November 14, 2019

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Nearly two months after being chosen by an internal jury to represent France at the upcoming Eurovision Song Contest set to take place in Sweden, Amandine Bourgeois will be releasing her entry L'enfer et moi tomorrow much to the delight of fans all across the continent who are anticipating an extremely competent entry. This is not the first internal selection for the Big Five country considering that this has very much been the case since 2009 when Patricia Kaas had been selected to represent the country, ultimately achieving their last top ten result with Et S'il Faillait Le Faire.

In the mid-morning, at around 10:00 CET, the song will be made available through the medium of Spotify. Just before though, she will be the guest star of the radio show Laissez-Vous Tenter which is broadcasted on RTL, the leading radio station in France. Within the show, she is expected to give some information about her participation along with a short preview of the song. The official video clip which will be accompanying the entry will be made available for everyone to view on the official France 3 website, on Thursday. It is also worth mentioning that Warner Music will again this year cooperate with France 3 to promote the French entry as has been the case within the past two years. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all of the latest news.

Source: Warner Music France

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1sjttHafsyE

Tuesday, 22 January 2013 16:28

France: Amandine Bourgeois Heading to Malmö

France 3, the broadcaster responsible for selecting the French entry at the Eurovision Song Contest has not managed to get the best possible cards in recent years noting that the country has only scored one top ten finish in ten years, that being in 2009 when Patricia Kaas took to the stage with a sultry rendition of Et S’il Faillait Le Faire managing an eight place with a hundred and seven points in total. The disappointment of the past year seemingly took its toll with the broadcaster stating that they will not be selecting someone well known and with Bruno Berberes stepping down as the Head of Delegation and replaced by Frédéric Valencak, it was clear that there will also be a perception change. A decision for 2013 has just been taken according to the national media and it will be none other than Amandine Bourgeois.

A special selection committee appointed by the broadcasters involved in the selection process including France 3 and France Ô has made their selection it seems, one which was somewhat unanimous according to Le Parisien which is one of the most popular newspapers in the country. It is worth noting that the announcement of Patricia Kaas in 2009 was preceded by an announcement in this newspaper and therefore, it has proven itself reliable. In the meantime, the choice of Amandine Bourgeois would be quite interesting having come out of a casting show known as Nouvelle Star, which just happens to be the French version of Idol. Since winning the competition, the artist has gone onto sign a record deal with Sony Music and released two studio albums, the first one entitled 20m² which sold around 600,000 copies and enjoyed considerable success through reviews and the second one entitled Sans Amour Mon Amour which barely sold 5,000 copies and not supported by radio stations. 

In recent months, she took part in the compilation album Génération Goldman where she performed with Emmanuel Moire and considering it being the most successful album in France at the moment, she is an ideal candidate. Should this indeed be the choice of the French broadcaster, it will be quite intriguing to see what type of song she will present to the Eurovision Song Contest, especially having said that her upcoming studio effort will be a mixture between folk and blues. Following the announcement of Le Parisien, France 3 decided to issue a press release confirming the news. Rumours are stating that she will be performing an entry entitled L'Enfer et Moi written by Boris Bergman and David Salkin. In the meantime, escflashmalta.com invites you to listen to the vocals of Amandine Bourgeois just below whilst urging you to stay tuned for all of the latest news about the 2013 Eurovision Song Contest as soon as it becomes available. 

Source: Le Parisien, Patrick Strouk

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2PqrrmMHpy8

It is quite apparent that the Eurovision Song Contest is being used as a launching platform for several artists with record labels banking on the exposure to push them to successful pastures and with countries gearing up to select their representative entries for the event taking place in Malmö, Sweden, more artists will move into the fray. Nevertheless, January is somewhat an intriguing month in which early stages of selections are set to take place with six countries having selected their entries for the competition during the month of December as 2013 was still drawing near. In the meantime, singer/songwriter Jean Claude Vancell is definitely going to be one of the key individuals during the upcoming months continuously providing you, the readers with the latest album reviews whilst also coming in as a special guest to analyze a couple of selection formats during the evenings. Following the reviews of the albums Heal and Sans Attendre by Loreen and Celine Dion respectively, another album has been carefully analysed, the one entitled Una Parte Di Me released by Amaury Vassili. What did Vancell think about it? Keep reading this post and find out.

