First the Finnish broadcaster YLE announced a new format for selecting their entry for the Eurovision Song Contest called "Contest For New Music". Then they received a record breaking 540 songs for the competition. Later, a special jury made of 11 music professionals shortlisted to 40 the number of demos which were made public on UMK's official site.
For the last couple of months, all visitors to the website could listen to the 40 songs and click on the "I like" button. This voting was compiled in a chart called "Fanitusbarometri (Fan barometer)", although the ultimate voting decision belong to the expert judges who picked their 12 favourite demos. Final studio versions of these songs have now been produced by the top producers in Finland and will be released next Monday 30th of January.
The top twelve entries as revealed by the presenters Anne Lainto and Joona Kortesmäki during the first program of UMK some minutes ago are (composers in brackets and the number indicates the latest position on the "fan barometer"):
- Aili - Mun Taivas (Jussi Petäjä) #34
- Aura Pineda - Kunpa Vois (Ape Anttila/Sana Mustonen) #31
- Freeman & Uusi Fantasia - Noitanainen (Leo Friman, Kroko-Roc, Street Kobra, Ercola, Mariska) #27
- Iconcrash - We Are The Night (Jaani Peuhu/Rory Winston) #8
- Jari & Taika - Aamuyön Ikuisuus (Jari Mustajärvi) #1
- Kaisa Vala - Habits Of Human Beings (Kaisa Vala) #37
- Kirahvi nimeltä Tuike - Sinisulkien Viimeinen (Mikko Tirri/Visa Kurki) #13
- Leola - Rytmit Rikkoutuu (Kuisma Eskola) #22
- Mica Ikonen - Antaa Mennä (Lauri Hämäläinen/Mica Ikonen) #16
- Pernilla Karlsson - När Jag Blundar (Jonas Karlsson) #18
- Stig - Laululeija (Matti Mikkola & DJPP/Paula Vesala) #15
- Ville Eetvartti - Lasikaupunki (Jyri Sariola/Tero Myllyvirta & Joni Pekkarinen) #17
We can see that some of the contestans were not among the favourites of the "fan barometer" but the runaway winners of that voting, Jari & Taika are in the final list.
The following three demos have now a chance to be saved by the audience as a wildcard on a telephone vote in Finland from today until Thursday noon:
- Jessica Wolff - Better (Janne Hyöty/Paul Oxley/Niklas Rosström) #3
- Martina - Checkmate (Hermanni Kovalainen/Aatu Mällinen/Adam Powers/Lene Dissing) #20
- The Spyro - Teleport My Heart (Hape Haavikko/Olli Pitkänen) #4
In the next four shows, the Fridays of February, the development of the songs and the artists will be followed. Six of them will make it to the Grand Final on the 25th of February 2012 at the Helsiki Ice Hall. With guest stars The Rasmus, Anna Abreu and Paradise Oskar, tickets for the show can be purchased online.
Last year in Düsseldorf Finland was represented by Paradise Oskar who won the Marcel Beçenzon Press Award for his song Da Da Dum after it placed 21st in the Final of the Eurovision Song Contest.