August 26, 2019

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Several artists in the local music scene were somewhat preoccupied with their submissions in the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza this past weekend noting that the first elimination phase took place within Media.Link Communications but nevertheless, this is the final week leading up to the Eurovision Song Contest 2012 rehearsals and our reviews are heading towards their ultimate end with the next entry coming from none other than Georgia, one of the most successful countries at the music competition having always been in the final. This time round, they are presenting to Baku, Azerbaijan the singer Anri Jokhadze with the song I'm a Joker composed by Rusudan Chkhaidze and penned by Bibi Kvachadze. The song has been reproduced completely following the national selection making it a decent effort from the country.

Anri Jokhadze is famous as a pop singer in his country. He was born on November 6th, 1980 in Georgia. Anri Jokhadze currently lives and works in Tbilisi, and he is famous and loved by the Georgian audience for his distinctive artistic talent and his powerful voice with a great range of no less than four octaves! This is quite an interesting turn of events for the country noting that Anri will actually be the very first male representative following a number of female artists who have done the country proud most notably knowing that there have been a lot of females named Sopho who have taken to the the renowned music stage. The national selection which Anri managed to conquer and ultimately win was not made up of an astounding quality of entries and it seems that the song which he will be presenting to Europe struck a chord for being quirky and different. 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xXzO8Tdl8EY

The Critics Voice Their Opinion

Magnus Kaxe

  • The most crazy song of the evening. A crossover of between opera, pop, oriental and funk. Does it work? Maybe for the Eurovision viewers but not for me. It’s not a real song, just different music parts put together in a strange music production. Two (2) points are more than enough for this one!

Marion Welter

  • I have to give this guy a standing ovation for being a great actor and a good performer seemingly extremely special but this song is just not cutting any positive edges unfortunately. Once more another disappointment for an Easter country and therefore one (1) point will suffice.

Tobias Larsson

  • Simply the worst song of the year in every possible way. There is no melody, the lyrics are a complete rip-off from another song ("The Joker" by Steve Miller Band) and the performance leaves an awful lot to be required. Nul points. I agree with my colleagues and would like to give this song only one (1) point.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o1kCgD626Go 

Entry Background

 Performer: Anri Jokhadze

Composer: Rusudan Chkhaidze

Author: Bibi Kvachadze

Song: I'm A Joker

Language: English

Broadcaster: GPB 

History of the Nation 

This will be the countries' fifth appearance in the Eurovision Song Contest having entered for the very first time way back in 2007 with Sopho and her track Visionary Dream which finished in twelfth place in the final giving the nation a good start within the competition. In the meantime, their best result thus far was achieved last year and the year before that when Eldrine and their song One More Day as well as another Sopho with the track Shine both finished in a respectable ninth place. It will be interesting to see whether they can go higher this time round. We have to wait and see.

Source: Eurovision.tv for the Biographical Information and all respective media 

Published in Editorials

In this years' Eurovision Sogn Contest, there are a number of stellar names from the Balkan nations such as that of Zeljko Joksimovic who seems to be the most famous and popular to come out on top in the long run. He will be representing Serbia having already done the honours for the former Serbia & Montenegro back in 2004 with the song Lane Moje which reached the runner-up position just behind Ruslana and her Wild Dances. This time round, he is presenting a song entitled Nije Ljubav Stvar and he finds himself as one of the favourites with the bookies, putting him in fifth place.

Zeljko along his accompanying band have just released an official music video in the run up to the competition including Nenad Mahmutovic, the winner of the Serbian version of Got Talent. His creativity is genius because he does songs in sign language and the outcome of the song is just beautiful. The video carries one general message which says Jezici su razliciti, poruke su uvek iste which when translated into English states The languages may differ, but the message remains the same. Serbia will be competing in the second semi-final of the Eurovision Song Contest alongside Malta and Kurt Calleja. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all of the latest news.

Source: RTS

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LnrTDS85rC8

The 2012 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest is taking place in Baku, Azerbaijan and it is quite interesting to note that whilst the preparations are going on at full speed, several countries are finishing off their promotional tours noting the visits of the Turkish and Azeri representatives in the Maltese Islands over the past couple of days. In the meantime, many have been keeping an eye on the way that the polls and the betting odds have been developing and it seems that there have been no changes in recent days or weeks apart from  a switch between the second and third position. The leading country for this years' competition is Sweden who are represented by a track entitled Euphoria which has been described as a mixture between dance and pop and performed by Loreen.

