Festivali i Kenges 59 - Albania Eurovision 2019 - Lineup of Competing Acts

The 26 songs that will participate in Festivali i Këngës 59 have been revealed. And that means we’re ready to ask you a very important question: Who should win FiK and represent Albania at Eurovision 2021?

This year’s Albanian selection is a sea of queens and kings all gunning for the chance to sing in Rotterdam (or from a remote studio location). The contest has lots of fresh and familiar faces and, as usual, plenty of rock singers and divas. And they’re all getting fans excited.

Festivali i Këngës 59 acts

Plenty of names have set tongues wagging.

The glamorous Anxhela Peristeri boasts an Instagram following above a quarter of a million. The X Factor Greece alum last competed at FiK in 2001, before it was Albania’s Eurovision selection show. Since then, her star has risen steadily, culminating in a Kënga Magjike victory in 2017. She returned in 2019 and placed third.

There are, of course, many alums recent editions of the festival. Fan favourites from 2019 Era Rusi and Kamela Islamaj return, as do Orgesa Zaimi and Mirud from the year before.

Inis Neziri last appeared at the 56th edition. In the interim, she has won the prestigious Golden Stag and New Wave competitions in Romania and Russia respectively.

Or perhaps one of the other acts is your favourite?

Poll: Who should win Albania’s Festivali i Këngës 59?

It’s time to vote in our poll! You can listen to all 26 songs in the playlist embedded below. Remember to choose wisely, you can only vote ONE time. Voting will close just before the live shows take place.

Who did you vote for? Let us know in the comments.

Follow all of our Albania Eurovision 2021 news.

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Kris
Kris
4 days ago

I would have wanted Era to win but this song is nowhere near Eja mere in terms of immediate impact. And karma is not very good for me.

Inis would probably come the closest to something decent. Fatos , Enxhi and Rosela are the only other ones I listened to in full on first listen.

Chr
Chr
5 days ago

I’m pretty sure Albania will go with Inis, but let’s see. I expect it to be a ballad, even though there are few bops in this selection. In my opinion, Mirud has the best song, but I like Era’s song as well. If they really need to go with a ballad then Anxhela or Xhesika would be better choice. I wouldn’t mind Orgesa going to Rotterdam, but her previous attempts were far better than this one. Also, Manjola’s song is quite interesting.

Who?
Who?
5 days ago

Live will change everything. the song that meh in studio version usually come alive in live.

EscStuff
EscStuff
5 days ago

If anyone wants the translation of any song you can reply here I’d be happy to give it to you

Colin
Colin
5 days ago
Reply to  EscStuff

I’d like that very much, thanks. 🙂 Could you perhaps to start with Klinti’s and Xhesika’s songs?

Last edited 5 days ago by Colin
EscStuff
EscStuff
4 days ago
Reply to  Colin

Klinti Collaku- I will make it Between the waves in the sea, Where the wind screams I raised my voice. Do you hear it? And the (????) is echoing Abandoned in this life In the emptiest place I raised my voice once again. Do you hear it? It echos. It thunders. Everytime I have fallen on my knees Everytime I didn’t believe in myself Everytime I’ve been mistaken in a way I’ve rised up once again like a storm Everytime they told me I don’t deserve it Everytime they told me “you’re too late” Everytime my soul has been wounded… Read more »

EscStuff
EscStuff
4 days ago
Reply to  Colin

Xhesika Polo- Protects Me Broken, my heart, I don’t have you The pieces, I attach them, little by little Where are you, pain, you gave me In my soul, I feel fear, again No, I can’t hide it from you This much pain that I’m feeling You give me strength, you protect every step I have so many words that I never got to tell you You give me strength, you protect every step I have so many words that I never got to tell you Warm me, only with, a word I have fear, I have tears, forgive me… Read more »

Colin
Colin
4 days ago
Reply to  EscStuff

Thank you very much. ? These lyrics are really good. Both of these songs are great. ?

Last edited 4 days ago by Colin
EscStuff
EscStuff
4 days ago
Reply to  Colin

Yeah both songs are amazing 🙂

Tibor
Tibor
5 days ago
Reply to  EscStuff

That is a very generous offer, I hope you won’t get swamped. If I had to pick one, I’d like to know, what Sardi Strugaj is singing about. I’ll be more than grateful for the general gist alone. 🙂

EscStuff
EscStuff
4 days ago
Reply to  Tibor

Sardi Strugaj- She Will Make You Cry If you look at her eyes She will make you cry You will know her story The weight she’s carried She never rewinds back time Only reverses the clock But 12 and 6 Can’t go together I didn’t deserve the mistakes, I was afraid Like words, without a sound her fragile eyes speak It’s not hard for you to see that her heart has a knife You look at her soul, if you look at her eyes -If you look at her eyes She will make you cry You will know her story… Read more »

Lourdes
Lourdes
6 days ago

I know she’s not going to win, but I voted for Gigliola with E lire. It’s the only one that captivated me from the first listen.

