Montenegro is yet to confirm their participation in Eurovision 2016, but
1617-year-old Montenegrin singer Vasilije Ojdanic is claiming that broadcaster RTCG has internally selected him to represent Montenegro and that the broadcaster will announce the news today. Some Eurovision fans are already excited, but wiwibloggs has investigated and the story seems a little fishy.
Vasilije announced the news with this Instagram pic, purportedly showing a text message of confirmation from RTCG. Note: Vasilije has since deleted this Instagram account.
Good afternoon, Vasilije! Radio Television of Montenegro are informing you that you have been selected to represent Montenegro in the Eurovision Song Contest 2016 in Stockholm, Sweden. Thank you for your participation. The official press conference will be held on September 12 at RTCG in Podgorica. Congratulations!
It’s odd that such a serious decision would be communicated via a brief text message. No contract? No agent? No lawyers? No press schedule? Just a “Yah, you’re it, lolz” style? And why is such a big announcement being made on the weekend?
Who is Vasilije Ojdanic?
Last year the amateur singer announced that he would be representing Montenegro at Junior Eurovision, but then said he had to withdraw “for private reasons”. In May, Vasilije uploaded a video (since deleted) campaigning for his song “When You Call My Name” to be selected as Montenegro’s song for 2016. He also urged fans to donate money, though he didn’t say what this would be used for.
Vasilije later ran an online poll asking fans to choose between “When You Call My Name” and another song called “Zauvijek” (which he claims was written by “Z. Joksimovic“). “Zauvijek” led the poll with 70% of the vote, leading Vasilije to proclaim, “Here we go! “Zauvijek” will be performed in Stockholm!”
He uploaded instrumental teaser clips of both songs on Instagram. They both sounded nice, but Shazam-ing the songs reveals a different story.
“When You Call My Name” is actually a track called “Worlds (Instrumental)” by The Sir Jimi Newton Project, on an album called Music For Videos and Soundtracks. Whereas “Zauvijek” is the ambient tune “The Babbling Brook” from the relaxation album The Healing Sounds of Nature. Oh, has Zeljko turned to writing cheap production music? Besides, both tracks were released well before 1 September 2015, making them ineligible to be used for Eurovision 2016.
The big question: can Vasilije do it?
Does he have what it takes to get up on stage at the Globe, rock the arena, entertain millions of viewers around Europe and do his country proud? Well, if the quality of the song clips on his Soundcloud account are anything to go by, the answer is no, not really.
His Soundcloud reveals Vasilije to be an enthusiastic amateur, interpreting pop songs and Eurovision hits. But after listening to even just a few tracks, it’s obvious that he has difficulty holding a tune and can barely project his voice beyond a whisper.
So no, he’s not Montenegro’s man for 2016.
We can’t help admire the effort that Vasilije has gone to in creating this Eurovision fantasy. But as the 40 super talented performers we saw in Vienna showed us, there’s so much more to competing in Eurovision than just wanting to do it.
Our advice to Vasilije – if you’re genuinely serious about entering Eurovision, make it a long-term goal. Really commit to your craft. Get some voice lessons, work on your performance technique and learn how to entertain a live audience. Come back in 10 years and then we’ll talk.
We reached out to the Montenegrin Head of Delegation. The official response: Vasilije Ojdanic’s claim is “nonsense”. Case closed.
Now that Highway has been confirmed as the act who will actually be representing Montenegro in 2016, it seems Vasilije Ojdanic has set his sights on Switzerland’s national final.
He uploaded his song “Zauvijek” (Forever) to German-Swiss broadcaster SRF’s open submission platform. It’s a nice enough song (though Vasilije won’t be able to use those autotune effects if he’s selected for Stockholm), but the music is oddly familiar.
Oh yes – the music is the exact same track as “The Babbling Brook” from the 2012 album Relax Rejuvenate Renew – Music and Nature Sounds for Relaxation, Meditation, and Yoga by The Healing Sounds of Nature. Obviously too old to be eligible for Eurovision 2016. And then there’s the curious situation where Vasilije credits himself as the creator of both the lyrics and the music.