Category Archives: 2015 Eurovision Song Contest

Måns Zelmerlöw launches his own wine – Cava: Hola MZ Cava

Måns Zelmerlöw has launched his own wine called Cava: Hola MZ Cava by Måns Zelmerlöw. It is a dry, healthy and fruity Cava that is both organic and vegan.

Måns won the 2015 Eurovision Song Contest for Sweden with Heroes and is one of the presenters at the Melodifestivalen 2021 shows.

Launching a Cava was obvious for Måns, as Spain is his great source of inspiration when it comes to both food and wine. Måns lived for a time partly in Barcelona where he spent a lot of time writing music and enjoying the culture, the weather, the relaxed lifestyle and the people. In Spain, his already strong interest in food and drink developed further.

After a few weeks in Barcelona, ​​I started to find restaurants that the locals went to and got my first “real” tapas experiences. We sat for hours and ordered right after right, drank Cava late into the night and just enjoyed. With an enormous love for Barcelona in particular, and the surrounding nature, it feels extremely exciting that I have had the opportunity to make a Cava together with Hermansson & Co and the producer Barcelona Brands SL, says Måns Zelmerlöw.

Cava: Hola MZ Cava by Måns Zelmerlöw is available for purchase in Systembolaget’s order assortment.

Måns Zelmerlöw & Polina Gagarina will soon release a duet which will be the theme to the World Figure Skating Championships taking place in Stockholm, Sweden this year.

Source: ESC Covers

Alex Larke – “Shine On” review

Alex Larke

Alex Larke, the male half of Electro Velvet is back with a new single, which is exclusively guest reviewed for ESCCovers by Mike Duncan of ESCKAZ:

“Debut single, a new haircut and a video filmed in part in some sun kissed location in Greece. His little sister Anna has a cameo at the start of the video with a delightful little bundle who I think is Alex’s and Tamara’s little peanut….cute, very cute…. 

Anyway onto the music. Well first a confession, I am a sucker for big strings and old style retro electronic organ so was kinda hooked right from the start. Then up pops Alex, sporting aforementioned new hair do, filling the screen with his big muff and grabbing attention. Then he sings. At first I did a bit of a double take, who is this? Where is the deep crooner from Electro Velvet, who is this (almost) falsetto geezer giving it large into the camera?? Yep, it’s him. This is a completely different style from those that know Alex from Eurovision but I kinda like it. Like I said always a sucker for big strings and a organ or two thrown in…..

I am reminded of Ocean Colour Scene from back in the 90’s and Alex’s putting on the “I’m Noel Gallagher and you better believe it” act simply adds to the whole 90’s Britpop vibe. Like I said I’m a sucker for all that….just add some more drums and a guitar riff here and there and I’m back in 1996 trying to style out a Paul Weller look and not succeeding.

Alex has moved on from his Eurovision foray a few years back, I hope he continues in this vein, much more suited to his style and voice than the flippy-flappy EV single….just needs to add in some edgy drums please and keep doing this…..well done (7.5/10)”

Alex Larke releases his debut single, ‘Shine On’ of EP ‘Disposable Love’, on February 3rd 2017. Available from all good digital retailers and streaming sites like Amazon

Alex Larke represented the UK at the 2015 Eurovision Song Contest, as part of Electro Velvet. More on his official site: larkemusic.com

Electro Velvet Performs at the UK’s Eurobash

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At the UK’s annual Eurobash, one of the special guests this year was the UK duo, Electro Velvet.  They actually performed their entry and took photos with fans.

When interviewed Bianca Nicholas explained her struggle this year.  When she came back from Eurovision, she followed and read all the negative press they received.  She fought back but over time she found that it actually has destroyed her confidence as a performer.  She now worries whenever she performs and gets herself in a state that she can’t mentally break out of.  She very rarely performs now so it was a real treat for her to perform for us.  She said that true Eurovision fans have been her only redemption from the experience.

Alex Larke announced that he didn’t pay attention to any of the press when he got back from Vienna and he is actually getting ready to complete his next project.  Alex has released a solo album with a fusion of different styles and will continue to grow from his experience.  He said that he didn’t regret his decision in participating in Eurovision but just wished that the UK general public would get behind their chosen entry regardless if they like it or not.

Måns brings the Heroes Tour to London

 

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As the winners tour concluded last night in Copenhagen.  Let’s have a look at some of the great moments that Måns gave us.  Back on the London leg of the tour, just outside London’s West End at the gay venue, Heaven, Måns delivered a very intimate concert to a massive crowd.  Performing most of his new album, Perfectly Damaged, but also some amazing favourites of the past.

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He pleased the crowd by performing the Melodifestivalen 2009 finalist classic, Hope & Glory but it was the Mirrors Tung Version, which was a funk rock version of the song that still had an infectious beat.

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He then sang the ever popular Cara Mia from Melodifestivalen 2007, which in my eyes still should of won of that year.

