We close out our Eurovision 2015 coverage of the first semi-final with “Goodbye to Yesterday” by Elina Born & Stig Rästa. Will Estonia ride its status as favorite all the way to the top of the scoreboard?
Song Title: “Goodbye to Yesterday”
Artist: Elina Born & Stig Rästa
Semi-Final: First, Position #7
Last year’s entry: “Amazing” – Tanja (Did Not Qualify – 12th Place, SF1)
Estonia knows how to bounce back after disappointing results in the Eurovision Song Contest. After struggling for several years to qualify for the Final when semi-finals were introduced in 2004, Estonia finished in 6th place in 2009. Another miss in 2010 was followed by “Rockefeller Street” being considered a favorite to win in Dusseldorf. That didn’t quite happen1, but “Kuula” in 2012 scored another 6th place finish. Estonia missed the final last year2, so does that mean Elina Born & Stig Rästa’s “Goodbye to Yesterday” could be poised for a 6th (or better) placing?
Yes. Absolutely yes.
Once again Estonia finds itself a favorite of the bookmakers in what I consider to be the more competitive of the two semi-finals. “Goodbye to Yesterday” is incredibly pop-friendly without underlining that it is a pop song or falling into the trap of being a “Eurovision Song.” This song’s biggest strength is that it could exist completely outside of the Eurovision ecosystem and be a major success. It’s a strategy that works for Italy, will work for Australia, and did work for the Netherlands last year.
The second-greatest strength of this entry lies with Elina Born & Stig Rästa’s performance. Though “Goodbye to Yesterday” is low-key and almost dour, there is a charisma that peeks through the vocals and story of the song that is difficult to resist. I don’t expect the stage performance to be all that different from when the song was selected in Estonia’s national final3, but the song doesn’t require a flashy presentation.
The only hurdle I can see causing a low placement in the Final would be a bad position in the running order. I think this entry may need to be in the second half of the show if it wants to secure a top 10 finish. The subtleties of the song could be forgotten if it appears to early in the lineup, and if a lot of the duets in this year’s field advance it could make differentiating between tracks a little tricky. The good news is that this song should pair nicely with whatever comes before or after it, so that should allow the producers some flexibility in giving “Goodbye to Yesterday” the best position to shine.
Good luck Estonia! We’re rooting for you!