Joel
Joel
6 days ago

I think its between Inis and Anxhela. Anxhela has a slight advantage over Inis when coming to juries because she’s more known in Albania. Personally i like Inis over Anxhela, Karma sounds a bit messy and doesn’t attract me as much as Pendese do, but im not sure which would be a better option.
Who you think would do better at Eurovision: Anxhela or Inis?

Elisa
Elisa
6 days ago

Ju flisni çte doni eshte e drejta juaj por ne gjith kete liste vetem nje eshte artiste internacionale e famshme me 2 çmime te para nderkombetare qe eshte Inis Neziri.Nje vajze e re teper e talentuar qe ka treguar qe di tjua rrembeje zemrat dhe fitoren te huajve ne vendin e tyre. Ajo vjen me nje kenge te fuqishme dhe te madhe taman ne parametra per eurivision. Jam e bindur qe po shkoj ne eueovivision do jete ne top 3. Per mos te thene e fiton. Kaq di te them. Respekte. Shqip ,paster, bukur.

Elisa
Elisa
6 days ago
Reply to  Elisa

Beni cte doni ÷ === Inisi e meriton te fitoj me ate vokal qe i ka falur i Madhi Zot

Miguel
Miguel
6 days ago

There are a few good songs this year. I particulary like the ethnic songs. Here is my top.      

1   Rosela Gjylbegu – Vashëzo
2   Klint Çollaku – Do t’ia dal
3   Mirud – Nëse vdes
4   Enxhi Nasufi – Njësoj
5   Evi Reçi – Tjerr
6   Stefan Marena – Meteor
7   Era Rusi – Zjarri im
8   Anxhela Peristeri – Karma

Lukas
Lukas
6 days ago
Reply to  Miguel

I love your list . thumbs up. Rosela deserves really much .

Kmmmm
Kmmmm
6 days ago

Anxhelas vocals are unbeatable in this group!! Enough said

I’ll Be Back
I’ll Be Back
6 days ago

Am I the only one who thinks that Gigliola is the best?

Erasmus
Erasmus
6 days ago
Reply to  I’ll Be Back

no same opinion and I also like Fatos.

Lourdes
Lourdes
6 days ago
Reply to  I’ll Be Back

I’m with you!

Pressed Yolk
Pressed Yolk
6 days ago

people sleeping on Sardi

Alex Kirkby
Alex Kirkby
4 days ago
Reply to  Pressed Yolk

AMEN TO THAT, my 2nd!

Jond
Jond
7 days ago

This is Anxhela Peristeri’s year.

Nestor
7 days ago

Inris neziri my absolute favorite

Uno
Uno
7 days ago

I do not see Angela winning but I do see her stirring controversy like Elvana. This is Jessica Polo’s year.

jason
jason
7 days ago

Anxhela and Inis would be the most probable winners but Era would bring Albania their best ever result since their debut.

Ashton
Ashton
6 days ago
Reply to  jason

period

Pressed Yolk
Pressed Yolk
6 days ago
Reply to  jason

don’t think it finish higher than 2012

Ashton
Ashton
6 days ago
Reply to  Pressed Yolk

Oh I forgot about Suus. Second best then

Azaad
Azaad
6 days ago
Reply to  jason

Would she? I can’t see the juries embracing it and I don’t think the televote would push it hard enough where she could place in the top 4.

Elisa
Elisa
7 days ago

Inis Neziri the best. Amazing song
Amazing talented.

Alex
Alex
7 days ago

Mirud or Inis Neziri will win.

Héctor
Héctor
7 days ago

Top 5:

1.     Fatos Shabani – Ty (7)
2.     Mirud – Nëse vdes (6.75)
3.     Era Rusi – Zjarri im (6.5)
4.     Wendi Mancaku – Vesi i shpirti tim (6.25)
5.     Rosela Gjylbegu – Vashëzo (6)

I see the safest choice and SF filler is winning. Nervermind. I’m used to that, Albania.

Last edited 7 days ago by Héctor
Azaad
Azaad
7 days ago

The good thing with most of the songs is that they don’t go over the ESC time limit by a large margin, so you don’t need a wholesome cut/edit for many of them, and readjustments can focus on simply improving the song rather than trying to shave off parts to bring it to 3 minutes.

