With the announcement of the up-coming semi-final allocation draw, today the six pots were published. We take a look at the differences to last year as it isn’t just a matter of swapping the two host countries.
On the 29th of January, we’ll see who ends up in which semi-final – and also whether or not they will perform in the first and the second half. The semi-final countries will be drawn into the two semi-finals from a set of pots partly made up by previous voting pattern.
2018 compared to 2017
Compared to last year, there are any changes in the first pot. In pot two, we now find Ireland instead of Estonia, which has then been moved to pot six which includes its neighbours Lithuania and Latvia, but also Poland as well as the Netherlands and Belgium.
In pot three we find Russia and surrounding countries. Ukraine join this group as they aren’t hosting it this year. As Ukraine join, Israel is leaving the group. They are now placed in pot five with two other islands Australia and Malta, but also Austria, Czech Republic and San Marino.
As always, Greece and Cyprus are placed in the same pot. In this pot we also find Moldova, Romania, Bulgaria and Hungary just as last year.
Five songs about love in various shapes, and one rock song which encourages you to get back up on your feet. We talked to the six Czech finalists to find out why exactly we should listen to their entry. One of these six songs will represent the Czech republic at the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest.
Debbi, Eva Burešová, Mikolas Josef, Pavel Callta, Eddie Stoilow and Doctor Victor. Those are the six artists fighting in the online national final, Eurovision Song CZ, for the ticket to Lisbon. Two solo female artists, two solo male artists and two bands. That is equally divided just as with the music genres. We have a dark ballad, a rock band, fresh funky song, a guitar song, Swedish-sound modern pop song and an American style band. Let’s look at the songs individually.
Each song caption is a link to the song.
1 Eva Burešová – Fly
2 Mikolas Josef – Lie To Me
3 Eddie Stoilow – We Rule This World
4 Debbi – High On Love
5 Pavel Callta – Never Forget
6 Doctor Victor – StandUP
Eva Burešová – Fly
Fly is a dark ballad composed by Václav Noid Bárta who represented the Czech Republic in 2015 in a duet with Marta Jandová. After Eurovision 2015, he expressed his wish to write another song for Eurovision, having met all the other artists and people behind Eurovision. This year he has the chance to prove if he can do better than last time.
The song is by Václav noid Bárta and it is about love, because it is a theme that everyone of us experienced. It doesn’t matter if it is a love to a partner or to your own child. It says that everybody once got into the point where he got his heart ripped out of his body and don’t know what to do next. And he wasn’t able to name it. What happened, why does it happen and how to get out of it. But the song is not negative, it is positive and about the hope that one day everything will be okay again.
Eva Burešová about the song Fly
Mikolas Josef – Lie To Me
As it did not break any of the rules set by the broadcaster, Mikolas already performed Lie To Me live during Czech Blog Awards and released his own music video for it. Already before the announcement of the finalists, this song became a hot fan favourite, not only among the Czech people but also foreign Eurovision fans. Lie To Me was written by Mikolas himself and is a song about the real situation from Mikolas past love life, as he explained during the press conference.
From the moment when I played my music on the streets, Eurovision was something I wished for. My song is also about love, but in a different direction than the other songs. It is about my ex-girlfriend who dumped me for my best friend. I decided I will not cry about it and I will do it in a different way. So in the song I told her what I wanted to tell, and I am glad it ended the way it did.
Mikolas Josef about the song Lie To Me.
Eddie Stoilow – We Rule This World
Not only at Eurovision, but in general a lot of songs are about love. That’s also the case of We Rule This World and as the band members told at the press conference, it was not intended for Eurovision in the beginning. Their lead singer Honza Žampa was, unfortunately, missing during the press conference as he was on a trip to South-Eastern Asia so he only sent a video greeting to the journalists.
“The song is about love and about getting together in a non-kitch way. During the last year, there were many different bad things that happened around the world and our song got the atmosphere from that – a little bit melancholic, maybe also a ceremonial. It is not just en egoistic pop song like in the radios today.
Eddie Stoilow about We Rule This World.
Debbi – High On Love
Not to be confused with Reidun Saether’s song of the same name, this High On Love is something completely different. Composed by Greig Watts and his production team in DWB, the same team who penned My Turn for Martina Bárta last year. That makes High On Love the only foreign song in the Czech final.
