Bill Bailey tried to enter Eurovision but was turned down for being ‘too silly’

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Bill Bailey has revealed he tried to enter the Eurovision Song Contest once before, but was turned down by the BBC for being "too silly".

The Strictly Come Dancing 2020 champion tweeted to say that he wanted to represent the UK at the Eurovision Song Contest after James Newman's disastrous nil points last place effort, and has told Good Morning Britain that James's song was "underwhelming", adding that he had written his own entry previously.

Incredibly, the BBC told Bill that his spoof eco anthem was "too silly" to be considered for the contest, which is known for its bizarre performances and novelty songs.

Bill, 56, told Susanna Reid and Bill Turnbull: "There has to be a bit more drama, a bit more theatre, because that's what this show is about, Eurovision, some of it is totally bonkers. We need to celebrate our Britishness, that's what's been lacking.

"A few years ago I sent in an entry to Eurovision and it was a kind of spoof eco anthem in the style of Dad's Army and the BBC said it's too silly, we can't have that. I thought this taking it seriously, that's not going well either, is it?"

On Saturday, James came last as the only act to get zero points from both the judges and public votes for his song Embers, which prompted Bill to tweet that he would like to become next year's UK entrant.

He got support for his bid from his Strictly partner Oti Mabuse, comedians Billy Bragg and Jack Whitehall, the mayor of London Sadiq Khan, and plenty of fans.

Talking about James's effort, Bill said: "It was a serviceable song, there was nothing wrong with it, but I think we're missing a trick. I think we need to celebrate a bit of eccentricity, the kind of quirkiness and Britishness that doesn't really seem to be coming across.


"It's very well produced and put together but it's a bit underwhelming, a bit bland."

He added that he had given a bit of thought to what would work well at Eurovision and gave a hint at some of the outlandish things he was considering.

Bill said: "There's always something percolating in my mind, a rock song, maybe we have a giant badger, I don't know what it is but we're not taking it seriously enough and taking it too seriously, we've got it the wrong way round.

"We should make it into a huge big celebration that sends it up a bit as well. Maybe some guitars, maybe some cow bells. There's not enough car horns in it I don't think."

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