Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Azerbaijan 2010

The Azerbaijani national final for the ESC 2010 was held on March 2 in Buta Palace in Baku. Before the final there was a semi-final of which three acts went on to the final. The singers performed different songs from the ones they sang in the semi-final. The winning singer was chosen by an "expert" jury, while the winning song was not announced until March 18. Safura Alizadeh was chosen to represent Azerbaijan with the song Drip Drop. At the ESC Safura came 5th.

Safura Alizadeh (September 20, 1992, Baku) is an Azerbaijani singer and saxophonist. Safura began singing when she was very young and made her first stage appearance at age 6. In the course of her career, she sang in children's bands Sharg Ulduzlari and Bulbullar. Alizadeh took up violin lessons at the Baku Musical School No 2 but later also learned to play the piano and the saxophone. She became the winner of the national contest Yeni Ulduz. Since the eighth grade Safura has been studying at the school no. 23 in Baku.

Safura has signed a five-year contract with the Swedish record company Euteria. Her first album, It's My War, was released in June 2010 and had a success around Europe. Drip Drop was the first single released from It's My War.

Monday, 30 May 2011

Marianne Mendt

Marianne Krupicka, better known by her stage name Marianne Mendt (September 29 1945 Vienna) is an Austrian jazz singer and actress.

Marianne started singing in jazz clubs and played bass with the group the Internationals. In 1970 she was noticed by talent-spotter Gerhard Bronner who also wrote her first hit Wie A Glock'n, which was used as the theme tune for a television drama. Marianne published several Austrian versions of well-known jazz and pop songs like Mercy Mercy Mercy, Spinning Wheel and Aquarius/Let the Sunshine In.

In 1971, Marianne was chosen by broadcaster ORF to represent Austria with the song Musik at the 16th Eurovision Song Contest, held in Dublin. It marked Austria's return to the ESC following a two-year absence. Musik is the only song performed at the ESC to date in the Viennese German dialect. The song Musik came 16th out of the 18 entries after a somewhat nervous and hesitant performance from Marianne.

Marianne combined her singing career with acting in productions at the large Vienna theaters. In the 1990s, Marianne's acting career came to the fore, notably in the role of Gitti Schimek in TV drama Kaisermühlen Blues which ran from 1992 until 2000.

Marianne Mendt remains an active performer, regularly appearing at concerts and jazz festivals in Austria.

Sunday, 29 May 2011

Marcos Llunas

Marcos Gómez Llunas (born September 19, 1971, Madrid) is a Spanish singer-songwriter who has been very successful in southern Europe and Latin America.

Marcos, son of Spanish musician Dyango, released his self-titled first album in 1993. He recorded several successful singles and in 1995, in Paraguay, he won the OTI Song Festival for Spain with the song Eres Mi Debilidad.

In 1997, Marcos Llunas was chosen internally by broadcaster TVE as the Spanish representative for the 42nd Eurovision Song Contest with his song Sin Rencor. At the contest, held in Dublin, Sin Rencor finished in 6th place of the 25 entries.

In the years following his Eurovision appearance, Marcos recorded in Portuguese and Catalan in addition to Spanish, and became particularly successful in Latin America. His most recent album, a career retrospective, was released in 2004 and he has been inactive as a recording artist since, although he has appeared as a judge on Spanish television talent shows.


Feminnem is a girl group from Croatia and Bosnia & Herzegovina and consists of Neda Parmać, Pamela Ramljak and Nika Antolos. In 2007 Nika joined the Feminnem to replace Ivana Marić who left the group to start a solo career.

Ivana and Pamela are from Bosnia & Herzegovima while Neda and Nika are Croatian.

The group formed in 2004, following the appearance of the three original members, on Hrvatski Idol. Their first single, Volim Te Mrzim Te, was a big hit in the Croatia, Bosnia, Slovenia and Macedonia.

In 2005 Feminnem took part in the Bosnian national final for the ESC. In the Bosnian pre-selection there was a tie at the end of the voting, the "expert" jury vote took precedence so Feminnem won with the song Zovi. At the ESC they sang the English version, Call Me, which finished 14th.

In 2007 Feminnem tried to represent Croatia at the ESC in Helsinki with the song Navika. They came only 9th in the Croatian national final, Dora.

In 2009 they tried again to represent Croatia at the ESC but they came 3rd with the song Poljupci U Boji.

Feminnem took part at the Croatian national final for the third time in 2010, hoping to represent the country at the ESC in Oslo with their song Lako Je Sve. They finished only fourth in the semi-final, but they went on to win the final, receiving maximum points from both the jury and the telephone voters. At the ESC they stranded very unexpectedly in the semi-finals.

Azerbaijan 2009

In 2009, the national final was allready planned to be held by the Azerbaijani broadcaster ITV. However, after the quality of the entries was deemed poor, ITV decided to organize an internal selection.