About Amaury Vassili
 
Amaury Vassili is a French tenor, born in June 1989. He entered the music scene in 2009 with his album Vincerò, which went double platinum in France. He also had success in Canada, South Korea and South Africa. He followed his success with another album entitled Canterò, released a year after. He is now back with his latest collection of songs – Una Parte di Me. With a velvety texture to his voice, tenor Amaury Vassili returns to music stores with his newest offering: the album “Una Parte di Me”. Many of us remember this fresh-faced tenor when he competed in the 2011 Eurovision Song Contest held in Dusseldorf, flying the French flag with his entry ‘Sognu’. Numerous polls put his number in high ranks, many betting he might take the contest back to French grounds. The results on the night showed otherwise, when he placed 15th after a hair-raising performance.

Album Title: Una Parte Di Me
 
Released: 22nd October 2012 (France)
 
Vassili released this studio album under Warner Music. It features the best from the greatest classical composers such as Mozart, Chopin, Tchaikovsky and Brahms giving them a pop opera feel. Of all the songs on the album, I felt that the title track, “Una Parte di Me”, had a very awkward arrangement. The beat used left me feeling uneasy and thinking that Mozart would probably be turning in his grave just for its production. Needless to say, there is nothing wrong with Vassili’s vocal interpretation in the track. His vocals shine through, even with the unexpected rock drums. Personally, I would have preferred the tenor to have left the arrangement just as Mozart had intended, and lent his beautiful voice to it.
 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mZkiWU8kts8
 
The tenor included two duets on the album, featuring Sofia Essaidi on I Silenzi tra Noi and Domenique Magloire on I Lago Dei Cigni. Both efforts are a pleasure to listen to. His Chiaro di Luna was a lavishly sung piece, however Debussy’s Claire de Lune (originally just a piano instrumental) is one of those pieces I would leave untouched. The vocals, in my opinion, detract from the piece’s beauty. Vassili closes the album with a French rendition of Siamo il Futuro (which he sings in Italian with a children’s choir a few tracks before). This is the only track in French – and it’s a very welcome ending. I most definitely prefer Amaury singing in his native tongue. Even though his Italian diction is very good, it lacks the open vowels that are required for the language. Nevertheless the diction does not detract from the album’s listening value.

Tracks to listen out for:
 
Siamo noi il futuro –The song builds up gradually and has wonderful orchestration. Leave out the awkward diction that the children’s choir lend to the track, and you have a beautifully laid out song. Until now I had forgotten that Vassili is a French guy singing in Italian.
 
La Guerra – Bach’s composition for cello shines through the opening of this track and lends itself very well to the song. A good mid-tempo song which I thoroughly enjoyed. Even people who would not normally enjoy opera pop would take a liking to this one.
 
I Lago Dei Cigni – If this album were a dessert trolley, this track would be the chocolate fondant. A rich instrumentation accompanies Vassili’s and Domenique Magloire’s voices on this rendition of Tchaikovsky’s classic “Swan Lake”.
 
Final Verdict
 
Hand on heart I admit I was dreading listening to an hour of pop opera, but I was wrong - this album had me hooked. Vassili, you changed my perception of the genre! The album is truly enjoyable and would recommend a listen to anyone. It might not be a opera fan’s cup of tea, since the tracks have been pop-ified (I know that word doesn't even exist!) to a large extent. I will still prefer Claire de Lune as a piano instrumental, but hey, everyone’s entitled to his opinions at the end of the day!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3SU39AXEuLU

France 3 is looking to reinvent their method of representation at the Eurovision Song Contest and are seemingly looking to hold an open national final this time round and one of the individuals who has shown interest is none other than Anne Marie David, who has already been to the continental showcase on two occasions, albeit in the seventies. On her very first attempt in 1973 and on behalf of Luxembourg, she finished as the winner with Tu Te Reconnaîtras and on her second appearance in 1979 on behalf of France with the track Je Suis L'Enfant-Soleil, she finished in third place which was a great achievement nevertheless. Her campaign was launched this morning on her official Facebook page as well as an apparent website which you could access here.

Following the negative result achieved earlier this year with Anggun and her track Echo (You and I), it seems that the French broadcaster led by a new Head of Delegation will be taking up a brand new selection method rather than an internal selection which has become popular in recent years. The song which she plans to enter into the French selection is entitled Je Manque De Toi and has been written by Jean Musy who is one of the most popular songwriters in the country having worked with Nicole Rieu, Demis Roussos, Gérard Lenorman, Françoise Hardy, Isabelle Aubret, Charles Aznavour and Dalida amongst others. This would actually be an extremely good idea for the broadcaster noting that Anne Marie David is still very much liked by the fan community of the Eurovision Song Contest. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all of the latest news in the coming days.

