Sunday, June 29, 2008

La Perrelli K.O.

Charlotte Perrelli had a break down last Friday just before she was supposed to go on stage in Sweden. The hard promowork before Belgrade, the very disappointing result (18th) when she had only one goal - to win again - after the news she didn't even make the final but was saved by the juries, and on top of that break up with husband upon return to home has just been all too much for her, it seems. A girl can only take bad news and disappointments up to some limit, and poor Charlotte seems to have reached that now... I wonder how another Swedish diva extraordinaire Carola is doing?

Friday, June 27, 2008

25.000 thank yous!

It has been 5 weeks I put the Statcounter and today I passed 25.000 pageloads, as well as 20.000 visitors! Thank you all who passed by and continue to do so!

On the spotlight: Bearecords

Stop hunting for the Eurovision related cds and dvds on various sites and Ebay: Bearecords once again has most of them. For many years Bea DeVrijn makes wonders hunting down the goods for us and sells them with very moderate (should I say "normal") prices instead of asking a fortune she in many cases could and many do on Ebay. Take for example the Israeli promopack this year... I saw someone bought it on Ebay with 80 euros.... Bea has cd singles, albums and dvds from Eurovision and from Eurovision related artists, also from various national finals. Over 3.500 titles include 33 out of this year's 43 (at the moment!). It's easier to name the ones she doesn't have as yet: San Marino, Albania, Lithuania, Belarus, Georgia, France and Spain with the most difficult of them all this year: Armenia. Have a look what she's got and complete your collections by clicking the logo on the right!

Eurovision stars in minor festivals this summer

As usual many Eurovision stars have been to most every minor festivals and competitions before Eurovision in their career and to many it opens the doors to do so after. This summer three of this year's entrants are trying their luck in Montenegrin Pjesma Mediterana or The Song of the Mediterranean: Boaz Mauda (Israel), MioDio (San Marino) and Tamara (Fyrom). In the competition are also other Eurovision veterans: Goran Karan (Croatia 2000) and Ekstra Nena (Yogoslavia 1992). More information here:
Ani Lorak instead performs in the Turkish Cesme Music Festival and Sebastien Tellier is touring Europe.

Lordi on tour

Lordi is getting back on tour for some dates this summer. Only two gigs in Finland and some in central Europe:

July 5: Waldrock 2008 (Belgum, Netherlands)
July 12: Oluset festivaali (Iisalmi, Finland)
July 25: Benatska Noc Festival (Czech Republic)
August 2: Wacken Festival W:O:A (Wacken, Germany)
August 16: The Black Swan Festival (Whitney, UK)
August 23: Rock to the river (Imatra, Finland)

Thursday, June 26, 2008

It's Moscow 2009!

.. or is it? Anyways, Svante has been to Moscow to discuss the matters with Channel One and it seems Olympiiski Indoor Arena would be the place. The dates are set to May 12 and 14 for the semis and May 16 for the final. Let's see now if this is all correct or will there be changes....

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Mr Lordi gets gold... and a piece of land!

The Dark floors DVD has sold gold in Finland so the good news is that if people didn't go to see it in movies at least they will gladly watch it at home! The DVD includes also footage from the world premier in Oulu.
Also, Mr Lordi or Tomi Putaansuu finally gets the promised piece of land from the city of Rovaniemi. He will build a house there. The chosen land lies about 20 kilometers from the center of Rovaniemi to the south in the village of Muurola. The city of Rovaniemi quickly renamed its main square as Lordi Square after the Eurovision win.
The new yet unnamed album will be released October 20, 2008. The previous album The Arockalypse including the Eurovision winning song Hard rock hallelujah has sold 350.000 copies worldwide gaining gold records in Sweden and Germany and triple-platinum in Finland. The new album will be much rockier than melodic The Arockalypse and the band will have, as usual, new masks for the new album!
Watch the latest video here:

Monday, June 23, 2008

Serj Tankian for Armenia 2009?