On January 17 it was revealed that Aysel Teymurzadeh, a 19 year old R&B singer, was selected to represent Azerbaijan at the ESC 2009 in Moscow. She was selected by a 7-member jury appointed by ITV. A few days later it was announced that the same jury unanimously chose the song Always written by and performed as a duet with Iranian/Swedish singer Arash.

As part of their promo tour, Aysel and Arash visited Slovenia, Romania and Sweden. At the ESC they came 3rd.

Aysel Teymurzadeh (April 25, 1989, Baku) is an Azerbaijani pop and R&B singer. Aysel started to sing at the age of 4 and the piano became her passion since childhood. Aysel graduated from the Intellect Lyceum and attended Texas High School in 2005-2006. Within days after her arrival in the USA, she signed up for the local choir. In 2005 Aysel participated in the talent show Yeni Ulduz.
After the ESC Aysel toured Europe with Arash and together they released an album.

Arash Labaf (April 23, 1977, Tehran)is an Iranian/Swedish singer, dancer, entertainer and producer. At the age of 10 Arah and his family moved to Sweden where he became interested in music. His debut album in 2005 was very popular in Azerbaijan, Turkey,Sweden, Russia, Slovenia, Greece and Poland. Arash had many hits all over Europe and colloborated with many famous artists. Since 2005 he released 3 succesful albums and many hit singles.

Saturday, 28 May 2011

Azerbaijan 2008

After the German victory in 2010, I posted an item about every German participation at the ESC. This year I'll do the same about every Azerbaijani contribution at the ESC, starting with 2008.

The first ever Azebaijani pre-selection for the ESC was held at the Heydar Aliyev Palace in Baku. The winner was chosen by an "expert" jury. Elnur Hüseynov and Samir Javadzadeh were chosen by the jury to represent Azerbaijan at the ESC with the song Day After Day, which came 8th in the Grand Final

Samir Javadzadeh (April 16, 1980, Baku) is an Azerbaijani pop singer. He graduated from university with a degree in business in 2002. After serving in the army for a year, he became a member of the pop band Sheron for the next three years and eventually started pursuing a solo career. In 2008 he was chosen to sing the Azerbaijani entry at the ESC together with Elnur.

Originally, Samir Javadzadeh was not named among those who competed to represent Azerbaijan at the ESC. The jury chose Elnur Hüseynov and it was then revealed that the song Day After Day would be performed as a duet by Elnur and Samir. In an interview following the decision, one of the coordinators of the contest (and author of the lyrics of Day After Day) Zahra Badalbeyli stated that it was not contrary to the contest rules for Elnur Hüseynov to invite another performer or more to sing with him, and that it was his and Samir's mutual agreement to perform Day After Day in a duet.

Elnur Hüseynov (March 3, 1987, Ashgabat, Turkmenistan) is an Azerbaijani pop singer.

At age 5, Elnur was admitted to a music school for gifted children where he was trained as a piano player. In 1999, the family moved to Baku, Azerbaijan, where Elnur studied at a medical school and graduated with a degree in dentistry. In 2004 he graduated from the Asaf Zeynally College of Music and took up some hairstylist courses. He worked shortly at the Azerbaijan State Academic Opera and Ballet Theatre and with the choir group of the Azerbaijan State Philharmonic Society, in addition to singing in a church choir.

In 2003, he received first prize in the musical competition Sing Your Song aired on Azerbaijan's Lider TV. In 2008, he was selected to represent Azerbaijan at the Eurovision Song Contest.

Following the contest, the duo split. In December 2009, Elnur Hüseynov announced his intention to move permanently to Ukraine to further pursue his musical career.In June 2010, Elnur performed the part of Phoebus in the musical Notre-Dame de Paris, which was staged in Heydar Aliyev Palace. In October 2010, he submitted an application to represent Azerbaijan at the Eurovision Song Contest 2011 but did not compete in the semifinals, with the exception of making a cameo appearance in one of the performances of the semifinalist Diana Hajiyeva.

Fabrizio Faniello

Fabrizio Faniello (April 27, 1981) is a Maltese pop singer.

Fabrizio discovered his passion for music at an early age. His teacher advised him to take music lessons but Fabrizio, at that time, was interested in playing soccer. In 1997 he played for one year in Turin. When he was 16, Fabrizio chose to have a career in music and returned to Malta. In the meantime he released 3 successful album and several singles which were very successful in Malta. Fabrizio also had a couple of hits in Sweden an Germany. Fabrizio is mainly known for light Europop music, but his willingness to experiment outside of conventional song structures, including forays into harsh noise, have been met with critical acclaim.

In 2001 Fabrizio represented Malta at the Eurovision Song Contest with the song Another Summer Night which came 9th and in 2006 he represented Malta once again at the ESC but this time he came only 24th with the song I Do.

