A 78-year-old man man committed suicide today in the Cathedral of Notre-Dame, just five days after a man in his 60s shot himself with a sawn-off shotgun in a local nursery.
Robin Stjernberg - You (Sweden - Eurovision 2013)
After winning last year for the fifth time, host nation Sweden are sending Swedish Idol runner up Robin Stjernberg to represent them with the song ‘You’. ‘You’ is already #1 in Sweden and has also charted in Finland, and is an incredibly catchy and decent pop song. Bookies are expecting a mid-table position for the song however, but with the Scandinavian countries predictably behind it, Sweden could do well this year, just not as well as Loreen.
El Sueño de Morfeo - Contigo hasta el final (Spain - Eurovision 2013)
Spain reached the top 10 last year with ‘Quédate conmigo’, however this year’s entry isn’t expected to meet the same fate. ‘Contigo hasta el final’ by El Sueño de Morfeo is a mix of pop, indie and Celtic all rolled into one. It starts of rather slow and soothing, before the drums kick in, but it never really gets too energetic. It’s a bit more folksy than other entries, but lacks that Spanish passion and latin sound we love Spain for. All in all, it might be a bit too slow and forgettable to make much progress on the leader board.
Cascada - Glorious (Germany - Eurovision 2013)
Germany won the contest in 2010 with ‘Satellite’ and have achieved top 10 position from then on. This year, German dance act Cascada, who have had success across the globe, will be representing Germany with dance song ‘Glorious’. ‘Glorious’ is a popular, upbeat dance tune that is bound to get the arena dancing. It shows of Natalie Horler’s vocals well and has a terrific beat. It’s still very much ‘Cascada’, but pop enough to do well in Eurovision too. However, bookies aren’t expecting a top 10 position, despite their worldwide success, but somewhere in the mid table instead.
Bonnie Tyler - Believe in me (UK - Eurovision 2013)
Last year, the UK chose an old singing legend, gave him a ballad and sent him of to Baku; things didn’t go too well. This year, the UK are doing the same thing, only this time sending ‘Total eclipse of the heart’ superstar Bonnie Tyler. Bonnie doesn’t expect to win, stating that it is ‘too political’, and is instead using it as as a platform to promote her new album. She has sold over 9 million records all over Europe and the world, so her European fan base could work in her favour. However, the song fails to show off her amazing vocals as some of her previous power ballads do. It may also sound too American country for the European public. Hopefully this will do well. Overall, a nice song and Bonnie sings it amazingly.
Marco Mengoni - L’Essenziale (Italy - Eurovision 2013)
After returning from a 12 year absence in 2010, Italy have placed within the top 10 twice. This year’s entry ‘L’Essenziale’ by Marco Mengoni has already hit the #1 spot in Italy and has entered the charts in both Switzerland and Belgium. Mengoni himself is a former X Factor winner who has gone on to release two #1 albums and win awards across Europe. He is good looking and a great singer, although many believe that the song isn’t memorable enough to make a lasting impression. If he is to make any impact on the Eurovision table, he’s going to have to show off his vocals more and throw on hell of a performance.
French President Hollande has signed the gay marriage bill, making France the 9th in Europe and 14th globally to legalise gay marriage.
The bill has been controversial, with anti-gay marriage protests hitting the streets in Paris and throughout the country. The right-wing opposition also challenged the bill, a move which was rejected by the Constitutional Council.
Both the Catholic Church and the right-wing opposition UMP think that the bill will undermine an essential building block of society. This is surprising as the Catholic Church’s influence on the French people was believed to have decreased in recent years. In January, some 340,000 protesters hit the street to voice their opposition to the bill.
Opinion polls have suggested that around 55-60% of French people support the gay marriage bill, but only 50% support gay adoption.
Currently, the UK are in the process of legalising gay marriage. Countries which have already legalised gay marriage include Norway, Sweden, Finland, Iceland, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain and Belgium.
Serbia - Eurovision 2013 Semi-Final 1
Switzerland - Eurovision 2013 Semi-Final 2