catalogue of artists.
What do you think of our list? Who would you suggest? Let us know in the comments.
Molly Scott, please!!
Ms East was on the one show last week and she confirmed that she’d not been approached for eurovision 2020. Come on BBC. I want some news!!!
Still no news! )as of 12th Feb) But not long to go now. The deadline for submissions is the 9th March 2020
The bbc could get adele to sing the song but they’re not allowed to promote the artist/song. There’s some clause in their licence from the government that they’re not allowed to promote a product. As a singer is a product of a record company, then they’re is very little they can do to support the singer and their song. They’re allowed to promote “eurovision” as it’s something that they are paying for and to show on the telly/radio. but that’s their limit really. I think it should be up to the fandom to take the singer and promote them widely… Read more »
The BBC could do a lot more Ted. For a start they could playlist more Eurovision songs, including the UK entry. Blue had to fight to even get on Radio 2. Then they could get more supportive coverage across the corporation, rather than reducing the contest to a vehicle for Norton, Rylan and the appalling Scott Mills. It would have been great, for instance, if they’d announced our 2020 contestant during the final of Strictly last year. Every day which passes now is one where ground is lost to countries which have already done all the above or similar.
All poor choices really with no great European appeal. We need a current established artist who’s selling songs and topping the charts over Europe now. Fleur is a great singer but never really hit it off after Xfactor and has tried everything else since. Mable is a weak choice she’s very inconsistent in her live performances.
George Ezra and Iron Maiden are also British acts working for BGM, although they might be too big for the Contest.
Please let Bbc just enter a singer that actually can sing and has a good song…… Not a backing singing waffleboy with zero charisma.
ili by far.
I really miss the situation of having the United Kingdom really battling for the win =]
Good Luck UK from Tel-Aviv =]
If Bonkers Boris Johnson had laid a plan for the BBC to send someone insanely amazing via BMG to protect the license fee and celebrate the U.K.’s departure from the EU with an awesome track it would be a Eurovision Fan’s wet dream.
for everyone saying Mabel is a bad idea. YOU ARE WRONG. she has improved greatly as an artist. She is a new artist and they are known to struggle with stage presence but she has improved greatly. She is also a champion and inspiration for people with anxiety and mental illness.
I totally respect your opinion but to say we are wrong is in itself wrong. I’m not talking about her stage presence although let’s be honest it’s not particularly great. I’m talking about her live vocals. Of course everyone has bad days bu but I’ve heard her several times and even at her best she’s pretty average. To be fair she’s hardly unique in hyped up singers who rarely deliver live so I’m not singling out Mabel. Like yours mine is only an opinion so let’s agree to disagree.
Mabel please no. A terrible choice. Have you seen her live for goodness sake. Fleur East again no. She’s a one hit wonder who has limited appeal. She’s basically scrapped her music career and is trying to be a presenter instead. Katie Melua has been mentioned and she is definitely a great singer but do I think she’d do it…. no.
Bugga Chips would be amazing
Lucie Jones deserved so much more! At least top 5!
Honestly, im still shocked the UK are competing after what happened last year
I’m still predicting a repeat of 2014 for the UK. Some unknown who’s signed to the label and who has a decent song. There’ll be some hype by ultimately the UK will get a 17th place or lower and Brexit / neighbourly voting will be blamed.
UK has so much potential so sad they never use it. Last good entry they sent were Blue. Would love to see them try harder this year.
That’s interesting, because I followed the X Factor UK 2016 due to Saara Aalto and therefore also discovered Emily Middlemas. To see she is still making music under a new pseudonym is great. I will catch up with it later today 😀 See, this is Wiwi’s service 😀
Also, I really love Mabel’s “Don’t Call Me Up” <3
Don’t have a huge expectations actually …
The fact that BMG is involved doesn’t mean much. There’s no sign or guarantee that the UK is going to send a strong and serious act to Eurovision this year.
Agreed, if they’d got a substantial and experience act, we’d have heard by now. Electro Velvet 2 beckons.
Does BMG have a song that would be considered duet material? If they do, and select a male solo artist, I think the perfect female partner would be Adeline Um, a Boston native who graduated from St. Andrews last June. She currently has her own Soundcloud and YouTube channels, if they’d like to check her out.
So after years of sending talent show rejects (not winners), the UK gets a major record label involved in their Eurovision selection process and one of the most likely candidates is….a talent show reject?
I would see your point, except that Fleur East finished 2nd in her competition. So, she wasn’t rejected.
(Good point, but not accurate about Fleur East.)
Remember 2008? Runner-up on The X Factor…but came last.
sending talent-show entrants who didn’t come first has worked for many other countries in the past, eg Loreen and Mans for Sweden. So wind your negative neck righ back in!
And Duncan Laurence
Oh my God, if Bloc Party enter, it’s official, I will have died and gone to heaven. Banquet and Helicopter are absolute classics, something like that would be fantastic for ESC.
Please not Fleur East, I don’t think I could cope with another manufactured talent show artist.
Mabel with a bop like “Don’t call me up” annd a dynamic staging + choreo would be top 10, easily, she’s very good live, too.
If Foxes will be joining alongside with Mabel in the national final, then this is kind of interesting..
