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Eurovision, an institution that you either love or hate. I was a viewer of this colorful party of national interests and music since I was a kid, and I was always anticipating May, but also the week before the contest, where all the reporters on Greek TV were working overtime in order to bombard us with all the news (gossips) of the “grand” event!
2 voices are too familiar for me from the Greek National TV (ERT). The voice of Alexis Kostalas on skating contests and that of Dafne Bokota on Eurovision! You see, I was born in an era without any private TV channels and no Internet. This contest was a chance for me to soak in music and get together with friends. Get my notepad out and start scribbling the results all the way to the nerve racking ending. Thats how Eurovision was for me, when I fell in love with it.
I never believed in any Greek entry from start to finish and no song was ever really liked fanatically. My “favorite” up to last year was that of Yiorkas and as a worst contestant I'm having trouble picking between Sarbel and the unforgettable S.A.G.A.P.O., which I can’t really say, was the worst! As a hidden Rouvas fan (Rouvitsa), my heart was beating fast in Istanbul even though we lost, but I got to know Athena on that year, as a bonus.
Thats why I always was a passionate viewer. Because I found songs and artists that I never thought that I would discover in such a carnival of cultures. I found Mor ve Ötesi με το Deli, the Turkish entry in Eurovision 2008, and the same year I also discovered the sounds of Sébastien Tellier while the next year i found Anastasia Prikhodko from Russia with the amazing song Mamo and the list goes on...
Always, when that week was approaching, my country would split into groups. Those that wanted to talk about Eurovision and those that were complaining about the money and the expenses. Even when Greece won for the first time, there were many that accused the Government and even Elena Paparizou herself, because, someone is always to blame, the why and the who is figured out along the way.
Then, we blame the alliances between neighboring countries, something that is well known and we all know what alliances exist. We along with Cyprus are a team from the start and we always exchange our 12 points, so does Portugal with Spain, Serbia with Montenegro and so on and so forth... We knew it, we know it and it will never change. If the song is good and the PR is better, then the winner is... the best! Welcome to the dance of Eurovision!
This year is not a different year and it makes sense that Eurovision is no more a party, given the state of the country. Usually what annoyed us on the Greek entries were the english lyrics, the singer that wore an outrageously expensive dress or that the song didn’t have any traditional sounds in order for our culture to be spread and for the contest to have a bigger effect and educate the Europeans more about us and our music! As if that’s why they were watching.
But on this years entry, we have it all. We got 5 young guys, with passion, energy, a great Balkan song, with Greek lyrics, great outfits, humor, honesty and as if all of these weren’t enough, they have among them a grand rebetis, Agathonas, supporting them with his presence, his voice and his soul! A song that raises a mohawk over Europe and shows all that must be shown. That Greeks are hearty and they still keep going.
Many found things to say even for this entry. And its nice that there are trolls out there, we do get a dialog! We just wish a lot of fun for the guys. They want it, a lot, and they worked hard getting there. They scared us with that last envelope, but Greece is always late and running to catch up, why would it be different now?
I smiled and shook the whole 3 minutes that I was watching our song on Dutch TV. I was secretly proud deep down that I got to meet and talk with the guys and now, I was getting to watch them perform along with millions of viewers worldwide. I wish them a victory for all their hard work, the Greeks got to know them and love them no matter what the result is, and I will be waiting again for those 3 minutes in the Finals, smiling. I already have my text message ready with the number 21 in order to vote for the first time in my life for my own country, and as a bonus, I get to give my vote to my favorite song as well! Go Koza Mostra, you got it guys!