In 1998, Dana International with the track Diva managed to achieve a third victory for Israel since their debut participation and it has been the first in around thirteen years. Unfortunately, since then the top ten results for the nation have really been cut down to just three out of fourteen participation whilst also staying within the semi-final on the past two occasions. IBA, the Israeli broadcaster is reinventing their selection procedure with the hope of success in the very near future preferably as they take up the challenge within the 2013 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest which is taking place in Sweden. Their most recent representatives, Izabo with the song Time were well criticised for having been picked over Maya Buskila.
IBA have carefully taken up the idea used in Norway for the Melodi Grand Prix, adapting it into their own brand new system of Kdam noting that there will be thirty (30) semi-finalists which will be performing in three (3) semifinals at the end of February with three (3) entries from each managing to make it through to the final and two from each semi-final head to a second chance round set to take place on the 3rd March . In the second chance, the six (6) songs will be split up into three duels, with the winning entry of each duel reaching a second round of voting where one (1) will ultimately make it to the final stage. Ten (10) acts will be competing against each other on the 7th March to represent Israel in the 2013 Eurovision Song Contest. The result will be carefully decided between a 70% Public Vote, and a 30% Jury Vote. Since the introduction of the semi-finals, they managed to qualify on five occasions. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all of the latest news as soon as it becomes available.
The beginning of the year is set to be quite a marquee time due to the fact that the 2013 edition of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest will be moving to a slightly earlier date due to other current affairs in the country and therefore, preparations are underway as the Public Broadcasting Services continues their search for the next representative and entry at the esteemed music event with a history which dates back to 1956. The submissions for the competition were received at the main broadcasting house on Tuesday and Wednesday and we have been in touch with a number of performers exclusively confirming their respective entry. Members of the editorial team at escflashmalta.com were also present keeping an eye on the individuals going in to try their luck. We are officially in a position to confirm that one of the artists who is giving it a miss from a lead vocalist point of view is none other than singer/songwriter Wayne Micallef.
Many people have somewhat become accustomed to the performances that Wayne Micallef has brought to the competition noting that he has managed to qualify to the finals every year since 2009 as a soloist with all of his tracks being very well appreciated by the international community. In fact, his placings have been relatively positive including a seventh place finish with Where You Belong in 2009, a sixth place result with Save a Life in 2010, an eighth place finish with Everybody Sing in 2011, and last but not least twelfth in 2012 with his track Time. One could easily note that he has managed three top ten finishes in a time where the staggering amount of performers coming into the competition fray was astonishing. Our source has also informed us that despite not entering as a performer, Wayne has submitted some tracks as a songwriter and therefore, he still manages to be around in some way or another. Unfortunately, it will not be the same feeling but nevertheless, his sound will definitely be evident if any of the tracks do manage to make it through. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all of the latest news about the 2013 Malta Eurovision Song Contest.
Source: escflashmalta.com, Chrissy Photography
Israel have quite an interesting history in the Eurovision Song Contest noting that they are known for bringing about innovative ideas to the competition having been the first ever country to host a female conductor way back in the edition of 1974, when Ilanit performed the track Ey Sham which ended up finishing in fourth place. Nevertheless, in recent years it seems that success has not been on the agenda for the nation especially following the fact that they have not made the final since the beautiful ballad Milim was performed by Harel Skaat way back in 2010. They decided to select their entry internally earlier this year but nevertheless, it was not well received so to speak with Izabo and their entry Time finishing in thirteenth place in the semi-final. Thus, following two disappointments in a row, the Israeli broadcaster, IBA will be hosting a high profile national final.
Next years' national final procedure will be very much the same as the Norsk Melodi Grand Prix thus comprising of around thirty artists split up in three semi-finals, ten in each one with the top three of each round making it through to the final phase of the selection. From all of the entries that fail to make through automatically, there will be yet another competition, with the public selection another one making it ten entries in the final in total. It is to be noted though that Norway has not been successful in the past two years as well despite the fact that they were favourites in 2011 with Stella Mwangi and Haba Haba and also Tooji and his track Stay in 2012. This will be quite an interesting process actually especially for a country like Israel whose best attempts at national finals came through the typical Kdam process which was only a grand gala night. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com as we follow this brand new selection process.
