Saturday, October 22, 2016


The 60 Newcomers are already online for the next Sanremo festival. Out of these the jury will select 12 in the live auditions in Rome for the prime time live show on Raiuno December 10, 2016 where six of them will qualify for the festival itself, to be joined by the two winners from AreaSanremo selection. 
It's worth remembering that according the rules this year should the eventual winner of Sanremo festival decline the Eurovision ticket, these newcomers are in game as well as Rai will pick up someone else from the festival. It might as well be the Newcomers winner just like happened with Raphael Gualazzi....
Once again many names from the other reality and talent shows: 8 are from The Voice (Alberto Guarrasi, Cristiano Turrini, Dylan Magon, Carola Campagna, Frances Alina Ascione, Francesco Guasti, Tommaso Pini, Frè Monti), also 8 from Amici, including two winners (Chiara Grispo, Gerardo Pulli, Valeria Romitelli, Julia Vertaldi, Lele, Luca Tudisca, La Rua, Martha Rossi), and Enrico Nigiotti from the X Factor. 
Other already familiar names are Lello Morra, Marianne Mirage, Gabri-El, Flo, Riky Anelli, Noemi Smorra, Marie and the Sun, and of course also the winner of Castrocaro 2016 Ethan Lara

You can listen to all their entries here

Friday, October 21, 2016


Here he is, next year's first confirmed artist for the Eurovision song contest 2017 in Kyiv. Cyprus will again order a song from Swedish Thomas G:son and it will be sung by Hovig, and will be revealed later.
Hovig Demirjian (27) is a Cypriot-Armenian and no stranger to Eurovision as he has tried to get there twice before in the Cypriot selections, 2010 with Goodbye (3rd) and 2015 with Stone in a river (4th). Before that he did X Factor Greece.


ABBA's Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus are planning and considering a possible comeback concerts and tour with the British music mogul Simon Fuller - as holograms. "Nobody wants to see us old people on stage" they have stated many times before and are searching through the material from their 1977 and 1979 world tours that could possible used for the project. Techically it would be possible as likes of Elvis Presley, Michael Jackson and Frank Sinatra regularly keep on performing in Las Vegas shows these days.
Björn and Benny and their represants don't want to comment the plans at the moment except with "there are always all kinds of plans in the air".... 
Meanwhile you can enjoy them as holograms in Stockholm's ABBA Museum. 

Thursday, October 20, 2016


The rules for the 67th Sanremo festival are out and once again it is used as the platform for the Italian entry - or rather the entrant as nothing is said about the song - for the Eurovision song contest in Kyiv. The winner has the option to fly the Italian flag if (s)he wants to and is the first choice. In case of "no, grazie" by the winner Rai will choose internally whoever they think suitable unlike in 2016 when it clearly stated the runner up would be next in line and gave us Francesca Michielin when Stadio declined the offer.
Another interesting step is shortening the entries. Now for the Big category it is set to max 3:30, and for the Newcomers 3:00. Sounds very Eurovisionesque, doesn't it?
Some changes in the line up of the evenings, too.
All the 20 Big aka Campioni will perform already the first night and be voted 50-50 by televote-press. Ten of them will perform again on 2nd and 3rd night each with the same voting system. After counting the votes for these two nights six songs will go directly to the final, while the other four will have a Second Chance on the 4th night.
The 8 newcomers will perform on the 2nd and 3rd night, four each and two qualifying for the 4th night's final where they have due duels, and then the superfinal. Same voting system as for the Big.
The 4th night or Friday sees the 12 already qualified artists perform covers and the 8 others fight for the remaining 3 places in the final with zeroed votes so it all begins from the start for them with televote, jury vote and demoscopic jury vote. 
In the final there will be then 15 songs, the beforementioned 3-way voting system and zeroed votes from the previous nights. The top-3 will have a superfinal, again with the 3-way voting and zeroed votes.
Sanremo number 67 ccomes from Teatro Ariston in Sanremo from 7 to 11 February, 2017. For the third year in a row Carlo Conti is hosting and in charge. His co-hostess will be most likely Laura Pausini if you believe the rumors and gossip.