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And of course no evening would be complete without the 2015 Eurovision winner, Heroes.  Annouced by Conchita and replaying that winning moment back in Vienna.

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Overall, it was a night to remember and can’t wait for the next time that Måns stops off in London.  He is welcome back anytime.

 

Destiny Chukunyere will sing for Malta at 2015 Junior Eurovision

Destiny Chukunyere {copyright: PBS}
Destiny Chukunyere {copyright: PBS}

Malta have held the selection to find the act that will represent them at the 2015 Eurovision Song Contest in Sofia, Bulgaria. 20 acts performed a song of their choice. The show was held at the Mediterranean Conference Centre in Valletta on Saturday 11 July.

The voting was a combination of expert jury and televoting. The winning act was Destiny Chukunyere who performed her soulful version of Think originally recorded by Aretha Franklin. The song for Junior Eurovision will be revealed by PBS later in the year.

The 20 acts were –

Thea Aquilina

Haley Azzopardi

Amy Marie Borg

Ilenia Camilleri

Aidan Cassar

Destiny Chukunyere

Francesca Dimech

Kelsey Farrugia

Sarah Farrugia

Nicole Frendo

Christina Magrin

Isaac Mercieca

Raisa Marie Micallef

Sarah Micallef

Gabrielle Portelli

Veronica Rotin

Nicole Sciberras

Victoria Sciberras

Rebecca Scicluna Rizzo

Andy Shaw

You can see Destiny perform Think below.

Source: www.escflashmalta.com; www.esccovers.com

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MuQwRncLvDY

Euro acts appear at Sunčane Skale festival in Montenegro

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The 21st edition of the popular music festival Sunčane Skale took place earlier this week in Herceg Novi, Montenegro. Many Euro acts guessed in the festival that was held over two days. The first part of the festival was a competition for lots of up and coming acts. The second night was a festival where acts performed their latest hits.

Former Eurovision acts performed at the festival including Magazin (Croatia 1995), Pamela Ramljak from Feminnem (Bosnia-Herzegovina 2005 and Croatia 2011), Jelena Tomašević (Serbia 2008), Bojana Stamenov (Serbia 2015) and Knez (Montenegro 2015).

The competition part of the festival was won by Karin Soiref from Gibraltar with Sing My Song. Karin got to perform this again as part of the festival on the second evening. Karin was later interviewed and she said she “would like to represent Gibraltar at the 2016 Eurovision Song Contest”.

Source: www.esccovers.com; Balkanika tv

 

RATING OF THE PRESS P R FOR EACH COUNTRY – PART ONE

Every year I do rate the P R of each each country from a press perspective (seen out of my own eyes mostly) but also taking into account that I hear from others and then give them a point of out 10
Every year some countries SHINE and others are just awful. 2015 was no exception. I have decided to do this in order of appearance via semi final 1 and 2 and then those automatically in the final
MOLDOVA
I always love it when it starts off with a great country. Getting the bag with the CD single and full CD and the singer making himself available for photo’s. What more can you ask?
10 out of 10
ARMENIA
A rough start – for me a special interest because the one member is from Ethophia and he actually was recently in South Africa to audition for Big brother Africa. I think the head of press felt a little overwhelmed by the degree of interest (because of the 6 members being from different continents). But in the end all worked out well, getting the bag with the paper CD single and also the special production of a 3 set with CD, CD rom and DVD.
9.5 out of 10
BELGIUM
A huge disappointment, having personally wrote well ahead of the event and seeing that the entry is via SONY MUSIC Belgium. There were 250 promo CD’s and I failed to get one. Yes there was a lot of interest because the song was a favourite, plus some language problem since it was the turn of the French side of Belgium TV to have the entry, but I still feel extremely let down by them. Maybe those 250 press people who did get the promo CD will have another more positive experience?
0 out of 10
NETHERLANDS
After a little rocky start it was great and each pigeonhole got the promo CD without having to ask (Netherlands did that also in 2013 and 2014). Sorry they failed to make the finals but if it had been me, I would have staged the song like WALK ALONG and have a road and lots of icons along the road like ABBA, CELINE DION, UDO JURGENS, etc so to play in with the fact that it is 60 years of Eurovision.
9 out of 10
FINLAND
It could not have been easy to work with the band and their circumstances but they did a great job – we were upset that we could not hand the good luck messages but the band members were tired and had to go home and then later they allowed us personally inside an interview booth to do it. I am also one of a few who did the the promo CD
9 out of 10
GREECE
I cannot recall a year Greece was not among the top 5 in my review – they are just amazing when it comes to promo CD’s and the way it is available to all. And their promo CD’s always look so good.
10 out of 10
ESTONIA
Difficult to judge them since I got the promo CD from the president of OGAE Estonia as a thank you for helping one of their members with Mark Churches tickets. Luigi and I were glad to stand next to Estonian TV at the red carpet so we called most artists to them and has close access as well.
9 out of 10
MACEDONIA
Compared to last year, this was a big disappointment. I expected more but we learned that Daniel donated the money normally spent on promo material to a hospital and we all got just a UB stick (that is enough, at least we got something). The song is in huge demand to cover in Afrikaans and we probably will do a single with both Daniel’s version and the Afrikaans cover so we could have a physical single.
6 out of 10

SASCHA REVIEWS VIENNA…SEMI 2.2

In 1 week, we will have a new Eurovision winner and if you are a true Eurovision fan, you will already have a list of your favourites for this year. If you haven’t made up your mind yet, you can have a look at the videos of the songs (you can find them all here).

