Loving Engelbert Humperdink

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The UK’s Eurovision entry this year is sweet, understated, classy.

Sadly for Engelbert, he got close to the draw of death in the finals – he’s first up.

The UK were drawn first in 1976 – when Brotherhood of Man won with Save All Your Kisses For Me – but this is a long time before phone voting made the effects of the draw so prominent.

Three contests have been won by the song that opened the show, but not since 1984, when the mormon Herreys brothers won for Sweden with Diggy-Loo Diggy-Ley.┬áThe real Draw of Death is singing second – no-one has ever won from that slot.

Anyway six things to know about the man who appears to have been renamed The Hump:

1. Humperdinck was big in Belgium in 1966, with a song called Domage Domage.

2. Bert Kaempfert gave him Strangers In The Night to record, but he lost out to Frank Sinatra re recording it as a single.

3. Pre-empting the Joe Dolce-Ultravox fight by 14 years, the Hump’s Release me kept Strawberry Fields/Penny Lane off the top slot in 1967.

4. Don’t call The Hump a crooner -
“No crooner has the range I have. I can hit notes a bank could not cash. What I am is a contemporary singer, a stylised performer.”

5. Humperdinck got the Honorary Freedom of Leicester in 2009, with Sue Townsend and former professional footballer Alan Birchenall.

6. An anagram of Engelbert Humperdink is
Mr Nut Bleeped Gherkin.


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