Fabrizio participated many times in the Maltese pre-selections for the ESC:

1998: More Than Just A Game, 2nd
1999: Thankful For Your Love, 8th
2000: Change Of Heart, 2nd
2001: Another Summer Night, 1st
2004: Did I Ever Tell You,3rd
2005: Don't Tell It, 12th
2006: I Do, 1st
2011: No Surrender, 4th

Monday, 23 May 2011

Barbara Dex Award


The Barbara Dex Award is the annual price for the worst dressed artist in the Eurovision Song Contest. The visitors of the site The House of Eurovision can vote every year after the ESC for their favourite.

The award is named after Barbara Dex, who represented Belgium in the 1993 contest. During her performance she wore an awfull, self-made dress.

The "winners":

1997: Debbie Scerri (Malta)
1998: Guildo Horn (Germany)
1999: Lydia (Spain)
2000: Nathalie Sorce (Belgium)
2001: Piasek (Poland)
2002: Michalis Rakintzis (Greece)
2003: t.A.T.u. (Russia)
2004: Sanda Ladosi (Romania)
2005: Martin Vučić (FYR Macedonia)
2006: Nonstop (Portugal)
2007: Verka Serduchka (Ukraine)
2008: Gisela (Andorra)
2009: Zoli Adok (Hungary)
2010: Milan Stanković (Servia)
2011: Eldrine (Georgia)

Sunday, 22 May 2011

Gina de Wit

Gina de Wit is a Dutch singer. At very young age she took sing lessons and a couple of years later she studied music at the Rotterdam conservatory. Besides teaching Gina studied drums, keyboard, guitar and songwriting. Gina is still a music teacher.

Gina de Wit participated 5 times at the Dutch national final for the ESC, 4 times as a singer and once as a songwriter, in 1993.

1989: Elke Dag, 9th
1990: Liever Alleen, 7th
1993: Tederheid, 8th
1996: De Wereld Is Van Jou, 2nd
2000: Hjir Is It Begjin, 5th

In 1995 the Dutch weren't allowed to participate in the ESC because Willeke Alberti didn't gather enough points for the Netherlands in 1994 with her ballad Waar Is De Zon. So the Dutch organized their own contest. Every regional broadcaster sent a representative. Gina represented Omroep Fryslan with the song Ga Je Mee.

Paolo Mengoli

Paolo Mengoli (Bolgna, August 14, 1950) is an Italian singer.

In 1968 Paolo became wellknown by winning a talentshow. A year later he had his biggest hit with the song Perché L'hai Fatto. In 1970 he participated at the Festival di Sanremo with the song Ahi! Che Male Che Mi Fai, which didn't reach the final and in 1971 he participated again at Sanremo, he again didn't reach the final with I Ragazzi Come Noi.

In 1970 Paolo represented Italy at the first World Popular Song Festival. with the song Mi Piaci Da Morire, which came 6th and won an Outstanding Song Award and an Outstanding Performance Award.

In 1992 he participated once again at the Festival di Sanremo with the song Io Ti Darò but this time he also didn't qualify for the final.

Currently he is a frequent guest of talk shows on Italian television.

Saturday, 21 May 2011

World Popular Song Festival - Dee Dee

Dee Dee is a Dutch singer who was born in 1956 in Amsterdam as Anna Dekkers. She was a member of the band Head Over Heels in the early 70's.

In 1978 she recorded the album Loving You. In that same year Dee Dee represented the Netherlands at the World Popular Song Festival with the song Hold Me which stranded in the semi-finals.

Her biggest hit was I Put A Spell On You. Aside from her solo work Dee Dee sang with Johnny Kendall, Herman Brood, Beau Boy and Vulcano.

After Vulcano split up in 1986 Dee Dee participated in the Dutch national final for the ESC with the songs Fata Morgana (2nd) and Clown (3rd). In the 80s Dee Dee released a a few singles which were not very succesful. In 1992 Dee Dee stopped her career to spend more time with her family.

Alban Skënderaj & Miriam Cani

Alban Skënderaj, born 1982 in Vlora, Albania is a singer who moved to Pistoia, Italy at the age of 14, were he lives still today with his family. In June 2006, he played the role of Romeo in the Albanian version of Gerard Presgurvic's musical Roméo et Juliette, de la Haine à l'Amour.

Miriam Cani, born 1985 in Elbasan, Albania is a German singer and television host of Albanian descent. At the age of six she moved together with her family to Heidelberg, Germany were she soon attained German citizenship along with the rest of her family. In 2003 Miriam Cani, along with 13.000 other participants, auditioned for a spot in the German version of the talent show Popstars and in the end was voted one of the winners and became a member of the girl group Preluders, which were very successful in Germany. She hosted the Albanian national final for the Eurovision Song Contest 2010. Cani made her first TV appearance in Germany in 1993 in the show "Interaktiv".

