It’s Greece’s 40th appearance in the contest this year and they are one of my favourite Eurovision countries with their long history of ethno dance/party bangers stretching back to the 1980s, as well as several of their slower numbers, especially where they’ve incorporated Greek instrumentation and flavours. Greece’s glory years were between 2001 and 2013, when, in addition to their 2005 win, they scored a further 9 top 10 results. It’s been patchier in recent years, including two non-qualifications, but they are back on form this year with Katerine Duska and “Better Love”.
Katerine is Greek-Canadian, born in Montreal but now lives in Athens. She’s not come from any reality TV route (and that feels almost odd to say that about solo artist at Eurovision these days) but is a singer-songwriter in her own right, and has released music previously. It’s an incredibly strong song – the best, in my view, song by a female artist this year. She co-wrote this with Leon of Athens and Scot David Sneddon, the winner of UK’s first series of Fame Academy in 2002 but who took a path into songwriting, and has worked on songs projects with Will Young, Lana del Rey, Pixie Lott and Olly Murs.
Her vocals in this song really do stand out. Her voice is distinctive and she also hits some very high notes in this. She had a bit of tough time at Eurovision in Concert in Amsterdam as she was ill but that was shown to be a blip as her performance was great at the pre-party in Madrid (and also in first rehearsal in Tel Aviv).
The bookies still, at time of writing this preview, expect the top 5 places to be filled by male artists. I find that hard to believe that will actually happen (as I am not sure that has ever happened before) and while bookies and fandom have Cyprus as most likely to be the top female solo artist, I happen to think that it could in fact be this and would be well deserved, it’s excellent. Welcome back Greece!
Official music video:
Live at Madrid pre-party:
My preview video:
Greece in the Eurovision Song Contest
First entered: 1974
Appearances (excluding this year): 39
Best result: Winner 2005
Last year’s result: 14th in semi-final (did not qualify)