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The Search Concludes for Eurovision Perfection, number 10 to number 1 Written by on May 7, 2012 | 5 Comments

So, you want to know which out of the 1,099 Eurovision Final songs is the most successful ever?

Over the last six weeks we have been counting down the top 100 songs based on total score and working out what percentage that was against what they could have scored, assuming they got maximum points from every one else.  Not likely, I know, but there is one song that achieved over 80% of the total points available to it.  More on that later, in the meantime, sit back, relax and enjoy the next nine songs that are, let’s face it, so euro-massive that they just cannot be confined to the vaults of history. Let’s let them out, one more time!

Don’t forget, the entire playlist is here, from 100 to number 1 for your listening pleasure.  Just keep all razorblades out of harms way.  Ewan doesn’t want to be sued quite yet.


#10 – Un banc, un arbre, une rue by Séverine (Monaco, 1971, came 1st with 75.29%)

This Monégasque classic is a true great, hitting #10 on the top 100 is not an easy thing to do.  Séverine garnered over 75% of the total points she could have achieved back in 1971 – this is a classy performance and one that, certainly on the Continent, everyone knows.  A little over-dramatic, peut-être.


#9 – Power to All Our Friends by Cliff Richard (United Kingdom, 1973, came 3rd with 76.86%)

Now, this didn’t even win and yet it hits our top 10, Sir Cliff’s firm favourite of 1973 is another euro classic.  Apparently Cliff had to take valium to get over his nerves just before the contest and his manager really struggled to wake him before his performance.  Poor Cliff – probably couldn’t get 1968 out of his head at the time.   Although 3rd is the best place it got on the night, 9th all-time is no mean feat.  What are those trousers all about?  Well done Cliff, here’s to many more years of no further commercial releases!


#8 – J’aime la vie by Sandra Kim (Belgium, 1986, came 1st with 77.19%)

Little Belgium, not that well known for it’s euro smashes, this song surges up the chart and rests at #8 as Belgium’s most successful ever.  I hate it.  Always have, the precocious brat of 1986 even had the audacity to lie about her age, even in her song.  She would have still been able to enter Kiddie Eurovision now, this song sounds like it could have come from there, I still say there should be a retrospective disqualification for my bleeding ears at least.  Well done Sandra.


#7 – Eres tú by Mocedades (Spain, 1973, came 2nd with 78.13%)

And now Spain’s most successful song ever, and like Un, deux, trois for France, it didn’t even win.  Coming just second, this is the top 100’s highest placing for a non-winner – and this is great.  Classy, stunning and wonderfully melodic.  Lovely.


#6 – Rock ‘n’ Roll Kids by Paul Harrington & Charlie McGettigan (Ireland, 1994, came 1st with 78.47%)

There is no denying that Ireland have done extremely well in this contest, no-one saw this one coming.  Well, I didn’t.  It was dull, dull, dull when you compare it to some of the other entries of 1994 – Poland and Hungary jumped out at you like fish in a barrel.  It’s only now, years and years later, that I see the appeal of this song and it’s definitely down to my increase in age years.  But I still think Poland or Hungary should have won, perhaps the judges were a little too scared of handing the contest over to these newly democratic nations, or their scorecards were pre-printed with ’12’ against Ireland.  It’s a nice song, but nice songs alone, of course, don’t make great songs.


#5 – Fairytale by Alexander Rybak (Norway, 2009, came 1st with 78.66%)

What? 5th?  Yep.  This was H-U-G-E, but still only got to 5th place.  I say only very flippantly there – 5th is such a massive achievement and I don’t want to take anything away from that.  This song instantly caught everyone’s attention, from Melodi Grand Prix all the way through to the ESC final and beyond, this song was a massive hit that was so annoyingly catchy that it roped everyone into listening, or even buying it.  It hit number 10 in the UK Top 40 – presumably from iTunes and other download outlets, but that is not an easy thing to do for Eurovision.  The slightly grumpy Alexander was great on the stage and he captivated his audience.  A clear winner, from the day he was conceived by his mum and dad!


#4 – Love Shine a Light by Katrina & The Waves (United Kingdom, 1997, came 1st with 78.82%)

Before I started compiling this chart, I thought Karina was going to be on top, but there are three other songs that got a larger percentage share.  This, as you know, is the UK’s last winner to date, unless Engelbert can better that it will be for a long time.  This anthemic classic was so, so good on the night.  I still can’t believe I missed Eurovision that year, I was on holiday and thankfully my partner, at the time, remembered to record it for me.  I watched 1997 two weeks after its live broadcast totally oblivious to the fact we had won, and not just slightly won, humongously won.  I real hand-waver, I still love this.  A bit cheezy perhaps, a little cliché in its message of love and understanding, world peace and humanity.  Isn’t that what the ESC has been about for ions?


