In defense of Tore Petterson

So, last night was Norway’s Melodi Grand Prix Semifinal 2. I think it’s a truth generally acknowledged that there were three really solid songs performing, and one meh entry.

Unfortunately, most of all of you felt that the ‘meh’ entry was Tore Petterson’s big band swingle The Start of Something New:

(I pasted the studio video here because the live performance is good, but the staging doesn’t come close to what I had imagined.)

I’ve heard people criticize this song for many reasons. The worst is that this song is too dated. What – you can accept opera in Eurovision, but you can’t accept a sound style that was current when Eurovision started?

At any rate, I get not liking the song. But I also very much get liking this song, because I do!

And here are the reasons why I like it:
1. It’s unapologetically gay – Tore Petterson is singing a love song to a man, and it’s just a completely normal thing. And despite the overall queerness of Eurovision, the love songs tend to be strictly het in nature. So it’s nice to see something different.

2. Those conga drums! And that piano! And that fake ending! As dated as everyone may find this, it still completely slaps musically. I am on my feet doing a dance every time I hear this song – which is not always common for Eurovision songs.

3. Tore Petterson owns the best collection of blazers in Norway. I want to raid his closet. There are so many! And I bet that he has even more at home. Just think about what we missed by not sending him to Rotterdam!

So yes, I may be the only Tore Petterson stan out there, but I have my reasons! Maybe you should go reevaluate your stock dismissal!

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