Another Sunday, another slideback. Today we’ll revisit United Kingdom’s 1991 entry “A Message to Your Heart” and see what the team thinks of this topical plea wrapped in a catchy pop song package.
I’ve followed every contest obsessively since I first became a fan, but I think a lot of Eurovision fans can relate to having less exposure to entries of the past.
“A Message to Your Heart” is one of the few pre-2000 UK entries that I’ve listened to, but it’s always stuck with me. Is it the best vocal performance? Definitely not. Is the song original? Not in the slightest. In fact, it might be ticking the most Eurovision boxes thematically in its cry for a better world.
It’s catchy though, and that’s all I really need in a pop song. Samantha looks every bit the Popstar Barbie and the performance isn’t bad. The disconnect between the lyrics and the vibe of the entry may throw some people off but we’ve forgiven much more questionable decisions in the name of Eurovision, haven’t we?
About the song
“A Message to Your Heart” was written by Paul Curtis who previously penned the country’s 1975, 1984, and 1990 entries. It finished in 10th place which isn’t a bad result per se. However, this was the worst result during United Kingdom’s golden – ahem, silver – era where they finished in second place a whopping 4 times.
Samantha said the result devastated her as she thought it’d end her career. However, you’ll be happy to know that since then she’s gone on to become a successful actress. I know – I was worried too!
What do the team think
First of all, thank you for selecting an older Eurovision entry, I love to dig in the history and discover older diamonds of songs. Well what can I say about this entry? United Kingdom was one of the countrie to watch during their entire Eurovision journey in the 20th century. “A Message To Your Heart” is one of the few British entries that did not finish 2nd and might therefore be called one of the “less succesfull British entries”. However, the situation I have with Sweden in the 21st century, is what I would have had with the UK back then. Even the entries that didn’t finish as high as expected, were still very good! And this is definitely one of them. And this is why the United Kingdom is one of my all time favourite countries in Eurovision history!
It’s always fun to finally review one of the older Eurovision entries. The UK used to be a powerhouse in Eurovision througout the 90’s, missing the top10 only once, and being second sevetal times. Always used to look forward for the UK entries back in the days. Now, back to “A message to your heart” from 1991. Among the majority of the Eurovision-fan community, this entry does not usually belong among the most popular ones. However, myself I find this one cheerful and catchy, and I enjoy it. The performance could have been made differently, but who cares? A top10 was very well deserved.
Over the years the UK has very often been in my top 5 or so, but this message never quite reached my heart. 1991 is one of my very favorite years, and with competitors like “Draumur um Nínu”, “Bailar Pegados”, “C’est le dernier qui a parlé qui a raison”, “Kan” and (for some reason) “Could It Be That I’m In Love?”, “A Message to Your Heart” didn’t stand a chance. To me it’s just a bit bland and uninspiring, and it lacks that “little bit extra” that makes a song stand out. Samantha’s performance is good, even though her vocals are a bit shaky here and there, and she looks utterly gorgeous. Watching this performance always remind me of one of my favorite “guilty pleasure” movies, “Grease 2” and Michelle Pfeiffer’s “Girl For All Seasons”. #stephanieforever
But even that’s not enough to lift this song up from its position as average. My favorite UK entries are “Let Me Be the One”, “Come Back”, “Beg, Steal or Borrow”, “I Can”, “I’m Never Giving Up”, “Hold On to Our Love” (I know; I don’t know why…) and of course my fave dancefloor singalong song ever; “”Don’t Play That Song Again”! Fingers crossed they will start taking Eurovision seriously again at some point… Not holding my (last) breath, though!
I’ve heard this song a few times in studio, but never had the experience of the live performance. I’ll be honest, this isn’t my favourite song or uk entry. There’s one line in the song that strikingly stands out: ‘through politics and ignorance, half the world in need’. It’s upsetting that very little, if anything has changed in over 25 years to alleviate that very real feeling. However, I can’t help but feel that said message is diminished by the uptempo nature and virginal, wedding dress-like frocks Samantha and her backing vocalists are wearing? Maybe I’m missing something. Coming 10th back in the day would probably have been perceived as the end of the world #berghandahl but I think now uk fans would make a sacrifice to the fake violinist that almost knocked Jade Ewan into a different decade or Javine’s unfortunate nip slip for such a strong result. I can’t help but feel that Sam’s acting career is more of a powerhouse highlight than this song (sorry!)…
What’s your opinion on A Message to Your Heart? Do you agree with the team? 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! Also, be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel to see our reactions to the news in the run up to Rotterdam!