Nevertheless, despite the fact that the Melodifestivalen winner seems to be the favourite even in terms of sales noting that it has charted at number #1 in Sweden and Finland whilst also making the charts in countries such as Norway and Malta, there are another four tracks which together make up the top five and in fact these are L'Amore e Femmina performed by Nina Zilli for Italy, then it would be Buranovskiye Babushki with their song Party for Everybody for Russia. In fourth place comes Serbia with Zeljko Joksimovic and his beautiful ballad Nije Ljubav Stvar and then in fifth place it would be the United Kingdom and their represented Engelbert Humperdinck with the classic entry Love Will Set You Free. Other notable names which have kept high positions in this years' betting odds include none other than Ireland who are represented by Jedward and Waterline as well as Iceland whose Greta Salome and Jonsi will perform the entry Never ForgetKeep a close eye on the songs that will be presented in this years' edition of the Eurovision Song Contest.

Source: Oddschecker 

Each and every year the Eurovision Song Contest is riddled with a number of countries who are touted by betting odds and polls as favourites to finish on top and in the past couple of years, they have been proven correct on more than one occasion and therefore, it is quite important to have a look at what they are saying this time round. The country which leads all of the possible tallies is Sweden who this year will be performing in the eleventh slot within the second semi-final to be held on Thursday night. Their representative is the upcoming artist known as Loreen with the song Euphoria which has been written by Thomas G:son & Peter Boström.

Loreen (28) was raised on the countryside outside Stockholm, in a family of Moroccan-Berber origin. She has a very focused attitude to her music. She gets frustrated when she's tagged as an R&B artist: ”It's almost bizarre. I never listen to R&B or soul music!” She continues: ”The music I get inspiration from is music that gets you into kind of a trance. Both musically and vocal wise. Artists like Björk, some of Enya's music, and especially Lisa Gerrard”. It's fitting that Loreen learned to play the piano by imitating the very minimalistic Michael Nyman score to the 90's film The Piano. Loreen continues: ”I want to make music that really connects to my soul. I think that's when my music affects the most.” She describes herself: ”Somewhat a loner, a seeker that steers away from the information overload of today. I have no TV set. I have a laptop but I only use it for e-mails and music programs".

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jqA_gRMYgA0

She then interrupts herself laughing: ”I'm really “impossible” in this age of living your life in the digital space. The people I work with really hates that I'm not even on Facebook!” Her general aim? ”To unite people in the thought that there is much more to life than the materialistic aspects. I know that it may sound hippieish and overblown. But is that really a reason to give up on this ambition? I'm certain the answer to that is no!” Euphoria, written and produced by Peter Boström and Thomas G:son, is Loreen’s third single release and has already spent three weeks topping the Swedish charts quickly surpassing Platinum status. Neighbouring Norway and Finland were quick to discover this uplifting future anthem and are currently also reporting no.1 positions. Loreen's highly anticipated debut album is scheduled for a September release. The composers have a double job in this year's Eurovision Song Contest as Thomas G:son co-wrote the Spanish entry and Peter Boström the Norwegian one.

The Critics Voice Their Opinion

Brooke Borg

  • I believe that the vocals in this track are amazing although if being picky, I would think she needs to work on her diction. Her falsetto is beautiful and she has very good control on every note she holds and reaches for in her song. The song is a perfect combination of the pop genre with a dance beat and production. It is a very powerful song and i can easily hear it being played in clubs. I like the comibination of the wind, the light and the shadows that these create. Loreen made use of the wind and shadows by letting her hair down and wearing a garment to flow with the song and her dance moves. I think it works as a whole package. I would like to give this entry a good nine (9) points,

Tobias Larsson

  • One of Sweden's best choruses for many years matched with a bold and daring live presentation makes this a strong candidate for victory. I wonder if this one has as wide appeal as most people in Sweden seem to think, but Loreen is nothing short of fantastic. Here come a total of nine (9) points for this entry.

Marion Welter

  • Honestly speaking, I am a little bit confused following the video of this performance because the choreography is very euphoric but nevertheless, I believe that the song is very good and should do well on the night considering that it is a leading favourite. I would like to award her seven (7) points.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4nJcmLMb5to

Entry Background

Performer: Loreen

Composer: Thomas G:son & Peter Boström

Author: Thomas G:son & Peter Boström

Song: Euphoria

Language: Swede

Broadcaster: SVT

History of the Nation

Sweden is surely one of the most successful nations in the Eurovision Song Contest having always been part of the final showcase except on one notable occasion, the fiftieth participation when Anna Bergendahl and her song This Is My Life finishing in eleventh place within the semi-final. Last year they surprised everyone by virtue of finishing in third place but then again, this is a nation which won the contest four times in total including a victory with the world renowned Abba whose song Waterloo remains one of the most popular to this day. This time roudn they will be hoping to continue their success last year and go a step or two further.

