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Eurovision 2023: What do the Finnish lyrics to Käärijä’s entry ‘Cha Cha Cha’ mean?

‘Cha Cha Cha’ is an upbeat paean to piña coladas and pints

Annabel Nugent
Monday 15 May 2023 08:59 BST
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BBC interview member of public thinking he’s Finland’s Eurovision entrant

Finnish rapper, singer, and songwriter Käärijä placed second in the 2023 Eurovision Song Contest.

Sporting a fashion-forward bowl cut and a neon green bolero, the experimental artist was one of 26 musical acts who performed in the grand final in Liverpool on Saturday (13 May).

After a tense showdown in the voting stages, which temporarily saw Finland shoot to the top of the leaderboard, it was bookies’ favourite Loreen who ultimately clinched the win a second time for Sweden. Loreen previously triumphed in the 2012 competition with her hit song “Euphoria”.

It is unlikely that viewers will forget Käärijä anytime soon, however, with the Finnish star turning in one of the most memorable moments of the evening – which also featured a royal cameo from Kate Middleton.

Käärijä’s wacky rendition of his song “Cha Cha Cha” – performed with a cohort of dancers dressed in pink – won over fans, earning Finland an extraordinary 376 points in the public vote.

Follow our live blog for all the latest updates on Eurovision 2023

Käärijä – real name Jere Pöyhönen – has been making music since 2014 and gained more fans following the release of his debut album Fantastita in 2020. (Beware of lookalikes; the BBC awkwardly mistook a Eurovision superfan for the Finnish singer.)

His Eurovision entry – titled “Cha Cha Cha” – is characteristic of his genre-defying approach, fusing rap, electronic music, metal and schlager. A celebration of delicious pina coladas and refreshing pints, the track is a surefire party anthem.

Eurovision (Copyright 2023 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

“Cha Cha Cha” was written together with his two friends, multi-platinum-selling producer and songwriter Johannes “Kiro” Naukkarinen, and producer Aleksi Nurmi.

If you’re interested in what the Finnish lyrics mean in English, you can check out both the original lyrics and their English translation (courtesy of the official Eurovision website) below.

“Cha Cha Cha” (English)

This exhausting week and the many long days are behind

There’s only bar and piña colada on my mind

There is some time for a few, the night is still youngish

This icy shell is something I have to demolish

//

Holding on the drinks with both hands tied on them like a

Cha cha cha cha cha cha cha, no

There’s no tomorrow when I grab a pint tightly like a

Cha cha cha cha cha cha cha, no

Wanna mess my head up and to free my mind of fear like a

Cha cha cha cha cha cha cha, no

And I stay on this seat until I have to climb off it like a

//

A couple piña coladas I have devoured

Yet the expression I have on my face is sour, yeah yeah ye ye yeh

There is some time for a few, the night is still youngish

This icy shell is something I have to demolish

The floor is calling me when I’m no longer so frozen

Like a cha cha cha I am approachin’

//

Holding on the drinks with both hands tied on them like a

Cha cha cha cha cha cha cha, no

There’s no tomorrow when I grab a pint tightly like a

Cha cha cha cha cha cha cha, no

Wanna mess my head up and to free my mind of fear like a

Cha cha cha cha cha cha cha, no

And I stay on this seat until I have to climb off it like a whoa

//

I head towards the dance floor

Like a cha cha cha

And this world ain’t making me scared no more

Like a cha cha cha

When Champagne all over myself I pour

//

Cha cha cha

One eye keeps turning crossed too far

And talking is so hard when this different side of me does its part

Cha cha cha

I don’t usually go and drop my guard, not me

But now I am that guy, now I am that guy

I head towards dance floor

Like a cha cha cha

And this world ain’t making me scared no more

Like a cha cha cha

When Champagne all over myself I pour

//

Like a cha cha cha

Cha cha cha cha cha cha cha aa-aah

Like a cha cha cha

Cha cha cha cha cha cha cha

Cha cha cha cha cha cha cha

“Cha Cha Cha” (Finnish)

Rankka viikko ja paljon pitkii päiviä takan,

Mielenkiintona piña colada ja rata,

Ilta on vielä nuori ja aikaa kumota,

Tää jäinen ulkokuori on aika tuhota

//

Pidän kaksin käsin kiinni juomista niinku

Cha cha cha cha cha cha cha, ei

En mieti huomista ku tartun tuopista niinku,

Cha cha cha cha cha cha cha, ei

Haluun olla sekasin ja vapaa huolista niinku

Cha cha cha cha cha cha cha, ei

Ja mä jatkan kunnes en enää pysy tuolissa niinku

//

Muutama piña colada on jo takana,

Silti mul on vielä naamataulu vakava, yeah yeah ye ye yeh

Ilta on vielä nuori ja aikaa kumota,

Tää jäinen ulkokuori on aika tuhota,

Parketti kutsuu mua ku en oo enää lukossa,

Niinku cha cha cha mä oon tulossa

//

Pidän kaksin käsin kiinni juomista niinku,

Cha cha cha cha cha cha cha, ei

En mieti huomista ku tartun tuopista niinku,

Cha cha cha cha cha cha cha, ei

Haluun olla sekasin ja vapaa huolista niinku,

Cha cha cha cha cha cha cha, ei

Ja mä jatkan kunnes en enää pysy tuolissa niinku vou,

//

Nyt lähden tanssimaan niinku cha cha cha cha enkä pelkääkään tätä maailmaa,

Niinku cha cha cha kun mä kaadan päälleni samppanjaa,

//

Cha cha cha toinen silmä jo karsastaa, ja puhe sammaltaa ku tää toinen puoli must vallan saa,

Cha cha cha en oo arkena tää mies laisinkaan, en oo mut tänään oon se mies, tänään oon se mies

//

Nyt lähden tanssimaan niinku cha cha cha, enkä pelkääkään tätä maailmaa,

Niinku cha cha cha, kun mä kaadan päälleni samppanjaa,

Niinku cha cha cha

Cha cha cha cha cha cha cha aa-aah

Niinku cha cha cha

Cha cha cha cha cha cha cha

Cha cha cha cha cha cha cha

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