In december 2010 Alban and Miriam participated in the Albanian national final for the ESC 2011 with the song Ënde Ka Shpresë which came 2nd.

Friday, 20 May 2011

Kathy Kirby

Kathy Kirby, born as Kathleen O'Rourke (October 20 1938 - May 19 2011) was an English singer.

At very young age, Kathy took singing lessons. After meeting bandleader Bert Ambrose in 1956 Kathy became a singer in his band. Until his death in 1971 Bert was Kathy's manager.

In 1959 Kathy started her solo career. She adopted the look of a blonde bombshell and was compared to Marilyn Monroe. Her looks and her powerful voice became her trademarks.

Kirby became one of the biggest stars of the mid 1960s, appearing in the Royal Command Variety Performance and three television series for BBC TV. In 1965 Kathy was chosen to represent the UK at the ESC. In the UK national final Kathy sang 6 songs of which I Belong won. At the ESC in Naples, Kathy came 2nd.

Kirby's star faded in the late 1960s. She recorded twelve singles and an album between 1967 and 1973, but they all failed to chart. She continued to make television appearances.

In December 1983, she retired from show business but she made occasional television appearances.

Kirby died on 19 May 2011 after a short illness.

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Sean Dunphy

Sean Dunphy (November 30 1937 - May 17 2011) was an Irish singer who represented Ireland at the ESC in 1967 with the song If I Could Choose which came 2nd.

Sean Dunphy became famous in his home country as lead singer with The Hoedowners, a showband led by trumpeter Earl Gill. Between 1966 and 1973, fourteen singles by Sean Dunphy and The Hoedowners entered the Irish Charts including, in 1969, two no 1 hits: Lonely Woods of Upton and When The Fields Were White With Daisies. In the late 1970s, Dunphy went on to have two further hits as a solo artist.

Despite undergoing a quadruple heart bypass operation in 2007, Sean Dunphy continued to give live performances up until his death. In March 2009 he sang many of his greatest hits in a one-off concert at Dublin's National Concert Hall. His son Brian is a member of the Irish band, The High Kings.

Sean Dunphy passed away on 17th May, 2011.

Sunday, 15 May 2011

ESC 2011, the results: the Grand Final

Here are the full results of the Grand Final.

01. Azerbaijan: Ell & Nikki - Running Scared 221

02. Italy: Raphael Gualazzi - Madness of Love 189
03. Sweden: Eric Saade - Popular 185
04. Ukraine: Mika Newton - Angel 159
05. Denmark: A friend in London - New Tomorrow 134
06. Bosnia & Herzegovina: Dino Merlin - Love in rewind 125
07. Greece: Loukas Giorkas Feat. Stereo Mike - Watch my dance 120
08. Ireland: Jedward - Lipstick 119
09. Georgia: Eldrine - One More Day 110
10. Germany: Lena - Taken by a stranger 107
11. UK: Blue - I Can 100
12. Moldova: Zdob si Zdub - So lucky 97
13. Slovenia: Maja Keuc - No One 96
14. Servia: Nina - Čaroban 85
15. France: Amaury Vassili - Sognu 82
16. Russia: Alexey Vorobyov - Get You 77
17. Roemenia: Hotel FM - Change 77
18. Austria: Nadine Beiler - The Secret Is Love 64
19. Lithuanian: Evelina Sašenko - C’est Ma Vie 63
20. Iceland: Sjonni's Friends - Coming Home 61
21. Finland: Paradise Oskar - Da Da Dam 57
22. Hongary: Kati Wolf - What About My Dreams? 53
23. Spain: Lucía Pérez - Que me quiten lo bailao 50
24. Estonia: Getter Jaani - Rockefeller street 44
25. Switzerland: Anna Rossinelli - In Love for a While 19

ESC 2011, the results - semi- final 1

Here are the full results of semi-final 1.

01. Greece 133
02. Azerbaijan 122
03. Finland 103
04. Iceland 100
05. Lithuania 81
06. Georgia 74
07. Hongary 72
08. Servia 67
09. Russia 64
10. Switzerland 55
11. Malta 54
12. Armenia 54
13. Turkey 47
14. Albania 47
15. Croatia 41
16. San Marino 34
17. Norway 30
18. Portugal 22
19. Poland 18

ESC 2011, the results: semi- final 2

Here are the full results of semi-final 2.

01. Sweden 155
02. Denmark 135
03. Slovenia 112
04. Roemenia 111
05. Bosnia & Herzegovina 109
06. Ukraine 81
07. Austria 69
08. Ireland 68
09. Estonia 60
10. Moldova 54
11. Belgium 53
12. Bulgaria 48
13. Slowakia 48
14. Belarus 45
15. Israel 38
16. FYR Macedonia 36
17. Latvia 25
18. Cyprus 16
19. The Netherlands 13

Monday, 9 May 2011


Bernadette (born Bernadette Kraakman, March 1 1959, Volendam) is a Dutch singer, best known for her participation in the 1983 Eurovision Song Contest.

