First Listen: Spain Hopes You Will “Say Yay”

After Edurne's disappointing finish in 2015, Spain returned to a national final in the hopes of finding a crowd favorite for Stockholm. Will Barei inspire fans to say yay or meh?

Barei will represent Spain in the 2016 Eurovision Song Contest. (Photo: Facebook) Barei will represent Spain in the 2016 Eurovision Song Contest. (Photo: Facebook)

Last year’s Spanish entrant, “Amanacer” by Edurne, absolutely did not deserve its 21st-place finish, at least judging by its current play count in my music library. Can “Say Yay,” Barei’s mid-tempo dance number, find its way into my favorites playlist? Let’s take a peek:

Let me get this out of the way: I AM SO DISAPPOINTED that this song isn’t in Spanish. Spain has been one of the few countries that has reliably resisted the move towards English. A few of their recent entries have included portions in both languages, but this is the first time ever that their entry will be fully in English.1 Of course, that could change between now and the contest, but given how often Barei sings in English, I’d be shocked if it did.

Otherwise, I think “Say Yay” has a whole lot of potential. At the moment, though, it’s a mismatch of awesomeness and WTF-ness. I love Barei’s makeup and hair, but that hospital-gown of a dress and sneakers just are not working for me. Her voice is fantastic when she sings, not so great when she resorts to yelling. I’m not completely sure what she’s saying most of the time, but she’s singing with confidence, and I’ve learned to just accept Eurovision lyrics for what they are.2 At this early juncture, it’s possible Spain could be in the running for the Barbara Dex award, but I’m hopeful they’ll polish things up.

  1. Thank goodness we still have France.  
  2. Mostly. I’m still trying to figure out what “oximated” means.  

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