Tuesday, September 27, 2016

FRANCE: PATRICIA KAAS IS BACK! NEW ALBUM AND TOUR

Patricia Kaas is back! I mean the Patricia who's not doing cabaret or paying hommage to Edith Piaf. She's back as herself in a new album (propably titled La langue que je parle) to be released in November, her first of that kind since 2003's Sexe fort. Even if 13 years cap may sound a lot she's been busy in between with Kabaret album (2009) and Kaas chante Piaf (2012), Eurovision song contest 2009 and two world tour,s writing an autobiography L'Ombre de ma voix..... 
Here are the first two singles off the new album:
She will be touring from January 2017 again all over France

Monday, September 26, 2016

ESC 2017 AUSTRIA: RUSSKAJA SELECTED? AUSTRIA GOING NUTS AGAIN?

And while we are at rumors here's another one. Austria is going internal this time (last time was with Conchita, btw). They have given us weird stuff from Alf Poier to Träckshittaz and Global Kryner, not forgetting some rather challenging stagings over the decades. Now it seems they want to challenge us again after the beauty and elegance of Conchita and Zoe with something else. So what would be more effective than sending a Russian Turbo Polka metal band to Ukraine? It's been awhie we had some crazy ska in Eurovision anyways.... 
The band is often featured in the ORF late night entertainment shows as party band and therefor their selection would make more than sense - keep it in the family! - and here are their efforts with the one and only Conchita Wurst for example:

ESC 2017 BELGIUM: PIERRE LIZÉE OR OLIVIER KAYE FOR KYIV?

Just like neighbouring the Netherlands also Belgium seems to have found the right cards for the Eurovision success in the past years. And if it works, why change it? Once again they are apparently selecting internally the artist and once again from The Voice contestants. 
Two very different artists with different styles are rumored to be the ones they are trying to figure out who would guarantee a better success and keep Belgium in the Top-10 for the third consegutive year.
20-year-old Pierre Lizée would follow the footsteps of Loic Nottet by being a bit on the alternative side and has gained success and fame after the show despite making only the semifinal.
23-year-old Olivier Kaye did make the final, and has belted out various musical styles with ease, and may have not such a clear genre and profile as Pierre and is more traditional.
It is reported songs are being written and produced for both artists so in the end it might be a question who gets a better and more suitable song and whole package for Kyiv, but one thing is for sure: Belgium continues to showcase new fresh talents again. 

Sunday, September 25, 2016

ITALY: FRANCESCA MICHIELIN RELEASES ALMENO TU

Francesca Michielin releases sixth single off her album di20 (re-released as di20are) following L'amore esiste, Battito di ciglia, Lontano, her Eurovision 2016 entry Nessun grado di separazione and Un cuore in due. Almeno tu is also on a soundtrack of Italian film Piuma directed by Roan Johnson, while Francesca will hit the road in october with her new tour. 

ITALY: MARCO MENGONI - NEW ALBUM AND EUROPEAN TOUR

One would have thought Marco Mengoni would like to take some time off after releasing two albums last year, scoring countless hits, touring Italy with two sold out tours and all the rest but no. In October  comes a new album that follows the multiplatinum success of Parole in circolo and Le cose che non ho (the 5th and 8th most sold albums in Italy in 2015).
The new leg of his tour #MengoniLive2016 starts on November 12 with ten dates in Italy and then continues to Lugano (CH), Frankfurt (D), Brussels (B), Amsterdam (NL), Paris (F), Luxembourg, Zurich (CH), Köln (D), Wien (A) and Warzaw (PL) on December 20, 2016. 

Friday, September 23, 2016

NEW RELEASES FROM SAADE, MARGARET, ANOUK AND LOBODA

Here are again some new releases from Eurovision stars and wannabes. Bad boy Saade is apparently having success in Russia after dropping his first name and change of musical style. I kinda like it. Better than before for sure! Margaret keeps delivering excellent pop tunes and Elephant is another good example. Maybe not as catchy as Cool me down that has been playing also on Finnish radio waves quite a lot. Anouk goes her own way with Down daddy down and it's interesting at least. And Ukrainian (Svetlana) Loboda is having maybe the biggest hit of her long career on home soil. And Russia!

