Archives for March 2012

Go For It Engelbert!

When I read that Engelbert Humperdinck was going to represent the UK in this year's Eurovision song contest at the end of May in Baku, Azerbaijan I must admit I was a bit taken aback. I am old enough to remember him in his heydey, all smouldering looks, sideburns and big lips belting out romantic balleds like Release Me and I had no idea he was still performing.

I know Eurovision is a bit of a joke but Europeans take it very seriously and the UK's entries have been pretty appalling over the last few years so I imagined choosing a 75-year-old singer (76 by the time the contest is held) was a publicity stunt. But Engelbert is big in Europe, he will be the oldest contestant ever in the competition, ballads are inevitably popular especially romantic ones and Russia are fielding a group of grannies, so the BBC may be pulling off a pretty savvy move here.

We know Eurovision isn't about the song – too much politicking for that – but a good tune does help and I have to admit I LOVE Follow Your Heart, partly because when Engelbert hits the high notes in the key change I want to cheer! The song has been criticised as old fashioned, bland and formulaic but you know what, I've been singing it since I first heard it and that is a good thing in my book. And people are too ready to knock anything these days.

So go for it Engelbert, I think you're great, you still have a wonderful voice and more importantly you're a true inspiration, showing that age is absolutely no barrier!