People in Europe enjoy watching the Eurovision Song Contest every year that is hosted by a different city in Europe. They get to hear new songs, get to vote for favorites and new singers are always discovered. The contest can now be viewed all over the world.
So it happened when the contest was hosted in Brighton, England on April 6, 1974, that the tiny country of Luxembourg missed out on having a third straight win at the 19th Eurovision Song Contest. It was the year that a new group came on the scene named ABBA and sang “Waterloo”. The Swedish group won and soon became a sensation worldwide. This was the first time that the contest chose an unknown winner.
There was another hopeful that year a wonderful singer who also participated. It was Olivia Newton-John with the song “Long Live Love“. She represented the U.K.
The idea behind the Eurovision Song Contest was to give member countries of the European Broadcasting Union a chance to participate in a live broadcast. The start was in 1956 when the event only lasted one-night with seven participating countries. Now it has become a week-long event with representatives of over 20 countries in Europe, the Middle East, and North Africa. It is also the one most-watched TV events in the world. Unfortunately except for ABBA Eurovision has failed to launch other new artists into international stardom.
The year that ABBA won was the second year in which contest competitors were allowed to perform in any language they wished to. Due to this ABBA’s performance in English became an instant hit with the British public. “Waterloo” became the first of nine U.K. number one hits for the group.