Source: Eurovision.tv for the Biographical Information and all respective media 

Published in Editorials

Adrenaline crazed pop double act “Jedward” are sitting pretty as a promotional video for their third album “Young Love” has had an astounding 1.3 million views within its first week of exposure on YouTube. The 40-second preview for the title track has had a positive reaction just weeks before the Dublin born duo take centre stage as Ireland’s representative at the Eurovision Song Contest 2012 in Baku, Azerbaijan.

Both their previous albums, “Victory” and “Planet Jedward”, were popular Europe wide reaching album chart positions in Ireland, United Kingdom, Austria, Germany and Sweden. Their promotional video for Young Love has also charted on YouTube as the Number 1 ‘Most Discussed’ video of this week generating over 55,000 comments. The album which is set for release on June 1st, was recorded in London and Sweden, and features this year’s Irish hopeful for Baku. 

“Our last two albums were real pop teen music but this has songs which are much more meaningful and deep. Our big hope is that we keep all our old fans and we find lots of new ones” said Edward. The entry entitled “Waterline”, composed by Nick Jarl & Sharon Vaughn, has been aired on British Music Channel “Chart Show TV” among the ‘Top 20 Most Tweeted Songs’ last week along with reaching the download charts in Sweden, Latvia and Estonia. There is no doubt that the extravagant pair will give it their all with a combination of unique staging and costume design. Ireland performs in 18th position in the 1st Semi Final which will take place on Tuesday, May 22nd 2012.  

Source: Facebook, Twitter

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xm2PkTCm2X8

Over the past couple of months, one could easily note that we have been in direct contact with a number of performers in this years' Eurovision Song Contest to bring you all of the latest updates prior to the competition itself which will be taking place in the next couple of weeks. The next artist to have found the time to speak to our team is none other than Sabina Babayeva who will be representing the host country of  Azerbaijan and will also be coming over to Malta in the next couple of days in order to promote her entry entitled When the Music Dies which we will be reading about into more detail. Within this interview, she speaks about the choice of the Azeri people in terms of artist and then also the song which was put forth by a panel of professional people.

One of the most interesting points about the Eurovision Song Contest is that it brings about the interest of well known performers along with those who are yet to commence their career in the industry. The possibility of success following the event is very much still existant noting that massive positive accalim that Lena still receives after winning the music showcase back in 2010 with the song 'Satellite'. You come into this competition with a backdrop of interesting performances, but one has to note that you did try to represent Azerbaijan last year eventually finishing in third place though and thus missing out on the ticket. What do you recall of the experience and would you have done anything different today?

I believe that everything happens for a reason. The competition is never easy. Every year lots of talented people try their best to win. And the only thing you can do is to work hard and give it a hundred percent. I think I was ready this year. It is unbelievable how happy I am right now to have this opportunity. I’ve still got a lot of work ahead of me. But I am indeed enjoying it.

Looking back at the history of Azerbaijan at the Eurovision Song Contest, one would see that the relatively new country has made strides of positive acclaim in recent years with their debut back in 2008 with the song ‘Day After Day’ performed by Elnur & Samir holding the record for achieving the worst placing for the nation thus far but then again, it was still an extraordinary start by virtue of finishing in eight place. In the next couple of years, the country would be close to victory with the likes of Aysel & Arash as well as Safura but it was down to the duet between Ell & Nikki with the song ‘Running Scared’ to achieve victory. When you look at such history, does it put a lot of pressure on you personally to follow in their footsteps and achieve another positive result? You see how we climbed our way to the top?

It is because we all come from the Land of Fire. We are all passionate about what we do and we never give up. I feel that I have a huge responsibility on me. And it’s definitely going to be tough to top Ell/Nikki’s success, because I think they both were just perfect together. I’ll be different. Our songs are different. They were romantic. And I will be alone on the stage (of course, together with my performance team). I have absolutely different song and story! Music is my love. I thank God that I’ll be performing in my home city – Baku. So I am sure that the pressure of great results will be compensated with the fact that I perform at my home soil. Anyway for me the most important thing is to give a great performance for the audience.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uVWtTK-LEN4

The song that you will be presenting in the finals of this years' Eurovision Song Contest is entitled 'When the Music Dies' and it is quite different to what has been presented by Azerbaijan in the past though what is intriguing is that you are working with Anders Bagge, Sandra Bjurman, Stefan Örn and Johan Kronlund who have between them also written the songs 'Drip Drop' for Safura in 2010 and 'Running Scared' for Ell & Nikki in 2011. The choice of the song was mostly an internal issue with Ictimai being at the forefront of the decision but then again, did you have a say when it came to the final choice and do you believe that the song itself speaks the message that you would like to send across with your vocals?

