In Finland the national final is called “UMK - Uuden Musikkin Kilpailu”which determines the Finnish entry for the Eurovision Song Contest. The Finnish broadcaster YLE has made one instead of three shows in the Espoo Metro Arena this year. There were ten finalists with the most different music styles. The really entertaining show was hosted by the charming ex-ESC singer Krista Siegfrids. Unlike last year there were no national juries, but an international jury. Due to the fact that the Finnish entries often do not match the European taste, it was a wise idea to include an international. This show concept was the sixth edition and did not bring big success for Finland neither, only two songs made it into the Grand Finals, but there was no Top 10 song. The most sophisticated entry “Black Bird” by Norma John could win with a great majority of points.
Norma John is a band which consists of the two musicians Leena Tirronen and Lasse Piirainen. Both singers are friends and do music together since 15 years. The band exists since 2008 and there were three more singers in the beginning. In the year 2010 Norma John participated in the X Factor and made a third place. They released one album and three singles so far. Now they have won the UMK and going to represent Finland at the ESC and they have the chance to get known to a very big audience. They do write all of their songs on their own.
The song “Black Bird” is a very calm and simple song with a strong and beautiful melody. This is a very adult song which really shines with a reduced presentation. Of course there might be some similarities to Anouk with “Birds”, which was another calm and reduced song. The audience will get caught by the amazing voice of Leena and the simplicity of the Nordic sound. This entry is a real gem in this year’s ESC and would perfectly fit in the Grand Final.
Finals: 44 (7 since 2004)
Top 10: 12
Chances for Top 10: 24 %
Chances for Final: 54 %
For the 51st time Finland is participating in the Eurovision Song Contest. Finland has joined quite late in 1961 and missed out some years because of the rules and bad placings. Over the years Finland’s reputation in regards of success has suffered. Even if Finland has send songs of outrageous quality and many great evergreens, but the points did not flow as for other countries and therefore Finland was often found on the bottom of the scoreboard undeservedly. Three times Finland received not even a single point. Maybe this was due to the language issue or it has just been the wrong choice of the Finnish entries for Eurovision.
After all the years of waiting the hard rock band Lordi came with “Hard Rock Hallelujah” in 2006 and Finland had its first fulminate victory in history which was overdue for a long time. The entire country was in Lordi-fever and a long-cherished wish came true.
At least Finland is often passing the Semi Finals lately, seven times out of thirteen Finland has made it into the Grand Final with the utmost different styles from hard rock, ballads pop up to folkloristic songs.
Photographer, Journalist, Editor
About me: My first Eurovision I watched was in 1987, Brussels. Since then I am following the ESC with great enthusiasm. The greatest fascination for me is the fact that the entire Europe is watching the show at that specific night. Since 2010, Oslo I am a member of the eurovisionlive.com team. I had the chance to witness the second German victory with Lena. My biggest wish would be to have the orchestra back, as it used to be until 1998.