March 7, 2011

Eurovision Song Contest 2011 - The fight is joy, Portuguese say

Homens da luta is a Portuguese comedy and musical street show group. Vasco Duarte (Falâncio) and Jel (Neto) are the creative team. Their songs are a parody of the songs sung during and after the 1974 Revolução dos Cravos (Carnation Revolution) democratic revolution. The characters played are caricatures of the revolutionary singers and Portuguese people of that time. Homens da Luta can translate to The fighting men. They won the 47th edition of the Festival da Canção that took place at the Teatro Camões in Lisbon. After the shared votes by an expert-regional jury and people phone voting on a 50/50 basis, Homens da Luta will represent Portugal at the 2011 Eurovision Song Contest in Dusseldorf.

Endless debate started all over the internet after Homens da Luta victory. Some Portuguese just feel ashamed and find it pretty disgusting. Other say they are proud to be represented by A Luta é alegria. Some say that this song is not a winning song but is one aimed to stir consciences. Some say it expresses the true feeling of the people. Some say that are tired of commercial songs and that this one is fresh. Some say that Anglo-Saxons do pop song better and that we should explore other ways. Some say that Eurovision Song Festival is not about good songs at all. Some say that no matter what kind of song Portugal gets to Eurovision it always ends  last. I do not like the song. I am not sure how to qualify it, if  a satire or a joke. I do like folk and popular music. Eurovision Song Contest is not an intervention Festival. Even if it was I still find the music very weak. In fact I did not like any of the songs presented to competition this year. Maybe I'm just too demanding?


In the past this song contest was a prestigious te
levision event but Portuguese viewers got disinterested year after year. At least Homens da Luta song has put everybody talking about it, there’s a lot of controversial buzz going on. On stage you get a parody of the Portuguese revolutionary period from 37 years ago. As nowadays Portugal is undergoing a period of disputes the song pleased easily. Unemployment is rising, young qualified people can’t get jobs, dismissed people can’t re-enter labor market. Justice has become inoperative; corruption took over many sectors of Portuguese society. Going abroad again in search for better living conditions has become a solution for many Portuguese. People feel disenchanted all the way. Social rights are being cut off due to severe measures to keep up with European boat. For older people this was not what they expected from Carnation Revolution; for younger people this was not what they expected from joining the dream of Europe. We all blame it on Government misguidance and wrong politics that seems to have favored the capital and ruined middle-class. Some say that this song got votes only due to the current national (and European) context. All over people are standing up against Government policies. But what are Homens da Luta singing about? The lyrics and video next:


The fight is joy

Sometimes you find yourself discouraged
Sometimes you find yourself distrusting
Sometimes you find yourself startled
Sometimes you find yourself despaired

Night or day
The fight is joy
And people’s progress is on the street screaming!

It is pointless to tight the belt
It is pointless to whine around
It is pointless to be always frown
It is pointless to have anger as your helper

Night or day
The fight is joy
And people’s progress is on the street screaming!

Bring the bread, get the cheese, bring the wine
Come on old man, come on young man, come on boy

Come celebrate this situation
And we will sing against reaction!

Bring the bread, get the cheese, bring the wine
Come on old man, come on young man, come on boy

Many warn you to go carefully
Many wish to tell you to shut up
Many leave you distrustful
Many will sell you the very own air

Night or day
The fight is joy
And people’s progress is on the street screaming!

Bring the bread, get the cheese, bring the wine
Come on old man, come on young man, come on boy

Come celebrate this situation
And we will sing against reaction!


Bring the bread, get the cheese, bring the wine
Come on old man, come young man, come on boy




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