Her vocals are okay but she really lacks stage presence.
To be fair I’ve only seen her perform on Graham Norton and it could have been an off day, but I wasn’t impressed.
shes amazing she sings her song mad love well live and has improved greatly with dont call me up.
Jane McDonald is available those dates
Mabel would be amazing… we can only dream
Alexandra Burke Thanks
I want to be enthusiastic about the UK in Eurovision. It is going to be a hard sell though, both to the fans and to Europe. But credit to BMG for getting on board at the time of Brexit; thank you for carrying on regardless. 🙂
Freya Ridings should also be considered. She has one of the most mesmerizing voices of the UK.
She would be great as well
I just want Stormzy or an up and coming grime rtist
No matter who’s representing UK, it will be in the bottom of the scoreboard. This is the punishment for being an automatic qualifier. Same thing applies to Spain, Germany and occasionaly France. Italy is still the televote’s darling, but that doesn’t apply to the juries (in 2015 Il Volo deserved to win, but the…so called “experts” preferred Sweden, as usual… Mans, Franz, Bengtsson, the horrible InGRossO, or last year’s Jon Ludwig, the cheap copycat of Cesar ~ Austria 2018, but with no salt or pepper)… Even small countries like Moldova, Bulgaria, Cyprus or recently North Macedonia put more effort into… Read more »
You are talking Nonsense. I repeat non non non non non non non non non non non non non NONSENSE!!!!!!
I have to agree with Geo, he’s making a point actually…
There is no “punishment” for being an automatic qualifier…
It’s all down to song quality. When big five come up with the goods: Il Volo, France “J’ai cherché “, Germany and Michael Schulte, they do well. Good songs end up in top ten. End of.
Your theory would have prooved right only if all countries ranked low. Why would italy not be punished and germany and france randomly and spain and uk always? Because the answer is in the quality of the composition, singer. Act and team behind the entry. Not in punishment. Public votes for what they like not for what they dont.
I can’t help but wonder if a certain artist who performed as a interval act in Rotherham for the Junior Eurovision song contest in 2007 and almost represented UK in 2010 but got turned by Katie Taylor of the BBC to give us a You Decide Pete Waterman show. This artist is currently signed to BMG and this artist has a open schedule around the Eurovision dates. So I can’t help but think could it be………. Katie Melua as our UK Representative?
It’s probably wishful thinking on my behalf Una! Saying that there are a lot of connection to Eurovision with her. I personally think she be spot on as this year UK representative because she has that authentic musician quality that has that vibe with most of the recent winners.
Some people, including me, suggested her years ago.
No shade or disrespect but it would’ve been cool to see some different styles here. The UK has a lot of really diverse artists, not just upbeat female pop and drag queens. I’m personally really excited to see what my country will bring this year. I loved Michael Rice’s track from 2019 and in no way on earth did he deserve last place. I’m optimistic but lets not kid ourselves. We’re not gonna be getting a global superstar.
Maybe it’s best not to get our hopes up.
l love how the author of this article refers to the Royal “We” and lists a group of artists that either have ZERO track record of and/or ability to performing live or they are more hasbeens on the tail end of their careers.
It might be useful to get someone to write this kind of article that has A) a working knowledge of the current UK music scene and B) a working knowledge of what it takes to compete at a Eurovision Sogn Contest!
Belgium 2016 owes a lot to Fleur East and they did well, so…
Just like Fleur owes a lot to Bruno Mars..
Just like Adele owes a lot to Britney Spears…
If we get a big name and a good song it would be amazing but I bet u it will be an unknown again with no chance but I’m really hoping the BBC and BMG prove me wrong
Lots of rumours going around about Fleur East doing it for the UK. It would only make sense if they chose a BMG artist, since they’re collaborating with them. Hopefully the UK can come out with something strong with a major record label behind them, if not, then it’s going to look really bad for BMG.
Fingers crossed for a better decade!
mabel…. y’all crazy. have u seen her perform live? she has no stage presence lmfao, she’s an r&b girl who sold out to pop but has no popstar quality, she’s essentially a spotify playlist act not someone worth seeing live. some of the others would be cute choices but lettuce be realistic it ain’t happenin
I agree. She doesn’t have her mother’s charisma at all.
You beat me to it. I totally agree with you. I have seen her at least 4 times on the TV and she doesn’t sing well live.
Enough with all these articles regarding artists. UK has a plenty of talented artists. The need to find an authentic, good song.
Interesting choices. Looks like it’ll depend on who wants to do it more.
Personally am never a fan of Fleur’s music, but I do think she can get the UK back on the right track if she goes to the contest with an actual professional and killer-quality song
I’d love to see all of these (minus Frock Destroyers, I loved their performance on RPDR but I don’t think they’d be a serious contender…). However, I feel like the UK will go with someone who’s slightly off radar and not well known.
Clearly you dont wish the best for the UK if you wish to send Frock Destroyers….
Fleur East is the one most likely to do it and do it justice, not saying that the others aren’t bad is just that since her back catalogue of songs is always consistent, polished, on-trend, and modern; all things needed to win this contest.
Also, this link may allude vital information to lead up to the Selection