The Eurovision Song Contest, an international singing competition involving entries from most European countries as well as Australia and viewed by hundreds of millions around the world every May, attracts high viewership numbers for a variety of reasons. One of them is that people enjoying seeing countries put forth music that shows off their cultures.
However, this has changed over the years as many have started sending English-language songs in attempts to connect with a wider audience and increase how many points they receive and how high they can reach on the final scoreboard. But, despite this, just three of them have only submitted English songs.
The United Kingdom would be an obvious guess, and it would be an accurate one. The U.K. entered the second edition in 1957 with the English-language song, “All,” and, with the exception of 1958, has been at every show since with all of those songs being performed in its native language.
How about Ireland? Actually, no. Its 1972 entry, “Ceol an Ghrá,” is an Irish-language song. Except for 1983 and 2002, Ireland has been at every Eurovision since 1965, and all of its other entries have been sung in English.
Australia? Yes, the Aussies, who were invited to Eurovision for the first time in 2015, have only sent English-language entries in their short Eurovision history.
Who else? Well, a few countries have had at least some English lyrics in every song that they’ve sent, but only one more can say that its Eurovision history has been English-only.
The perhaps surprising answer is Azerbaijan. This country, which, outside of Australia, is the easternmost one eligible to participate in Eurovision and is home to relatively few English speakers, is one of three to have only entered English songs, which it has done since its debut appearance in 2008. Interestingly, despite this, Azerbaijani has been sung at Eurovision. Bulgaria’s 2012 entry, “Love Unlimited,” has three words in that language.