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(D): from D'Nash to Dzuli

KEY: Winner Runner-up Third-place Top 5 Debut Entry Host Entry Last Place Nul Points

D'NASH (group) Spanish entry, Helsinki 2007: 20th place (43 pts)
A world watched in awe as Spain presented the first ever boy band as their entry for the 2007 Eurovision Song Contest.

Before that fateful day, nobody had ever thought of putting a group of fairly attractive, healthy-looking men in their late teens/early 20s together and giving them an uptempo pop stomper to perform in matching outfits.

The impact sent ripples throughout the world. Queen Elizabeth II sent a message of congratulation to the Spanish royal family, a national holiday was held in Russia, and Massiel streaked through the streets of Madrid.

Even notorious feminist Germaine Greer was impressed. As the lads performed I Love You Mi Vida on the Finnish stage, she looked up from the very serious book she was reading, glanced at the TV screen, tutted quietly, and continued to read.

DAISY (chain singer) Swiss entry, Malmo 1992: 15th place (32 pts)
Sounding most striptease-like, Daisy Auvray's Mister Music Man was the Swiss attempt at tickling the juries' fancy in 1992.

Sadly, Daisy was thwarted by the recent success of the Black Lace smash-hit I Am the Music Man which had topped the charts in every country in the world, achieved multi-multi-multi-platinum sales, and spent 22 weeks at Number One in the UK.

Therefore, she would have won if she had played an imaginary trombone while singing "Oompah, oompah, oompah, pah..," hummed the theme from The Dambusters while pretending to be an aeroplane, waved an imaginary scarf behind her head to the strains of the Match of the Day theme tune and, just to top things off, got her tits out and rubbed whipped cream into her nips

DANA (singer/s) Irish entry, Amsterdam 1970: 1st place (32 pts) ; Israeli entry, Birmingham 1998: 1st place (172 pts)

One has a cute dimple, nice line in lacy dresses, wants to rule the world via Brussels and only grows snowdrops and daffodils in her back garden. The other one used to have a willy.

DANIJELA (performer) Croatian entry, Birmingham 1998: 5th place (131 pts)
The founder member of Croatiastrip PLC, Danijela will get her kit off for anyone.

Don't be fooled by that virginal smirk, or a hairdo reminiscent of someone from your school's PTA, Danijela knows how to get the televoters going, just let me tell you. After her deserved 5th placing in 1998 with Neka Mi Ne Svane, Danijela was plagued with phone calls from Demi Moore, who wanted to know where she'd gone so wrong in Striptease.

DAWN (performer) Irish entry, Birmingham 1998: 9th place (64 pts)
A hairdresser-cum-singer from Dundalk, Dawn Martin is Linda's elder sister, and is actually 68.

Clever make-up and lighting from the BBC made her look much younger on stage in Birmingham. Her entry:
Is Always Over Now? was inspired by the fact she can't stand that film where Audrey Hepburn plays Richard Dreyfuss's guardian angel and she can never wait for it to finish when it's shown on RTE Gold.

DAY AFTER DAY (song) Azeri entry, Belgrade 2008: 8th place (132 pts)
An impressive debut from the Azeris, whose high-pitched blood and lace shennanigans landed them eighth place in Serbia.

Elnur and Samir came through an impressively staged national final in Baku with their Jim Steinman meets Aida number, complete with an angels and devils-style staging to give the whole mood an impressive final lick.

Their performance wasn't enough to win, but that wasn't the end of the story for the lads.

They have now decamped to Italy, where they have been stapled to the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, as an added bonus for eagle-eyed tourists.

DAZ (doorstep rapper) British entry, Athens 2006: 19th place (25 pts)
The cruelly ignored UK entrant of 2006 did the unthinkable and managed to make around 75 people in Blighty aware of what that year's entry for Eurovision sounded like.

The Hard Knock Life and Another Brick in the Wall style homage was of course topped off with the (over 16) schoolgirl choir joining in for the chorus of Teenage Life.

Eurovision rules state that a song must come in at three minutes or under, that is why the initial draft lyrics had to be drastically edited prior to the Making Your Mind Up final.

When the choir originally chirped up with "What? Did you learn in school today?", Daz was to answer: "How to TWOC a car, undo a bra strap with two fingers, wee up to the ceiling in the boys' toilets, where to buy the best skank, which of the ugly girls will show you their kebab, and the importance of metaphor in the Comedies of Shakespeare."