Debbi is glad to work with the team again. On her previous albums she already got few songs by Greig, e.g. La La on her debut album or You Take Me There from her second CD. High On Love is of course about love again, but it has a foreign sound to it.
The theme of the song is already in its title. I think that almost every song in the world is about hapiness, love or sorrow. And it is true that the love has the presence, it is everywhere. It is a beautiful feeling that everybody experienced and the song evoke that love is somehow the strongest drug of all. And I think it is beautiful to experiment with it. Love is a strong emotion and the song wakes this in me and I hope, in you too.
Debbi about High On Love.
Pavel Callta – Never Forget
Pavel usually always writes his songs on his own and that is also the case of Never Forget. Mostly, Pavel sings in Czech, but for some of the songs, he makes an English version. Just as with Never Forget. In Czech, the song is called Nezapomeň and surprisingly was performed during his concert in Summer 2017 and as such did initially break the rules of the Eurovision Song Contest. The song however went through a revamp, and not only lyric transformation, and as such should be cleared now.
Never Forget was written already a year and a half ago in Czech and it is very emotional because it reflects my previous relationship that lasted for a many years. It was a high school love and we were splitting up and getting back together, and that is what the song is about. Even if we don’t want to, we have to move on because the relationship is already dried out. We stayed friends and I sing about my feelings, that I will never forget the beautiful moments we spent together. It is a romantic song, even if somebody may take it as a cliché.
Pavel Callta about Never Forget.
Doctor Victor – StandUP
Mikolas, Eddie Stoilow and Pavel all wrote their songs themseves. This approach is also used by this new rock group Doctor Victor. From StandUP we can expect a rock staging and a lot of guitar solos. Is it the way the Czech Republic should head in 2018? StandUP is the only out of the six final entries that is not about love, and as such it stands out in more than one way.
Our song was recorded when I (Victor) lived in our rehearsal studio and the sound is authentic. What you hear on the track is what you get. StandUP is manily for the people who feel drowned and then need to stand up and get on their feet again.
Doctor Victor about StandUp.
In the recap video below you can listen to all the six songs. Who has what it takes to bring the Czech Republic into that final of the Eurovision Song Contest they have only reached once?
Ed Rallide has just released the lyric video for his Latvian Supernova 2018 entry What I Had With You.This song was co-written by Aminata, Latvia’s Eurovision entry from 2015.
Aminita heard Ed sing at a club and knew immediately she wanted to write a song for him. She got together with Kaspars Ansons and wrote the song What I Had With You, especially for Ed.
Ed knew nothing about this. He told EuroVisionary that he was genuinely humbled that Aminata would even consider writing a song for him.
The singer heard the news when he was at the mall, buying groceries. When he saw Aminata’s name on his phone, he dropped his milk with excitement. He continued that working with Aminata has been an amazing experience. Aminata inspires Ed to work harder and be as professional as he can be.
Ed says that although he did not write the song he relates to the lyrics a lot. The story is about a failed relationship, but then you find out, it failed, because of nobody else but you.
See what you think of the song in the lyric video below.
The 1985 Swedish representative Kikki Danielsson will compete in this heat. She came 3rd for Sweden with Bra Vibrationer. Also in this heat is last years 5th placer Benjamin Ingrosso, who sang Good Loving, and current Norwegian hitmaker Heidi Musum, better known as Kamferdrops.
1 Sigrid Bernson – Patrick Swayze 2 John Lundvik – My Turn 3 Renaida – All the Feels 4 Edward Blom – Livet på en pinne
5 Kikki Danielsson – Osby Tennessee 6 Kamferdrops – Solen lever kvar hos dig 7 Benjamin Ingrosso – Dance You Off
Heat 2 – Scandinavium – Gothenburg – February 10, 2018
Polish Eurovision alumni Margaret will compete in this heat. She placed 2nd in Poland’s selection heat in 2016 with Cool Me Down. Her competition includes Samir & Viktor who came 8th in 2015 with Groupie and 12th in the Melodifestivalen final in 2016 with Bada nakna. Mimi Werner came fifth in her heat with Ain’t No Good in Melodifestivalen 2016.
