On August 25 she won Belarus’ Junior Eurovision 2017 selection with the song “Ya Samaya” (I Am The One). And ever since then Helena Meraai has been riding a wave of hype as JESC fans praise her modern, drum ‘n bass tinged track.
Writing on the comments section of our news post, Héctor says young Helena could slay the adults in her own country.
“Sounds really good,” he writes. “It’s interesting how some countries tend to send better songs to the Junior Contest than to the Eurovision Song Contest itself. Belarus is one of the best examples!”
Kris agrees: “This seems better produced than their adult ESC NF.”
Standing on a small raised platform, Helena delivered a mature performance that showed off her power and control. What starts off as a traditional ballad eventually morphs into a drum ‘n bass ballad with a house feel. The quickening beat gives it drive and pace — it remains child-friendly, but occupies the more mature end of the song contest spectrum.
Helena’s dramatic facial expressions and arm movements suggest she’s put a lot of thought into the overall package. With greater control of the high notes and a dramatic LED, she could be on to something big for Tbilisi.
“Great song,” Adrian writes in our YouTube comments section. “Really great JESC song. One of the best ever #Eurovision entries from Belarus (including the “Senior” #Eurovision entries). Unless some really awesome JESC entries come later on, this really should be Top 3/a potential winner.”
“She is so mature for her age!!!” Hripsime DAVTYAN writes. “She is my winner but I don’t think that the kids jury will like it.”
Deniz NL disagrees. He thinks that many listeners misunderstand trends among young people. He writes:
“Love this song. This is what most children nowadays like. That’s what a lot of people don’t understand — this is more kid-friendly than 95% [of the music] they hear and see nowadays.”
Helena, a teen queen with a savvy fashion sense, is already cultivating a style all her own.
In her official music video, which you can watch below, she channels intergalactic avant-garde chic, singing before a light display that features images of outer space. At one point she holds an orb illuminated with the universe.
She wears her hair in two buns, referencing Princess Leia, and sports an edgy nose piercing with a chain that snakes behind her ears.
What do you think of Helena and her entry “I Am The One”? Does it have a chance to bring home that trophy in Tbilsi? Or is it too early to tell? Let us know in the comments box below.
People just love to throw shade at Helena! But why? Maybe for having a loud voice throughout most of “Ya samaya”, or maybe because the song is a but “mature” for Junior Eurovision. Guess what? YOU’RE ALL WRONG! Her singing is just fine,and “Ya samaya” isn’t too bad, and it most certainly has a melody. Those who keep throwing shade are NOT the best critics! 😀
My top 3 Belarus entries in JESC;
1. Angely Dobra (2011)
2. Volshebstvo (2015)
3. Ya Samaya (2017)
Aminata wannabe in terms of style.
A mediocre song.
It’s like a Loreen wannabe. And she is screaming almost all the song, i’m sorry but i don’t like it.
Different yes, but best song … nope.
For the one millionth time, Helena is NOT screaming! Nevertheless, her singing is just fine! >:(
I just have realised that there was 10 selected entries for children of Belarus all with…. russian lyrics exclusively? Just when I thought their broadcaster has started to mantain some cultural attitude with helping Naviband make it into (yet on bigger grade letting Brutto perform at home soil back again), we face the reality of country when your language put by government as secondary [to please former Empire householder so it will throw shade on Ukraine with similar language policy being shut down like it does right now] for 25+ consecutive years. It’s overall enjoyable with this a bit edgier… Read more »
To be fair to the broadcaster, Russian is the most commonly spoken language in Belarus.
This turnaround of bilingual policy doesn’t create any excuse for broadcaster to completely neglect Belarussian for Belarussian nationality which dominates in that country by a landslide.
You seem to be fine with kids being deprived of mother tongue.
Thanks for including me in your article! I feel famous now xD
I don’t understand why inlove Eurovision so much and yet detest the junior Eurovision with a passion.
