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Wednesday, 16 October 2013 02:15

Malta: Reminiscent Ira Losco Keeps Options Open

Malta’s most successful female artist, Ira Losco seems to be reminiscing about her Eurovision experience back in 2002 in Tallinn, Estonia. She was the first ever Maltese artist to get Malta so high up the scoreboard in second place behind Latvia. Undoubtedly, Ira is surely one of the very few artists who managed to her reputation and a solid career after the Eurovision Song Contest. Alongside her management she was wise enough to use the experience as a springboard to other things and her career took off from there.

She has released six albums after her Eurovision triumph and the material in each and every album reflects Ira’s life, feeling and her gradual maturity. This is something helped her evolve as an artist especially since she started writing her own songs – making her material somewhat biographical. Her down to earth approach and her professionalism, apart from her great tunes, have always been two traits which are surely the reason why Ira is still popular up to this very day.

Her latest album came out early this summer and this was seen as Ira Losco’s comeback into the local scene since she hadn’t released any new material in quite some time. She was still ever so present into the scene with different gigs, television appearances and shows but she was always seen singing her old material. Her album released marked, one of the busiest summers in Ira’s career. Her new songs invaded the local airwaves and her videos achieved thousands of views.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eyiw0Wm52eU

Her comeback has been a solid one and one would assume that she is once again at the peak of her career yet again but we never know what to expect from the local starlet. A lot of music critics and die heart fans believe that Ira Losco is Malta’s best bet at getting the Eurovision Song Contest on our islands for the very first time and few would blame them - with a fresh sound, great image and a solid management team behind her she would be a great bet of doing extremely well.

This could serve up as a spring board to hit the foreign market once again and use the experience as her springboard to it. After her initial success, Ira never actually hinted that she would be interested in doing Eurovision again and a number of people would say that for some time she tried to distance herself from it. Few would blame her as the Eurovision was not seen in high regard with a number of people but the situation slowly changed and some of the biggest production houses became interests in it. Loreen’s international success had a lot to do with it and slowly the perception about the contest is changing.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3YL6FUsh-lI

With the Maltese submissions closing in exactly a fortnight from today, yesterday Ira Losco took her Facebook page and posted a photo with the following caption: “13 yes THIRTEEN years have passed since I represented Malta in Estonia.... Just 12 pouts away from the title!!! Whenever I'm asked if I would ever do it again... I never say no... But it would have to be the right time. Do you think I've changed much from the picture?” So the big question is… Does Ira think this is the right time? 

Well one would assume, that she might think it is. Why would she randomly post a photo of her adventure back in 2002, a fortnight before the submissions close? Malta is a Eurovision mad country and to have the local star teasing her fans and her followers in this manner, one would assume that she is up to something. It is rather obvious that this is all speculation but one thing is sure – Ira Losco seems to be interested. 

It might not be this year or the next, but you never know. Her career is riding a high wave of success here in Malta – it would be a great way to channel this success to the foreign markets through the blessed Eurovision Song Contest! Maybe one day we’ll get to hear ‘Malta – 12 Points’ and the show will close with ‘See you next year in MALTA’ but if this ever becomes a reality who is going to be the HERO to achieve this feat? Will Ira Losco manage if she decides to give it another shot?

Source: Official Facebook Page

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-o9sgAHsTN4

Published in Editorials

Richard Edwards, first runner-up at the Malta Eurovision Song Contest in 2011 with the track Finally which he co-wrote with Jan Van Dijck is the latest vocalist to confirm his intentions to return to the pre-selection process. It does not really come as a surprise denoting that the male artist has been ever so present in the competition since his success, being a finalist in 2012 and 2013 with the tracks Look At Me Now co-written with Jan Van Dijck, Fall Like Rome composed by Philip Vella and Magnus Kaxe to the lyrics of Gerard James Borg and a duet with Petra entitled Wonderful Today a co-write with Wayne Micallef.

Richard Micallef took to his personal account through Social Networking website, Facebook stating 'Just finished two new songs that I will submit for the Malta Eurovision Song Contest. Something different from what I normally write ... I feel like I need to change it up a bit...' This is actually good news, and somewhat bodes well especially following the disappointing announcements made by Nadine Axisa and Klinsmann who will not be submitting any entries for the upcoming edition of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest. Submissions will be received by the Public Broadcasting Services at the Creativity Hub between the 30th and the 31st October 2013. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all of the latest news.

Source: escflashmalta.com

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

Published in Local Music News

In 2007, Klinsmann made his debut within the Malta Eurovision Song Contest with the track She Gives Me Wings composed by Mark Spiteri Lucas to the lyrics of Rita Pace and for the next six consecutive years found his way into at least the semi-final stage of the competition. In fact, his last participation was earlier this year as he presented a track entitled The Remedy composed by Philip Vella and Magnus Kaxe with lyrics by Gerard James Borg.

escflashmalta.com is in a position to confirm that after seven consecutive years, Klinsmann will not be submitting a song for the Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2014. On a post on his Official Page on Facebook, he stated 'I'm not gonna take part as a performer this year. I'm gonna give it a miss after 7 consecutive years.' Technically speaking, it could very much mean that Klinsmann could join another act on stage as a band member or possibly co-write an entry, something which he is getting accustomed to do alongside his band, Planet Seed. This is the second former Malta Eurovision Song Contest to confirm absence from the event at the first hurdle following the likes of Nadine Axisa. More stories will be unveiled by escflashmalta.com in the coming days, so stay tuned.

