GREETINGS PEOPLES! It’s that time of year again! The 2022 Eurovision Song Contest Countdown starts NOW! Because I got a little bit later start than usual, I will be scattering some stuff around, doing one song most days but doing two or possibly three songs on other days, just so we get done in time for the semi-finals beginning May 10th!
40 songs to be ranked, 40 artists to spotlight, plus news and other ESC related specials – all coming between now and the official broadcasts beginning with the first semifinal on May 10, followed by the second semifinal on May 12 and finally the grand final on May 14. This year’s coverage for each participating country will include all the usual information about this years’ artists, countries, and song entries, and a few other tidbits along the way. Two countries are returning this year – Armenia and Montenegro – while Russia has been excluded from this year’s contest due to their recent incursion on the sovereign state of Ukraine; originally the EBU was going to allow them to participate anyway, but after several national member organizations threatened to pull ESC support this year, they relented and excluded the country from this year’s contest. Belarus was excluded in 2021 after refusing to submit a non-political song, and that exclusion will continue through at least the 2023 contest year.
As always, the TKR rankings are my personal opinions and do not reflect the chances of the song – I will explain on each entry why I like it and whether or not it has a good chance despite my ranking; I fully recognize songs I don’t personally care for that have potential to do well with others, so as always when it comes to my rankings, your mileage may vary, heh heh…
2019’s winning entry from The Netherlands, Duncan Laurence‘s “Arcade“, became the first ESC WINNER to chart on the Billboard Hot 100 in FORTY FIVE years, where it ultimately peaked at #30 on that chart; it also went to #7 on the Mainstream Radio Chart, #9 on the Adult Contemporary chart, and #7 on the Adult Songs chart, so CONGRATS DUNCAN! Prior to “Arcade“, the last ESC winner to hit the pop chart in America was 1976’s champion from the U.K., “Save All Your Kisses For Me” by Brotherhood Of Man, which hit #1 on the AC chart in the US and climbed to #27 on the Hot 100. The most recent Hot 100 entry prior to “Arcade” was Gina G‘s “Ooh Ahh (Just A Little Bit)“, which hit the US top 20 and finished 8th in the contest for the UK in 1996. Last year’s winner, Italy’s Maneskin, did not hit the Billboard Hot 100 with their winning ESC entry “Zitti e buoni“, but DID hit the Billboard Rock Tracks chart with that song and several other entries recorded in English, so there’s hope yet for the US record charts when it comes to Eurovision
And of course, although things are getting better, there are still COVID concerns around the world, and we do not know for sure which of the four scenarios set up last year by the European Broadcast Union will end up being used for the contest this year, although as far as I know, they’re presently operating with the assumption that the show will proceed under the normal conditions, which is protocol 1, I believe.
Eurovision will once again air live in the United States on the Peacock streaming service owned by NBC/Universal, the network that is home to the long awaited Eurovision-licensed American Song Contest. The shows will air on Peacock at 3 PM ET/2 PM CT/1 PM MT/ 12 Noon PT, so make sure you have the right local time for the show!
You can also catch the latest ESC updates every Saturday on my YouTube show The Kirkham Report, which uploads at 4 PM ET US, under the segment called “Contest Fever“, where I am also covering the currently-ongoing American Song Contest. Also starting this year, I will be doing livestreams immediately following both semi-finals and the finals of Eurovision. similar to the ones I am doing after each edition of the American Song Contest, to talk about how each went, surprises, the songs moving on and those unfortunately cut, and more, and I hope to see you there – more news will be coming on those as we move ahead with our coverage. I will also be doing a “Guide To Eurovision Song Contest” series of specials the week before the contest that is geared more to American audiences that hopefully will give them a little taste of what to expect and a reason to become fans too!
I’ll see you Monday as I begin counting down this year’s ESC Entries! Hope you enjoy it as much as I do!!!