Sabrina
Sabrina
7 days ago

Don’t think any of them will actually win, but voted for my favorites so far: Erik, Evi and Rosela.

David vidi
David vidi
7 days ago

Inis the best. Amazing vocal,amazing song, beatififul girl

Eurovision fan
Eurovision fan
7 days ago

Mirud and Era have the best songs. Inis’ song is not bad, but it’s boring choice for Albania.

Tommy
Tommy
7 days ago

Xhesika Polo is going to win it all! Make my words!

Tom
Tom
6 days ago
Reply to  Tommy

Jesus nooo …Albania would be cancelled then

albanian
7 days ago

KARMA OR PENDESË….
Albania need one of these songs to do good at Eurovision 2021

Malo
Malo
7 days ago

Unfortunately none of our opinions matter. RTSH has probably already decided the winner like usual.

Colin
Colin
7 days ago
Reply to  Malo

That is unfortunate to hear. I hope there is a room for some discussion after the performances.
By the way, can you please translate ”Vashezo”? It’s the only song besides Karma (duh!) not to have a translated title. I tried Google translate and nothing comes up. Is it a slang? A name? A place? Thanks in advance.

Malo
Malo
7 days ago
Reply to  Colin

Yeah, I mean I don’t have hard evidence but history has taught me that. For example the second I learned Jonida was competing I knew she had it in the bag. Same for Lindita, Eneda and Elhaida.
‘Vashëzo’ is a dialect word and it basically means ‘Girl’ or ‘Young Girl’. It is usually used as an endearing term.

Last edited 7 days ago by Malo
Colin
Colin
7 days ago
Reply to  Malo

Thanks for the translation. 🙂 Do you know are there lyric translations anywhere online?

Malo
Malo
7 days ago
Reply to  Colin

Np 🙂
No I checked, there aren’t any yet.

Colin
Colin
7 days ago
Reply to  Malo

It would be nice to know what they are about. I mean, I’m not nitpicking over details, but it would be unfortunate to fall for a song whose lyrics are downright offensive or very poorly written.

You’ve been very helpful, Malo, so I’m not asking anything in particular, but any insight on what these songs are about would be more than useful.

Anyway, thanks a lot. 🙂

Colin
Colin
7 days ago
Reply to  Malo

Given the Google translate is any good, I found the translations to Pendese, Vashezo, Karma, Jo, E lire and Zjarri im. I’m assuming the others might be updated as well at some point.

https://genius.com/albums/Various-artists/Festivali-i-kenges-59

Last edited 7 days ago by Colin
Amesc
Amesc
7 days ago

I think most people talk about Inis, Anxhela and Mirud and seeing the views on youtube someone could think that the win is going propably to one of these three artists. BUT people dont decide. So in the end Iris and Axhela will fight for the first place (in my opinion always) with the second having a slightly bigger advantage

Tibor
Tibor
7 days ago

Provided she can pull it off live, Rosela Gjylbegu’s song would probably achieve the best result in Rotterdam: The song is danceable, yet unusual enough to score well with the juries and make an impression on an international audience. For me personally, she’s tied with Sardi Strugaj and Wendi Mancaku, two very good options in their own right, that probably and unfortunately don’t stand a chance with the black box voting system in FiK, but you never know. On the other hand, I couldn’t care less, if an off the rack standard ballad like “Pendesë” will be performed in Albanian… Read more »

Malo
Malo
7 days ago
Reply to  Tibor

Rosela is a great vocalist so I’m sure she will kill it live. Unfortunately, unless the jury members will be close peers of hers (a possibility because she is a respected artist and has connections with RTSH), her best shot is a 2nd place.
How do you feel about “Karma”? It’s the only true contender besides “Pendesë”.

Last edited 7 days ago by Malo
Tibor
Tibor
7 days ago
Reply to  Malo

Okay, that is good news, so at least she’s not out of the picture, yet, that’s all one could hope for.
As for “Karma”, to my ears it’s a bit try-hard and messy. It features a thousand ideas that don’t mix too well, and I suspect they’re there to mask this rather bland and heard before melody. It’s not unlistenable, but if you ask me, Albania has a ton of better options this year.

Malo
Malo
7 days ago
Reply to  Tibor

Thank you for replying 🙂
I do agree that it’s a heard before melody. Anxhela herself has other very similar songs because she and Karma’s composer have collaborated often.
I say she’s a true contender because she’s the only “big mainstream” name this year, and RTSH tends to pick those, no matter the song.

Tibor
Tibor
7 days ago
Reply to  Malo

Of course. 🙂
I can see that you write a lot about who is going to win, but is there someone you’d like to win and who in your opinion doesn’t stand a chance? Or are you happy with the battle Anxhela vs. Inis?