Source: escflashmalta.com, Emil Calleja Bayliss (Image)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dy35AgTBiVE

Published in Local Music News

In 2009, Eleanor Cassar was the first runner-up at the Malta Eurosong with Someday composed by Paul Giordimaina to the lyrics of Fleur Balzan. It was the vocalists' sixth participation within the national selection and was then followed by another three entries; Choices (2010), Hypnotized (2011) and I Want to Run Away (2012). Her final appearance last year was thought to be a slight fall from grace with many stating that the song did not really suit the stunning vocal capabilities that Eleanor is known to offer. In an interview on TVPM, it was revealed that she did not intend to submit for the 2013 edition of the festival and she did keep to her word, taking up a residency on the programme Ħadd Għalik aired on Television Malta in the meantime.

In recent weeks, the editorial team at escflashmalta.com has been speaking to a number of artists with regards to their intentions for the upcoming edition of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest, of which the Public Broadcasting Services will be receiving submissions at the end of the month. One of the artists who will indeed be putting her name forward is Eleanor Cassar because following a year away from the madness, she believes that she has the right track to return. The last time that Eleanor Cassar was away from the festival, back in 2007, she returned with the stunning Give Me a Chance, a ballad composed by Paul Giordimaina with lyrics by Fleur Balzan which spoke volumes and had several underlying themes within the lyrics. The editorial team of escflashmalta.com will be making several revelations over the next couple of days, so we urge you to stay tuned whilst we wish Eleanor Cassar the very best of luck with her endeavours.

Source: escflashmalta.com

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RB8QQeY_EDU

Published in Local Music News

Nadine Axisa, one of the most verstaile vocalists in the local music industry will not be submitting any entries to the upcoming edition of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest, deciding to focus on the release of her debut album, one which is jazz infused and supported by the Malta Arts Fund. The last time that she had been in the final as a lead vocalist was in 2010 when she joined Clifford Galea in a duet for the song Once in a Lifetime composed by Jason Paul Cassar to the lyrics of Mario Farrugia.

Since then, she has taken a step back and participated as a backing vocalist, most notably with first runner-up Kevin Borg and his entry Needing You. Her debut album which is set for release within the month of the upcoming year is set to include a series of original songs within the jazz genre. She has decided to include her fans in every step of the proceedings which will see her record, and producer the collection of songs. Nadine is working with some of the most hard working individuals in the industry and is putting in a lot of effort to make sure that the release will be received in a positive manner. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all the latest news.

Source: escflashmalta.com

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AmQRnM6xdzU

Published in Local Music News

Sinners, an extended play released by Lauren Aquilina managed to peak at number #66 in the United Kingdom with fan support through social media including Facebook and Twitter. It wasn't the first success though noting that her debut release, that entitled Fools also peaked at number #72 suggesting that her fan-base is on the increase. As the rules of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2014 were published by the Public Broadcasting Services in the past forty-eight (48) hours, it comes as no surprise that local fans would like her to put her name forward. Those who think it's not possible are wrong especially due to the fact that Lauren could very much apply for a dual citizenship and thus making her eligible. Nevertheless, this will not be the case at least for next year according to a post on social networking website, Facebook.

Darren Cassar posted the escflashmalta.com article about the release of the regulations on her wall asking her to possibly consider a role within the selection process but his efforts proved futile with her reply being a categorical 'hahahaha noooooo I can't! xx' and in technical terms she might be right considering that she has a tour planned in February, one which might not allow her to take up any more commitments for the time being. One artist who has already stated her intentions in favour of a second participation within the Malta Eurovision Song Contest is none other than Davinia, the second runner-up at this years' edition of the competition. A photo with the tag #eurovision was posted whilst in the studio with Matt Mercieca signalling that she is working with the same individuals behind Betrayed. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all the latest news.

Source: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=knzu1g-S0fI

In 2011, the Public Broadcasting Services issues a rule which stated that no representative from the past three years could enter the Malta Eurovision Song Contest. Nevertheless, it was extended to the artists who had honoured the country in the previous five years in both 2012 and 2013, with one vocalist always granted permission to return as every year wore down. During the evening news bulletin, last night, Keith Demicoli revealed that this is one of the rules which have been completely dismissed by the host broadcaster with only Gianluca not permitted to submit an entry.

