Wenn Du Da Bist (When You Are There) is the second (see No. 420) of seven entries from 1981 in our chart. The song was the opening number of that year’s contest in Dublin and was performed by Marty (Martin) Brem who, as a member of Austrian five-piece Blue Danube, had also kicked off the previous year’s Eurovision in the Hague with Du Bist Musik.
1981 was particularly notable for the number of returnees – more than a third of the entries featured artists who’d graced the Eurovision stage before. After Brem (in order of appearance) came Jean-Claude Pascal for Luxembourg; he’d lifted the trophy for the Duchy exactly 20 years earlier with Nous Les Amoureux (one of 15 winning songs not to feature in our countdown) but in 1981 could only manage joint 11th place, tied with Tommy Seebach and Debbie Cameron for Denmark. Seebach was a Eurovision trouper – he had finished 6th with Disco Tango in 1979 and would go on to represent Denmark again in 1993.
Irish female trio Sheeba were on home turf in Dublin and finished 5th with Horoscopes. One of their number, Maxi (McKenzie McCoubrey), had previously represented Ireland in 1973 with Do I Dream. Crossing the Irish Sea to Britain and 1981’s winners Bucks Fizz included Cheryl Baker, formerly of Co-Co, UK entrants in 1978 with The Bad Old Days.
Switzerland’s Eurovision perennials Peter, Sue and Marc were appearing at Eurovision for a fourth time, and in 1981 achieved their best-ever showing with Io Senza Te which finished 4th. We’ll be hearing a lot more from Peter, Sue and Marc over the coming months. Finally, Björn Skifs of Sweden – like Cheryl Baker he’d also been present at the 1978 contest, and like Marty Brem, he performed in the same position in the running order twice, though rather than taking the stage first as Brem did, Skifs closed the show both times. And unlike Peter, Sue and Marc, that’s it for Björn Skifs in the countdown – both his entries fell short of the Top 500.
Wenn Du Da Bist failed to replicate the success of Du Bist Musik. Blue Danube had finished inside the Top 10 the year before, whereas the solo Brem could only manage 17th. After Eurovision he continued in the music industry, spending much of the 1990s in London working as VP of International Marketing for Sony Music.