Serj Tankian, the solist of System of a down, declared his interest for represanting his native Armenia in the Eurovision when visiting Finland this weekend. The band's on break and Serj tours the world as a solist from New Zealand where he resides these days. System of a down has been active in a group that is trying to make Turkey confess the 1915 genocide where even up to one million people lost their lives. "The idea is very, very interesting. It would be a very good forum to talk about this. A love song would propably do better than political song however" he stated.
System of down has been very succesful in Finland where they have even scored two platinum albums. Serj was travelling from Helsinki to Seinäjoki where he performed in train. "I wanted to see this country better. I love it here, very beautiful." He is also a self confessed fan of Finnish salmiakki: "I went to a supermarket and bought all different types and brands so now I can pick up the best of them all myself!"

Serj Tarkian or System of down to represant Armenia in Russia 2009? Time will tell....

Friday, June 20, 2008

Summer f**k??!!

It's time to wish you all hyvää juhannusta or happy midsummer! The time of the year is here the sun never sets, crazy things happen during these white nights and one can recall the Estonian entry this year: How many of you noticed they actually changed the lyrics during their semifinal performance? Was it allowed btw?? Anyways, instead singing Mitäs nyt, kesävalot nyt in the Finnish refrain they went on Mitäs nyt, kesäpanot nyt.... And all you happy summernight city people, kesäpano means.... err... summer f**k! Now the abusing of that on stage piano makes perfectly sense, don't you think?

January = Euroviisut

YLE has decided to keep with the same system also in 2009. There will be three semifinals, each with 4 singers with one song only, making it a total of 12 singers/songs. Six of them will make it to the final on Saturday January 31, 2009. The same day the second chance will take place, just like this year, and two more songs will make the final.
The semifinals start already on January 9 and will be held on three Fridays.
The list of the artists, chosen by record companies, will be revealed in September.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Whatever happened to Paparizou?

From the Finnish Helena to a Greek one: La Paparizou, winner of Eurovision 2005. She has released a new album, all in Greek and it's a far cry from songs that made her famous. Where are the easy pop songs that had summerhit written all over them: My number one, Gigolo, Mambo and all Antique stuff? The album is rather dark and gloomy, rather rockish with lots of guitars. Actually her voice, darker than ever, fits it beautifully. With first listenings a couple of songs like Pirotexnimata and Papeles Mijados stand out but still.... a new Mambo they are not. All this said, it is not a bad album at all. Just not what I would expect from her and time will tell if this change of direction will pay off in the future! (Or is she coming with an album in English filled with bubblegum summer pop later?)

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Katri Helena strikes it rich

Katri Helena has been one of the leading ladies of Finnish music since the 1960's and these days she's the best earning female singer, and altogether second only to Kari Tapio. Jari Sillanpää completes the top-3. Both Katri and Jari have been very clever investing the money they earn in their companies, and paying themselves only enough (less than 9% of the income) to avoid the huge taxes in Finland. In Katri's case this means that for the fourth year in a row she has taken around 80.000 euros cash taxfree. Rest of the money lies in properties like the apartment in Helsinki and a villa near Porvoo. Jari Sillanpää has a penthouse in Helsinki, a mansion outside Helsinki and a villa in Haparanda....

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Hanna Pakarinen returns!

Hanna, who has been enjoying a long break with a very few occasional gigs (like Euroviisut 2008 final) will perform in Helsinki's On the Rocks on this Thursday night and on Friday in Pori for the midsummer night's festival. The set will include also some new material! One can only hope she has recovered from the Bon Jovi concert yesterday in Olympic stadium in Helsinki though....
Meanwhile she is leading the poll of who is going to win the Iskelmä-Finlandia Award later this summer. If she wins she will be the youngest winner ever.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

EDC: Maria and Mikko for Finland

The winning pair of Tanssii tähtien kanssa or Dances with stars Maria Lund and Mikko Ahti will represant Finland in the Eurovision Dance Contest in Glasgow in September. As we all well remember Finland's Katja Koukkula and Jussi Väänänen won last year. Maria Lund is the daughter of late legendary Tamara Lund (she did Euroviisut in the 1960's) and singer herself.

Dima Bilan - The album

The single Believe has now been released in Europe... Dima Bilan has finally released the long awaited album in English.... Written and produced by Timbaland team it was recorded in Los Angeles and Philadephia and includes a duet with Nelly Furtado. American release is scheduled later this year, as well as a Spanish version for the Latin America. (I guess this isn't the sleeve though....)

