My top 5 songs from…Poland

Poland arrived at Eurovision in 1994 as part of the great wave of debut countries from eastern Europe. They’ve notched up 22 appearances, with 14 grand finals and 3 top 10 placings, but no win as yet. In the Junior Eurovision however, they are back-to-back winners in 2018 and 2019, so maybe in the future this top 5 will see a Polish winner?

5. Gromee feat. Lukas Meijer “Light Me Up” (2018, 14th place in semi-final, 81 points)

When this won Poland’s national selection, I was both surprised and please. Here at last was an uptempo, electronic dance track from Poland and I fully expected this to go into the final. That wasn’t to be, as the live performance in the contest arena just fell a little flat and they failed to pick up the diaspora votes. I can understand why, but the song remains a great Eurovision night dancefloor song, and both Polish Gromee and Swedish Lukas were both personable guys – as shown at the London Eurovision Party.

4. Anna Maria Jopek “Ale Jestem” (1997, 11th place, 54 points)

We’re keeping with more uptempo numbers (at least moderately uptempo) and one of Poland’s best results. Anna has gone on to considerable further success in her musical career in Poland as a vocalist and songwriter.

3. Tulia “Fire of Love (Pali się)” (2019, 11th place in semi-final, 120 points)

I wasn’t a fan of this on first listen, but I grew to like it a lot and it’s insidiously catchy. It’s very Polish/east European with Tulia employing the white voice technique, a traditional style of singing from eastern Europe. They narrowly missed out on a deserved place in the final by just 2 points and there are still rumours that there was some irregularity which meant they finished 11th rather than 10th.

2. Edyta Górniak “To nie ja” (1994, 2nd place, 166 points)

Poland’s very first year in the contest was also their most successful, finishing as runners up on their debut (at the time the best ever result by a debuting country). You can see (well, hear actually) why – Edyta has a great voice and delivers a standout live vocal.  A Polish top 5 would not be complete without their best ever result. Edyta went on to have a successful post-Eurovision career.

1. Donatan & Cleo “My Słowianie – We Are Slavic” (2014, 14th place, 62 points)

This distinctly un-PC performance and song remains my favourite Polish entry. The overwhelmingly gay Vauxhall audience I was watching Eurovision 2014 with gave a big cheer at various points during this performance. And I won’t forget Graham Norton’s comment during the postcard introducing this “make sure you wake your granddad up for his, he might enjoy it”! Enjoy…

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