17 February – Now, life is grubby and grey in the streets of Paris

You have to admire the Dutch. In their time, they’ve notched up five Eurovision victories, but never seem to shout from their gable-ended rooftops about it. And they’ve been in the contest since the start, so have a very rich heritage in the show.

With that in in mind, it’s time for a Dutch birthday. Maybe not one you immediately think of when you think of Dutch performers. Today’s birthday boy Bernardus ‘Ben’ Cramer didn’t have a barrel organ, or a native American headdress, or a massive dress containing dancers. But he did have a guy on an accordion and trendy long hair. He probably felt he was unlucky, making the short trip from his native Amsterdam to Luxembourg. That home jury liked him best even though his song was about Paris/Parijs. So what does this tell us? Never perform a song about another country.

Ben is 77 today.

Gefeliciteerd, Ben!

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