Luxembourg’s Eurovision Journey
Decades before San Marino entered the fray- casting a wide geographical net in search of its Eurovision acts- Luxembourg was up to the same trick. The Grand Duchy was operating on a rather higher plane, however, amassing five Eurovision victories between 1961 and 1983.
Courtesy of French and Greek singers, this nation of 3-400,000 became a Eurovision heavyweight with a golden touch. But after Luxembourg’s 1983 win, the tide turned. Before bowing out of the contest in the wake of relagation for 1994, only two more top ten positions would be achieved, both courtesy of loan signings.
The latter of these was Lara Fabian. Now an international star, Fabian was a relatively unknown Belgian teenager, finishing in fourth behind another teenager, Céline Dion. In the ’90s, Fabian would join Dion as a Canadian citizen.
Two years prior, it was a Canadian singer who achieved Luxembourg’s last podium finish. Hailing from English-speaking Manitoba in western Canada, Sherisse Laurence sang “L’amour de ma vie”, to achieve third place. The German team behind the song were more renowned for generating pop hits for Baccara, but the oh-so-’80s synth-ballad met with favour from the juries, despite being first on stage that night in 1986.
What do the team think?
Oops, I haven’t heard this one before, so this is a first impression you are getting now. L’Amour De Ma Vie started really promising with Sherisse and her lovely voice. I was waiting for a nice sounding chorus, but there Luxembourg left me a bit cold here. The anti climax happened right there wher the song should make me say “yes, I’m loving this!”. I have watched a full recap of the 1986 Eurovision Song Contest, and I have to say that this wasn’t the strongest edition ever. However, I struggle to understand how this finished so high as I thought that there were some better options. Apart from that, I really miss our little neighbour in the contest and they’ve given us some great entries through their Eurovision journey.
The top scoreboard of 1986 was dominated by three French language songs, and surprisingly all three of them ended up where they deserved and for the first time also in accordance to my top3 list. Such a strong year it was!! “L’amour de ma vie” is a nice French 80’s chanson, well performed by Sherisse Laurence’s pleasant voice. It’s not as catchy as Belgium and Switzerland, the other two songs on the top2 though, but regardless it remains a classic song today. I miss Luxembourg in Eurovision and wish they return soon!
This is a frustrating entry to review. Sadly, this is one of many instances where the singer is far better than the song that said singer has been paired with. Sherisse has a really lovely vocal tone and flourishes throughout the performance but the chorus seems slightly reductive? To me, it sounds as if the pre-chorus / first line of the chorus sets the song up to an anti-climax. The final chorus, however, with its transposition into a higher notation feels much more inviting interesting and enjoyable (although that could speak to us looking back at the song rather than watching/listening at the time?).
As a fan who hasn’t kept up with the older songs in the contest’s history, this was my first time listening to “L’amour de ma vie”. I think it’s… pleasant. It’s not a song I’d skip in a playlist but I also find it extremely inoffensive which isn’t a good thing in a Eurovision context. I expect a little bit more oomph from Eurovision songs, but it’s also entirely possible that I’m comparing it too much to the contest in the past 20 years. I’m actually quite curious to hear the other songs competing in 1986 to see if this deserved 3rd place – my gut feeling says it didn’t. Sherisse does get bonus points for performing it extremely well though!
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