Eurovision: Can Engelbert Humperdinck Take The Title?
Engelbert Humperdinck lines up for the UK this weekend as we - well, the people who still watch it- try to convince ourselves that increasingly frosty political relations between our small island and the rest of mainland Europe definitely isn't the reason for our consistently abysmal showing at the Eurovision Song Contest in recent years. No, it's that the quality of our performers just hasn't been good enough, of course.
So to rectify that, we've got 76 year-old "don't call me a crooner" crooner Engelbert Humperdinck; the British committee evidently deciding that the Europeans tend to favour a bit of kitsch (what, didn't they see LORDI win!?) and so have searched about our great and green land for something of a similar ilk. Unfortunately most of our young musicians have moved on from that sort of thing, so it's a call to the old folks home and the release of one of our most successful singers of all time.
So can he win? Well, the omens aren't good, and he couldn't even win the title of the oldest competitor after being pipped by a few months by Russia's entrants. Britain took a surprise fifth in 2009 with Jade Ewen's 'It's My Time,' but apart from that they've fared dismally in the 21st century, with three bottom placings, one "nul points," and - last year - having to enter Blue as competitors. Grim. All this, not to mention that Humperdinck's song itself, 'Love Will You Set You Free,' only reached No.76 in the UK Singles Chart.