Following the whirlwind of the good, the bad and the Russians; the Eurovision Song Contest has selected the first 10 national candidates to take their microphones at Eurovision 2012 in Baku, Azerbaijan. These finalists include dancing grannies, prancing cellists and Jedward (sorry).
We already know that there are six finalists confirmed for the finals of the Eurovision because the hosts Azerbaijan join the five biggest European contributors to the European Broadcasting Union (France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom) and their Eurovision contributions are already available on Infobarrel.
We also know the 10 finalists who progressed during the first Eurovision Semi Final.
For those that like their Eurovision Song Contest music, the official Eurovision Song Contest UK MP3 Album is available, but for the US some tracks are available individually, or get the Eurovision Song Contest on CD [Import].
Bosnia & Herzegovina
Formerly competing as a part of the Yugoslavia Eurovision entry, Bosnia & Herzegovina have had a reasonable record at the Eurovision Song Contest since debuting in 1993. They are one of the few countries that regularly switches from using the local Bosnian language and English for their songs; roughly half have been offered in each language but it does not have an obvious affect as to whether they do well or not.
MayaSar offers this years performance to the contest and the track Korake ti znam and is her third performance for Eurovision for the country (although her first as the focus) and resides in Sarajevo.
What to expect: High scores from Croatia
Bosnia & Herzegovina
Maya Sar - Korake Ti Znam
Despite being reasonably successful since its début in 1993, Estonia has been a rare attendee at the Eurovision Song Contest final since the introduction of semi-finals 9 years ago. In each case the failure to qualify at the Eurovision semi-finals has been in the lower half of the table but this might change in Beku on Saturday.
Estonia's Eurovision entry comes from Ott Lepland, a soft rock artist who had a number of singles released in the last few years as well as a number of albums further back. To get to Eurovision, he won the Estonian singing Eesti Otsib Superstaari won by previous Eurovision contest winner Tanal Pandar (Eurovision winner from 2001) with a range of tracks from REM, Aerosmith and Robbie Williams among others.
With his repertoire, Ott Lepland could win it for Estonia on Saturday.
What to expect: Granny-Loving Russia scoring Estonia highly.
Ott Lepland - Kuula
F Y R Macedonia
Macedonia have qualified for the Eurovision Song Contest Final for the first time in 5 years. The country has rarely been sucessful in the contest having been in the bottom two in 1998 (their debut), 2000 and 2002 missing the subsequent years. Since the introduction of the semi-finals they did start appearing mid-table in the first 4 Eurovision Song Contests in the new format; but from 2008 onwards have failed to make the finals.
This years entry is from an all-round musical artist with experience in pop and jazz as well as classical music. Kaliopi Bukle has been on the music scene since the late 1970s touring with choirs as a child artist and then as a classical singer, before appearing as a member of the group Kaliopi. She has appeared as the entry for Eurovision 1996 but failed to qualify through the pre-qualifying round, appeared in the Macedonian Eurovision selection contests in 2002 and 2005; but now is a finalist in the Eurovision Song Contest 2012.
The Macedonian entry is an established artist in her own right which shows in the performance that was submitted to the Eurovision committee (below) and her live performance on Thursday night.
What to expect: Point trading with Bosnia & Herzegovina
F Y R Macedonia
Kaliopi - Crno i Belo
When they have made the finals, the Lithuanian Eurovision Song Contest entry has consistently gained points from viewers here in the UK. A variety of home language, French and English language sings have been offered over the years, but with one exception of 2006 the Lithuanian entry has never made it into the top 10 of the Eurovision finals. Indeed even their appearance on the contest final has been occasional since the introduction of the semi-final shows with no distinction on what language the track is offered in.
This years entry is from Donny Montell and called Love Is Blind. He has tried to enter the contest in the last 4 years with varying success but no victories until now.
What to expect: Despite disputes with Russia in the past, they usually give then lots of points.
Donny Montell - Love is Blind
Aged just 23, Kurt Calleja is one of the youngest singers in this years Eurovision Song Contest and the mainstream pop nature of his song is going to appeal across the European voting Saturday night. All of Calleja's singles in Malta consist of tracks that he has entered into Eurovision selection competitions in the country.
Malta head from the top to the bottom of the table on a regular basis, who knows how well they are received.
What to expect: Points exchanges with the UK and Ireland
Kurt Calleja - This is the Night
Norway have been three time winners of the Eurovision Song Contest - the most recent being 2009 thanks to Alexander Rybak - and regular recipients of the wooden spoon - most recently in 2004.
The majority of the more recent contest have been with English language songs and the same is true in Baku in Eurovision 2012 with Tooji performing Stay. The roots of the song is not traditionally Scandinavian though and the track has an Arabian feel to it; most likely due to Tooji's Iranian family heritage as his family moved to Norway when he was just 1 year old.
Outside of singing, Tooji's background is social care and he works as a Child Protection Consultant.
What to expect: Points trading within the Scandinavian 'bloc'.
Tooji - Stay
Apart from Switzerland (at the first Eurovision Song Contest), Serbia are the only country to win the competition on their début. In 2007 Serbia won the contest with a home language performance from Marija Serifovic and with one exception in 2009, the country have finished in the top half of the finals table. So far, Serbian has always performed at Eurovision in Serbian.
This years entry is sung by Zeljko Joksimovic, who previously sung for Serbia and Montenegro in 2004 before they became independent of each other. This years track is called Nije ljubav stvar and is a pop ballad. Joksimovic is an established rock singer and spent many years producing studio albums on the City Records label and writing for other artists such as Jelena Tomasevic's Eurovision 2005 entry in Kiev.
What to expect: Points trading with Bosnia & Herzegovina