Christmas and Eurovision have quite a lot in common. The annual anticipation. The glitter. The heavy drinking. The celebration. Embarrassing yourself at that annual party. The goodwill to all men (and some women too), and so forth. Oh, and the music.

At Christmas, tunes centuries old are cherished with fondness and hopeful lyrics of collective and personal positivity win through.

At Eurovision, tunes centuries old are cherished with fondness and hopeful lyrics of collective and personal positivity win through.

Both Christmas and Eurovision songs get seasonally recycled, giving an annual breath of life to music that may otherwise have been quite easily lost to the mists of time.

‘Christmas’ and ‘Eurovision’ are almost musical genres in themselves. The oh-so-familiar sounds of a relatively limited number of revisited Christmas songs mean that fifties and sixties doo-wop sounds, chimes, bells and anything involving Michael Bublé’s voice sound like Christmas. We want and expect the same.

The same could be said for Eurovision. Unlike what we hear in the charts year-round, there isn’t a continuous musical progression in Eurovision music, and there’s an emphasis on a listable bunch of familiar favourites. It all means Eurovision’s sound doesn’t move on too much from year to year. Composers, lyricists and viewers know what works and are suckers for the formula; expecting and wanting that seasonal flash of the comfortingly familiar.

And if that wasn’t enough…

On the twelfth day of Eurovision, my true love gave to me, twelve drummers drumming:

Eleven pipers piping:

Ten lords a leaping:

Nine ladies dancing:

Eight maids a milking:

Seven swans a swimming:

Six geese a laying:








Five    gold    rings:

Four calling birds:

Three French hens:






Two turtle doves:

And a partridge in a pear tree:
(You’ll have to grant me artistic licence here!)

Chief Editor: A non-schlager Europhile who's been doing this ESC writing malarkey since 2008, usually championing Eurovision's alternative or quirky offerings. My role at Xtra isn't too dissimilar from my previous life as a school teacher, but they're a well behaved class. Also responsible for dropping bum notes on a piano.

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