Malo
Malo
7 days ago
Reply to  Tibor

Haha yeah I do write a lot about that because unfortunately FiK is not really a meritocracy, and I’ve lost all hope in RTSH changing that. Therefore I try to analyse the politics of it. I personally would like Rosela, Era, Sardi or Mirud to win, but again I have very little to no hope on these scenarios happening. Regarding the Anxhela vs. Inis, to be honest I really like them as artists, but I fear their songs wouldn’t bring anything new to Albania’s Eurovision lineup. But again considering their odds, I think they’re fine winners. Edit: There are other… Read more »

Last edited 7 days ago by Malo
Tibor
Tibor
7 days ago
Reply to  Malo

Oh, I’m glad I asked, another Sardi fan (we unfortunately seem to be a rare breed). Can you tell me anything about him? I’m really puzzled why he doesn’t create more buzz – perhaps he’s too indie for the casual Eurovision audience.
And as I said the other day, the FiK-class of 20/21 is a rather good one, I completely agree. I don’t know anything about the internal shenanigans of RTSH, but I understand your frustration. Even from an outside perspective and without knowing the specifics, the Albanian voting system seems to be … let’s go with peculiar.

Malo
Malo
7 days ago
Reply to  Tibor

I don’t know if I can tell you much about Sardi. I remember him from when he competed in X-Factor AL and he has released a few songs recently, they’re on YouTube. But yeah he’s great. And from I can tell he wrote the song with an unknown young composer, so at least one positive thing about FiK is promoting new/young artists.
Regarding RTSH, peculiar is definitely a fitting word to describe it.

Tibor
Tibor
7 days ago
Reply to  Malo

Thank you. I’ve checked him out on YouTube and I really like his newer work, particularly a song named “Hana”. This indie rock style really suits him. Unfortunately, he’s neither on iTunes nor on Bandcamp. It’s a shame that artists from smaller countries are rarely present on these platforms. I cannot figure out why that is.

Last edited 7 days ago by Tibor
Malo
Malo
7 days ago
Reply to  Tibor

I have little to zero knowledge regarding how the music industry works. I’m guessing in Sardi’s case he must have released his music independently, so maybe he needs a label and such to be in streaming platforms.

Tibor
Tibor
7 days ago
Reply to  Malo

I was mistaken, he is on iTunes, but only under “Sardi”, if you type in his last name as well, you don’t get a result. But I really think, artists outside the English as a native language speaking world should be more aware of Bandcamp as a promotion tool of their music, especially those who are not signed up with a major label. 🙂

Frisian esc
Frisian esc
7 days ago

Fatos shabani ‘ty’!

Evridiki
Evridiki
7 days ago

“Ty” by Fatos Shabani is my absolute favorite 🙂

Colin
Colin
7 days ago

It’s a tough choice, but I think I’m going with Klinti, Xhesika, Manjola and Wendi. I can understand Inis and Mirud dominating the poll, as both are very talented and their songs are quite competitive. The inspirations from the succeses of Shaj and Me tana are there, but they are pretty solid standalone songs. From the music alone, I can see Xhesika’s ballad being really heartfelt. Klinti probably has the most interesting flow of the chorus. Manjola’s song has that something mystical in a good way. But that’s just me…

PS. Yes, whomever wins, please keep it in Albanian.

Last edited 7 days ago by Colin
Alueta
Alueta
7 days ago

Anxhela peristeri

Una
Una
7 days ago

I’ll wait for the live shows. No solid favourite so far but if I *had* to choose one song, I would go for Fatos Shabani’s “Ty”.

Nestor
7 days ago

Inris neziri my absolute fav

Last edited 7 days ago by Nestor
Eriona
Eriona
7 days ago

Mirud is the best.

Last edited 7 days ago by Eriona
Lucia
Lucia
7 days ago

ANXHELA PERISTERI
DEVIS XHERAHU
Staging is very important.
Those are my 2 favourite songs.:)
I HOPE THEY WON’T CHANGE IT TO ENGLISH! PLEASE DON’T!! NATIVE LANGUAGE IN EUROVISION IS MAGIC. :):):)

Last edited 7 days ago by Lucia
Ashton
Ashton
7 days ago

It’s Era, Mirud, Inis, Kamela, or Xhesika for me. Inis will probably win, and I’m genuinely upset that she will translate it if she wins. I’m so over Albania translating, can y’all learn that it nearly never works well AND Albanian is so beautiful???

Azaad
Azaad
7 days ago
Reply to  Ashton

The difference is that Pendese seems similar to Shaj in that it would only need a translation and not a revamp. The production doesn’t have a lot of strictly Albanian motifs.

