51 Weeks: 51 Songs From The Past: Week 18: Alexander Rybak – Fairytale

I’m so excited! No, I’m not singing the lyrics to a well know ‘Pointer Sisters’ song, I’m so excited because we’ve entered the month of May, which means ‘The Eurovision Song Contest’ is drawing near. How could I not include some ‘Eurovision’ in this music feature?

51 weeks 51 songs from the past poster

I’ve landed the music time machine in the year 2009, so we can meet the artist who, until 2016, held the record for the most number of points awarded to a song in the history of The Eurovision Song Contest. Take it away, Alexander…

I don’t know why, but Alexander has one of those faces I’d like to slap. Does anyone else think so? Anyway, my eyes were also drawn to the two guys dancing in the background. How did they manage all those moves? Did they believe they were at the gym? Did anybody else notice them, or were your eyes transfixed on Alexander’s fiddle?

Alexander said the song was based on an ex-girlfriend of his, but also admitted that a beautiful female creature from Scandinavian folklore was also on his mind when he wrote it. I’m not sure what I would have thought about that, but I suppose he at least said the creature was beautiful.

Here’s a clip of the song from the night Alexander performed it for Norway at The Eurovision Song Contest.

The song did very well on music charts around the world getting to the number one spot in seven countries including, Norway, Sweden, Iceland and Denmark. In the UK, it scraped into the top ten at number ten which, for a winning song from The Eurovision Song Contest, was magnificent for the time.

Thank you to everyone who left a link to a favourite song in the comments section of last week’s post. Thank you to Ruth, Marie, Barbara, and Kat who joined in with publishing a blog post of a favourite song, and to Terri who linked one of her posts to this feature.

Do you have a favourite song from The Eurovision Song Contest?

Want to join Hugh in building up your 51 favourite songs from the past? Leave a link in the comments section below and showcase your next song.

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  1. Wow! Great song and he sure has a lot of energy. I love fiddle playing so really enjoyed this. Thanks for sharing. I love this idea and think I will join ya’ll with this challenge.

  2. Well, this is another one I’ve never heard of. I kinda like it. There’s a lot going on in the performances…he’s cute (don’t want to slap him), the fiddling (very good), the dancers (? why were they even there? I kept expecting them to do Riverdance or something!) All in all, a fun watch/listen. Here’s my entry …enjoy! http://wp.me/p3RE1e-2Xt

      1. I agree, it’s a distraction from the main focus of the performance. A little bit of extra is fine, but these giant production numbers/shows at concerts, I don’t know. I just want to hear the singer sing their song!

  3. Oh Hugh, I do love your sense of humor, even though I’ve never heard of that song, nor does it turn my crank, lol. Although he has a cute face. 🙂 xx

    1. A few of you have mentioned the word ‘cute’, Debby. I don’t think the song was ever released in North America, although I am hearing that The Eurovision Song contest is beginning to get popular in your part of the world.

  4. Thanks, Hugh – Again I have learned much from your ’51 Weeks: 51 Songs’! I hadn’t heard of Alexander or the song, ‘Fairytale.’ (I did live in Beijing from 2001 – 2015 which is my excuse and I’m sticking with it)! I was so captivated by his song that I looked up his ‘biography’ on youtube. A little rough (okay, quite rough)…but interesting all the same. You can check it out here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_V3v33WXI78.

  5. I think this song was a turning point in the contest in the 2000s where countries started taking it much more serious – quite rightly. Kyiv calling, I’ll be there next Thurs 🙂

      1. There’s a better chance of being on tv this year as it’s a smaller venue and we are closer to the stage…also we will be wearing kilts and a t shirt with a flashy Union Jack haha

      1. Yes back then there wasn’t the indifference towards us. I thought it was a great song anyway, but then I was only 10 years old Hugh!!! Glad to know they are still knocking around 😊

  6. Uhm, wow, Hugh! I am not sure about this one. lol I mean, I was so distracted by the back up dancer/acrobats that seemed out of place with the fiddle which almost overpowered the song…. I mean, I think I hardly noticed the song. And then I kept watching Alexander’s face because I was intrigued by your desire to slap him. 🙂 I just don’t get the guys and the hats hanging in the air… and all of it. And that it was so popular? It’s a real head scratcher for me- thanks for sharing this! 🙂

    1. Did you notice how one of the hats almost poked one of Alexander’s eye out, Kat? Not very good video editing, but Europe seemed to love this song in 2009. It did very well for him, but he failed to make it back into the charts; unlike previous Eurovision winners such as Abba and Celene Dion.

  7. never really thought much of the Euro after Abba – I’m a bit of the Euroyawn school I’m afraid to say so I’ll go with the first time I am aware I saw a violin included a rock song that I loved … I’m seeing these guys this summer assuming they in fact still alive… https://youtu.be/PLNR4xfh1Qc

    1. I do like ELO, and they will feature later on in this series, but I was never a fan of this particular song, Geoff. They had some marvellous hits, but this one was not their best. But, I guess every band has a hit like that?

    2. Contrary to the views expressed below, this is a song (or version of) that I’ve grown fonder of over the years. I thought it was a great choice – better than the track that originally sprang to my mind – Violinski’s Clog Dance.

  8. Oh dear, I’m not a Eurovision fan, I’m afraid, and sadly you haven’t tempted me back with this offering… 🙂

  9. Hi Hugh,
    Okay, help me understand why you want to slap that face. He is cute, however, perhaps a little conceded? I love the beat of the song and maybe a little Irish basics?

    1. lol, I don’t know, Chuck. It’s just that type of face. It needs slapping. 😀 Maybe it’s the grin? Ireland has won the song contest many times, so maybe what you say is why this song won?

  10. OMG he is so cute! Gotta love that fiddle! If I’m going to watch music videos, this is the silly stuff I like! Great choice–I actually enjoyed everything about it, guess my hubby’s European/German influence in music has rubbed off 🙂

  11. Hmm- overacting maybe? Must admit his fiddle didn’t appeal to me – the size of his mouth is fascinating though!! As for those two show offs in the background…

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