Unfortunately, the BBC objected to the use of Shakespeare in the lyrics of a pop song, and the song truncated.

DE EERSTE KEER (song) Dutch entry, Oslo 1996: 7th place (78 pts)
A Sandra and Andres for the '90s, Maxine and Franklin Brown did the unthinkable (as far as the BBC were concerned) and placed the old-fashioned Eurovision boppy-song De Eerste Keer one point ahead of Gina G at Oslo '96.

Franklin Brown is now more famous for going to prison not long after the contest.

Maxine did try and help him escape so they could perform De Eerste Keer for a season at Butlins Hilversum in 1998 by singing and dancing in front of the guards to distract them.

Although Maxine's ingenuity should be applauded, this still left Andres the task of escaping from his cell, scaling a 30-foot concrete wall topped with razor wire, and making his way through a courtyard full of blood-thirsty guard dogs with only a toothbrush and a Gideons Bible for tools.

Butlins Hilversum booked Gina G instead.

DE VOGELS VAN HOLLAND (song) First Dutch entry, Lugano 1956: Place/points unknown
This is it, the one that got the great big cheesy ball of Eurovision rolling, as the first song on stage back in 1956.

It would be churlish to write something cheeky about it.

DEBBIE (performer) Maltese entry, Dublin 1997: 9th place (66 pts)
Each time she hears the music play, Debbie sings a second line which doesn't scan.

This is after she has removed all the Air Malta stickers from her person which have been adhered to her in a subtle attempt at product placement, made a telephone call from a MaltaCom phone box, worn some clothes from Malta's leading fashion house (with the labels still attached) and eaten a meal at one of Malta's poshest restaurants (where the only waiters who have badges bearing the name of the establishment seem to be serving at her table). Hmm... strange.

DENMARK (nation) First entry: Frankfurt 1957. 2 1 2
A nation where, if you ring Directory Enquiries, two girls in yellow body warmers appear from nowhere and do 'Felicity Kendal's Shape Up and Dance' in your front room. Unfortunately, a man in leopard-print pants with no rhythm may turn up with them.

This is known to be preferable, however, to a heavily pregnant lady with a ginger pom-pom on her head who will make her friends throw guitars at you.

DENTRO DI ME (song) Swiss entry, Dublin 1997: =22nd place (5 pts)
Barbara Berta could have won the 'Curliest Hair and Snakiest Clothes' Contest in 1997, but she very foolishly elected to enter one to do with songs instead.

That said, Dentro Di Me is pleasant enough when you've heard it 25 times - so if the Swiss had been every entry that year they'd have walked it. I think.

Shortly after the contest, Barbara shed her skin and became Noel and Kym from out of Hear'Say.

DERVISH (group) Irish entry, Helsinki 2007: 24th/last place (5 pts)
Ireland's most popular group, Dervish had a long-fought battle with U2 for the right to represent Ireland at Eurovision 2007.

Once Bono and the boys had been sorted, Cathy Jordan and her lads of trad had to find the perfect ingredients for the song which would bring Ireland its eighth Eurovision victory.

Tragically, on the day Cathy went shopping for those ingredients, she forgot to take her glasses. Thus, instead of going into her nearest music store, to check out the sounds all the hip kids in Europe were plugging in their ears, she went into the Slinky emporium next door, which had just merged with renowned Latvian company Icicles R Us.

Within 10 minutes, They Can't Stop the Spring had been written. And re-written.

DESIRE (song) Maltese entry, Stockholm 2000: 8th place (73 pts)
U2 had a UK Number One hit with this song in 1988.

What...sorry? Oh, no, this is a different song altogether. Claudette Pace belted this calypso-esque number out for Malta in 2000.

A performance notable for the fact that her backing singers had considerably greater dress sense than she did herself, and looked like some kids embarrased by their Mum in a karaoke competition.

This was because they were a last minute replacement from the Swedish broadcasters, the five original backing singers staying at home because they refused to have 'Air Malta is dead good' tattoed on their foreheads.

DET BLIR ALLTID VARRE FRAMAT NATTEN (song) Swedish entry, Paris 1978: 14th place (26 pts)
If you ever see the final entry in the 1978 contest again, you will notice Bjorn Skifs looks troubled as he sits at the piano keyboard.