#3 – Ein bißchen Frieden by Nicole (Germany, 1982, came 1st with 78.92%)

Thinking Katrina had this chart wrapped up – then I realised I had forgotten all about Nicole.  One of my first Eurovision memories, this song was simple, classic, understated and, clever.  She realised at the time that were she to win she needs to get as many language versions out there and why not go through the lot on the reprise?  Sung in practically every language except Xhosa and Maori, this song took off across Europe faster than Sarkozy’s presidency.  It was the UK’s 500th number one ever – a huge hit all over Europe at the time.  Well done Nicole.  What you doing now?


#2 – Save Your Kisses For Me by Brotherhood of Man (United Kingdom, 1976, came 1st with 80.39%)

Bloody hell.  To complete the UK’s standing at coming 2nd more times than anyone else, ever, guess what.  We came second.  This song has been interwoven into Euro history so much that it’s hard not to hear Te deum without it immediately being followed by that annoyingly catchy riff.  Europe fell in love with this song, aided no doubt by the language rule at the time – the reason for so many second places in my view – this was a mega Euro song that just does not go away.  Every year at about this time it rears its head out of the mists of time to be exposed like a flasher’s raincoat.  We still love it.  We’re usually drunk, but we still love it.  Well done BoM – I wonder what will be played at their funerals?



So, the number one Eurovision song, at least statistically, is coming up.  Before then, a complete recap of all the Eurovision songs and their placings, just to tease this out a little more!


#99 = White and Black Blues by Joëlle Ursull (France 1990, came 2nd equal)

#99 = Somewhere in Europe by Liam Reilly (Ireland, 1990, 2nd equal)

#98 – One Step Out of Time by Michael Ball (United Kingdom 1992, came 2nd)

#97 – A festa de vida by Carlos Mendes (Portugal 1972, came 7th)

#96 – Lejla by Hari Mata Hari (Bosnia & Herzegovina 2006, came 3rd)

#95 – Reise nach Jerusalem by Sürpriz (Germany 1999, came 3rd)

#94 – Io senza te by Peter, Sue & Marc (Switzerland 1981, came 4th)

#93 – Junger Tag by Gitte (Germany 1973, came 8th)

#92 – Un train qui part by Marie (Monaco 1973, came 8th)

#91 – Era by Wess & Dori Ghezzi (Italy 1975, came 3rd)

#90 – T’en vas pas by Esther Ofarim (Switzerland 1963, came 2nd)

#89 – L’amore è un attimo by Massimo Ranieri (Italy 1971, came 5th)

#88 – Su canción by Betty Missiego (Spain 1979, came 2nd)

#87 – Je n’ai que mon âme by Natasha St-Pier (France 2001, came 4th)

#86 – Satellite by Lena Meyer-Landrut (Germany 2010, came 1st)

#85 – Believe by Dima Bilan (Russia 2008, came 1st)

#84 – I giorni dell’arcobaleno by Nicola di Bari (Italy 1972, came 6th)

#83 – Rock Me by Riva (Yugoslavia 1989, came 1st)

#82 – Molitva by Marija Šerifovic (Serbia 2007, came 1st)

#81 – Mysterious Woman by Marc Roberts (Ireland 1997, came 2nd)

#80 – Nje vjer, nje bojsa by t.A.T.u. (Russia 2003, came 3rd)

#79 – Džuli by Danijel (Yugoslavia 1983, came 4th)

#78 – Humanahum by Jean Gabilou (France 1981, came 3rd)

#77 – L’amour ça fait chanter la vie,= by Jean Vallée (Belgium 1978, came 2nd)

#76 – Sanomi by Urban Trad (Belgium 2003, came 2nd)

#75 – Kan by Duo Datz (Isralel 1991, came 3rd)

#74 – Främling by Carola Häggkvist (Sweden 1983, came 3rd)

#73 – All Out of Luck by Selma (Iceland 1999, came 2nd)

#72 – It’s Just a Game by The Bendik Singers (Norway 1973, came 7th)

#71 – Everyway That I Can by Sertab Erener (Turkey 2003, came 1st)

#70 – (I Would) Die For You by Antique (Greece 2001, came 3rd)

#69 – Laß die Sonne in dein Herz by Wind (Germany 1987, came 2nd)