Thursday, September 22, 2016

ESC 2016: JAMALA RELEASES 1944 VIDEO

Better late than never, here it is finally: the video for the Eurovision song contest 2016 winner, Ukraine's Jamala and 1944. Very suggestive simple one, that fits perfectly the mood of the song. Well done!

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

MALTA: THE QUEEN OF L-GHANJA TAL-POPLU - CORAZÓN MIZZI!

If The Travellers have proven recently one can do great singing in Maltese there's also someone else doing great stuff: Corazón Mizzi. While in Malta I was looking for some Maltese CDs only to find out they pretty much don't exist, and the most helpful staff in legendary D'Amato - probably the world's oldest record store today - suggested me Corazón's Hawn jien (2014 album). Having nothing else really to bring home I decided to go or it without even realizing it is the Corazón from Maltese Eurovision selections. And what a find it was! Thank you D'Amato!
But let's start from the obvious: Eurovision. Corazón has been offering us songs in the Maltese Eurovision selection since 2009, actually making her best result this year with Falling glass, one of my favorites btw. I also liked last year's Secretly but that failed even the final.
But Corazón's true calling is singer-songwriter in Maltese as this excellent album clearly shows. We have all heard about L-Għanja tal-Poplu or Festival tal-Kanzunetta Maltija, a song contest for original songs in Maltese running since 1973 where occasional Eurovision stars make an appearance singing in their native. Corazón is the Queen of this contest winning it for the fourth time this year! Isn't it time to drop the English and songs written by others altogether and go for Europe in self written Maltese instead? If The Travellers aren't up for it, Corazón please give it a try!
Check out more Corazón songs after the jump......

SWEDEN: MELODIFESTIVALEN 2017 GETS 2.478 ENTRIES

The hunt is on in Sweden, too, and the submission period is over. This year 2.478 entries arrived in time, slightly more than last year. Karin Gunnarsson is the new woman in charge at this point and she tells their aim is to get as many new songwriters in as possible, those who have never participated before and Christer Björkman says it's a bit easier this year as half the songs last year had chart success after MF. 
"Karin's exactly what we've been looking for. She has both the innovative thinking that knowledge of the industry and sense of what Melodifestivalen needs"  says Christer.
"New artists, songs and sound are a never ending source which year after year continues to fascinate and interest me. It is a privilege to work and share it to a large and enthusiastic audience. I'm incredibly proud to be a part of SVT and the Eurovision Song Contest", says Karin.
Karin has worked at Sveriges Radio P3 as music editor for over ten years with music-related projects P3 Gold, Musikhjälpen and P3 Love tour. 2013 was Karin's first year in Melodifestivalen selection panel and she has participated in the jury since.

Melodifestivalen continues with its familiar formula:
Semifinal one - February 4, 2017  - Gothenburg
Semifinal two - February 11, 2017 - Malmö
Semifinal three - February 18, 2017 - Växjö
Semifinal four - February 25, 2017 - Skellefteå
Second Chance round - March 4, 2017 - Linköping
Final - March 11, 2017 - Stockholm

Monday, September 19, 2016

ESC 2016 IN STOCKHOLM AN AWARD WINNING ECONOMICAL SUCCESS

The Eurovision song contest 2016 didn't only win the Rose d'Or as the best entertaining programme beating other 400 programmes from 33 countries. Earlier it also won Kristallen award aka the Swedish Emmy as the best entertainment show on tv. 
It has been also an economical success for the city of  Stockholm. The event's turnover ended at 263 million (27,5 million euros), the money visitors spent in hotels, food and entertainment. "We had high expectations investing 100 million (10,5 million euros) and we wanted results. They were achieved", says the City of Stockholm's Karin Wanngård.
Among other things they invested on the "city dressing" or decorating the city in the Eurovision theme. An example of this was the crossings that played the winning songs "Euphoria" and "Heroes." Something that was appreciated by the fans.
Awards and money but also the public opinion was a success: Eight out of ten visitors gave Stockholm honors as the host city and seven out of ten Stockholmers were pleased that the event was held in their hometown.
Now that's a kind of success that is hard to follow up..... Hello, Kyiv?

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