My top 5 songs from…Norway

It’s been a while since I’ve done a top 5 of a Scandinavian country but I’m trying to fill the gaps of countries I’ve not done before Eurovision 2017 starts! Norway has an interesting reputation in the contest – famous for getting nul points, but they are also three-time winners.

In fact, Norway has come last more times than any other country (11 times) and has had more nul points than any other country (4 times). Yet, with 55 appearances in the contest with three wins, and many top 10 results, there are plenty of songs to choose from.

5. Åse Kleveland “Intet er nytt under solen” (1966, 3rd place, 15 points)

Going a long way back into Eurovision history, this was Norway’s first top 3 placing. I love the 60s look and feel of this. Åse went on to host the contest when it was held in Norway in 1986, and was Norway’s Minister of Culture between 1990 and 1996. A further intriguing fact: she was the first female singer in the contest to wear a trouser suit rather than a dress…

4. Christine Guldbrandsen “Alvedansen” (2006, 14th place, 36 points)

There’s something vaguely Enya-ish about this song (a more uptempo Enya song) and I think it deserved to do better than 14th. It is in the Nordic folk song tradition so perhaps my comparison isn’t too far off the mark! This is the only entry to date to be sung in Norwegian since the language rule change in 1999.

3. Margaret Berger “I Feed You My Love” (2013, 4th place, 191 points)

Ultra-modern and Bond-esque in nature, this achieve a fine and deserved top 5 place for Norway. It ranks as Norway’s best result since their 2009 win and their sixth best result overall.

2. Alexander Rybak “Fairytale” (2009, winner, 387 points)

The biggest winner of Eurovision in terms of points won (on pre-2016 points system), this song strolled to victory in 2009 – the first year of the 50/50 jury and public vote points system. Even by halfway of the voting, it was clear Alexander had an unassailable. I’ve been lucky enough to see this performed live by Alexander Rybak at the UK national final in 2017.

1. Bobbysocks “La det swinge” (1985, winner, 123 points)

An iconic Eurovision winner and one of my favourites. Bobbysocks performed at the 60th anniversary concert and had lost none of their enthusiasm in their performance. While this was their greatest moment, Hanne Krogh and Elisabeth Andreassen have performed several other times at Eurovision, either as parts of other groups or solo. Elisabeth was runner up in 1996 (to Ireland) with “I evighet”.

So, that was nul points Norway – plenty of success on show. Who else would you have put in the top 5 or as your number 1? Do leave a comment below!

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