Best so far, but hey, we have (at least) 13 more countries to go so Belarus being my fave so far doesn’t say too much I’d say. It’s a very good entry tho and it definietly belongs to Belarus’ list of great entries in both JESC and ESC.
It’s pretentious af and kids don’t like pretentious. Last year Belarus was cooler.
It’s so overrated by fans. Not surprised by that since it’s a young diva basically screaming. Song is terrible with almost no melody.
I keep trying to tell you! Helena is NOT screaming. In fact, her singing is just fine.
After Malta won for the second time, it looks like Belarus and Georgia decided that they wanted to remain the two best countries in the competition so they both decided to win! ?
? = 😉
It’s a great song, I don’t think it needs a revamp. The only possible problem is that it is not very kid friendly, but I hope it does well, it deserves it.
I love How everyone says that This isn’t child-friendly, I am 13 and I know This isn’t childish, but This is What children (like me) listen to. I love This and hope it’ll do Well.
S H O O K
I agree, today children don’t listen to disney and cartoon music.
Inclined to believe you a lot, even though it’s not changing fact that there’re still mostly dead top100 spotify streamed by teens and adults en masse. It also flashes memories how my sister (of your age) introduced me to some proper tunes of cloud rap and some other ‘bloke’ stuff. Can’t stand by lyrics but still live fresh flows as it keeps me… updated 😀
It really depends on the other songs and their genres to succeed or fail. Also, we have to see how embracing kids are of the song.
I do have to say that I think kids can appreciate more mature songs in the contest. I don’t think this will go over their heads.
It’s a great song! Belarus wants a third trophy! BUT, don’t introduce englsih lyrics Belarus, because the song is amazing!
Don’t worry Victor. They’re not gonna revamp it! 🙂
The song is not bad by any means, but I feel like the fandom always overrates songs of this style.
The vocals are very impressive. But the song feels a bit underveloped in terms of melodic material.
It’s already overrated af. It’s more adult Eurovision material, I wouldn’t send it to a kids’ contest. Their entry from last year was perfect, he was serving some vocals that would make you think he was Christina Aguilera’s song–all that while jumping around and slaying a choreo. This one is more for tumblr kids.
I agree Alexander was great last year, but he didn’t do that well.
Forget about Alexander, Olga should have won the selection, her song was a BOP and she was by far the winner of the televote.
I really like it but aren’t parts of it (especially at the beginning), very similar to the Water of Life Project? Or is it just my ears malfunctioning?
I agree it’s kinda similar. Not enough to be a bad thing, but worth noting.
Both Helena’s and Water of Life Porject’s songs were written by the same person: Rita Dakota. That’s why you can hear some similarities betwen the two songs.
He he….You included my comment.Really appreciate it guys 🙂
Honestly this song has powerful vocals, a modern production and it s an amazing song overall, my favourite by far. HOWEVER, i cant see this doing well at JESC, its too dark for JESC, in ESC this would get top 10 no doubt.
Did you see how Poland, Iceland or Azerbaijan flopped this year? This wouldn’t be even close of Top 10 (and Belarus has no diaspora to boost it)
C’mon let’s be real. This won’t do well, way too grown up for JESC and she’s not the best singer
But she’s not the worst, either! 😉
I am sorry, I dont like it. It reminds me of Anja Niessen, too shouty with a weak underlying melody. Also ‘too adult’ for my taste- I really do not see this winning.
It’s not that shouty. It’s not really all that weak either. In fact, maybe you should listen to it a few more times and then you’ll start liking it! 😉
It is so shoutty yes. And there’s no melody basically. It’s just not pleasant and hooking at all.
Guys, calm down. Stop being mean to Helena. Her singing is just fine. Let’s just say that “Ya samaya” appears to be better suited for teenagers. 😉
Yeah she’s my favourite right now. I have an opinion that JESC can and should have entries like this, that are not super child-friendly.
I disagree. I believe JESC should have songs that are the best the country can offer for their young talents to sing.If they are child friendly too then it’s all the more better
Let’s just hope Helena doesn’t revamp this song. 😉