I’ve been taking a look at all the songs in this years contest and providing some brief thoughts. If you agree or disagree, why not add your comments at the bottom of the page.

Today is the final instalment, we’re looking at the second half of Semi-Final 2 (plus the last 2 songs already qualified for the Grand Final which I haven’t covered in the previous articles).

Latvia Latvia Aminata – Love Injected Score
This is definitely one of Latvia’s best entries, although their are a number of fans who don’t seem to like it very much. I think that is because this is a performance song, best seen performed instead of listened to on a cd. Aminata has a very strong voice and should have no problem pulling this off on the night. I personally quite like it, however I do need to be in the right mood to listen to it. Could this be Latvia’s ticket to the final? 13

Azerbaijan Azerbaijan Elnur Huseynov – Hour of the wolf Score
One of my absolute favourite songs this year. Azerbaijan always chooses the right song and their past stagings have been spectacular. If Elnur can pull off a flawless vocal along with attention grabbing staging, not only will they easily qualify for the final, but I think they have a very strong chance of their second win this year. 20

Iceland Iceland Maria Olafs – Unbroken Score
This song has grown on me more than any other in the contest. When I first heard it during their National Final, I wasn’t blown away. On listening to the final version on the cd however I think Iceland have changed it just enough to turn it into a very strong entry this year. Maria is very young though, so I am not sure if she can pull off the vocals live, but hopefully she will prove me wrong. I would love Iceland to finally win, but she has some strong competition. 16

Sweden Sweden Måns Zelmerlöw – Heroes Score
Sweden knows how to do Eurovision. This year they have entered a very strong pop song with spectacular staging. It is the type of entry that forces you to watch, even if it is not your style of music. Måns is a very good performer and should pull off a flawless performance. This will easily qualify for the final. I also think they will be very difficult to beat this year, so it may very well be Sweden’s 6th win. 19

Switzerland Switzerland Mélanie René – Time to Shine Score
A great entry from Switzerland this year. Mélanie performs very well live and has a beautiful voice. Her position in the second semi-final might work in her favour, give a very different music style to both Sweden and Cyprus, but people watching at home may also be a bit distracted by the previous Swedish entrant as it is always difficult following one of the favourites. I wish Switzerland all the best though and hope they will qualify for the final because they certainly deserve to with this song. 15

Cyprus Cyprus John Karayiannis – One Thing I Should Have Done Score
This is a lovely soft ballad sung by a very competent performer with a great voice. It is going to stand out in the show because it is surrounded by much bigger numbers, but will it be the kind of song to make people vote for it? Hopefully Cyprus will be able to provide some memorable staging though for the audience to really take notice. 14

Slovenia Slovenia Maraaya – Here for you Score
I’ve loved this song since first hearing it at their national finals. It is different, quirky and enjoyable. Maraaya has a great personality of stage and I love the headphones which she never seems to be without. I really hope this will qualify (and am sure it will). 16

Poland Poland In The Name Of Love Score
When you first hear this song, it comes across as a great ballad and ticks a lot of boxes for Eurovision. However I feel that when you compare it to the other songs in the same genre, it doesn’t really stand out for me. I do sometimes forget who it is when the song comes on, which is not a great sign. I hope Poland pulls it off with some great staging, particularly as they are closing the show. The have come 11th in the semi’s so many times they do deserve to make it to the final. 14

Germany Germany Ann Sophie – Black Smoke Score
I’m not in love with this song and I don’t really know why. It is the kind of music I most tend to listen to, yet there is something about it that just doesn’t appeal to me. I think if maybe it was a softer song, with just a piano and gentler vocal it would make it more enjoyable to listen to. But Ann Sophie is a great performer (I have seen her perform the song live) and I am sure she will do Germany proud. 12

Italy Italy Il Volo – Grande Amore Score
My favourite in the contest. Italy was the only entry that when I first heard it, caused a little shiver up my spine with excitement. I think the song is beautiful and it builds perfectly for a Eurovision winner. It has the soft and the dramatic. The performers are phenomenal themselves and should easily pull off a fantastic performer. Italy has been doing very well most years since they returned to the contest and I do think this could be their year. 20