Mia Renwall, a familiar name from The Voice, has the honor to belt out this year's official Pride tune.
Thursday, June 30, 2016
Wednesday, June 29, 2016
Eurogames 2016 are happening as we speak in Helsinki and the Eurogames village has been set to the city center, in the Helsinki people's living room next to Music Hall. Tonight the opening ceremony will take place and yes, they are all there:
Krista Siegfrids (ESC 2013),
Softengine (ESC 2014),
Sandhja (ESC 2016),
UMK runner up Mikael Saari and
eternal runner up in everything Saara Aalto.
Even Tuuli Ukkonen of UMK fame makes an appearance.
Altogether 14 disciplines, 1500 athletes from 40 countries all around the globe it's a little bit like Eurovision bubble. It's also the Pride week and Saturday's parade will be propably the biggest Finland has seen yet, and the Closing party will be the biggest gay event ever held in Finland.
And yes, Krista is there, too!
Australian sisters Miriam and Olivia have got Kylie, Jake and Nile for their latest and it's pretty fantastic! Strangely this seems to have passed totally unnoticed. Their songwriting CV is impressive and yes, you have heard their songs for sure - just not knowing it's written by them. What's there not to love about this one?
Tuesday, June 28, 2016
Roxette may have stopped performing live for good, but they keep delivering great tracks. French Sebastien Drums has remixed their latest Some other summer turning it into a great dance track for summer. Even if it was released already for winter.....
Monday, June 27, 2016
French-Jamaican DJ Willy William returns with a song full of summer. It's off his debut solo album, after being collaborating with most everyone for the past 5-6 years.
Sunday, June 26, 2016
British-Norwegian producer Alan Walker's Sing me to sleep some has some sort of hypnotic about it. Maybe it's vocalist Iselin Solheim? This follows Faded, that was a success all over Nordics and in some other European charts as well....
Saturday, June 25, 2016
One of the biggest hits this season in Latin America is making its way to the European radiowaves, too. An annoyingingly nice mix of different sounds with a lot of Latin flavor and Luciana's interesting voice. Baila baila!
Friday, June 24, 2016
The bidding for the host city for the Eurovision song contest 2017 in Ukraine has officially started. The cities have time until July 8 to submit their entry. The next week NTU will have a look at the submissions and showcase the best ones to the Organizing committee that will pick up to finalists by July 22 that will be then presented to EBU. After visits to the finalist we will know on August 1, 2016 the next host city.
Ukrainians voted in a poll Lviv as their favorite followed by Kiev, that would be most likely NTU's and EBU's favorite unless the others come up with something very interesting and spectacular.
Besides beforementioned Kiev and Lviv also Odessa, Cherkasy, Dnipro, Kherson and Vinnytsia have expressed their interest.... This blogger still wants Lviv.....
And what doess it take to host Eurovision? Below are some numbers to consider:
Arena with a capacity of at least 7000
Official hotels of European standards within easy reach from the arena providing at least 2000 rooms; 1000 for the official delegations, and 1000 for the fans and media.
General safety of the participants, media and fans.
Press center for at least 1550 journalists with modern equipment, wi-fi etc
Interesting side programming for the delegations free time
Welcome party for at least 2100 people, including all delegations
After party for at least 3000 people, including all delegations
Meanwhile Ukraine has asked to change the provisional dates a week earlier: semifinal one on May 9, semifinal two on May 11 and the grand final on May 13, meaning the Eurovision rehearsals would start on April 30, 2017.
The Swedish boyband is aiming on Latin American market with the Spanish version of My girl, with the help of Danny Saucedo. One of the guys is Venezuelan born, and Danny is half Bolivian so why not? It's not the first time for him singing in Spanish, even if he has changed lately from English to Swedish. Remember Todo el mundo (Dancing in the streets)?
Thursday, June 23, 2016
Last year Alvaro was under the same summer sun with El mismo sol, this year he's got a summer girl named Sofia. Equally catchy and summery, and fabulously Cuban video to go with it.
Wednesday, June 22, 2016
Old news, I know. YLE announced already during (and maybe even before) Stockholm and especially after the semifinal disaster that UMK will be back in 2017 and used as the selection method for the Eurovision song contest 2017 despite all harsh critic by certain people.