I think a lot of people in the world had this struggle to keep their relationships alive. And this song is about that. We are afraid that the music might die with these relationships. But it won’t, because our love doesn’t go away. Our love is like music. It never dies. People might come and go, but the music is going to stay with us. The music is what keeping us alive. It’s an ultimate power to keep going. That’s the message I would like to share. It was written for me and I feel this song with every bit of my heart. 

Following the Azeri victory last year, it was somewhat apparent that Ictimai would be re-launching their artist selection show to make sure that the chosen name represented the best interests of the country through a weekly system of voting. You managed to get through your heat which took place in the seventh week of the proceedings and then also from within the semi-final stage of the competition. During the grand final which only comprised of five performers, you came out on top. Such an event was surely one which you will never forget as it will keep to mind especially when getting the opportunity to represent your country on home soil. There were some exceptional performances which the competing acts gave yet did you believe that you could actually finish at the winner at the end of the final itself and from within the final, what were your thoughts on the Maltese representative?

The whole process of the competition was overwhelming. So the only thing I could do is to stay true to myself and do my best. I had a dream to get to Eurovision Song Contest and I won. It’s an awesome feeling. I think it is great. And I think that Kurt Kalleja is beyond great.  He is so handsome and I would be happy to perform with him on one stage. Our songs are so much different. My song is very sensitive and emotional. And “This is the Night” is very positive and make you want to dance. I love the fact how different they are. So we’ll see how it goes. 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Ycp-rAS1p4

Age normally comes before beauty yet one has to note that you manage to encompass, the best of both worlds as they would say by looking gorgeous and still quite young. Nevertheless, you are not new to the music industry and looking through what you have achieved thus far is quite incredible with a host of international opportunties. There have been a number of competitions which you have fronted throughout the years including ones in Russia and Latvia amongst others. When taking part in such an international forum, what do you believe is one thing that the jury will be on the look out for and do you believe that such experiences help the artist develop better or do they give no general support to the growth of one’s up and coming career?

I think it all depends on the song itself and the fact how the performer delivers it on stage. And Eurovision Song Contest’s history is the best proof to that. It is always surprising and unpredictable. I think there is no formula. You just have to do your best. And your age has no advantage or disadvantage whatsoever.  It’s all about you and your song.  

The preparations for the Eurovision Song Contest commenced quite a hefty amount of time ago yet the interest stars growing at this point in time now that the draw of the running order is held during the Heads of Delegation Meeting which also marks the fact that all of the respective song choices have been presented to the European Broadcasting Union. In the past, the event had been touted to be the one based on the song and despite this status weakening at some points, due to the importance of the visual presentation but it seems that it is gaining such credibility once more. Have you thought about the way that you will be presenting the song to the millions of people watching from all of the world or are certain things still up in the air?

We are working on that right now. So I will not give you any details about my performance so far. The only thing I can say is that you’ll see some sensual material on stage. I feel really connected to that song. 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FgY9EJUH-h8

As just pointed out, the draw for the running order has already been organized and one of the key elements of the Eurovision Song Contest is the placing of where the song is performed due to the fact that it might stand out either on it's own merit or even so benefit from the songs that are performed either before it or after it. When it comes to the finalists, this is only known following the respective semi-finals when the representatives f the countries, draw their own starting positions from a respective pot. You will be performing in thirteenth position in the final, a number which is considered unlucky or lucky. What do you think of the draw and do you think it will have an impact on the result?

I would probably freak out if I were superstitious. But I am not. In fact 13 is my lucky number! I have performed of few festivals under 13 tag and won them! (Smiles) So you never know! It really doesn’t matter if you are number two or twenty two. It’s a song contest. So the only thing that matters here is how you perform. If the audience will like your song you win. It’s that simple.  

Would you like to say anything to your fans and our readers at escflashmalta.com?

I’d like to say thank you to my fans for their love and support. I know that Malta has become  a great friend of Azerbaijan. It means a lot for me. It’ gives me extra strength to do my best. And I’d like to invite all of your readers from Malta to come to Baku for Eurovision 2012. Our city is incredibly beautiful and full of history. The main thing about Azerbaijan an Azeri people is our hospitality. You’ll feel yourself like home. See you soon!