As a child Bernadette was a member of De Damrakkertjes,
a dutch children's choir. Later she was a singer in the Fat Eddy Band
which released a couple of quite successful singles like Let your body move, Good times and Don't let it fade.

In 1983, Bernadette took part with two songs in the Dutch Eurovision selection, but she emerged the narrow victor (by just one point) with Sing Me a Song, which despite the title was sung in Dutch.  She went forward to the 28th Eurovision Song Contest, held in Munich on April 23, where Sing Me a Song finished a solid seventh of the 20 entries.

Following her unsuccessful partnership with Ingrid Simons in duo Double Trouble in 1986, Bernadette became a voiceover and backing singer, having worked with artists such as Harry Slinger and Rob de Nijs.

Festival di Sanremo - Patty Pravo

Patty Pravo (born Nicoletta Strambelli, April 9 1948, Venice, Italy) is an Italian pop singer whose career has spanned more than four decades. In 2011 she participated for the eighth time in the Italian Festival Di Sanremo.

Patty studied music at the conservatory institute of Benedetto Marcello. At the age of 15 she began her singing carreer in the Piper club. In 1966 she recorded her first single, Rgazzo Triste, which was an Italian version of the Sonny & Cher hit But You're Mine. After that Patty had numerous hits in Italy but one of her biggest hits was Pazza Idea, in 1973.

She has been featured on many Italian television programmes. In 1970 Patty hosted her own programme called Bravo Pravo, broadcasted on French television, and in 1978 appeared in highly controversial Italian TV show, Stryx, where she wore provocative clothing which attracted much attention.

In 1994 she travelled to China to record her album Ideogrammi. In 1995 returned to Italy and re-emerged in 1997 with the number 1 hit E Dimmi Che Non Vuoi Morire.

Her last Italian top 10 album has been 2002 Radio Station. In 2004 Pravo released four albums. In 2007 she released a tribute album for Dalida, entitled Spero Che Ti Piaccia… Pour toi. In 2011 she releases the album Nella Terra Dei Pinguini.

Patty has taken part in the Sanremo Music Festival 8 times:

1970: La Spada Nel Cuore, 5th
1984: Per Una Bambola, 10th
1987: Pigramente Signora, 20th
1995: I Giorni Dell’Armonia, 20th
1997: ...E Dimmi Che Non Vuoi Morire, equal 4th
2002: L'immenso, 16th
2009: E Io Verrò Un Giorno Là, equal 4th
2011: Il Vento E Le Rose, equal 11th

Sunday, 8 May 2011

World Popular Song Festival - Hetty Koes Endang

Hetty Koes Endang, born as Hetty Koes Madewy on August 6 1957 in Jakarta, is an Indonesian singer and actress. Hetty released very successful singles and albums in the period from 1972 to 2004. Hetty participated in many festivals and contests.

In 1977 she participated at the World Popular Song Fesival with the song Damai Tapi Gersang which was a duet with Ajie Bandi. They came 7th and won an Outstanding Song Award. In 1981 Hetty represented Indonesia again at the W.P.S.F. Unfortunately she stranded in the semi-finals with the song Siksa, which was a duet with Euis Darliah.

Anni-Frid Lyngstad

Anni-Frid Prinzessin Reuss von Plauen (born Anni-Frid Synni Lyngstad, November 15 1945 in Bjørkåsen, Ballangen, Norway), also known as Frida Lyngstad, is a Norwegian/Swedish singer of Norwegian/German origin. She was one of the four members of Swedish pop group ABBA.

She is formally styled Her Serene Highness Princess Anni-Frid Synni Reuss of Plauen following her marriage to a German prince of the former sovereign House of Reuss in 1992.

Frida stated that her grandmother often sang old Norwegian songs to her, which resulted in her love for music. She showed musical talent at an early age. She was often asked to sing in front of the class and soon became known for her beautiful voice. At the age of 13, Frida got her fist job as a dance band and schlager singer with The Evald Eks Orchestra. To advance and develop, she also started to take singing lessons. Later, she teamed up with a 15-piece big band, who performed a jazz repertoire covering Glenn Miller, Duke Ellington and Count Basie. In 1963, she formed her own band, the Anni-Frid Four. In 1967, Frida won the Swedish talent show New Faces. Frida became very popular and released many singles. In 1969 Frida participated at the Swedish pre-selection for the ESC with the song Härlig Är Vår Jord which came 4th. Backstage she met Benny Andersson, who also participated in the contest as composer. They soon met again at another venue and then became a couple.

