Friday, May 26, 2017

ITALY: NINA ZILLI RELEASES MI HAI FATTO FARE TARDI

Also Nina Zilli is feeling the summer as her new single is very summery reggae inspired tune. This is her first release since 2015 and anticipated a new album. Hooray!

FINLAND: WHAT IF HANNA PAKARINEN SUNG SUNRISE AVENUE'S FOREVER YOURS IN EUROVISION 2007?

A curious details was revealed by Sunrise Avenue's Samu Haber in the popular Vain elämää show, where artists spend a week together and every night cover each others songs between stories of their career and life. On Samu's night Laura Voutilainen had picked Forever yours to cover and Samu told:

"After Lordi won Eurovision in 2006, we were writing a song to Hanna Pakarinen for Eurovision and the demo sounded pretty much like Forever yours. When I played it to the record company people telling this would be on our second album's first single they insisted we record it and it was added to the debut album's special Gold version instead."

So, if the record label didn't like the song so much it could have been one of the two Hanna Pakarinen songs in Euroviisut 2007 and propably Finland's entry as well at home in Helsinki 2007. Hanna never recorded it, of course, but Laura Voutilainen gave an outstanding performance of it in the show first solo, and then as a duet with Samu as he picked it as his favorite out of the six covers of his songs. Check them out here (hopefully available abroad.....)

Curiously Sunrise Avenue has been nominated by many after yet another non-qualification in Eurovision as a suitable Eurovision entrant for Finland..... but we have UMK2018 coming up, so no way....


RUSSIA: DIMA BILAN RELEASES LABYRINTH

Eurovision song contest 2008 winner Dima Bilan keeps on releasing new songs and here comes the latest, Labyrinth (Лабиринты). It's another highly enjoyable Bilan track and his 36th official single already but the first one of 2017. 

NORWAY: ALEXANDER RYBAK IS LOOKING YOUR WAY WITH PHILIP CECIL

Alexander Rybak is having a very productive perios! After the quite wonderful covers of both 1944 and Amar pelos dois he has released Looking my way with Norwegian EDM artist Philip Cecil and while his violin is there it's a bit different sounding affair and his singing is new and fresh. And extremely catchy! Well done!

FRANCE: AMIR HAS NO VACANCY WITH ONEREPUBLIC

Amir has teamed up with American OneRepubic for their French version of No vacancy, who already have released the Spanish one with Colombian singer Sebastian Yatra. Amir fits in like a glove and there's no reason to believe this wouldn't become a huge summer hit...... Dansons!

FINLAND: WANT TO HAVE A TASTE OF CATCAT IN A BOTTLE?

We all know the girls of CatCat are bubbly and sweet but now they are that literally: they have launched their very own dry apple cider with strawberry flavour! Perfect for those endless white summer nights when sun never sets and music never stops and you just don't want to say bye bye baby, baby goodbye.....
If in Helsinki, get yours from a lovely special shop Pien in the heart of Helsinki by Tuomas and Erkki in Ateneuminkuja between Stockmann and the railway station. 

Thursday, May 25, 2017

EUROVISION: THE ONES THAT SHOULD HAVE QUALIFIED FOR THE FINAL BUT DIDN'T, BECAUSE.....

 
... because there has been some different system for qualification in use.....

If the Eurovision song contest semi-final qualifiers were very straight forward with top-10 qualifying from 2010 onwards, before it was a different story.
In 2009 only the Top-9 qualified while the 10th qualifier was chosen by a jury, to a criteria only known to themselves. And they surely used their power with variable success.....
In the first semifinal the qualifier would have been Macedonia's Next Time (10th) with Nešto što kje ostane. The jury decided to skip also the 11th one, Montenegro's Andrea Demirović's Just get out of my life and lifted to the final instead Finland's Waldo's People (12th) and Lose control, that then placed second to last, 24th, in the final. Of course as a Finn I was happy for the sudden turn of the things :-)
In the second semifinal it was ever more cruel: the jury chose Croatia's Igor Cukrov feat. Andrea with Lijepa tena that only placed 13th in the semifinal thus surpassing Serbian Marko Kon and Milaan with Cipela (10th), Ireland's Sinéad Mulvay & Black Daisy with Et cetera (11th) and Poland's Lidia Kopania (12th) with I don't wanna leave. Igor placed 18th in the final.  This blogger was quite happy here, too, as I liked Croatia a lot, a bit less Serbia and especially Ireland.....
In 2008 the jury actually did pick up as their joker the song that came 10th in the first semi-final. Poland's Isis Gee with Life. In final it finished second to last, 24th, just like Finland the year before. The 11th was Slovenia's Rebeka Dremelj with Vrag naj vzame, I would have sent into the final San Marino's very much underrated Miodio with fantastic Complice
In the second semi-final  10th was Macedonia (again!) with Tamara, Vrčak & Adrian and Let me love you. 11th was Bulgaria's Deep Zone & Balthazar with DJ take me away. However the jury picked up 12th placed Eurovision song contest 1999 winner Sweden's Charlotte Perrelli with Hero. A very understandable decision for many reasons. It went on to finish 18th in the final and avoiding the very first Swedish non qualification..... And it's still a great and remembered song - hands up who remembers either Macedonia or Bulgaria? Thought so....
Last but least we have 2007.  The current top-10 qualifies system was in use BUT there was only one semifinal and 28 songs in it. A. Total. Massacre. Poor Portugal placed 11th with Sabrina's Danca comigo, 3 points short of the final. Andorra's Salvem el mon by Anonymous was 12th, 11 points short and Iceland's Eurovision veteran Eirikur Haukson was 13th with Valentine lost. 