Published in Interviews
Thursday, 03 May 2012 03:28

Croatia: Reviewing the song 'Nebo'

When the running order was drawn there were gasps for the way that two neighbours have been drawn back to back due to the fact that they have extremely similar genres in the entries that they presenting for this years' Eurovision Song Contest taking place in Baku, Azerbaijan. The country which will be performing in the tenth position in the second semi-final is Croatia, who are bringing about some of their best vocal talent to the competition in the form of Nina Badrić who has decided to perform the song Nebo which she both penned and composed the music to actually making her one of the few singer/songwriters in the competition.

 

Nina Badrić is one of the most successful and most awarded Croatian musicians, whose career has successfully lasted for the past 20 years. Accomplishments, rewards and popularity are following this musician beyond Croatian borders, where she’s been dubbed the best and most favourite pop singer from the former Yugoslavian region year in, year out, by both audiences and music professionals.
 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fBQ_K_49Cok
 
In the nineties Nina commenced a solo singing career, heading music charts all over Croatia. She is a multiple winner of the Popularity Oscar, awarded by the professionals and audiences in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro and Serbia. Besides a terrific voice that many compare to those of divas like Angie Stone, Alicia Keys or Mary J. Blige, Nina is characterized by many as one of the most complete musicians today. Her personality, charm, or the so called factor X immediately win people over, and as far as her looks are concerned, many claim that she has been one of the most beautiful Croatian singers for years.
 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r77ChPPrWcI
 
Nina Badrić’s face was recognized as the face of the world campaign for Frederique Constant luxury watches. The campaign with Nina’s trademark face graces billboards all over the world and numerous fashion magazines, such as Vogue, In Style or NY Times. She is known as a person that gladly takes part in many humanitarian activities. Nina Badrić is a singer who has tried her hand with every musical genre, from pop to jazz, leaving her specific mark of recognizable and strong interpretation in each of them. She writes most of her songs, and it is with an original composition that she plans to represent Croatia at the upcoming Eurosong competition.
 
The Critics Voice Their Opinion
 
Magnus Kaxe
 
I love the voice of this singer! She has a nice vibe and great sound. Unfortunately I can’t say the same of the song. I hear a uninteresting song without a chorus. But because of her voice I am giving it a good grade which would be five (5) points.
 
Marion Welter
 
I believe that this is a very much similar track to the one before it and I just cannot relate to the song in itself as I do not find anything that entices me but once more the vocals are spot on and the only mark given on this end is also one (1) unfortunately.
 
Tobias Larsson
 
Another well-crafted song, performed by a local star that will deliver on the big night. I would have hoped for a bit more punch and a hookier chorus, now it lands in the "good-but-not-outstanding" category which would be well translated into seven (7) points.
 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z5_tqyCjFZ8
 
Entry Background

Performer: Nina Badrić

Composer: Nina Badrić

Author: Nina Badrić

Song: Nebo

Language: Croatian

Broadcaster: HRT

History of the Nation 

To this day, Croatia remains one of the most successful countries never to win the Eurovision Song Contest and as they head in for their twentieth participation, they will be hoping to achieve another astonishing result. The nation has not managed to enter the final in the past two years and they will be definitely vying to do so this year when Nina Badric is such a star and brings about so much power to the event even working through a number of commitments whilst in surgery for her voice. Their best result thus far has been a fourth place achieved on two seperate occasions, the first one being in 1996 with Maja Blagdan and Sveta Ljubav and the second one being with Marija Magdalena performed by Doris Dragovic in 1999. It will be quite interesting to see whether it will be Croatia or Slovenia to stand out.

Published in Editorials
Thursday, 03 May 2012 03:09

Slovenia: Reviewing the track 'Verjamem'

The tenth entry on the evening of the second semi-final is actually more of a taste of what was to be expected following the opening of Serbia because it seems that most of the Balkan countries kept to the style and touch and one is somewhat sure that they will most likely all turn out to be successful especially those which have been put in different and opposing sides of the draw. The nation in this case though is Slovenia, a nation that is yet to reach a top five placing at the event but ultimately one which has mediocre results throughout the years. This year they will be represented by the young and charismatic Eva Boto with the song Verjamem composed by Vladimir Graić and Hari Mata Hari with the lyrics penned by Igor Pirkovič.