#68 – Dansevise by Grethe & Jørgen Ingmann (Denmark 1963, came 1st)

#67 – Nocturne by Secret Garden (Norway 1995, came 1st)

#66 – Solo by Alsou (Russia 2000, came 2nd)

#65 – Go Scott Fitzgerald (United Kingdom 1988, came 2nd)

#64 – Better the Devil You Know by Sonia (United Kingdom 1993, came 2nd)

#63 – La det swinge by Bobbysocks (Norway 1985, came 1st)

#62 – Ne partez pas sans moi by Céline Dion (Switzerland 1988, came 1st)

#61 – The One that I Love by Chiara (Malta 1998, came 3rd)

#60 – Never Let You Go by Dima Bilan (Russia 2006, came 2nd)

#59 – To nie ja by Edyta Górniak (Poland 1994, came 2nd)

#58 – Where Are You? by Imaani (United Kingdom 1998, came 2nd)

#57 – Jack in the Box by Clodagh Rodgers (United Kingdom 1971, came 4th)

#56 – Un premier amour by Isabelle Aubret (France 1962, came 1st)

#55 – Hallelujah by Gali Atari & Milk and Honey (Israel 1979, came 1st)

#54 – Johnny Blue by Lena Valaitis (Germany 1981, came 2nd)

#52 = Fångad av en stormvind by Carola (Sweden 1991, came 1st)

#52 = Le dernier qui a parlé… by Amina (France 1991, came 2nd)

#51 – Tom Tom Tom by Marion Rung (Finland 1973, came 6th)

#50 – It’s Nice to be in Love Again by The Swarbriggs Plus Two (Ireland 1977, came 3rd)

#49 – Why Me? by Linda Martin (Ireland 1992, came 1st)

#48 – You Are Summer (You Never Tell Me No) by Nova (Sweden 1973, , came 5th)

#46 = Falter im Wind by Milestones (Austira 1972, came 5th)

#46 = Diese Welt by Katja Ebstein (Germany 1971, came 3rd)

#45 – Insieme: 1992 by Toto Cutugno (Italy 1990, came 1st)

#44 – Theater by Katja Ebstein (Germany 1980, came 2nd)

#43 – Rock Bottom by Lynsey de Paul & Mike Moran (United Kingdom 1977, came 2nd)

#42 – Seventh Wonder by Ira Losco (Malta 2002, 2nd).

#40 = Chai by Ofra Haza (Israel 1983,  came 2nd)

#40 = Making Your Mind Up by Buck’s Fizz (United Kingdom 1981,  came 1st)

#39 – Diva by Dana International (Israel, 1998, came 1st with 59.72%)

#38 – Shake It by Sakís Rouvas (Greece,  2004, came 3rd with 60.00%)

#37 – Ei sham by Ilanit (Israel, 1973, came 4th with 60.63%)

#36 – The Voice by Eimear Quinn (Ireland, 1996, came 1st with 61.36%)

#35 – Pas pour moi by Daniela Simons (Switzerland, 1986, came 2nd with 61.40%)

#34 – Take Me to Your Heaven by Charlotte Nilsson (Sweden, 1999, came 1st with 61.74%)

#33 – Si la vie est cadeau by Corinne Hermès (Luxembourg, 1983, came 1st with 62.28%)

#32 – Als ‘t om de liefde gaat by Sandra & Andres (Netherlands,  1972, came 4th with 62.35%)

#31 – Lane moje by Željko Joksimović and the Ad Hoc Orchestra (Serbia & Montenegro, 2004, came 2nd with 62.62%)

#30 – Nur die Liebe läßt uns leben by Mary Roos, (Germany, 1972, came 3rd with 62.94%)

#29 – Terminal 3 by Linda Martin (Ireland, 1984, came 2nd with 63.43%)

#28 – I Wanna by Marie N (Latvia, 2002, came 1st with 63.77%)

#27 – Let Me Be the One by The Shadows (United Kingdom, 1975, came 2nd with 63.89%)

#26 – In Your Eyes by Niamh Kavanagh (Ireland, 1993, came 1st with 64.93%)

#25 – Non ho l’età by Gigliola Cinquetti (Italy, 1964, came 1st with 65.33%)

#24 – What’s Another Year by Johnny Logan (Ireland, 1980, came 1st with 66.20%)

#23 – Wild Dances by Ruslana (Ukraine, 2004, came 1st with 66.67%)

#22 – Never Ever Let You Go by Rollo & King (Denmark, 2001, came 2nd with 67.05%)