Anyways, reading the rules published today there seems to be no major changes. Again the song cannot be sent to any other country's selection, the artist can send only one song, but can be a member of a group for another while the authors can send as many songs as they want to, and even be under 16. At least one of the authors and one of the solist(s) must be a Finnish citizen or permanent residence. Once again music videos will be produced for every finalist, and YLE's chosen producer will help to produce the final version of the song, if they don't have their own production team and label behind them.
Oh, one thing might change: there's no mention of semifinals and votings. Will there be only the final?
Oh, one thing might change: there's no mention of semifinals and votings. Will there be only the final?
All YLE keeps all the rights and stuff. As always.
The song submission will take place from September 1 (noon Finnish time) to September 5 (noon Finnish time). All the rules and more information here.
Dima Bilan and a summer hit is inseparable. This is his 22nd Top-20 hit in Russia. He's got at least one every years since 2004. Not bad. It's another mid tempo atmospheric tune, very typical for him and Russian pop. Very enjoyable and laidback. Perfect for summer evening......
Tuesday, June 21, 2016
Monday, June 20, 2016
Two Eurovision veterans have been awarded as Best Male and Best Female artist in Italy: Marco Mengoni and Emma. They won their respective categories, meaning Emma beat this year's entrant Francesca Michielin but her time will come.... The Best Band went to Benji & Fede, who also won the Best New Artist.
The Best Performance went to The Kolors, who caused a scandal when the singer spit on the camera while performing and then didn't show up to collect their award in front of a booing audience. Not their best performance last night was it?
Both Benji & Fede and The Kolors also won another minor award this blogger has no clue what they are about....
Carola kicks of the sumer leg of her Min bästa... tour following the hugely popular and sold out Christmas editions and the best of tour last year. This summer some of the concerts are a joint affair with another Eurovision song contest winner, Månss Zelmerlöw. Are you ready?
July 1 - Västerås
July 15 - Varberg - with Måns Zelmerlöw
July 29 - Lysekil
August 3 - Halmstad
August 12 - Stenungsund - with Måns Zelmerlöw and Peg Parnevik
August 13 - Helsinki (Finland)
August 14 - Floda - with Måns Zelmerlöw and Peg Parnevik
Sunday, June 19, 2016
KendjiGirac has been releasing hit songs for two years now one after another, and this is the one for this summer from his second album Ensemble. Another top-10 in France, and this time he collaborates with popular Comorian-French rapper Soprano. French, Spanish, latin rhythms, gipsy and rap - but it works out fine!
After the qualification for the final by San Marino (2014) and Czech Republic (2016) there's only one country left that has never made it: Andorra. And as Andorra seems to have no intention to participate again in the Eurovision song contest - sadly - after their six year run of misfortunes, let's have a look what they did offer us during those years 2004-2009.
They debuted in 2004 with Marta Roure and Jugarem a estimar-nos, the first ever song in the contest in Catalan. She scored 12 points in the semifinal (all of them from Spain!) and places 18th leaving behind Belarus, Monaco, Slovenia and Switzerland. Marta released her debut album shortly after but has since disappeared, at least from the internet.
The year after Dutch born hotel director Marian van de Wal had the honors with Anabel Conde in the backing vocals with La mirada interior. She scored 27 points (10 from Spain and 7 from the Netherlands, and 6 from Albania and 4 from Moldova), that was enough for the 23rd place beating Monaco (again!) and Lithuania. Nothing is heard of her ever since.....
Jennifer Serrano aka Jenny, a waitress was sent to Athens with Sense tu. She came last with the 8 points from Spain only. No wonder seeing the staging....
After three failures that had already made Andorra famous for their rather questionable fashion sense and staging attemps things were looking up when Anonymous punk-rock boyband was sent to Helsinki 2007 with Salvem el món. They were considered a pretty sure qualifier and were hugely popular in the host city and regular sight in the parties always being the last ones to leave. However, their 80 points scored were enough only for the 12th place in the semifinal (that was murder that year with 28 countries and only 10 making it) and missing the final only by 8-9 points. A total of 19 countries voted for them with the obvious 12 from Spain. The band enjoyed some fame and gigs in Europe afterwards. Today Niki Francesca, the lead singer goes by as Nick Gain and his story continues here.....