Eva Boto was born on December 1st, 1995. She lives in the small town of Šentjanž pri Dravogradu which lies in the North Eastern part of Slovenia, 120 kilometres from the capital Ljubljana. She is now a second-year student attending the Ravne na Koroškem High School, but she is already thinking about continuing her studies in Graz, Austria, or London where she would like to study soloist singing. She has been singing since a very early age and practices daily in her specially designed music room at her home. At 10 years of age, Eva entered an international singing competition in Austria and won. Later, she performed several times at the FENS Youth Musical Festival, where she won twice.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HUxIAflTnk0

Eva Boto was only 15, when she applied to audition for the Mission Eurovision contest. The national broadcaster RTVSLO produced this series of programmes, which started on October 2nd, 2011 and ended this February, with only one goal in mind, to choose the singer who would represent Slovenia at the Eurovision Song Contest. Convincing renditions of songs from Mariah Carey, Shaina Twain, Irene Cara, Leona Lewis and Darja Švajger made a huge impression on the members of the jury and audiences alike.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=55PHFPtXibI

In the end, Eva Boto won a landslide number of votes with the song Verjamem (I Believe), one of the three she sang on the final night of Mission EMA 2012. Eva's favourite singer is Beyonce, but she likes 1980s and 1990s music as well. In her spare time, Eva plays guitar, plays with her dog and cat and, as every teenager loves to hang out with her friends. She's no stranger to computers and make-up, either. Eva enjoys cooking, especially baking. She is very emotional and sometimes shy. Her biggest bad habit is laziness. Eva's best friends and supporters in life and in her music career are her mother, father and elder sister Sanja. Eva describes her participation in Baku as her greatest life experience and challenge so far.

The Critics Voice Their Opinion

Magnus Kaxe

  • Good-looking, vocally decent singer in a nice song with a powerful chorus that gets stuck in my head. The verse melody goes too low in key for the singer to be able to sing it properly and the song loses a bit there. But still one of my favorite ballads this evening! But please let go of the ugly hat on the backing singers! They deserve a six (6) points for that entry.

Marion Welter

  • This is a completely different track than the one before it but I am not too fond of these kind of ballads even though, I have to compliment her on a beautiful set of vocals. She has a good range and will most likely impress. Unfortunately one (1) point from my end. 

Tobias Larsson

  • Like Serbia but weaker - another Balkan ballad that wants to be overwhelming but that doesn't quite nail it. The singer has an excellent voice, but the chorus just isn't convincing enough. Hmm, like my colleague, I agree on six (6) points.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SUrkusKotaA

Entry Background

Performer: Eva Boto

Composers: Vladimir Graić and Hari Mata Hari

Author: Igor Pirkovič

Song: Verjamem

Language: Slovene

Broadcaster: RTVSLO

History of the Nation

The eighteenth entry from Slovenia and hopefully continuing a trend that was built last year when they managed to overcome a number of disappointing years to reach the finals and also reach a decent position. This year, they have decided to take up a brand new route by looking for the performer first and foremost, a system that was used well by Germany to find both Lena and Roman actually. In the final, the finalists performed three songs and ultimately this was chosen. The best results that the country have achieved amount to a seventh place in 1995 when Darja Svajger took to the stage for the first time with Prisluhni Mi and then also a couple of years later in 2001 with Nusa Derenda and her entry Energy. Since the introduction of the semi-final system, Slovenia has only been in the final twice, missing out very closely on two other occasions. Eva Boto will be hoping to be the third woman to take the country to the final.

Source: Eurovision.tv for the Biographical Information and all respective media

Published in Editorials

We are almost halfway through the competition in the second semi-final and now have to a point where there has been a lot of genres presented from a number of countries from all over the continent. The next nation who was drawn to perform in the eight position is one who cannot say that they have been successful over the years due to dismal results. In fact, the nation is Bulgaria who have reverted to calling on their most notable names in the industry with hope of reaching the final and also obtaining a decent result. The chosen representative is the renowned Sofi Marinova with the song Love Unlimited composed by Krum Geopriev & Iasen Kozev and penned by the likes of Donka Vasileva.

Sofi Marinova (36) is one of Bulgaria's most popular performers. Devoted to arts since her childhood, Sofi established herself little by little as a top vocalist in Bulgaria. Coached by her mother in singing and dancing, Sofi excelled at school in Etropole while impressing musicians from a local band with her beautiful voice. Soon after, granting permission from her parents, she started singing covers at weddings and christenings; Whitney Houston and Michael Jackson's hits were part of her repertoire as well as gypsy songs from her cultural heritage.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=unC3KX9sVTw

Then her participation in many festivals, where she became victorious, followed and led Sofi to the release of her first album Old Wounds alongside the band Super Express which, according to numerous producers, is the best selling album in the country. Some solo albums followed until she began working with Sunny Music in 2004 and the producer Krum Krumov, a collaboration which is still successful.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vrs-nLDGFts

In her career the singer has had mostly first place awards in festivals and contests and said she will be very disappointed if she ever comes second, but in 2005 she reached the second place at the national selection for Eurovision in Bulgaria with Edinstveni (Only One) with Slavi Trifonov. In 2007 she took part again with the rapper Ustata and the songYa Tvoya (I'm Yours) placing third. Now Sofi Marinova embraces the challenge of trying to win the Eurovision Song Contest for the first time for Bulgaria on her own.