Ashton
Ashton
7 days ago
Reply to  Azaad

It doesn’t need either.

Malo
Malo
7 days ago
Reply to  Ashton

Translating the Albanian songs has worked in 2004, 2007 (ultimately it was half English), 2009 and 2010. The first three times it worked because a wonderful translator (from the US I believe) worked on them. I think her name is June Taylor. She also did the 2005 and 2011 translations, and she did a very fine job again but the songs were too ethnic to work in English. While in 2010, the song’s producer hired an English (or American) writer to write the lyrics, and I think that worked again. In my opinion the respective teams did a poor job… Read more »

Azaad
Azaad
7 days ago
Reply to  Malo

You bring up excellent points. It always make sense to have a fluent English speaker and Albanian speaker collaborate on a translation, or leave the job to someone who has an excellent command of both (like Lindita).

Speaking of Lindita, the issue wasn’t so much the translation as it was the revamp. Had World retained the orchestral sound of Botë, I believe it would’ve fared better even with English lyrics.

Malo
Malo
7 days ago
Reply to  Azaad

Ah thank you 🙂

Yes, totally agree regarding Botë/World. When I heard it on FiK, I thought this sounds so great and grand already, they can only amplify it for ESC, but they went for a different approach.

Kredential
Kredential
7 days ago

It’ll be between Anxhela and Inis. Both have name recognition and seem to be the early favourites, and most winning FiK songs in the past have followed a similar pattern. I honestly wouldn’t be surprised if Mirud doesn’t make it past the semis again, and it’s got nothing to do with my opinion of the song.

Malo
Malo
7 days ago
Reply to  Kredential

Yep, you nailed it. FiK has become very predictable, RTSH needs an actual revolution for things to change, and that won’t happen anytime soon.

Briekimchi
Briekimchi
7 days ago

I’m pretty sure Inis Neziri is going to be the choice. I mean, her song is just too much what they like to go for in FiK. It might get top marks from every single juror. It’s not my favourite song in the selection but it’s not like I’m such a big fan of anything else to the point that I’d be upset if Inis were to win.

Erasmus
Erasmus
7 days ago
Reply to  Briekimchi

sad thing is she is going to translate it into English 🙁

Malo
Malo
7 days ago
Reply to  Erasmus

If the lyrics are solid it can work. It’s not an ethnic song like Ktheju Tokës.

Amesc
Amesc
7 days ago
Reply to  Erasmus

Actually it is one of the few Fik songs that would probably be better in english than in albanian. The sound is very modern and the fact that it is not at all ethnic makes it easier to have an english revamp without losing the song’s identity

KESC
KESC
7 days ago

If Albania wants to go with with something more modern, different, I would say Mirud with Nëse Vdes.
If they want to stick to their traditions, they should go with Inis Neziri “Pendesë”. It’s a solid ballad, but nothing really particularly interesting.

Btw, do I mean that Mirud’s song is perfect? Obviously not! But with a decent revamp, the song has much potential, which I can’t really see in Pendesë, other than Inis’ beautiful voice, of course.

So, I wouldn’t be sad with any of these 2 winning, but my favourite is definitely Mirud!

Malo
Malo
7 days ago
Reply to  KESC

Based on the past FiKs, Mirud will be lucky to reach the final. Even Elvana last year got to the final and second place because of the international jury, and she is super famous. Mirud on the other hands is not an established name yet and doesn’t have connections with the “elite” juries FiK tends to choose. Plus he was already robbed once of the final, it can happen again.
I personally really like his song btw, this is just an analysis.

KESC
KESC
7 days ago
Reply to  Malo

I totally agree with you!
l also don’t have high hopes, but yeah, for me it’s the best song among the others.

It will most likely be Inis or Anxhela, but who knows, 2020 was full of surprises, so anything can happen.

Malo
Malo
7 days ago
Reply to  KESC

Haha yes, but I’m afraid that FiK’s mentality is too strong even for 2020 XD

Erasmus
Erasmus
7 days ago

Hard to judge before the revamps and staging.. we shall see, don’t really care tbh as long as it’s Mirud, Inis or Gigliola

Malo
Malo
7 days ago
Reply to  Erasmus

I’m afraid the jury will kill Mirud’s chances.
Inis’ only competition for the title is Anxhela.
Gigliola’s best chances are 2nd or 3rd because juries in the past have rewarded new talents (Sara Bajraktari last year, Lidia Lufi in 2018 and Inis in 2017). They don’t give them the title anymore though, they used to do that in the 2000s (2003, 2005, 2007 and 2008).