Ricchi e Poveri will be celebrating its 50th anniversary in business next year but since few months the trio has become a duo, when Franco Gatti (74) decided to leave the group he was part for over 48 years. 
 "I don't have the age anymore to travel all over the world. And since the death of my son it just hasn't been the same" 
The other member Angela and Angelo fully understand and go on as duo.
Franco's son, only 22.year-old, was found dead the night before Sanremo 2013 where the group was due to perform and accept an award for their musical career. In the funeral the trio became quartet once more, as also Marina was present. 
Ricchi e Poveri was founded as singing group back in 1967 in Genoa, north-west of Italy. Originally a quartet including Franco Gatti, Angela Brambati, Angelo Sorgiu and Marina Occhiena came to spotlight in 1968 and several Sanremo appearences in the early 1970's (with classics like Che sarà) made them household name in Italy. 
In 1978 they represented Italy at the Eurovision song contest with Questo amore, and in 1981 scored an European wide hit with Sará perche ti amo, from that year's Sanremo festival. Just before Sanremo Marina leaves the group - apparently after a cat fight with Angela over a man, but the trio's success continues with M'innamoro di te all over Europe. In 1985 they finally win Sanremo with Se m'innamoro
In the 1990's they toured the world from Albania to Australia and from South America to Georgia. And finally in the 2000's they have been very popular in Russia and Eastern Europe with tours and sold out concerts. 
Add some reality television at home, various life time awards and hommages and even a musical based on their songs..... Over 20 million reords sold, 12 Sanremos with one victory and two second places. 
The story's not over yet. 

Wednesday, October 19, 2016


Australia has been in already two years and most propably will be present also in Kyiv despite launching their our Asiavision next year. The decision to invite them - or rather let them in - is highly critizised by Eurovision purists but this blogger thinks it's just fine. But I would still rather prefer a different solution.....
Now that EBU has changed the rules also on paper by 

"Associates of the EBU, outside of the European Broadcasting Area, may also be eligible to enter the Eurovision Song Contest. Such decisions are taken by the Reference Group, the governing body of the Eurovision Song Contest, on a case by case basis."

I would propose a rotation. Every year a country outside Europe that wants to take part would be invited as a special guest, just like Australia the first time. Or maybe even several depending on the number of the regular countries participating, after all the maximum is set to 46 countries by EBU. If several regulars decided to step down, why not fill their slots with others? Anyways, a regular old Eurovision countries would always have a priviledge and should not stay home and give their place to any associate unwillingly. 
Australia, Canada, USA, China, Cuba, Kazakhstan, New Zealand and South Africa might be thrilled to do so while Iran, Chile, Korea, Mauritius, Japan, Bangladesh, Japan, Malaysia and Hong Kong maybe not so much. 
For the 2017 edition apparently 40 countries have so far confirmed their participation, 42 if we count in San Marino and Australia. If there are going to be any new countries debuting they would be Kosovo and/or Kazakhstan, or both. 

Saturday, October 15, 2016


SMRTV presented its programming for the next season and the much anticipated confirmation for the participation didn't materialize, and with it naturally not the artist nor the song, as announced by some sources earlier this week. 
Carlo Romeo underlined however it's important to San Marino to be there and be seen by 200 million viewers, and launched a message to all producers all over Europe to come forward and work preferably with a Sammarinese artist, as "without a producer we can't do it". With that he also left in doubt the microstate's presence in Kiev 2017 but Head of Delegation Alessandro Capicchioni had a cheeky grin behind him so .... No news is good news?
Serhat was present in a video message and also Valentina Monetta's final place was remembered.


Cristal Snow is releasing a new song and video every October week and plans to be just as gay as he wants to. The message is that everyone can be whatever they want to be, and it's also against the fact that in 2016 one's sexuality is still an issue. 
"I'm gonna sing about love until I die, and the only kind of love I know is that for a man. I don't see any point of pretending in videos and have some hot chicks in them. I had a huge fight in family about homosexuality when Pekka Haavisto was running for president (He got to second round and came close second. Ed.note). The issue being what a gay man can do and can't do, and can a gay man be president. That fight lasted for a couple of years. I also get feedback in social medias why I have to be so gay and I'm like fuck it! I'm as gay as I want to be! But no one has right to out other people, it must come from within."
Cristal Snow competed in UMK2016 with Love is blind and in Euroviisut 2008 with Can't save me

Friday, October 14, 2016


Sai che is Marco Mengoni's new song and video from forthcoming live album next month that includes some new tracks and a duet.....


Cat Cat is back with a new single and a new album is on its way to celebrate their 25th year in the business. The sisters have been doing gigs all these years along with raising families and other jobs. Virpi has been through a highly public and nasty divorce from singer Tauski. She tells she sold everything but her piano and artistic wardrobe to cover the costs. But the girls don't have the legendry Dublin Eurovision 1994 dresses - YLE refuses to sell them to them. When needed they rent them and "do a watermelon diet for days" to fit back in.  
They also tell they have been asked for gigs abroad as well over the years - Spain, Sweden and Germany - for various Eurovision events but have refused so far as they feel Finland is enough. With the anniversary celebrations this might change though so you might see them somewhere next year if asked. They also tell they are more secure now than when younger and these days it's guys at gigs who strip off their shirts.....


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