He’s charmed the bookies and emerged as one of the favourites to win Eurovision 2016.
And on Friday France’s Amir cast his spell on wiwibloggs when we met up for a chat in Amsterdam ahead of Eurovision in Concert 2016.
Wearing a black leather jacket with quilted detailing on the shoulders, he looked every inch the pop star as he sounded off on everything from his song “J’ai cherché” to his Turkish-Romanian wife.
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Happy and very chatty, Amir and his team took their time when deciding whether “J’ai cherché” was right for Eurovision.
They tested the water for several weeks before making a public reveal.
“We let the song live by itself for two months, and after many radios in France took it and played it and the public liked it, then we announced the Eurovision and it gave another layer of good reactions to the song.”
Despite the bookies’ love for him, the 31-year-old star is keeping his feet firmly on the ground.
“Yesterday we released the English version of the song and to be honest I never expected that my music will get to so many ears and receive so much love for what I’m doing, especially after I only started two years ago, so I’m so happy.”
“I keep on working every day to bring the best that I can bring on May 14.”
“It’s a risk both for the artist, but I think especially for the country. You need to understand that you’re representing a nation in front of a whole continent. And the image of a nation in front of a continent is important and it can sometimes be tarnished by a bad or a disappointing performance. I wouldn’t like to be the one that is bringing this disappointment to my country in front of Europe. I don’t want to shame my people.”
Amir also spoke about his multicultural background. Born to a French-Tunisian father and a Spanish-Moroccan Israeli mother, growing up Amir says he and his siblings were “influenced by all those colours and customs.” His Turkish-Romanian wife adds to the mix, and Amir also has a sister in London.
The bookies’ favourite explained that while he’d try to do his best at Eurovision, his main goal was to “just to have fun in order to keep the best memories. I can come to Eurovision also to have fun and to consider it as an entertaining episode in my life. And this is the best way to have the best things to give my grandsons one day.” Awww…