Some of us believe that Eurovision is the main stage of a singers’ success in his career. However, one must believe that where there’s a will there’s a way and although, Eurovision opens a lot of doors to young promising artists, it is not the only road to success. Opportunities, come our way in many different forms and we must have our eyes wide opened to catch them before they are lost. Wayne Micallef is one of those singers whose ambition is to have success with his music in whatever life leads him into and most importantly for people to enjoy his music.
Micallef is a well-known artist in the local music scene with many of his songs finishing in the top local charts. Some of the singles released by the artist in the past years are ‘Breaking Down’, ‘Slip Away’, ‘Save a Life’ and ‘The Parade’. He is also one of the popular singers/songwriters in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest with some of the past records being ‘Save a Life’, ‘Everybody Sing’ and the last one being ‘Time’.
Following his performance in the final of this year’s festival, Wayne has teamed up with Brandon Mueller to release a music video for his self penned track ‘Time’. The two talented people has shot the video in Wisconsin in the Fox Valley, USA. One must say that the music video continues to complement the beauty of the song which was very well liked by the fans of the festival. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all of the latest news from the local music scene.
Source: Wayne Micallef Official Facebook
Nine reviews have now been published and therefore, we move onto the tenth one in accordance with the draw for the running order in order to give the readers a better analysis to how the songs styles will be heard about after each other. In the first semi-final one could easily note that there are not too many issues because most of the songs manage to stand up on their own and reach the best possible result. The next country, is Israel, a debatable nation on whether it is actually European such as Azerbaijan due to the ties with another continent. Nevertheless, they have presented great songs over the years and this time round they have chosen a very interesting track entitled Time written by Ran Shem-Tov & Shiri Hadar who are part of the performing group known as Izabo.
Izabo are best described as a brilliant, action packed combination of Psychadelic Rock, Disco, Punk flavoured with Arabic spices. They secured a spot as one of Israel’s most successful alternative pop bands with the 2003 release of their debut album The Fun Makers. From there Izabo went on to sign with Sony BMG, and in the same year released “The Morning Hero EP” in the UK and began to take their funky sounds to an international audience. In January of 2005 The Fun Makers was released in the Benelux countries via the label Rough Trade NL, and in 2006 it was released in France via Roymusic/ Discograph.
Since 2006, Izabo have been busy touring Europe constantly and showcasing their catchy disco beats at a variety of festivals including Trans Musicales, The Paleo Festival, and Eurosonic. Their second album Superlight was released in Israel and France in 2008 with Roymusic/ Discograph to rave reviews. In October 2011 Izabo signed with the English Label 100% Records, who signed artists among Gossip, Moby and Placebo. Izabo’s first three Track EP has been released in the United Kingdom this July, with their brand new album due to be released by the end of the year, in the UK, Europe & Israel.
The Critics Voice Their Opinion
Jan Van Dijck
- This song brings me back to the Motown Sound. The song itself has a melody line that reminds to one of ABBA’s less known songs “Nina, Pretty Ballarina” included in ABBA’s first album. But the song is catchy, funny and the band members of Izabo are enjoying. Will Europe enjoy it? I did and I give it seven (7) points.
- Israel goes in a rather crazy direction this year. But where other crazy efforts fail miserably, like Montenegro, this actually works in its own special way, because there is some musicality in it. And I believe that originality is something that should be credited, so five (5) points they shall receive, although I’m not crazy about the song!
- A rock/pop song with nice strings added to it. The chorus is the best part in there but the melody has a silly ”asian” feel to it. Not enough to make it a good song. We can only give this track three (3) points.
Composers: Ran Shem-Tov & Shiri Hadar
Authors: Ran Shem-Tov & Shiri Hadar
History of the Nation
One can always learn new facts about a country when it comes to the Eurovision Song Contest. Israel is one of the nations who has never finished last in the event. Their first participation came in 1973 with the beautiful track Ey Sham performed by Ilanit which finished in fourth place making it a very respectable debut. This entry did cause some interesting talk because the conductor of the orchestra was a woman, the first ever at the music competition. They would continue to reach positive results year after year and in their first five years of competition, their worst placing was eleventh. Their first victory would come in 1978 with A-Ba-Ni-Bi performed by Izhar Cohen and the Alphabeta but they would reach the top placing once more the following year in 1979 with Hallelujah sung by Gali Atari & Milk and Honey. The results would continue to flourish and another victory would be recorded by Dana International and her track Diva in 1998. Since the qualification system was introduced Israel failed to make it through on three (3) occasions and made it through on another four (4) occasions.