Rumour has it he is deciding whether to sing in Swedish (which he doesn't want to do) and remain eligible for points, or sing in English (which he wants to do) and be instantly disqualified.

The song is that forgettable it doesn't really matter - although it is one of the 10 longest titles for a Eurovision song ever.

However, what really should have been worrying Bjorn is why he chose to wear pants which were that tight around the crotch when he planned to strut about the stage halfway through the song.

It was a good thing Auntie had left the room to get the interval cups of tea ready.
Note: Bjorn Skifs has a wife called Agnetha and they are always down the pub with their mates Benny and Frida Jønes.

DIE WELT DREHT SICH VERKHERT (song) Austrian entry, Dublin 1995: 13th place (67 pts)
This one was a cracker.

Chucking every known Euro-cliche out the window, Stella Jones got her band on stage (although one of them foed look like a pre-operative transexual) in Dublin in 1995 and belted out a soulful, jazzy number which got the place hopping.

It finished 13th, some way behind the predictable Swedish ballad and a long way behind the Norwegian winner which had no words. Still, we can only hope Jan Johansen got clouted with that sax during the after-show party.

DIESE WELT (song) German entry, Dublin 1971: 3rd place (100 pts)
Katja Ebstein did so well at the 1970 Eurovision (she came third), German telly let her sing every song in the 1971 final to make sure she represented them again the next year.

The song Diese Welt was selected for Dublin, which she duly performed in front of the now infamous airiel view of a condom in a white suit, red hair, and big teeth - and came third again, just two points ahead of Clodagh Rodgers.

She didn't go back the next year, but Germany did come third again. My, how curious.

DIGGI-LOO, DIGGI-LEY (song) Swedish entry, Luzembourg 1984: 1st place (145 pts)
The 1984 winner was performed by the Swedish brotherly trio 'The Herreys', who very kindly wore different coloured shirts on stage so that they could tell each other apart during the performance.

The lyrics are highly political, referring to the struggles of eminent Swedes Douglas (Dougie) Looe and Douglas (Dougie) Laes' attempts to introduce over-the-top choreography to indifferent Norwegians.

This was the last time in the twentieth century that the first song on stage won the contest, as the glare from their golden boots (see TERRY) dazzled and confused the juries for the remaining 18 songs, leaving just one song in their collective memories to vote for.

Once the post-win hoo-hah had died down, the Herreys got a bit bored, so tried desperately to convince American TV producers that they were the missing Scandinavian link between The Brady Bunch and The Partridge Family.

DIMA (singer) Russian entry, Athens 2006: 2nd place (248 pts)
Russia is often portrayed as a freezing tundra, so kudos to Dima Bilan for being the only Russian to venture outside in his vest.

Dima was almost prima in Athens, finishing second to a delicate ballad from eventual winners Finland. His song Never Let You Go shares a title with the Greek entry of three years previous, and refers to his days as a shepherding tutor in a perilous mountain village.

The female sheep were far too adventurous and would often wander too close to the cliff edge. If they slipped, Dima had trained his crack team to grab the creatures by the hooves and hold on to them for dear life. If ever they forgot this advice, he would sing his eventual 2006 runner-up to them as a poignant reminder.

DIME (song) Spanish entry, Riga 2003: =8th place (81 pts)
Taking a love for chocolate-coated impossibly crunchy sweet stuff to new levels, Operacion Trampolino's student of the year decided to combine with this passion with a tribute to Gaudi's pointiest architecture.

Beth, who knows how to fill a white trouser suit, decided to show off her toned tum-tum when singing the 2003 Spanish entry, which she had tanned to exactly the same colour as the innards of a Dime bar as a cunning vote-grabber, which almost worked.

The increasingly ironic title of the Spanish quest to plonk a singer in front of 100million-plus televoters has not been lost on Beth, who has since teamed up with her 2002 counterpart Rosa to launch the rival Operacion About Seventh or Eighth-O.

DING-DINGE-DONG (song) Dutch entry, Stockholm 1975: 1st place (152 pts)
Campanology sounds like the study of Dale Winton, but it's actually the art of bell-ringing- celebrated in 1975's Continental Tune of the Year by the Dutch group Teach-In.

The group's male members all resembled the bald bloke with the beard off FingerBobs, and Getty (the lead singer) was an early prototype for Zoe Ball.