Her first album, Frida, was released in 1971. After that she scored her first Swedish No.1 hit with Min Egen Stad. All four future members of ABBA sang back-up vocals on this song. Frida continued to play in cabarets, toured and regularly perform on TV and radio. Subsequently, her relationship with Benny Andersson, and friendship with Björn Ulvaeus and Agnetha Fältskog led to the formation of ABBA. In 1972, Frida recorded the single Man Vill Ju Leva Lite Dessemellan, which became her second No. 1 hit on the Swedish charts.

Her next solo album in Swedish, was Frida Ensam, produced by Benny Andersson. By now, she was already involved in ABBA. This album includes her successful Swedish version of Fernando, which stayed at the no. 1 spot in the Svensktoppen radio charts for 9 weeks, but was never released as a single. It became an enormous commercial and critical success in Sweden, topping the Swedish album charts for six weeks and remaining in the charts for 38.

At first, Frida was hesitant to perform with her boyfriend Benny Andersson, his best friend Björn Ulvaeus and his girlfriend, Agnetha Fältskog. Their first project together was the cabaret act Festfolk, which flopped in the winter of 1970–1971. The following year, Frida toured on her own while the other three future ABBA members started performing together on a regular basis. Eventually, she rejoined them. Benny and Björn were busy producing other artists, but soon discovered the qualities of Frida's and Agnetha's voices combined: ABBA came to life. With her warm mezzo-soprano voice, Frida contributed lead vocals to some of ABBA's biggest hits like Fernando, Money, Money, Money, Super Trouper, I Have a Dream, Knowing Me, Knowing You and shared lead vocals with Agnetha on Mamma Mia, Waterloo, Dancing Queen, The Name of the Game, Voulez-Vous, Summer Night City and others. Frida clearly enjoyed the spotlight more than the other three members of ABBA. She truly liked to tour and to meet audience members one-on-one. She took an active part in co-designing the famed ABBA costumes for their tours and TV performances. Since the members of ABBA went their separate ways, Frida has been the only one who openly regrets there never have been a reunion to date.

In 1982, during ABBA's last year as a working band, Frida recorded and released her first post-Abba solo album. This was also her first solo album in English. The Phil Collins-produced album was called Something's Going On, and became a big success for Frida worldwide. Frida and Phil covered the UK pre-selection song Here We'll Stay.

In 1983, Frida assisted with ABBAcadabra - the Musical. In 1984 Frida released a new, experimental, album called Shine which became a big success.

In 1990, Frida became a member of the committee of the Swedish environmental organization Det Naturliga Steget. The organization wanted a famous face to help them reach the public, and in 1991 she became chairwoman for the organization Artister För Miljön. In 1992, Frida performed live at the Stockholm Water Festival at the Kings Castle and released the environmental charity single with her cover of Julian Lennon's song Saltwater. All the money from this single went to charity. In 1993, on Queen Silvia's 50th birthday, Frida was asked to perform Dancing Queen on stage, as performed by ABBA when the king and queen got married. Frida contacted The Real Group and together they performed the song live at the Stockholm Opera House in front of the king and queen.

In 1996, Frida recorded her Swedish language album Djupa Andetag. The album attracted overall positive reviews and was a big success in Sweden where it became No.1 on the album chart. Frida did many TV appearances in Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Finland to promote the album. A follow-up album with producer Anders Glenmark was reportedly in the works, but was shelved due to the death of Frida's daughter in 1998.

Several one-off recordings followed, including a 2002 duet with opera singer Filippa Giordano.

For the 2004 semi-final of the Eurovision Song Contest, staged in Istanbul thirty years after ABBA had won the contest in Brighton, Lyngstad appeared in a special comedy video made for the interval act, entitled Our Last Video. Also in 2004, Lyngstad appeared with former band mates Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus at London's fifth anniversary performance of Mamma Mia!, the musical based on ABBA songs. In 2005, she joined all three of her former ABBA colleagues at the Swedish premiere of Mamma Mia! at the arena Cirkus in Stockholm.

In September 2010, a new album by musician Georg Wadenius titled Reconnection was released.

Saturday, 7 May 2011

J. Anvil

Ian James Vella, better known as J. Anvil, born August 4, 1975 In Attard, is a Maltese singer and dancer.

Ian started his career at young age as a dancer. By the age of 11 he was dancing modern jazz, latin and ballroom. Together with his partner in dancing and in life, Nadine, he participated in many dancing competitions and festivals. Ian is a fan of musicals and played also violin for a couple of years. In 2004 he participated at Malta's Song For Europe, which is the Maltese national final for the ESC, as a dancer and choreographer. It inspired him to become a singer as well and he wanted to represent Malta at the ESC. He participated 5 times at Malta's Song For Europe:

  • 2005: You, 3rd
  • 2006: You Too, 4th
  • 2009: Choose Your Number, 10th
  • 2010: Mirage, which didn't qualify for the final
  • 2011: Topsy Turvy, 10th
  • 2012: You Are My Life, 14th

Friday, 6 May 2011

Marion Rung

Evi Marion Rung (December 7, 1945, Helsinki) is a Finnish singer. Since 1961 Marion has recorded 368 songs.