Source: Official Facebook Page

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aPzwNm7stSY

The European Broadcasting Union has been pretty adamant about putting off rumours of a mass withdrawal from the upcoming edition of the Eurovision Song Contest and therefore succumbed to releasing the list of participating nations quite early due to the international media coverage which might have had a negative impact on the competition especially noting that Malmö is making several adjustments in order to accommodate a different type of show than what many have seen in recent years. The financial situation around the continent has not been a help and three of the four withdrawals; Bosnia & Herzegovina, Portugal and Slovakia have singled out this decision as the factor behind their pulling out with Turkey on the other hand believing that the recent amendments of the regulations at the event have somewhat put them in a disadvantaged position hence their disappointing results.

The Executive Supervisor of the Eurovision Song Contest at the European Broadcasting Union, Jon Ola Sand is quite upbeat about the number of participating countries believing that despite the economic situation, public broadcasters are very much committed to the traditional element that the contest has created over time. In fact, since the semi-final system was introduced back in 2004, there have always been between 36 and 43 participating nations and the 39 that will take part in 2013 are similar to the amount that took part in 2010 when the competition was also held in a Scandinavian nation with Oslo, the capital city of Norway playing the role of host. Losing three countries to economic reasons was quite disappointing but nevertheless, Sand is quite 'surprised' by the decision of Turkey noting that they 'never formally objected' the rules as regulations which were brought in back in 2009, a year in which Turkey finished in fourth place.

  • Albania (RTSH)
  • Austria (ORF)
  • Armenia (AMPTV)
  • Belarus (Ictimai TV)
  • Belarus (BTRC)
  • Belgium (RTBF)
  • Bulgaria (BNT)
  • Croatia (HRT)
  • Cyprus (CyBC)
  • Denmark (DR)
  • Estonia (ERR)
  • Finland (YLE)
  • France (France 3)
  • Georgia (GPB)
  • Germany (NDR)
  • Greece (ERT)
  • Hungary (MTV)
  • Iceland (RÚV)
  • Ireland (RTÉ)
  • Israel (IBA)
  • Italy (RAI)
  • Latvia (LTV)
  • Lithuania (LRT)
  • FYR Macedonia (MKRTV)
  • Malta (PBS)
  • Moldova (TRM)
  • Montenegro (RTCG)
  • The Netherlands (TROS)
  • Norway (NRK)
  • Romania (TVR)
  • Russia (C1R)
  • San Marino (SMTV)
  • Serbia (RTS)
  • Slovenia (RTV SLO)
  • Spain (TVE)
  • Sweden (SVT)
  • Switzerland (SRG SSR)
  • Ukraine (NTU)
  • United Kingdom (BBC)

As you can see, the leading European broadcasters including the Big Five featuring; the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Spain and Italy return for yet another competition noting that their results are improving especially with regards to three in particular. Some countries have already revealed their entries noting that national finals have already taken place in Belarus, Switzerland, Belgium and Lithuania whilst artists have been chosen for The Netherlands, Spain and Montenegro. Despite less countries than last year, the song quality thus far looks to be quite intriguing and this could be a strong edition for the Eurovision Song Contest with Sweden surely organising it to the best ability and letting it known that whoever did not want to participate would have missed out on a great opportunity. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all of the latest news as soon as it becomes available.

Source: Eurovision.tv

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pfo-8z86x80

The upcoming edition of the Eurovision Song Contest is set to take place in Malmö, Sweden following the major victory set forth by track Euphoria performed by Loreen by virtue of ranking in the top position in both public and jury voting. The editorial board at escflashmalta.com is currently gearing up in anticipation for the national finals season noting that the month of December is going to be particularly busy with no less than six countries announcing their respective entries and representatives alike. In the meantime, singer/songwriter Jean Claude Vancell is definitely going to be one of the key individuals during the upcoming months continuously providing you, the readers with the latest album reviews whilst also coming in as a special guest to analyze a couple of selection formats during the evenings. In recent days, Heal by Loreen was given a thumbs up but today, we feature a different kind of review in terms of genre as the latest album by Celine Dion entitled Sans Attendre has just been released to generally positive reviews yet what does Vancell think about it? Keep reading this post and find out.

Artist: Celine Dion

Celine Dion is a French-Canadian artist from Quebec. Born in 1968, she became a teenage pop sensation in the French-speaking world. She represented Switzerland in the Eurovision Song Contest in 1988 and won. After that she decided to take on the American market, after a few years out of the limelight to improve her image and her English. Dion took the American music market by storm during most of the nineties and noughties performed sell-out shows at the Caeser’s Palace in Las Vegas. She performed five nights a week to an audience of 4,000 people at one of the most luxurious hotels in Vegas.

