We know a lot about Eurovision and we want to share this knowledge with you! Therefore we’d like to bring you a blast from the past. Today: Valentina Monetta, who participated four times for San Marino. The song we take a closer look at is her first one: The Social Network Song (Oh oh – uh – Oh oh).
San Marino in the Eurovision Song Contest
In 2008, San Marino debuted at the Eurovision Song Contest. However, the band Miodio did not reach the final. Fans had to wait until 2011, when Senhit (Senit back then) took part for the first time. Valentina Monetta did no less than four attempts. She, Senhit and Serhat were the three contestants for San Marino who managed to reach the final. Okay, and Flo Rida of course, who featured in Senhit’s song “Adrenalina”. With a 19th place, it was Serhat who had the best score for San Marino with his song “Say na na na”.
On 14 March 2012, during a press conference by SMRTV (San Marino Radio & Television) it was revealed that they had chosen Valentina Monetta as San Marino’s representative for the Eurovision Song Contest 2012. The decision came about after an SMRTV director stumbled upon Monetta’s performance one evening.
A dedicated program, aired on 16 March 2012, was organized at the SMRTV studio to unveil Monetta’s contest song. The song titled “Facebook Uh, Oh, Oh”, composed by Ralph Siegel and penned by Jose Santana Rodriguez and Timothy Touchton, was introduced as San Marino’s Eurovision entry. Notably, Siegel, having crafted 20 Eurovision songs for different nations, clarified that “Facebook Uh, Oh, Oh” was crafted for the contest, but not specifically for Monetta.
Facebook is a brand, uh, oh, oh
Already two days after the presentation of the song, EBU told SMRTV that the song was breaking one of the Eurovision rules: mentioning brands in a song is not allowed. And Facebook is a brand. The lyrics had to be changed, and the song was now called “The Social Network Song (Oh oh – uh – Oh oh)”. Valentina was not the first one who faced this. That honour goes to Lotta Engberg who sang “Fyra Bug och en Coca-Cola”. Bugg was a Norwegian chewing gum brand and Coca-Cola is…. well, is Coca-Cola. Two years later, Belarusian Teo had to change the lyrics of his song. “Google Maps” became “All the maps”.
Valentina Monetta, born on March 1, 1975, in the picturesque microstate of San Marino, is an iconic name in the Eurovision Song Contest universe. With a passion for music evident from her youth, Valentina’s journey to becoming San Marino’s most recognized Eurovision participant is a testament to her talent and determination.
Starting her career in various jazz bands, Monetta’s versatile voice allowed her to experiment with different genres, including pop, jazz, and R&B. While she was making waves in the local music scene, it was her association with the Eurovision Song Contest that catapulted her to international fame.
In 2012, SMRTV, San Marino’s national broadcaster, announced that Valentina would represent the country at the Eurovision Song Contest. She did not reach the final. However, this did not deter Valentina, and she returned to represent San Marino in 2013, 2014, and 2017.
Out of these participations, her 2014 entry, “Maybe,” holds a special place, as it secured San Marino’s first-ever spot in the Eurovision Grand Final. Beyond Eurovision, Valentina released several singles and albums, further establishing her prowess in the music industry.
Monetta’s relationship with Ralph Siegel, the renowned composer, further enriched her Eurovision experience. Siegel crafted multiple Eurovision entries for her, showcasing her versatility and range as a singer.
Over the years, Valentina Monetta has become synonymous with San Marino’s Eurovision history.
The Social Network Song (Oh oh – Uh – Oh oh)
Ralph Siegel, a veteran Eurovision composer, crafted the music of the song, while lyrics were penned by Jose Santana Rodriguez and Timothy Touchton.
The song’s lyrics delve into the digital age’s social media obsession, particularly highlighting the universal appeal and reach of platforms like Facebook. It’s a catchy, upbeat pop track with playful lyrics about online friendships, profile pictures, and virtual life.
While it received a mix of amusement and skepticism from Eurovision fans and did not qualify for the final, “The Social Network Song” nonetheless holds a distinctive spot in Eurovision history for its timely subject matter during the rise of social media.