Marion's first hit was in 1961 with the song Brigitte Bardot. But her real breakthrough was in 1962 after winning the Finnish pre-selection for the ESC with the song Tipi-Tii, which came 7th at the ESC.

During the 60's Marion released many successful singles. In 1967 Marion participated again in the Finnish national final for the ESC, this time she came 7th with the song Goodbye and in 1969 she came last with the song Tuntematon Sydämeni.

In 1973 Marion won the Finnish pre-selection for the ESC wit the song Tom Tom Tom which finished 6th in Luxemburg. In 1974 she tried again to represent Finland at the ESC but she stranded in the semi-finals with the song Icing. In 1974 she won the Intervision Song Contest in Sopot with the song Uskon Lauluun. In that same year Marion represented Finland at the World Popular Song Festival in Tokyo with the song Aurinkosilmät. In Tokyo Marion came 10th and won an Outstanding Song Award and Outstanding Performance Award. Marion had several hits in the 70's like El Bimbo, Ding A Dong and Eviva Espanja.

In 1980 Marion won the Intervision Song Contest once again, this time with the song Where Is The Night. The Finnish version, called Hyvästi Yö, was a big hit in Finland.

In the 90's Marion started recorded danceable popmusic which was quite successful. Nowadays Marion is still releasing singles and she is still very popular in Finland.

Thursday, 5 May 2011

Micha Marah

Micha Marah, born as Aldegonda Leppens, (Turnhout, September 26, 1953) is a Flemish singer.

In 1969 Micha released her first single. In 1971 she became wellknown in Flanders after participating at Canzonisima 1971, which was the Belgian pre-selection for the ESC. In the final she sang three songs which got no points at all. One of Micha's songs, Tamboerke, was a big hit in Belgium. She also had a hit with a Dutch cover of the spanish entry En Un Mundo Nuevo, which came 2nd at the ESC in 1971. In the Belgian national final of 1975 Micha sang two songs of which 't Is Over became success in Belgium. Now Micha was an established artist in Belgium.

In 1979 Micha was chosen to represent Belgium at the ESC in Jerusalem. In the Belgian semi-finals Micha sang six songs of which the public chose three: Mijn Dagboek, Comment Ça Va and Hey Nana. In the final an "expert" jury chose Hey Nana. Micha hated the song and was furious, she said the "experts" chose Hey Nana because they didn't like her and they knew she wanted to sing Comment Ça Va in Jerusalem. She accused the composer of Hey Nana of plagiarism with the intention to disqualify the song. Meanwhile, the Belgian broadcaster asked Nancy Dee to sing Hey Nana at the ESC but eventually Micha herself sang the song at the ESC and came 18th and equal last. Micha refused to sing Hey Nana ever again and she never recorded it.

After the contest Micha released a few albums and became a TV and radio presenter. Nowadays she 's a member of the Flemish Soul DivaZ together with Sandra Kim and Alana Dante.

Wednesday, 4 May 2011


Brolle was born as Kjell Junior Wallmark on November 10, 1981 in Boden, Sweden.

He is a singer and musician which was discovered in the Kanal 5 series Popstars in 2001. However in the end not joining the final band Brolle soon got a record deal and released his first single Playing With Fire. He played musicals such as Footloose, replacing Måns Zelmerlöw, and he had also played the leading part in the musical Buddy Holly.

In 2011 Brolle participated at the Swedish Melodifestivalen with the song 7 Days And 7 Nights which came 10th and last in the final.

World Popular Song Festival - Anita Meyer

Anita Meyer (born as Anita Meijer on October 29 in Rotterdam) is a Dutch singer.

In 1976 Anita had her first hit in the Netherlands with The Alternative Way. After that Anita had many hits. Her biggest hit was Why Tell Me Why, it was the best selling record of 1981.

In 1981 Anita represented The Netherlands at the W.P.S.F in Japan with the song Too Young To Know which finished 8th an won an Outstanding Song Award. In the late 80's Anita had a couple of hits with Lee Towers.

In 1992 Anita stopped her singing career to spend more time with her family. Nowadays Anita performs occasionally in Dutch television shows.

David Bustamante

David Bustamante Hoyos (March 25 1982, San Vicente de la Barquera, Cantabria) is a Spanish singer.

David's breakthrough was in the TV hit Operación Triunfo which was the Spanish pre-selection for the ESC in 2002. David was one of the three winners. In the final show the televoters chose the Spanish entry for the ESC. David came 3rd with the song La Magia Del Corazón.