After that reasonable success Andorra turned into big guns and sent Gisela, a familiar name from a Spanish talent show who was enjoying success at the time. Casanova was a fan favorite and #2 hit in Spain. Yet she failed to conquer the rest of the Europe - maybe too stunned for the staging and look? - and scored only 22 points in the semifinal and finished 18th. Spain gave her of course 12 points, and five other countries some small points. Her career continues here.
In 2009 they turned to Susanne Georgi, a Danish Andorra based singer who already had tried her luck in the Danish selections as My & My with her sister. They had also scored some European hits before. La teva decisió (Get a life). She scored only 8 points in the semifinal (from Turkey, Malta and Portugal) and finished 15th.
And after that they decided to get a life and leave Eurovision. In 2011 they were planning to leave EBU altogether but stayed in the end. They have no intention to come back to the contest anytime soon......
Check out their preview videos by clicking the titles above and their live performances under the jump... I'm still wondering who did Marta's hair, and the make up in 2005? And those outfits in 2005 and 2006? They are all so wrong in so many ways.... not to mention the choreographies.... Anonymous stands out among these six being the only act where everything was right, the other entries were quite disastrous vocally and/or staging all wrong. But this said, I would love to have Andorra back!
Saturday, June 18, 2016
Madh (or Marco Cappai) made himself known in the X Factor Italy in 2014, and has since been going his own, very un-Italian way that is intriguing, interesting and exciting. Like Powerlife. His debut was Sayonara followed by River. Not forgetting fabulous In cerca di un senso, that wasn't taken to Sanremo Giovani 2016. That's quite scandalous, me thinks.
Friday, June 17, 2016
Hanna Pakarinen is releasing her new album Synnyin elän kuolen (I was born I live I die) next September 9 and it's a cover album of late Carola's songs (not the Swedish one but the Finnish one). Carola scored hits also with covers back in the day and one of the biggest ones was the Eurovision 1971 winner Un banc, un armbre, une rue for Monaco and it is the second single off the album, titled in Finnish Penkki, puu ja puistotie. The first single was Herrojen kanssa pellonlaidassa.
But before that her fans have a chance to relisten all the songs she has ever recorded solo (with the new album they are already 77) live on webstream and Periscope on her Facebook page every Tuesday. All new acoustic live versions with guitarist Jaakko Kääriäinen.
Miro Kanth is a new name to the scene as he moves from the bands, songwriting and production to the spot light. This blogger declares this Iloo as the song of the summer; the title translates to "joy" and indeed it's full of sunshine, joy and happiness.... all things that make summer (and life in general). This could become a new Silkkii. Love the rhythm, the lyrics... everything about it!
(And yes, he is Vilikasper's brother)
Thursday, June 16, 2016
The 2016 Eurovision song contest organizers didn't manage it - or any of the previous ones either nor those offering them millions of dollars - but they seem to get together for birthdays, the way the old friends do. Back in 1999 they performed together in a private party for Görel Hansel's 50th birthday, and now to celebrate the first meeting of Björn and Benny 50 years ago. Venue was Stockholm's Bern's Salonger and once again in a private setting but today even they can't stop the cell phone videos and social medias. Enjoy the magic of Frida's and Agnetha's voices again.
Allsång på Skansen, the hugely popular sing-a-long summer show in Sweden has a new hostess this year: Sanna Nielsen. She takes over from Petra Marklund (2014-2015) and Måns Zelmerlöw (2011-2013) who hosted the show the previous years.
The show started already back in 1935 and since 1979 has been on television as well. These days, every Tuesday some 10.00-25.500 people gather around to Skansen in Stockholm to be part of the show and a few million Swedes (and Finns) watch it on television.
This year's guest list is rich with Eurovision and Melodifestivalen stars as usual:
June 28: Frans and BAO (Benny Andersson Orchester)
July 5: Malena Ernman and Oscar Zia
July 19: SaRaha, Anders Glenmark, Orup, Sonja Alden
July 26: Jamala
August 2: Martin Stenmarck
August 9: Lill-Babs
August 16: Lill Lindfors
along with all the other artists from Veronica Maggio to Lisa Nilsson, Laleh and Zara Larsson.