She grossed a total of $400 million from this concert alone (A New Day…) during a 5-year run making her one of the most successful money-making women in the world. She announced a second residency tour at the Caeser’s Palace in 2010 and is performing the three-year, seventy show a year tour, entitled Celine presently. Celine is also releases perfumes under the Celine Dion Parfums collection. She has released her 14th perfume, called Signature, last September. This generally means that such an artist has also become a prominent business women thanks to various advisers.

Album Title: Sans Attendre

Released: 2nd November (Europe)

The album production is of very high quality (I wasn't expecting anything less from Celine Dion!) and uses very little synths on the album. It’s clear that the album can be taken on tour and played exactly as is with an 8-piece band easily. This does not lessen the beauty of the musical arrangements in the album. I did find that most of the songs were mid-tempo, making the album very consistent. I don’t particularly like this, since Qui Peut Vivre Sans Amour (a more up-tempo track – emphasis on the more) stands out like a sore thumb. 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q6K3elwE-Mk

Musically the album has a few interesting chord changes which Dion’s vocal works around effortlessly. Every chance for the vocal to soar (Celine style) is taken, but not abused.  An army of authors took part in the album. I counted 24. Wow. The singer isn't one of them if you’re wondering. Not surprisingly, the album has no fixed theme. Dion sang three duets on this album.  One with Johnny Hallyday, another with Jean-Pierre Ferland and one with Henri Salvador. The three of the men have beautiful voices – albeit very similar, making the duets very difficult to tell apart.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S9lVheR6ak4

The album was released internationally on November 2, 2012. It peaked the charts in Canada and France, reached number 2 in Switzerland (the country she represented at the ESC) and did very well in French-speaking countries. This is Dion’s 12th French album and 24th album overall. N.B. The deluxe edition included two bonus tracks (Ne Me Quitte Pas and Les Jours Comme ça) which were reviewed with the rest of the album.

Tracks to look out for:

Qui Peut Vivre Sans Amour? – The most striking refrain in the album. Dion’s strong vocals compliment the up-tempo rock feel of the song. The lyrics might sound trivial at first, but they pose some good questions once you think about them. As I previously stated, the track stands out effortlessly from the rest of the songs due it being faster-paced.

Une Chance Qu'on S'a – For the romantics out there, the lyrics are truly a beauty. This is a duet between Dion and Jean-Pierre Ferland.

Final Verdict:

I found the album very tiring to listen to, not only because it is in French, so I had to make that extra effort to understand it, but also because every track feels like the previous one. I prepared myself for Celine’s dramatic vocals, but nothing can prepare you for the roller-coaster that Dion’s vocal take on every song.

Ranting apart, the album is well-produced and well-written (I would hope so with that many song-writers). It’s good. I don’t love it. I don’t hate it. Will I listen to it again? Definitely not. Would I urge people to buy it? Yes, only if you love Celine Dion or if you understand French. If you don’t you’ll probably be weeping by mid-album – either because every song sounds sad (even if it might talk about the happiest things) or because you can’t stand Celine.  If you like Celine Dion and can understand French, then you’re in for a treat!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CN1Xw3_-_XQ

Published in Editorials
Saturday, 24 November 2012 01:30

France: Several Decisions Yet to be Made

Fabrice Mauss was the artist who had been presumably mentioned as the next French representative in the annual Eurovision Song Contest which next year is set to take place in the city of Malmö following the victory of Loreen with the track bearing the name Euphoria on behalf of Scandinavian country of Sweden. In recent days, we have been checking about our loyal sources in France and it seems that there has been some sort of mis-communication and as a matter of fact, Mauss will not be taking up the honour of representing his country within the event with France 3, the main broadcaster currently undergoing a number of structural changes within the entertainment division, so much so that there seems to be a set of new personnel coming in, possibly replacing the current guard, including current Head of Delegation; Bruno Berberes who has been around since 2002 when Sandrine Francois and her beautiful chanson Il Faut Du Temps finished in fifth place.

A highly credible French source close to the broadcaster has also gone on record to tell escflashmalta.com that the decision of the artist and the entry is still nowhere near being started with the selection process most likely to include a number of upcoming performers who will be submitting entries in a normal fashion. This will mark the return of the national selection for the big five country, which has not managed such a showcase since back in 2000 when France 3 had taken up the event for the second time. In fact, the results achieved through internal selections have been rather positive especially when they represented by the likes of Patricia Kaas in 2009 achieving eight place with the track Et S'Il Fallait Le Faire. The French of Delegation for the past ten years has been a pivotal role behind the participation of the country with his outspoken views due to being a casting director. He has most recently been a judge in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest and oversaw the representation of Anggun with the song Echo (You and I). Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all of the latest news with regards to France in the 2013 Eurovision Song Contest.

