Ahead of the United Kingdom’s Eurovision national selection this evening, we jumped on the phone with ‘Eurovision: You Decide’ hopefuls Joe and Jake. Find out their favourite Eurovision winners and whether or not they’ve nabbed some advice from will.i.am!
We’re sure you’re all friends but we want to hear some fighting talk. What does your song have that the other five hopefuls simply don’t?
Jake: We personally believe that our song is the most uptempo and energetic song and it’s really going to get people moving and dancing, singing. We really feel like our song is the one to do that over the others.
Is there anything that you can tell us about what to expect from the live performance of the song?
Jake: We’re gonna keep tight lipped on that but it’s going to be very exciting! That’s all I can say for now…
Have you had a chance to catch a glimpse of what anybody else will be doing tonight?
Joe: It’s all under wraps at the moment. Obviously we’ve heard their tracks, we’ve been seeing their socials and how they’ve been working but we’re just focusing on our own performance and making sure that everything’s going to go right for us when it counts.
Apart from the United Kingdom, which other country is your favourite in Europe and why?
Jake: I would have to say Sweden because they just produce so many great winners, and diverse winners, in comparison to everybody else. I mean, ABBA, Loreen, Måns… I favourite performance from Eurovision is ‘Eurphoria’ by Loreen in 2012. It was just a great performance, she sang it amazingly and the performance was just incredible, so I’ll have to go on Sweden with that one.
Joe: Funnily enough, my answer’s Sweden as well! They always really knock it out of the park and put so much effort into it. My favourite personally was Måns last year, I thought the song was great and the performance, and the aspect was awesome as well. I think they’re always contenders for it, and, if we get the chance to go there to Stockholm, that’ll be an absolute pleasure.
Obviously the two of you will be recognised from ‘The Voice’ here in the UK. You were both of different teams within the competition, so what gave you the idea to form this duo?
Jake: Straight away we really hit it off and became very good friends on ‘The Voice’. Even though we were on opposing teams, we still really got on. Once ‘The Voice’ was over for the two of us, we started meeting up a lot more regularly and writing music and gigging, so by the time we announced we were forming the duo, it was just so natural to us, it just felt so writing working together because things just happened so easily. We both have a very similar musical style, we both love the same kind of music and we both just understand each other musically.
Joe: It really helps that we’re close mates with it all. If I mess up, Jake will tell me, and if Jake messes up, I’ll tell him!
So this project isn’t just for Eurovision? It will continue after?
Joe: Yeah, definitely. Eurovision is going to be a great chance for us to just show people what we’re about and it’d be great for us to get the chance to go to Stockholm, but regardless of the result tonight, we’re really going to keep on working just as hard as we would be and we’re going to continue as a duo and make new music.
Joe, your mentor on ‘The Voice’, Rita Ora, entered the UK’s National Selection for Eurovision in 2009. Have you been in contact with her at all to get any advice?
Joe: No, I haven’t spoken to Rita about Eurovision. I think she’s that busy at the moment that it’d be impossible for me to get hold of her. It’d be lovely to catch up to hear what she’d have to say and what advice she could give me because she was brilliant with me on ‘The Voice’ and it’d be great if I got the chance to see what she thought about the whole thing and see what her thoughts are.
And Jake, does will.i.am know anything about this?
Jake: No, I haven’t informed will.i.am about this yet. It’s one of those things, we’ve kept it so hush hush, just down to ourselves and our very close circle so the first time anybody heard about any of this was Monday morning. You never know, it might just reach the power of Rita and Will but nothing’s been said as of yet.
Have you had a chance to check out any of the other countries’ entrants yet? Who do you think could be the UK’s biggest competition this year?
Joe: We’re focusing on ourselves more than anything. With our track and how hard we’ve been working on it and putting everything into it. We really want to go to Stockholm and represent the United Kingdom so we haven’t even thought about competition yet because our competition is tonight so we’re working hard to get past that so that we can hopefully get to Stockholm.
We think that the person we sent to represent us at Eurovision has to be full of knowledge about the contest, so we’ve devised our very own Eurovision Quiz.
Which country won the first ever Eurovision Song Contest?
Jake: What year was it?
It was in 1956.
Yes, are you googling?
Jake: No, I re-watched all of the Eurovision winners. Obviously I wasn’t born in 1956 but I’ve YouTubed all of the winners from every single year, and 1956 was the one that I just had to re-cap…
In which year did the United Kingdom first enter the Eurovision Song Contest?
No, it was 1957.
Could you name the six countries that already confirmed for this year’s final?
Jake: The UK
Joe: Germany… Spain?
Jake: Italy? France? The Netherlands?
The last one’s Sweden, last year’s winner!
Jake: OF COURSE! Oh my God, we were doing so well…
Do you know which country has won the most times?
Joe: Is it Sweden?
Jake: I know The UK used to win quite a lot when we first started but I don’t know if we’ve done it the most… Wait, isn’t it Ireland?
Yep. They’ve won seven times.
Can you remember the name of the duo that represented the UK at last year’s contest?
Both: ELECTRO VELVET!
Finally, what would you like to say to the British public before they vote tonight?
Joe: We’d love to get the chance to represent the UK, it would be such an honour for us because we’re so proud to be part of the UK and we really love it and would love the opportunity, and hopefully change the perspective of the UK’s idea of Eurovision.
Jake: Definitely, we’re really grateful for the support we’ve had so far and we just hope that continues and that everybody really gets behind us and votes for us because we really want to represent the UK in Stockholm.
Joe and Jake will perform ‘You’re Not Alone’ for your votes live on Eurovision: You Decide at 7.30pm GMT on BBC Four.