The Critics Voice Their Opinion

Magnus Kaxe

  • Ahh…this sounds interesting. Modern with a good house/club feeling. Great chorus, but maybe too long verses. And question but where are the dancers on stage? It’s after all a club track! All I’m looking at now is a non-moving female singer in an evening dress. I like this, seven (7) points from my end. 

Marion Welter

  • There are number of dance songs in this years' Eurovision Song Contest and this is neither better nor worse but I am not fond of such tracks hence I cannot give it more than one (1) point. I am very sorry!

Tobias Larsson

  • One of the strongest dance tracks of the year, performed by a real singing diva with style and flair. My objection concerns the visual presentation, which needs a lot of work still. If they get that right, this could go down well. I believe that seven (7) points are well deserved.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VurCPgXrkdg

Entry Background

Performer: Sofi Marinova

Composers: Krum Geopriev, Iasen Kozev

Author: Doni Vasileva

Song: Love Unlimited

Languages: Bulgarian, English, Arabic, Azeri, French, Greek, Italian, Romani, Spanish, Turkish, Serbian, Croatian

Broadcaster: BNT

History of the Nation

This will be marking the eight participation of Bulgaria in the Eurovision Song Contest meaning that they remain as one of the last countries to become part of the family but as already mentioned, their results have not been that good unfortunately. They have only made it to the final on one occasion, back in 2007 when Elitsa & Stoyan with their song Water made it and ultimately reached fifth place in the finals for their interesting performance. They have been close to qualification on another two tries, one of them being the following year in 2008 with DJ Please Take Me Away performed by Deep Zone & Balthazar finishing in eleventh place and last year with Poli Genova and Na Inat managing a twelfth position. Will Sofi make their second final? Many are yet to see though she is a marginal qualifier according to most of the fans of the Eurovision Song Contest.

Source: Eurovision.tv for the Biographical Information and all respective media

 
Published in Editorials

The Team of Radio International would like to invite to join the weekly Ultimate Eurovision Experience. The Show is broadcast on 106.8FM and Digital Cabel 41 in the Netherlands and also via the internet via www.radiointernational.tv and will also be web-televised via the show's own Live Video Channel via the website. The simulcast will be from 2000 – 2300 hours CET this Wednesday.

Eurovision in Concert 2012: 

Last Saturday, 21 April 2012, the annual Eurovision Music extravaganza took place in Amsterdam for the fourth time where this year is a record of 24 countries' representatives performed their entry to the Eurovision Song Contest 2012 which will come from Baku, Azerbaijan on May 22, 24 and 26. The event was a full success with an early start for the artists and journalists meeting in the delegation hotel in Amsterdam for the first session of interviews. After a Word of Welcome from EBU's Sietse Bakker the artists were taken by boat to the centre of Amsterdam for their soundcheck in the venue for the evening - The Melkweg. That also included the second session of interviews with the many international media that was accredited. The Team of Radio International in combination with Poplight from Sweden were also present to conduct as many interviews as possible with the 2012 Hopefulls. This week on Radio International listen to interviews with the representatives of Austria, Belarus, Lithuania, Portugal, Romania, San Marino and Switzerland.

Interview with Litesound (Belarus 2012):

After Anastasia Vinnekova's "I love Belarus" in 2011 which did not qualify Belarus for the Grand Final of the Eurovision Song Contest 2011 Belarus tries it this time with a young Rock & Pop Band by the name of Litesound. The band is composed of the two brothers Dmitry and Vladimir Karyakin, and Italian singer Jacopo Massa and will perform "We are the Heroes" which is definitely a grower. Belarus will be in Semi Final 2 on Thursday, 24 May 2012 at Number 5. Eric & JP met the singers at the annual Eurovision Promotion event in Brussels last weekend and had the big pleasure of an extensive interview.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hnJZG0eyavs

Interview with Donny Montell (Lithuania 2012):   

Lithuania will be represented by young singer Donny Montell who will perform the song "Love is blind" which will go into the competition in Semi Final 2 at Number 18. Donny was also part of the guest list of Eurovision in Concert 2012 in Amsterdam on 21 April 2012 and the team of Radio International had the pleasure of a short interview with the singer.  