The fear is here - on DVD

The Lordi motion picture, Dark floors, has been released on DVD in Finland. The film wasn't in Finland the megasuccess they hoped for - only 20.000 viewers - but then it's a horror movie and they never did so well in theaters. The DVD will be released also in the USA in time for the halloween by Ghost House Underground, a specialist on horror. The deal is worth of "hundreds of thousends of dollars" and the DVD should make it the US Top-50 easily. Meanwhile Lordi is in the studios recording the new album....

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Celine Dion Vs Kylie Minogue

The fate had it that both Celine Dion and Kylie Minogue came to Hartwall Arena on their very first visits to Finland the same week. While Celine sold all out within hours even with over priced tickets (cheapest 109 euros) Kylie tickets were still available at the door but she sold out, too. The Celine concert was described by the papers as "static, cold, very Las Vegas and badly mixed with severe sound problems and Ms Dion's mind elsewhere" I was there to witness Kylie take over. She was fantastic! The stage was wonderful and whoever designed it and did the lightning should be hired for Moscow 2009 immediately! Kylie was enjoying every moment as much as we did, sung suprisingly well and the whole show was pure nirvana for all its 3 hours. And the papers agreed for once with me. Only one question remains: How do you describe a feeling?

Everything from cheerleaders to love boat and Copacabana....
How do you describe a feeling?
From Japanese setting to disco sounds of In your eyes and Your disco needs you.... From ballad version of I believe in you to original mix of I should be so lucky that really brought the house down. All those 40somethings getting up on their feet and wild....

Tuesday, June 03, 2008


I'm off to Rome for some holidays and will be back sooner than you know so come back after 13th! There might be some Kylie news then. Nothing to do with Eurovision but wouldn't she be perfect to rescue UK from the bottom-5? And Celine Dion will be in Helsinki next week, too, but I'm not. Too bad! See you all!

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Gisela wins Barbara Dex Award

Andorra's Gisela didn't quite impress the televoters in the first semifinal this year with her Casanova but the fans surely noticed her self designed dress and she was a clear winner of Barbara Dex Award, the award for the worst dressed artists in the Eurovision 2008. She beats Belgium's Ishtar and Spain's Rodolfo clearly getting 104 votes against their 30 and 23. Therefor she enters the hall of fame of bad taste with Verka Serduchka, Nonstop, Martin Vusic, Debbie Scerri and Guildo Horn, just to name a few. The award was launched back in 1997. See the full winners list here

Watch the award winning creation here:

Viewing figures on the rise

Eurovision song contest 2008 was a success if you look at the numbers. More than 90 million people watched the contest live in Europe, and a few more millions can be added from Australia, New Zealand and other countries in Asia and Americas. Plus the internet viewers all over the world. More than 8 million votes were given (6 of them in the final), a new record.

In some markets the contest made numbers compearable to the contest's golden age: Norway 1.5 million, Finland 1,2 million and Portugal 1,7 million. Obviously the host country Serbia did very well, too: 4,5 million. Also Spain was takén over my Eurovision with 9,3 million viewers, the same number UK managed to gather. Germany stopped at 6,4 million while France kept declining with only 3,1 million this year....

Marcel Bezençon Awards 2008

I have completely forgotten to post about the Marcel Bezençon Awards announced in the After party as usual. Marcel (1907-1981) was the father of Eurovision song contest. He was until 1970 the director of EBU and created Eurovision based on Sanremo festival. However, to the point:

The composers present in Belgrade voted for their favourite and this year's Composer's Award goes to Andrei Tudor and his song Pe-o margine de lume, the Romanian entry.

Previous Eurovision winners have also voted for Artistic Award for the best performer and the lucky winner is Ukraine's Ani Lorak.

Accreditated press in Belgrade voted for Portugal's entry Senhora do mar by Vania Fernandez as the best song or Press Award.

Finally, the readers of website were able to vote for the Fan Award, given to an artist under 25 years. Armenia's Sirusho and Qele qele took this one home.
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