In this week’s “Throwback Thursday” our focus will be on Azerbaijan. Despite their yet short history at Eurovision, Azerbaijan has gifted us with some amazing songs. Today we will travel back to 2012 and revisit one of those amazing entries. It conquered many hearts around Europe, and certainly conquered mine. Now the question is: do our Escxtra members share my thoughts about this song? Let’s find out!
Azerbaijan’s best effort at Eurovision
When we ask someone about their favourite Azerbaijani song, the most common answers will be either “Always” or “Drip drop”. Even though I love both songs, I am always a bit surprised by the fact that most people seem to ignore “When the music dies”. If we look at the past three years, there was a common problem around the three acts that represented Azerbaijan: the live vocal performances were weak. And I’m not blaming it on the singers, because if we look at Aisel’s case, they gave to a great singer a song that wasn’t her style at all. However, if we go back to “When the music dies”, we can hear the best singer that Azerbaijan has given us. During those three minutes Sabina was just perfect. We could feel that there was a connection between the singer and the song. There was emotion, and the whole athmosphere created with the performance elevated a great song to an even higher level. Apart from complimenting Sabina’s talent and amazing performance, I also have to mention how much I love the lyrics of the song. You should take some citations from there to use on your Instagram photos. It will give you some extra reactions, I promise. Honestly I’m very sorry that Azerbaijan didn’t send her in 2011, as I think that “When the music dies” was superior in every way to “Running scared”. The song was better, the vocals were better, the performance was better…I could go on and on. Despite making it to the top 5, I think that the song didn’t get the attention it deserved. I know that at this point of the text you may think that I have some kind of obcession with the song, but honestly I just think it would have been a winner if sent in a weaker year. Music doesn’t die as long as we have masterpieces like this one.
What the others had to say?
I have to admit that I’m not a huge fan of “When the music dies”. I can not deny that it was a strong and original entry, and that Sabina has an amazing voice. It’s true that the performance itself was really good too. No wonder she’s got the 4th place. I guess it’s just not my type of a song. This melody wouldn’t get stuck in my head for long. In the end I always compare the entries and I must say that Azerbaijan has had much better songs representing their country. In my opinion, it’s not a masterpiece.
I think 4th place was a little fortunate for Azerbaijan in 2012. How can this song beat Spain’s “Quedate Conmigo” I have no idea! But “When The Music Dies” was still a strong entry that year and Sabina’s vocal was great. My main criticism is that she didn’t push the song in the performance. At times, it felt like a rehearsal! One final note to all RuPaul Drag Race fans: have you ever seen Sabina and Detox in the same room together? No, didn’t think so.
I think Azerbaijan get unfair treatment amongst Eurovision fans. Yes, they nearly always import songs from foreign composers but I have no issue with that. If the song is good then it’s good and I think Azerbaijan have the strongest track record of entries of all Eurovision countries. When the Music Dies is my second favourite host entry of the decade, only Taken By A Stranger beats it… and O Jardim completes my top 3 in case you were wondering! When the Music Dies combines ethnic sounds with a beautiful melody and effortlessly powerful vocals from Sabina. This deserved its top 4 finish in Baku with ease!
Wait, I’M supposed to judge this? Oh good god…Right now I share my feelings with the old man sitting on a tiny podium behind her, madly screaming for help in a foreign language. But even someone as tone deaf as me can tell that Sabina Babayeva is a magnificent singer and performer, the song may make me wish for the music to die and something else to come on…BUT let’s look past that insignificant detail and just say that her live performance does elevate it high enough for me to actually enjoy it when I DO see it (NOTE: last time was in 2012, what a wonderful reunion this was). It might not be one of my favourite entries from Azerbaijan musically, but Sabina IS one of the only singers they have sent who could hold a tune so I have utmost respect for her abilities. Oh and the dress is nice, just cut it out with all the smoke, okay Azerbaijan? Poor woman doesn’t have to look like she’s in the middle of a cigar factory.
So, what do you think about “When the music dies”? Do you feel my passion? Which is your favourite Azerbaijani entry? Let us know in the comments!
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