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=28Zel35BCwo

Interview with Mandinga (Romania 2012):  

In 2011 Hotel FM represented Romania at the Eurovision Song Contest with the song "Change". This year Romania sends in the happy sounds of Romanian Group Mandinga who is a mix of Romanian and Cuban members. The song is called "Zaleilah" and is based in Mandinga's Dance during the peformance. But more details you can hear in the interview on this week's show. Romania will be in Semi Final 1 at Number 6. 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VH2t9LpRGQk

Eurovision Song Contest Sportlight - Eurovision 2012 - The Team's Favourites:  

Last week Dermot Manning gave us his lists of the Top 10 what he thinks will be ending up in the Top Ten but also what his favourite Top 10 of the 57th Eurovision Song Contest are. This week is the turn of Alasdair Rendall. 

Interview with Valentina Monetta (San Marino 2012): 

2012 is the third time for San Marino to take part at the Eurovision Song Contest after Mio Dio in 2008 and Senit in 2011. This year San Marino teamed up with German Song Writer Ralph Siegel who delivered the "Social Network Song" which will be performed by Valentina Monetta at the Eurovision Song Contest 2012 in Semi Final 1 at Number 11. Radio International interviewed the young lady during Eurovision in Concert 2012 in Amsterdam on 21 April 2012.  

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PqwBh9hq9PE

Euro Friends Song Contest 2012 with Andy Simon:

Continuing with the Euro Friends Song Contest in search for the ultimate Eurovision song as voted for by the many fans around the world. Andy  Simon joins us every week to reveal the qualifiers for the next round.  The website of the Euro Friends Song Contest www.euro-friends.com where you can easily vote for your favourite Eurovision song per country and also see The Euro-Friends TV Show as hosted by Andy Simon. You can also join the Facebook Group. This week Andy looks at the next qualifiers from Heat 47 (United Kingdom).

Interview with Sinplus (Switzerland 2012):  

Gabriel & Ivan are Sinplus and were also on the guest list of Eurovision in Concert but as well part if the Eurovision Promo Event in Brussels on 29 April 2012. There Radio International's Eric chattet with the boys about the preprations for Baku. "Unbreakable" is the Eurovision entry of Switzerland  in Semi Final 1 at Number 7. 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8yX1dIK9vuc

Eurovision Song Contest News with Luke Fisher from escXtra.com:

Check out the latest developments connected to the Eurovision Song Contest. Whether it is music releases of Eurovision performers, appearances, special concerts, gossip, news, etc. Luke will have the latest updates during this week's edition of the show.

Interview with the Trackshittaz (Austria 2012):  

Part of the guest line-up at Eurovision in Concert was also the Austrian representatives to the 57th Eurovision Song Contest - the Trackshittaz who will perform "Woki mit deim Popo" in Semi Final 1 at Number 16. This song is in total contrast to what the country sent in 2011 when Nadine Beiler performed "The Secret is Love". You either love or hate "Woki mit deim Popo". Check out the interview the Team of Radio International did at the event with the Rappers from Austria.  

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BKQf8Z5uWQ8

Eurovision Music Requests/Eurovision Quiz:

A big part of the show is playing listeners' requests. Submit your requests and / or greetings to your Eurovision friends through Radio International via the CONTACT Link on www.radiointernational.tv or via This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. But also don’t miss out on the weekly Eurovision Quiz where you can win something.

Interview with Filipa Sousa (Portugal 2012):  

The winner of the Portuguese national selection to the Eurovision Song Contest called Festival da Canacao this year is Filipa Sousa who is the Portuguese Ambassador at the 57th Eurovision Song Contes. Unlike last year with Homens da Luta, Filipa bring back to Eurovision the traditional "Fado-like" sounds of Portugal to Eurovision in the song "Vida Minha" (My Life) which wil be in Semi Final 2 at Number 6. Listen to a short interview with the singer done at Eurovision in Concert 2012. 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PPJUJHLGhA8

Join Radio International on Wednesday, 02 May 2012 from 2000 - 2300 hours CET, via the website or on FM. Radio International is available live via www.radiointernational.tv and on FM 106.8 and Digital Cabel Channel 41 in parts of the Netherlands. Should you not be able to listen live, the show will appear in the Programme’s Show Archive a few hours after it’s airing on the radio.

Source: Team of Radio International