The Eurovision season is hotting up. And over the course of the next few months, we will all fall in and out of love with scores of new national final and Eurovision entries. But that doesn’t mean we forget about the artists from past contests.
Contrary to the commonly perpetuated myth about the song contest killing careers, we’re always thrilled to report that singers and performers associated with both Eurovision itself and the various national selections are thriving.
Here is a selection of just some of the songs and music videos released in the last week or so.
New music from Eurovision artists (2020: Week 1)
Dami Im “Kiss You Anyway”
“I’ve been saying it was going to be a big year… And I meant it. Here is some new music”. So wrote Dami Im on Instagram when she dropped “Kiss You Anyway”. The delicate ballad, written entirely by Dami herself, is her first since last autumn’s “Crying Underwater”. The Korean born songstress remains Australia’s most successful Eurovision performer, finishing second in 2016.
Branko, Ana Moura and Conan Osíris “Vinte Vinte”
Three of the biggest names in Portuguese music come together for the other-worldly “Vinte Vinte”. The electronic artist Branko and fado singer Ana Moura both provided interval entertainment at Eurovision 2018. Conan Osíris, of course, represented the country at the 2019 contest. Writing on Instagram, the critically acclaimed Moura describes Osíris as “the boy of the future”.
Julie Bergan with Seeb “Kiss Somebody”
Norway’s Melodi Grand Prix 2013 gave us Margaret Berger and Adelén, but the year’s biggest success story is arguably Julie Bergan, even though she missed out on the final completely. In the years since, she’s enjoyed two massive number ones with “Arigato” and Alan Walker’s “Ignite”.
“Kiss Somebody” is her newest single. In a press release sent to wiwibloggs, she says it “has a positive message about the vision of the future. Go ahead, don’t take life so seriously and kiss who you want: kiss a boy, kiss a girl, just kiss someone!”
Pastora Soler “Al fondo a la izquierda” (Acústico)
On Friday 3 January, Pastora Soler did two things. Firstly, she dropped an acoustic version of “Al fondo a la izquierda” — a track from her 2019 LP Sendir. On Instagram, Spain’s Eurovision 2012 rep calls it “one of the most special songs of this album”. Secondly, in the same post, she reveals that she is 36 weeks pregnant. The team at wiwibloggs sends our congratulations.
Alpis X Nano “Förblir”
Nono is a two time finalist in Sweden’s Melodifestivalen, competing in 2017 and 2019. For his first release of the year, he teams up with the rapper Alpis on “Förblir”.
Renaida “Ett andetag i taget”
Rendaida’s “All The Feels” was a firm fan favourite at Melfest 2018. After a tough 2019, the artist starts off the new year with “Ett andetag i taget” (One Breath At A Time). In a moving social media post, she writes:
“Today I release a NEW song that is by far the hardest job but also the most obvious song I’ve ever written. It means a lot to me. As you may know, I have gone through something very heavy recently. I got cancer. In this song I release today I get to share the strong and constant question marks that have spun in my head. Stopping them in a song is an extreme relief. Hope you also feel as much as I do and on Monday I will sing it live for you on the “Together Against Cancer” gala on @ TV4 at 20.00. Thanks for all the support yet❤️ Feel free to share”
Dima Bilan feat. Sergei Filin “Мечтатели”
Christmas may be over and done with for many of us. But in the east, the festive season stretches well into January. And this explains why Dima Bilan — the man who won Eurovision 2008 for Russia — released this festive music video on 31 December. The title translates as “Dreamers” and it’s a collaboration with the child performer Sergei Filin. It features on the soundtrack for a new retelling of the classic Cinderella fairytale. Dima originally sang “Мечтатели” on his 2011 album of the same name.
Ilinca “Biggest Hits of the 2010s”
Ever since she first yodelled in Romania’s national selection for 2017, Ilinca’s versatility as a performer was never in doubt. And sure enough, three years after her stint in Kyiv she continues to show off her vocal prowess. In this end-of-the-decade mashup she covers what seems like every hit of the 2010s, from Adele to Macklemore to Hozier. Which interpretation is your favourite?