Source: escflashmalta.com

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vSN7aq97rK0

Tuesday, 20 November 2012 13:28

France: Fabrice Mauss Heading to Malmö

The city of Malmö in Sweden will be hosting the 2013 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest in a couple of months and it seems that most countries are very much content about their upcoming participation by virtue of choosing their representatives relatively early especially now that The Netherlands and Belgium have confirmed Anouk and Roberto Bellarosa. A couple of days back, it seemed that the French Head of Delegation; Bruno Berberes was holding closed auditions in order to select acts to compete in what could have been a national selection or even an internal choice but earlier rumours posted on escflashmalta.com have proven to be true because Fabrice Mauss will be heading to the competition on behalf of France.

Fabrice Mauss is a known individual within the music industry by virtue of being the lead performer of the band which bears his surname. Nevertheless, he has been quite busy launching his solo career as of late even signing a record deal with Universal Music France before going independent releasing his third studio album entitled Minuit Passé under the label VF Musiques / Guess What! In an exclusive interview given to the popular radio station NRJ, Fabrice confirmed us participation in the event saying that retails of the track will be revealed in January or February. He is quite happy and honoured to have been chosen for the role but is quite scared of the final result especially after this years' result achieved by Anggun with the song Echo (You and I) which only garnered points from the jury. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all of the latest news as soon as it becomes available. 

Source: NRJ 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8-Yu1r9u2xw

Thursday, 15 November 2012 14:30

France: Bruno Berberes Holds Internal Casting

The 2013 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest is clearly gearing up all over the continent noting that the latest country to somewhat commence their proceedings is none other than France, a nation which is always in the final of the prestigious event due to the financial backing that they are known to provide to the European Broadcasting Union. Earlier today, it seems that the rumours were circulating that former Universal Music France artist; Fabrice Mauss has been contracted with a song that has been specifically written for his brand new album but nevertheless it seems that Bruno Berberes, the Head of Delegation has other plans. The individual came into fame through his casting sessions which have been known to bear a lot of positive acclaim in recent years and it seems he will be using this method once more.

According to a leading radio station in France known as Europe 1, it has been said that Bruno Berberes is currently holding a number of private casting sessions which will either result in a multi-performer national selection or yet in another internal selection where the performer would be chosen with songwriters called in to write specific entries. Bruno was actually one to say that in 2013, France would be turning to a national selection for the Eurovision Song Contest especially after the decision to send three well known performers in the form of Patricia Kaas in 2010, Jessy Matador in 2011 and Anggun in 2012 with the first two achieving success and the latter artist languishing in the bottom once more. France has not achieved a lot of success since the dawn of the millennium noting that they only managed the top ten in 2001 thanks to Natasha St-Pier, in 2002 with the aid of Sandrine Francois and in 2009 by virtue of Patricia Kaas. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all of the latest news as soon as it becomes available.

Source: Radio 1, Patrick Strouk

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0DZ7DbdeOeE

Wednesday, 26 September 2012 13:39

France: Amaury Vassili Preparing Album Release

Warner Music have been unequivocally important in promoting the Eurovision Song Contest as of late especially in France noting that the last two representatives of the aforementioned nation are signed to the music label. Turning the attention quickly on the 2011 entrant by the name of Amaury Vassili, it seems that the competition has done no harm in terms of music career with the youngest tenor in the world releasing two singles since his appearance and planning a brand new album which is out in stores within the next couple of months. In a recent interview in the French press, he described his music as lyrical pop but then again, when listening to the latest release from his upcoming compilation of tracks, one would realize how serious he is when it comes to covering music from well known composers.

In fact, the brand new album entitled Una Parte Di Me will be featuring classical compositions of Mozart, Chopin, Brahms and Tchaikovsky amongst others. The release date has been set for the 22nd October and there is a lot riding on this collection after his first two albums managed to rank in the top ten in France with Vincero peaking at number #9 and Cantero managing even one place better at #8. Amaury was the favourite to win the 2011 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest with the beautiful Sognu but it was not meant to be finishing in a disappointing fifteenth place after what many described as a good but not excellent performance of a difficult and challenging song. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com in the coming days and weeks for more news as soon as it becomes available.

Source: Official Facebook Page

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yRx4W28-8T4

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