The group split due to lyrics such as 'Dinge-Dong listen to it, maybe it's a big hit,' stirring deep philisophical reasonings in their collective consciousness, causing them to miss important gigs because they were at home reading Jean-Paul Sartre instead.

DIS OUI (song) Belgian entry, Birmingham 1998: 6th place (122 pts)
Those folk at Belgium telly are worryingly keen on sending extremely young girls to the contest with a song that's in with a shout to a city that begins with 'B'. It worked in 1986 (see J'AIME LE VIE), and looked to be doing the same for them in 1998.

It is interesting to note that there was a one-song Finnish gap between Melanie Cohl and Lars A Frederiksen's performances in Birmingham. It is not for us to suggest what occured in the wings during Aava, but there has to be some reason why the Norwegian's jumper was untucked from his keks and his hair was all messed up come Song 22.

Sadly, Melanie didn't take the prize at the end of the voting, but she has since developed an unhealthy interest in fjords, raw fish and the Aurora Borealis.

DISCO TANGO (song) Danish entry, Jerusalem 1979: 6th place (76 pts)
Don't judge a song by its title.


It's 1979, it's a song from Scandinavia, the word 'disco' is in the title. Yes, we're surely in for a prime slab of ESC Cheese, with lashings of froth thrown in for good measure.

If only. It's actually a very dreary little piano-based number with a few bars of the real tango thrown in at the end of each verse (surely that's plagarism?). Apparently, attendances at Danish discotheques dropped considerably from April 1st 1979.


DIVINE (song) French entry, Belgrade 2008: 19th place (47 pts)
Absolutely sublime.

One of the greatest Eurovision songs of the 21st Century, Sebastian Tellier was cruelly denied a decent place in the final shake-up. If only he'd tried to navigate that buggy across a really small ice rink.

Divine has managed that rare feat of being a Eurovision song which sounds perfectly at home on commercial radio and has even been spun on the decks of DJs who consider themselves rather cool.

Nobody knows what happened to Sebastian's wee car at the end of his performance in Belgrade, but in a completely unrelated matter, Svante Stockselius is now finding it a lot easier to get round the golf course.

DO I DREAM? (song) Irish entry, Luxembourg 1973: =10th place (80 pts)
"Well of course you bloody do!" is the obvious response to this question, but on 7 April 1973 the answer was more likely to be "When's Cliff Richard on?"

Conspicuously wearing the type of dress she lends her name to, Maxi half-heartedly delivered this to the lugholes on behalf of Ireland. The reason behind her rather poor rendition was that she'd threatened to decamp back to Dublin during rehearsals after a row about the song.

You'd think she'd have realised before the national final that it was, umm, a bit cruddy, wouldn't you?

DOLE QUE LA QUIERO (song) Spanish entry, Copenhagen 2001: 6th place (76 pts)
It only took them two years, but Spain's Euro-pickers finally realised that all this latin stuff doing well in the charts could earn its homeland a respectable position at the Big Song Contest.

Not only that, but they thought it a great idea to stand alongside the uber-tanned midget in leather pants who punched it out for them a pair of trainee air hostesses who'd just paid a visit to Copenhagen's only drive-thru labotomy clinic.

Sixth then, eh? It's like Lydia never happened - but she is finally putting that dress to good use, as if she spins around fast enough, it may produce the right effect to bring the aforementioned air hostesses out of their respective trances.

DON'T EVER CRY (song) Croatian entry, Millstreet 1993: 15th place (31 pts)
Giving Europe a taste of what was to come from the former Yugoslav states was the debut entry from Croatia (under that name, anyway) in 1993.

And very nice it was too, lots of harmonising, twirling about for the girls (not to mention absolutely no twirling about for the boys) and tributes to the Croatian sky in what is presumably a plea for it to stop raining.

One can only imagine it was the thought of staging the 1994 contest in a country still not entirely at peace which stopped a barrage of points flooding in for this audience-pleasing anthem, especially when you consider how the likes of Mama Corsica and Moi, Tout Simplement finished in that year's top five.

Put, the group who performed on behalf of the Croats, were not to be down-hearted. On their return to Zagreb, they got together with another vocal harmony group called Pitch and opened a miniature golf course.

DORIS (website inspirer)
Yugoslav entry, Bergen 1986: 11th place (49 pts), Croatian entry, Jerusalem 1999: 4th place (118/79 pts)

"Surf's up, Nemo," as Eastern Europe's answer to Frances Ruffelle sang on the Jerusalem stage. Doris has the enviable knack (envied, that is, by Conny van den Bos) of looking better on her second ESC appearance than her first.