Since then, David Bustamante has released five solo albums. His first CD, Bustamante, was released in May 2002 and spent many months among the top selling CDs in Spain. He followed this with a successful summer tour with over 70 concerts throughout Spain. His second album, Asi Soy Yo, was released in November 2003 and was produced by Emilio Estefan. David continued with Caricias Al Alma and Pentimento. Furthermore, he visited Latin America to promote his music.

David Bustamante has had big success in Spain, USA and Latin America. He has sold over 1,400,000 CD's. The last album of David is A Contracorriente, published at 2010. The album went Platinium in the Spanish charts. He followed this with a succesful Tour.

Martine Clémenceau

Martine Clémenceau is a French singer, born March 18, 1949.

She made her singing debut by singing a duet with Michel Sardou.

In 1971 Martine won the Grand Prix at the World Popular Song Festival in Japan with the song Un Jour l'Amour. The song was a big hit in Japan.

In 1973 she was chosen to represent France at the Eurovision Song Contest with the song Sans Toi which came equal 15th in Luxemburg.

In 1977 Martine represented France for the 2nd time at the W.P.S.F. in Japan. The song L'Amour Monsieur came 10th in the Grand Final and won an Outstanding Song Award.

Martine is still active in the music business and released her latest album in 2010.

Loretta Goggi

Loretta Goggi, born 29 September 1950, is an Italian singer, actress and TV personality.

In 1971 she represented Italy at the World Popular Song Festival in Japan with the song Dolce E Triste which stranded in the semi-final. Although she didn't made it into the Grand Final, Loretta won an Outstanding Song Award and had a big hit in Japan with the Japanese version of Dolce E Triste.

Loretta covered the winning song of the W.P.S.F 1971, Un Jour L'Amour. Loretta's version is called Non C'è Uomo

In 1981 Loretta came 2nd at the Festival di Sanremo with Maledetta Primavera, her biggest hit.

Monday, 2 May 2011

Tanel Padar

Tanel Padar (born October 27, 1980) is an Estonian singer. He is best known for winning the Eurovision Song Contest 2001.

Tanel became famous after winning the Kaks Takti Ette, a televised competition for young Estonian singers, in 1999. In 2000, he was one of the backing vocalists for Ines – who at the time was his girlfriend – at the Eurovision Song Contest 2000.

In 2001, Tanel Padar along with the boyband 2XL and Aruba born Dave Benton won the Eurovision Song Contest 2001 with the song Everybody.

Tanel performs in a band called Tanel Padar & The Sun, one of the most popular bands in Estonia. They are very successful and had many hits. Tanel and his band covered a few ESC songs like Waterloo and Nagu Merelaine.

Sunday, 1 May 2011


Séverine (born Josiane Grizeau, October 10 1948, Paris) is a French singer.

Séverine won the Eurovision Song Contest in 1971 for Monaco, with the song Un banc, Un Arbre, Une Rue. The song was a big hit in Europe. Séverine had further success in France and Germany, but never again on an international scale.

Séverine made two further attempts at winning the Eurovision Song Contest, participating in the German national finals of 1975 and 1982 In 1975 she came 7th with Dreh Dich Im Kreisel Der Zeit and in 1982 she came 10th with Ich Glaub' An Meine Träume. She accompanied Monaco's delegation to the Eurovision Song Contest 2006 in Athens, Greece.

Vasyl Lazarovych

Vasyl Lazarovych (born August 5, 1981) is a Ukrainian singer and performer.

1981 - Vasyl Lazarovych was born in the village of Banya-Bereziv, Kosiv Raion, Ivano-Frankivsk Oblast, Ukraine.

2002 - Vasyl graduated as a vocalist from the Stefanyk Ivano-Frankivsk University. He also played the part of Alexander II in the musical Equator.

2004 - Vasyl acted as a soloist in the Belarus Orchestra under the direction of Mikhail Finberg. They performed at the Slavonic Bazaar Song Contest.

2005 - Vasyl studied at the Tchaikovsky Music Academy

2009/2010 - On 29 December 2009 Vasyl was selected internally by the Ukrainian broadcaster (NTU) as the Ukrainian representative for the Eurovision Song Contest 2010 in Oslo. On March 6 2010, Vasyl sang 5 songs in the Ukrainian national final:

Adrenalin, 4th
Don't Wanna Loose You, 4th
Shine Of Your Star, 2nd
I Know, 2nd
I Love You, 1st

The song I Love You was chosen by SMS voting and an "expert" jury. But on 15 March 2010 the new board of the National Television Company of Ukraine, decided not to send him to Oslo, because the song was not good enough.

On 17 March 2010 it was announced that there would be by a new, last minute, national selection. Vasyl participated in the new national final, but he just placed eighth.