The four vocalists who will benefit from this change in particular are; Chiara, Thea Garrett, Glen Vella and Kurt Calleja who all represented Malta in the past five years with varying degrees of success. It is important to denote that three have also submitted their willingness to return to the competition should they be offered the right song with only one opting to remain out of the fray. Thea Garrett who flew to Oslo, Norway with the song My Dream composed by Jason Paul Cassar to the lyrics of Sunny Aquilina failed to get through to the final, finishing in twelfth place but made a number of contacts which have also led to the release of a couple of songs. She has subsequently moved to London where she is perfecting her vocal technique at a renowned music academy.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2I-Ls7YDzXo

Chiara, the female vocalist who represented Malta on three occasions, the last of which being with the track What If We composed by Marc Paelinck to the lyrics of Gregory Bilsen is currently signed to an Icelandic Record Label whose interests in the Eurovision Song Contest go deep considering that each artist that represents the Scandinavian country is represented by them. At the moment, Chiara has just unveiled her latest single, a cover of the hit song 9 to 5 in a duet with Hera Bjork who also went to the international competition. Chiara would jump at the chance to do it again should she have the absolutely perfect song. This is something that she stated on Euromix, hosted by Frederick Zammit on Radju Malta earlier this month.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RsC4_7pMOSY

Glen Vella is a true fan of the Eurovision Song Contest and one has to denote that he won the national selection relatively quickly, having participated as a soloist on only three occasions in total. His winning entry, One Life composed by Paul Giordimaina to the lyrics of Fleur Balzan was a decent effort but nevertheless, lacked that special quality which would have taken it into the final at the international event. It is true that he missed out only by one (1) point but nevertheless, I was never too keen on the actual song itself. He has spoken about returning time and time again and was also present in Sweden earlier this year where he was invited to perform by fans of the event.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h_VqeQe_xa0

Kurt Calleja was the surprise package of the year 2012 despite having managed to earn a reputable fan base following his second runner-up finish at the Malta Eurovision Song Contest in 2011. Following his participation within the international competition with the song This Is The Night which he co-wrote alongside Johan Jämtberg and Mikael Gunnerås, which saw him reach the final and finish in twenty-first place, Kurt returned to Malta and tried to launch a proper music career. His follow-up single, that entitled Boomerang was a massive success, picked up on 89.7 Bay and earning him a double nomination as Best Solo Artist at the Bay Music Awards and Best Male Artist at the Malta Music Awards. Nevertheless, launching his album Love On Mars has proven difficult despite a successful launch concert.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EgaX5QuMGR8

Whilst Chiara, Glen Vella and Kurt Calleja could possibly throw their hat into the ring, there might be some unfinished business with former representatives; Fabrizio Faniello and Olivia Lewis. The male vocalist who represented Malta on two occasions in 2001 and 2006 respectively has just won the third biggest music competition by virtue of winning the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza with the song Aħfirli Jekk Trid composed by Minik to the lyrics of Rita Pace. On the other hand, Olivia, representative of 2007 signalled her return by making it through to the final of the International Festival of Maltese Song, the second biggest music competition in Malta. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all of the latest news about the upcoming edition of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest, organised by the Public Broadcasting Services.

Source: escflashmalta.com

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kiORqJIala8

Published in Editorials

In an interview with TVPM, upon his return from this years' edition of the Eurovision Song Contest, Anton Attard who acts as the Chief Executive Officer at the Public Broadcasting Services and the Head of Delegation revealed that Malta would return to the competition in Denmark. Indeed, the rules and regulations for the upcoming edition of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest have just been revealed to all through the evening news bulletin on Television Malta, which happens to be the most effecting broadcasting organ in the country.

At the 2013 edition of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest, Gianluca was triumphant on his debut with the track Tomorrow co-written by Boris Cezek and Dean Muscat. Despite only coming in second with the general public vote, he managed to win the jury vote and it was the right call as the entry finished in eighth (8th) place, Malta's best result internationally for eight (8) years. Malta has a rich history at the Eurovision Song Contest managing to reach the top ten for eight consecutive years between 1991 and 1998, and again for another three years between 2000 and 2002, recording successful results with Chiara and her entry The One That I Love in 1998 as well as Ira Losco and her song 7th Wonder in 2002. The nation managed another high result in 2005 as the balladeer Chiara returned for a second time with her self-penned entry Angel finishing as the first runner-up.

It has been revealed that instead of the typical twenty-four (24) semi-finalists, there will be twenty (20) on this occasion whilst the final is set to comprise of fourteen (14) finalists rather than the typical sixteen (16). Songwriters can be either local or foreign but it is imperative that the artists are Maltese or carry a Maltese Citizenship. One of the rules which has been dropped by the Public Broadcasting Services is that former representatives of the past three years could not submit entries with only Gianluca, as the last winner being unable to submit any original songs. Entries will be received by the Public Broadcasting Services till the end of October at the Creativity Hub in Gwardamangia against a payment of €150. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all the latest news.

In order to obtain a copy of the rules and regulations as issued by the Public Broadcasting Services, please send an email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and you'll receive the respective document which you will be required to download.

Source: Public Broadcasting Services

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XdCVLuz-dLo

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