Jul 22, 2013

252/917 Family four: Härliga sommardag (Sweden 1972)

Warm summer, beautiful landscape and all the rest of the delights of your homeland have been constant subject for songs in the event that, apart from being a contest for songs, is a good opportunity to market your country for tourists and visitors. Sweden used the first two years of the 1970's to sing about lovely winter (in 1971) and summer (1972) of this Scandinavian kingdom. To sing both these well crafted tourism commercials Sweden chose a four member folk group Family four.

Their 1971 entry Vita vidder (to which I will hopefully return in the near future) was a melodic masterpiece by Håkan Elmquist, a song of many dimensions and stages. Perfect performance by the Family four gave this song one of the best results Sweden had ever had in the Eurovision so far.

The Swedish entry from 1972, composed as well by Elmquist, was much simpler and less structured praise of wonderful summer days. Family four did, again, a wonderful stage performance of the song with the girls starting the verse and the boys continuing. The verse is followed by a peppy and almost irritatingly hilarious refrain which is interrupted by a gorgeous middle eight with wonderful harmony singing by the group. Although not as perfect as the 1971 entry, Härliga sommardag manages, once again, be a delightful and very Swedish song to which Family four does justice with a big J. The recorded version is even better.

Unfortunately the juries, consisting of two members from each participating country, were not as thrilled of the Swedish summer as they were of the winter a year earlier. The song placed 13th among 18 participants.

Family four continued its career until 1974. Two of its members, Marie Bergman and Pierre Isacsson continued their careers as solo artists. Bergman would represent Sweden for the third time in 1994, and the same year Isacsson would, tragically, die in the Estonia ferry accident.

My points 4/5.

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