Anna Bergendahl “Speak Love”
She made one of the most spectacular Melodifestivalen comebacks in recent memory when she unleashed “Ashes To Ashes” on an unsuspecting general public. However, those who followed Anna Bergendahl’s career since her Eurovision 2010 performance or Sweden won’t have been surprised. Anna continues her run of bittersweet folk-pop with “Speak Love”. She says, “this song has a special place in my heart and I hope it can have it with you too”. Anna will return to compete on the Melfest stage once more in the spring.
Ieva Zasimauskaitė “Praėjo”
If local media reports are to be believed, Lithuania’s 2018 songstress is currently enduring some heartbreak. So, it’s not much of a stretch to interpret her latest single, which translates to “Gone”, as autobiographical. Fans can expect to see her once more when she takes up hosting duties on Lithuania’s national selection in a couple of weeks.
Shiri Maimon “Whitney”
Before Netta, Shiri Maimon was Israel’s most successful Eurovision act of the 21st century — finishing fourth with “HaSheket SheNish’ar” in 2005. She’s currently moonlighting as a judge on The Next Star For Eurovision — the show from which the country’s 2020 singer will be chosen. However, she’s still actively recording music. On New Year’s Eve, she dropped “Whitney”. It’s a soulful tune which, she writes on Instagram, “is an expression of my wish to return to those moments when everything was still innocent”. The music video depicts a drag queen overcoming prejudice with a little helping hand from Shiri.
Amandine Bourgeois “Tell Me Who You Are”
Amandine Bourgeois represented France with “L’enfer et moi” in 2013. On Tuesday she dropped a belated acoustic version of her bilingual track “Tell Me Who You Are”. The song first appeared on her 2018 LP Omnia. A similarly stripped-down take on “Nightcall” landed later in the week.
alyona alyona feat. Jamala “Забирай”
Ukraine’s Eurovision 2016 winner Jamala adds a new string to her bow with “Забирай”. It’s a collaboration with rapper alyona alyona. Translating as “Take It Away”, the music video sees the two women turn their ire on online trolls.
Just before Eurovision 2019, PAENDA released her second LP — the appropriately titled Evolution II. “Filler” is the latest single to be taken from the album which also spawned “Limits”.
Black Velvet & Koit Toome “2020”
At Eurovision 2020, Estonian crooner Koit Toome gave us a throwback to the 1980s with “Verona”. However, for this collab with Black Velvet he is very much in the present — it’s literally called 2020!
LOBODA “Мира мало” (Mood Video)
LOBODA — the artist formerly known as Svetlana Loboda — famously represented Ukraine in 2009, singing “Be My Valentine! (Anti-Crisis Girl)” from inside a so-called “hell machine”.
At the start of December, the prolific hitmaker dropped the single “Мира мало” (“The World Is Not Enough”). A lyric video soon followed, and now she’s gifted the world with a “mood video” for the single. It sees her straddle a unicorn in various states of undress. In typical LOBODA style, she’s completely naked by the end.
Cartoon feat. Daniel Levi “Más Y Más”
Both Cartoon and Daniel Levi are veterans of Estonia’s Eurovision selection — Eesti Laul. The former finished third in the 2016 edition while the latter came second in 2015. They’ve come together for the chilled-out Spanish language number “Más Y Más” (On & On). It’s released under the No Copyright Sounds label, so feel free to use it as a soundtrack on your YouTube videos. The original English version was released in 2016.
Bonnie Tyler “Let’s Go Crazy Tonight”
Best known for her 1980s global hits like “Holding Out For A Hero” and “Total Eclipse of The Heart”, Bonnie Tyler sang for the UK in 2013. In 2019, the 68-year-old released her 17th studio album Between the Earth and the Stars. “Let’s Go Crazy Tonight” is the latest cut to be taken from the record.
Who See “Duka Diesel”
The rapping duo are often touted as one of the most-wronged non-qualifiers of all time. But Montenegro’s Who See have long since overcome their 2013 result with “Igranka”. Over the festive period, they released a cover of the 1996 song “Duka Diesel”.
Which song is your favourite? Have we missed out on any? Do you have any artists you want to shout out to? Let us know in the comments.