#21 – Beg, Steal or Borrow by The New Seekers (United Kingdom, 1972, came 2nd with 67.06%)

#20 – Diggi-loo diggi-ley by the Herreys, (Sweden, 1984, came 1st with 67.13%)

#19 – Hard Rock Hallelujah by Lordi (Finland, 2006, came 1st with 67.59%)

#18 – En un mundo nuevo by Karina (Spain, 1971, came 2nd with 68.24%)

#17 – Hold Me Now by Johnny Logan (Ireland, 1987, came 1st with 68.25%)

#16 – A-ba-ni-bi by Izhar Cohen & Alpha Beta (Israel, 1978, came 1st with 68.86%)

#15 – Ding-a-Dong by Teach-In (Netherlands, 1975, came 1st with 70.37%)

#14 – Fly on the Wings of Love by the Olsen Brothers (Denmark, 2000, came 1st with 70.65%)

#13 – Un, deux, trois by Catherine Ferry (France, 1976, came 2nd with 72.06%)

#12 – Everybody by Tanel Padar & Dave Benton (Estonia, 2001, came 1st with 75.00%)

#11 – Après toi by Vicky Leandros (Luxembourg, 1972, came 1st with 75.29%)

#10 – Un banc, un arbre, une rue by Séverine (Monaco, 1971, came 1st with 75.29%)

#9 – Power to All Our Friends by Cliff Richard (United Kingdom, 1973, came 3rd with 76.86%)

#8 – J’aime la vie by Sandra Kim (Belgium, 1986, came 1st with 77.19%)

#7 – Eres tú by Mocedades (Spain, 1973, came 2nd with 78.13%)

#6 – Rock ‘n’ Roll Kids by Paul Harrington & Charlie McGettigan (Ireland, 1994, came 1st with 78.47%)

#5 – Fairytale by Alexander Rybak (Norway, 2009, came 1st with 78.66%)

#4 – Love Shine a Light by Katrina & The Waves (United Kingdom, 1997, came 1st with 78.82%)

#3 – Ein bißchen Frieden by Nicole (Germany, 1982, came 1st with 78.92%)

#2 – Save Your Kisses For Me by Brotherhood of Man (United Kingdom, 1976, came 1st with 80.39%)


So, the number one all-time top Eurovision song is next.  This tiny country has, as I have said before, sent some amazingly classic songs, and some total turd, Papa pingouin, Parlez-vous français?, Children, Kinder, enfants, C’est peut-être pas l’Amérique, Croire, Dès que le printemps revient, Amours mortes (Tant de peine), Amour amour, Frère Jacques to name a few – I will let you categorise ‘turd’ or ‘class’, but there is no denying this is a great song that was totally appropriate for its time.  This is what Eurovision used to be, yes it’s outdated and sentimental, but there is something about it that just makes your hairs on the back of your neck stand on-end if you have followed the history of the contest, even pre-dating your own birth.  It’s great.  And maybe it takes being a certain age to appreciate it.  It may not be a modern classic like Fairytale  or Fly on the Wings of Love but it definitely suited the era that gave birth to it.  So, without saying any more rubbish, here it is.  Europe’s number one Eurovision Song: Cry Baby by Jemini.  Just kidding.

The top ranking score of all Eurovision history – #1 – Tu te reconnaîtras by Anne-Marie David (Luxembourg, 1973, came 1st with 80.63%)


Thank you.  And see you in Baku.


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5 responses to “The Search Concludes for Eurovision Perfection, number 10 to number 1”

  1. Louise says:

    Wow, 1973 was certainly a bumper year! And 1972 also, what is going on there? Are most of the runaway winners from the 70s and 80s? It looks that way…

    Very interesting and enjoyable, thank you!

  2. Zolan says:

    Hm, I don’t recognise the #1 by title, and wouldn’t you know I’ve just had a major systems failure to keep me in suspense even longer.

    One other thing I’m curious about: If you plot all of the 1099 percentages from lowest to highest, what shape is the curve?

    Thanks very much. Your playlist is among the best ESC resources on YouTube.

  3. Steven Newby says:

    Not thought about the curve Zolan, maybe I could have a peak at this after 2012’s results are known – then the new finalists can be slotted in!

    Thanks for your idea!


  4. Zolan says:

    Oh yes. One can easily see why “Tu te reconnaîtras” would do well: cross-generational appeal (classy, but with a late 60s vibe and youthfulness), perfect delivery and camera-savvy presentation. It feels fresh even now.

  5. Vivi says:

    Where is Spain 1970??? And why don`t you have Eurovision songs from 1970????

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