Eurovision Fan of the Week - José from Argentina
For this week’s Eurovision Fan of the Week we spoke to José, aka @utavmorket on Twitter, who comes to us from Argentina. José shares his love for Scandinavia, Helena Paparizou and Montaigne, and introduces us to Argentinian artists he would love to see at Eurovision one day.
Thank you for being our Eurovision fan of the week! Tell us a little about yourself:
¡Hola! My name is José, I'm 23 years old and I come from that country located in the end of the world that's not Australia (pun intended). The land of football, tango and mate is where I'm doing a Master's degree in Management and Analytics after finishing my Bachelor's in International Studies.
I am currently based in Buenos Aires, but I grew up surrounded by the beautiful mountains of Jujuy, the northernmost province of Argentina. Having also lived in Thailand and the United States made me passionate about languages, travelling, music, food and books.
When did you first get into Eurovision?
My childhood was filled with all kinds of music, and a song called 'Nocturne' ended up being one of my favourites. After getting my first computer in 2011, I read its Wikipedia article. That "Eurovision" thing mentioned in it seemed interesting, but the thought of watching the event never crossed my mind.
Life had other plans, anyway. During a boring afternoon in May of 2012, I stumbled upon the international channel of TVE while trying to find something interesting to watch. And there it was, a woman and her team before the name "Sweden" appeared in front of my eyes.
What is your favourite Eurovision performance and why?
Helena Paparizou's 'My Number One' (Greece 2005), one of my favourite winners! It's a perfect combination: song, choreography, staging, camerawork, attitude and confidence. I can't wait to watch her perform in Rotterdam during the Grand Final!
One of my favourite winners too!! I also cant wait to see her perform this year! ~ Kyriakos
Which is your favourite Eurovision year and why?
I believe that every year has something special. But, taking into account things like musical quality, production and stage design, my favourite edition is Dublin 1997. RTÉ did a great job, the line-up had so many classics that are still popular among the fans and 'Love Shine a Light' was a fantastic winner!
Which artist/s from your country (or country you stan) would you love to see on the Eurovision stage? Which song/s best showcases that artist?
I actually have a very long list, but my three dream picks would be BEHM for Finland, sanah for Poland and Highasakite for Norway. And of course, knowing this is an Australian website, I can't hide the fact that I'm a big fan of The Faim! Something like 'Humans' would be amazing:
This question also made me think about a hypothetical Argentinian debut, like, what on Earth should we send? Well, something like 'Duele' by Tini and John C would make me proud: this mix of tango, pop and rap reflects our music scene while also celebrating our traditions. Oh, and they are great live performers, check this out:
Great choices!! ~ Kyriakos
Which national final do you look forward to the most? What makes it special?
I look forward to all of them, but there are two that take my personal spotlight: Sweden's Melodifestivalen and Italy's Sanremo. These events managed to become more than music festivals, developing into cultural institutions linked with the music industries of both countries. And they actually have something in common: the hosts and interval acts can get really crazy, they're so much fun to watch!
If you could change one thing about any national final or Eurovision what would it be?
One of my life mantras is "if it ain't broke, don't fix it". In my opinion, Eurovision and most national finals are doing great, but if I were to change one thing about the Contest... that would be the juries. Five people are not enough at all, it would be beneficial to have +10 members per country with strict selection criteria to guarantee diversity and professionalism.
Totally agree on your comments on the juries! ~ Kyriakos
What is your opinion on returning artists? Is there one you would like to see again?
Personally, they have my support: artists that come back love the Contest and it's great to see them again. Actually, I believe that some artists have "unfinished business" with Eurovision, just like Bulgaria's Poli Genova or North Macedonia's Tamara Todevska did. Their stories of success after initial failure only reinforce the Eurovision brand and its credibility.
Technically they wouldn't be returning, but I really hope that the 2020 artists that won't come back get to take part again someday.
If you could pick only three performances to encourage new people to watch Eurovision what would they be:
ABBA - 'Waterloo' (Sweden 1974): To show that Eurovision can be the start of a great international carreer.
Loreen - 'Euphoria' (Sweden 2012): To show that Eurovision can have pure art that sets new standards.
Duncan Lawrence - 'Arcade' (The Netherlands 2019): To show that Eurovision can introduce you to world hits (it's charting here!).
Which Eurovision song:
Is the best winner?
I am very aware that this may be the clichést cliché answer in the entire world but it must be given, sorry: Euphoria (Sweden 2012). As I previously mentioned, it was the first Eurovision performance I ever watched on TV and it'll always be special to me.
Euphoooorrriiiaaa!! ~ Kyrakos
Has the best live vocal?
There were great voices during the years, but I will never forget Yohanna (Iceland 2009).
The best from the last 10 years?
As I already talked a lot about Loreen, this answer is dedicated to my second favourite song of the 2010s: 'Better Love' (Greece 2019).
The fact that Nel Blu Dipinto Di Blu (Italy 1958) didn't win will never sit right with me.
It is still mind boggling to this day that Domenico didn't win Eurovision with 'Nel Blu Dipinto Di Blu'! The biggest robbery! ~ Kyriakos
Is your guilty pleasure?
'Lose Control' by Waldo's People (Finland 2009). I know the live performance was messy but it has its charm, and the studio version is a banger!
Is your favourite National Final song (that didn't make it to Eurovision)?
Erika Vikman's 'Cicciolina' (UMK 2020). The instrumental is addictive and it caught my attention instantly because my country was mentioned in the lyrics (of course, it's a reference to 'Don't Cry for me Argentina', but a very intelligent one).
Your favourite Eurovision 2021 entry?
Well, my Twitter username must have been the biggest spoiler ever: my winner of 2021 is Norway! MGP had an unparalleled line-up this year but 'Fallen Angel' stole my heart since I listened to 'Ut av mørket' in the semi-final. The melody is infectious and the way TIX sings came across as very sincere to me. We're all fighting our own demons, and that's why it's so easy to connect with the lyrics.
And finally which Australian entry is your favourite…
SBS has been doing a great job since 2015, but my favourite entry is 'Technicolour' by Montaigne. It's an extremely catchy song that feels authentic, fun and has an impressive set of vocal techniques. Also, the fact that Jessica's father was born in Argentina makes me feel represented by her in a way, so I can't wait to support Australia in May!
Are there any other titbits or comments you’d like to make?
Well, I must confess I was the one that uploaded the reaction of the Sammarinese commentators when Valentina qualified in 2014. It's hard to believe that more than 22 thousand people watched it since then!
I would like to thank the whole Aussievision team for the opportunity. This was so much fun and you're the nicest (shout-out to Kyriakos for contacting me)! Sending the biggest virtual hugs to all my friends in the ForoESC and Twitter communities because they're the ones that make everything worth it.
From Argentina with love!
Once again thank you so much José for being our Eurovision fan of the week, great to hear an Argentinian perspective of the contest!