Moving on with our previews, our next destination is the land of windmills, bikes and weed. It’s the Netherlands!!!
The Netherlands was one of the seven countries that took part in the very first Eurovision Song Contest in 1956. They have won four times, in 1957 with Corry Brokken singing “Net als toen”, in 1959 with Teddy Scholten singing “Een beetje”, in 1969 as a joint winner with Lenny Kuhr singing “De troubadour” and in 1975 with Teach-In singing “Ding-a-Dong”. They have achieved other top 10 results since then, such as fifth in 1980 with Maggie McNeal singing “Amsterdam” and Marcha singing “Rechtop in de wind”, sixth in 1993 with Ruth Jacott singing “Vrede” and fourth in 1998 with Edsilia Rombley singing “Hemel en aarde”. In recent years. they were not as successful, failing to qualify for the final at all between 2005 and 2012. In 2013, they returned to success, when Anouk finished ninth in the final with “Birds”. The following year, the Common Linnets finished second in the final with “Calm Before the Storm”, the Netherlands’ best result since 1975. Last year, Douwe Bob finished joint 11th in the final with “Slow Down”.
The Dutch broadcaster, AVROTROS, internally selected both the artist and song. O’G3NE was announced as this year’s Dutch representatives.
O’G3NE is a band made up of sisters Lisa (born June 21st 1994), Amy and Shelly (both born October 18th 1995). The sisters were born in Dodrecht in South Holland but raised in Fijnaart in North Brabant. They first came to public attention when they represented the Netherlands in the Junior Eurovision Song Contest on home soil in Rotterdam. They finished eleventh out of seventeen with their song “Adem in, adem uit” (Breathe in, breathe out). They went on to release two albums, 300% in 2008 and Sweet 16 in 2011. After a brief hiatus, the sisters took part in the fifth season of The Voice of Holland, under their new name “O’G3NE”. They went on to win the entire show, becoming the first group to do so in any franchise of The Voice. Their third album and their first under the name “OG3NE”, We Got This, went straight to number one on the Dutch Albums Chart. Their entry for Kyiv “Lights and Shadows” was written by Rick Vol, the girls’ father and composed by Vol and Rory de Kveit, Shelley’s boyfriend. The song is dedicated to the sisters’ mother, who is currently battling cancer.
I remember first seeing Lisa, Amy and Shelley at the Junior Eurovision and being blown away by their talent and harmonies. (Still not over 11th place, by the way). Their skills have only grown over time. Each member shines but not too bright as to outshine the others. I get vibes of some of the girl group greats like En Vogue. Yes, it sounds a little too 90’s but these girls knock it out of the park in their live performances. That just might be enough to get them to the final.
What Could Have Been
Over the past few years, one name that always appeared in rumours about who will be representing the Netherlands is Dotan. This indie singer-songwriter scored a massive hit in 2014 with “Home” and has sold out the Ziggo Dome in Amsterdam. His sound is fresh, catchy and could translate well to a European audience. Maybe we might see him grace the Eurovision some time down the line…
Veel succes Nederland!
Will the lights of victory shine on O’G3NE or they fade into the darkness? Leave your comments below. Stay tuned tomorrow for another Eurovision preview!
(Sources: eurovision.tv, AVROTROS, YouTube)