Wednesday, May 24, 2017

EUROVISION: THE CLOSEST SEMI-FINAL NON QUALIFIERS 2010-2017

 
This year it  happened to Georgia and Serbia. The dreadful 11th place in the semi-final. As for Georgia it was pretty clear with 16 points missing but Serbia lost only with 3 points, and Switzerland was only 4 points away from a possible qualification. Let's have a look at the closest miss outs over the past years. The 2011 edition was very close with three songs one point shy of qualification, while in 2016 the qualifiers were more than clear with a huge margin to the 11th ones in the semi-finals.

Bulgaria 2012 - Sofi Marinova - Love unlimited
The only tie so far with Norway that qualified having been voted by 11 countries, while Bulgaria only by ten. So Norway qualified for the final and Bulgaria was left out....
Malta 2011 -  Glen Vella - One life
-1 point (placing 11th in the first semi-final)
Armenia 2011 - Emmy - Boom boom 
-1 point (placing 12th in the first semi-final, tie with points with Glen Vella)
Belgium 2011 - Withloof Bay - With love baby
-1 point (placing 11th in the second semifinal)

Croatia 2012 - Nina Badric - Nebo
-3 points (placed  12th in the second semifinal)

Serbia 2017 - Tijana Bogicevic - In too deep
-3 points (placing 11th in the semi-final two)
Switzerland 2017 - Timebelle - Apollo
-4 points (placing 12th in the second semi-final)
Finland 2010 -  Kuunkuiskaajat - Työlki ellää
-3 points (placing 11th in the first semi-final)
Portugal 2014 - Suzy - Quero ser tua
-1 point (placing 11th in the semifinal one point behind Valentina Monetta)
Estonia 2014 - Tanja - Amazing
-4 points (placing 12th in semi-final behind Portugal)

(Please note the semifinals in 2011 had 19 countries, in 2012 and 2017 18 countries, 
in 2010 17 countries and in 2014 only 16)
Sweden - Anna Bergendahl - This is my life
Honorable mention for Sweden 2010 that lost the final with 5 points, being the only Swedish entry to do so (but then we have 2008 to look into later.....)

ESC 2017: MILLA JOVOVICH WAS MENT TO HOST EUROVISION?

Milla Jovovich apparently was in negotiations to host the Eurovision song contest 2017 - just like Lady Gaga to perform as interval act - but the deal wasn't made in the end. Money. It's always about the money, isn't it?
Milla, a worldfamous model and actress was born in Kyiv in 1975, then Soviet Union as daughter of a Russian actress and a Serbian father. She however spent her childhood in Moscow and the family immigrated to London for political reasons in 1980, and moved on to Los Angeles soon after.
Milla has declared she feels more Russian than Ukrainian, having only born there but spending her early years in Moscow, so in this light it seems a bit unlikely Ukrainians would have chosen her at this time and place of the world so I label this "only rumors"....
Wasn't she rumored also in 2008 as a host for the Belgrade Eurovision?

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

EUROVISION 2017: 182 MILLION VIEWERS (DESPITE RUSSIA)

EBU has released today data of the viewing figures for the Eurovision song contest 2017 held in Kyiv, Ukraine earlier this month. A drop was expected as Russia decided not to broadcast it but the drop is less than this blogger expected so who needs Russia anyways?
The audience share remained the same as last year, 36,2% in the 42 markets of the competing countries. That's more than a double of the usual Saturday night prime-time share in these countries.
The online viewers more than doubled from 2016. Over six million viewers in 233 territories watched the shows on official Youtube channel and a total of 8,5 million on-demand. (Does that make it 196.500.000 viewers?)
The viewing figures broke records in both winner Portugal and runner up Bulgaria. Italy also did its best result since rejoining the contest in 2011. Host country Ukraine also did the highest figures in eight years. The highest share was once again registered in Iceland: 98%!
In general the Eurovision song contest once again attracted about four times more children and young adults  (4-15, 15-24, 25-34) years old) in front of the television than usually.
I guess we can call it a success despite or because of Russia after all..... and the UEFA Champions eague matches during the semifinals

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