1 Samir & Viktor – Shuffla
2 Ida Redig – Allting som vi sa
3 Jonas Gardell – Det finns en väg 4 Margaret – In My Cabana 5 Stiko Per Larsson – Titta vi flyger
6 Mimi Werner – Songburning
7 LIAMOO – Last Breath
Heat 3 – Malmö Arena – Malmö – February 17, 2018
Jessica Anderson, who represented Sweden in 2003 as part of the band Fame, with Give Me Your Love appears in this heat. Sweden placed 5th in 2003. Méndez placed 2nd in the Melodifestivalen 2002 with the song Adrenaline. Kalle Moraeus & Orsa Spelmän are members of ex-Abba member Benny Andersson’s Orchestra.
1 Martin Almgren – A Bitter Lullaby 2 Barbi Escobar – Stark 3 Moncho – Cuba Libre 4 Jessica Andersson – Party Voice 5 Kalle Moraeus & Orsa Spelmän – Min dröm 6 Dotter – Cry 7 Méndez – Everyday
Heat 4 – Fjällräven Center – Örnsköldsvik – February 24, 2018
Mariette who came 3rd in 2015 with Don’t Stop Believing and 4th in 2017 with A Million Years returns to compete in this heat. Felicia Olsson came 5th in her heat in Melodifestivalen 2013 with Make Me Number One. Felix Sandman was the F of FO&O who came 11th last year with Gotta Thing About You.
1 Emmi Christensson – Icarus 2 Elias Abbas – Mitt paradis
3 Felicia Olsson – Break That Chain 4 Rolandz – Fuldans 5 Olivia Eliasson – Never Learn 6 Felix Sandman – Every Single Day 7 Mariette – For You
Two acts from each heat will be voted directly to the final. Further, two acts from each heat will be sent to the Andra Chasen round. This will take place on March 3 in Kristianstad Arena, Kristianstad. From this round, four acts will also proceed to the final.
The Melodifestivalen 2018 final will be held on March 10 at the Friends Arena, Stockholm.
Last year Robin Bengsston won the Melodifestivalen 2017 with the song I Cant Go On. Below you can watch a special recording of Robin’s performance, filmed from four different angles.
Today Belarus Television (BRTC) streamed the auditions of the artists who hope to represent Belarus at the Eurovision Song Contest 2018.
From these acts eleven have been chosen to appear in the Belarus final. The date of the final has not been announced yet, but BTRC promise it will be before March 1, 2018. The name of the acts and their songs are listed below.
ALEN HIT – I do not care
Adagio – You and I
Lexy – Ain’t you
Sophia Lapina – Gravity
Napoli – Chasing rushes
Alekseev – Forever
Anastasia Malashkevich – World on fire
Guns – I will not cry
Cyril Hood – Deja Vu
Radio wave – Subway lines
Ukranian Alekseev has already released his entry. See what you think of it below.
A group of national and international songwriters gathers in Germany for the so-called Song Writing Camp. Two of them have previously written a Eurovision winning entry. Can they do it again? The German final will be held on the 22nd of February 2018.
In December, German broadcaster NDR revealed the six acts that had made it to the final of their national selection titled Unser Lied für Lissabon (Our song for Lisbon). Today, the songwriters who will take part in the next phase, the Song Writing Camp was announced in a press release.
Songwriters for Song Writing Camp:
Billy Austin (US)
Richardo ‘Richy’ Bettiol (Swiss, living in Germany)
Axel Ehnström (Finland)
Martin Gallop (German)
Loren Nine Geerts (The Netherlands)
Nisse Ingwersen (Germany)
Nina Müller (Germany)
Jaro Omar (Germany)
Thomas Stengaard (Denmark)
Joe Walter (Germany)
Ali Zuckowski (Germany)
Two of these songwriters have previously co-written a Eurovision entry. Thomas Stengaard wrote the Danish 2013 winner Emmelie de Forest’s Only Teardrops together with Lise Cabble and Julia Fabrin Jakobsen. Ali Zuckowski was one of the writers behind Rise Like A Phoenix, the 2014 Austrian winning song.
In recent years, Germany haven’t scored well at the Eurovision Song Contest. Their last top 10 result goes back to 2012 where Roman Lob finished 8th with the song Standing Still. How did it sound? Refresh your memory in the video below: