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Throwback Thursday: When Denmark flew on the wings of love…

It’s that time of the week again to ‘throwback’ to yesteryear and return to look at the Eurovision hits of the past! This week we turn to Denmark and the Olsen Brothers’ “Fly on the Wings of Love”…

“Fly on the Wings of Love” by the Olsen Brothers won the 2000 Eurovision Song Contest in Stockholm, only the second win for Denmark after their first victory in 1963.

Some background

The Olsen Brothers became only the second entry from Denmark to win Eurovision, triumphing in 2000 in Stockholm with 195 points with their cheery and catchy ballad, “Fly on the Wings of Love”. More clear in the Danish original version, “Smuk som et stjerneskud the song implicitly talks about a beauty that grows with age.

“Fly on the Wings of Love” would prove to be popular in some unlikely places, long after its Eurovision-winning performance. In Ireland, the song sat at number one in the charts for two weeks in 2003, spent 24 weeks in the top 50, and ended 2003 as Ireland’s 11th highest-selling single. Even further afield, it was used routinely as an unofficial song for the 2004 AFC Asian Football Cup in China.

Why this song?

I was only four when the Olsen Brothers stormed to victory in Stockholm and only became aware of the song as time has ‘flown’ by. But why did I pick it and what’s its significance to me?

Upon first listen to “Fly on the Wings of Love”, I was instantly hooked! It has remained as one of my most listened to Eurovision entries over the years and I find that there is something lasting about the happy, upbeat lyrics and rhythm. It’s hard not to smile when listening to the Olsen Brothers on this track and it succeeds in transferring you to Summer, whatever the season.

I always find it puzzling that, when you often see polls or pieces talking about ‘great Eurovision winners’, the Olsen Brothers are often overlooked from discussion. “Fly on the Wings of Love”, to me, is a quintessential Eurovision winner and I’m sure I’ll be smiling along to it for many years to come.

What the others had to say:

Emanuel

The year 2000 is like a battle between Denmark and Latvia when it comes to the preferences of the Eurovision fans. And then you have some hipsters who decide to choose one of the remaining songs as their winner. I think Denmark was a very decent winner, and for several years it was also mine. However it just lost a bit of the charm to me, and personally I find entries like the ones from Sweden or Latvia more appealing. So yeah, I back Latvia on the Eurovision battle. When I say that the Danish song lost a bit of its charm, I mean I got bored of it. The song has however aged very well, unlike for example the Estonian winner the year after. If you compare this Danish victory to the other victories that came after, we see a huge difference when it comes to the type of song. It is a classic. But Latvia has some kind of magic. Would have given them the prize.

Luke

So Alexi has definitely made a very good choice with Fly On The Wings Of Love – it’s one of my favourite songs from that period of Eurovision. Before I really became a Eurovision fan and knew that it was a Eurovision entry, I remember my sister was obsessed with a club remix of the song and I HATED it. It was all that I heard for years. Then I started to get more into Eurovision and realised that it was actually a Eurovision winner, and the original version was 100x better than the remix that my sister loved. I love that it’s so simple and acoustic, it’s just beautiful. If it had been up to me, I’d have two songs in mind. The first is the the 1983 entry, Kloden drejer. Yes, I know that Gry’s vocals on the night were…..umm….interesting, but the song itself is so catchy and cute! The other song I’d think of didn’t actually make it to Eurovision. Of course, I’m talking about Anne Gadegaard’s Suitcase from DMGP 2015 – similarly to Fly On The Wings Of Love, it was so simple yet beautiful, but it had a ton of added adorableness and for me, it’s the best thing to ever get near Eurovision and it would’ve been my favourite Eurovision entry ever. Why, Denmark, WHY?

Sami

“Fly on the Wings of Love” is definitely one of the Eurovision classics. Over the years I have heard the song in most random places and heard people singing it, who definitely don’t follow the contest! One of my favourite moments with the song was seeing the while crowd singing along to it at the Eurovision Song Contest’s Greatest Hits. It was also very refreshing to have something different winning the contest after two very schlagerish songs in late 90s. The performance is very simple and sweet and it really was just about the song. Denmark usually goes with the song first, which is a good approach at this time, when the performances at the contest are getting bigger and crazier.

Rodrigo

If there is a country that has a talent for coming up with harmless, middle-of-the-road entries that definitely is Denmark. FOTWOL is no exception and to this day I remain baffled that this won (can’t believe any of Denmark’s victories but I could write a book about that). Staying on topic, everything about this entry is just plain bland. The music, the lyrics, the performance. Even writing about it is boring… #justiceforAlsou

And what do YOU think about “Fly on the Wings of Love”? Do you think it deserved to win? Are you team #JusticeforAlsou? Let us know! Be sure to stay updated by following @ESCXTRA on Twitter@escxtra on Instagram and liking our Facebook page for the latest updates!

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