Poor Ms Dragovic had 1/3 of her points taken away from her when the Diva-esque Maria Magdalena proved to have rule-bending voice samples (which were actually bearded Croatian gentlemen singing 'aah, aah, aah, aah, aah, aaaaaaaah' down hosepipes into a microphone) on its backing track.

This prevented her from returning in 2000 with another song about a biblical character which sounded like the previous year's winner: Pontius Pilate (sample lyrics: 'Pontius, Pontius Pilate/don't denounce the King...') based on the melody of Take Me To Your Heaven.

This was in case she only scored 1 point, thus having it reduced to 0.6666666666666 (recurring) by the EBU. Croatia sent Goran Karan and a woman who was trying to escape from a bin liner instead. Whoops...

DREAM EXPRESS (group) Belgian entry, London 1977: 7th place (69 pts)
Nine years before Sandra Kim, the Belgians would try anything. They got the man who'd conducted the previous year's winner (Alyn Ainsworth), a similar line-up to the three previous winners (a girl-boy combo) and a dance routine that could easily be copied by people standing in a row on the dancefloor at a wedding (where did they get that idea from?) for a simple up-tempo song which annoyingly lingers in the memory. They also wore gold shoes, but they were seven years too early there. Drawn second-to-last, and hot favourites before the event, surely the crown was Belgium's for the taking in 1977?

Nah. The juries in '77 were all Professors in Advanced Maths. When they heard that this group wanted to make A Million in One, Two, Three they stroked their collective beards, shook their heads at the impossibility of it all, and picked the song that followed it for spite.

DSCHINGIS KHAN (song) German entry, Jerusalem 1979: 4th place (86 pts)
Hoo! Hah! A Yul Brynner look-a-like and some of his mates have escaped from an out-of-season Munich panto and are heading for the Holy Land.

Yes, that's a pop group from Germany taking a song about a tyrannical dictator to a country whose population is largely Jewish.

You can draw your own parallells, but believe it or not, Israel gave them 6 points. Three years later, the same songwriting team won for Germany with a song called A Little Peace. Make your mind up, fellas.

DU BIST (song) Austrian entry, Istanbul 2004: 21st place (9 pts)
The Austrian entry in 200... two thousand and... two thou.

Oh, wake me up when it's over. Zzzzzzzzzzzz.

DUO DATZ (duo called Datz) Israeli entry, Rome 1991: 3rd place (139 pts)
OK, so they finished third, and a more fortuitous decision from the Italian jury could have seen the '92 contest in Jerusalem, but that still leaves the fact there is nothing particularly special about the identikit Israeli song Kaan, performed by the aforementioned Duo Datz, the male half of which looks so much like Keith Harris, it's a wonder he didn't bring his fluffy green Izhar Cohen puppet onstage with him.

The strange thing is, Kaan actually is an identikit Israeli song, ordered through the K-Dam catalogue. When the Duo had it delivered, despite following all the instructions very carefully, they still had quite a few bits left in the box, but just couldn't work out what else to do with them.

Ironically for the duo, it transpired the remaining objects were a large knife with which to emasculate Moshe, and a black, rainbow feathered Jean-Paul Gaultier frock for Lady Datz to wear during the performance.

When they left the packaging by the bin for the dustmen, little did they know a confused teenager called Yaron Cohen would come by for a sly rummage through the rubbish, thus setting a particularly contest-defining ball in motion.

DZULI (song) Yugoslav entry, Munich 1983: 4th place (125 pts)
How exciting! They'd only been entering since 1961, but in 1983 it finally seemed Yugoslavia had taken all the right notes and come up with the song to scoop the European Singing Trophy.

They followed the past rules of some winners (unbelievably boppy, bit daft, very catchy, backed by a pair of women who look simple) and took their own route for other elements (calling it after a girl's name - Julie - and adding an accordian introduction).

Daniel, for it was he who did travel to Munich and sing this for the children of Yugoslavia, gave a sterling performance and a domestic hit was assured, but in the end he had to settle for fourth place, just 19 points behind the winner.

He wasn't disheartened, but often kicked himself later on for not performing the song dressed entirely in denim and altering part of the lyrics to read: "Woah, woah Dzuli, if you love me truly..."

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