L-Għanja tal-Poplu, a music competition with original songs in Malta is turning thirty-eight (38) in a couple of days whilst encountering a resurgence, noting that the amount of submissions this year reached seventy-one (71), the highest in reality since the committee introduced the element of live instruments during the performances. escflashmalta.com has been granted permission to speak to the sixteen (16) competing acts, and thus we move onto the seventh act in our series; Karen DeBattista who will be performing the song Jien Ma Naħdimx composed by Mark Scicluna to the lyrics of Rita Pace.
Karen DeBattista, a newcomer to the local music scene whose vocals have well and truly been recognised by a couple of professional personnel, seeing you through to the finals of the Malta Summer Hit Song Contest, the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza and now, L-Għanja tal-Poplu. How have you as an artist grown throughout these competitions and what lies ahead in the future?
I must say that taking part in local competitions surely helps artists to grow first and foremost with regards to confidence and stage presence. I remember my first time on stage; I was absolutely petrified. By time I realised that all that was needed was self-assurance and experience. It also widens an artist’s circle of musical companions, meaning that with each experience I made new friends, both singers, and also composers and authors. I hope to work on new projects, although I don’t like to plan too far into the future. We’ll see what comes my way in the future!
Jien Ma Naħdimx, composed by Mark Scicluna to the lyrics of Rita Pace is the song that you will be presenting in this years’ edition of L-Għanja tal-Poplu. Would you care to explain the meaning behind the lyrics and the genre that the song encompasses?
The song is a simple ballad, yet its simplicity in music compliments the lyrics while allowing the audience to follow the theme of the song. The lyrics are directed towards society’s view with regards to the role of housewives. We seem to be under the impression that women who opt not to find a paying job have all the time in the world to do whatever they please.
In reality, the work which has to be done with regards to taking care of the family and doing all that is necessary to make a house a home requires the same, if not more, effort than a ‘regular’ job. There is no payment for a housewife’s work; all that she would want is the gratitude shown by family members and the proper importance given to her by society.
L-Għanja tal-Poplu is known to be a celebration of lyrical prowess amongst friends, noting that the competitive feel is very much forgotten during rehearsals or the actual night of the competition. With ONE, the most successful private broadcaster in Malta supporting this event, it seems to denote its successful reputation. Do you believe that there’s a place for this competition within the local music industry and do you support it’s continuation in the years to come?
Without a doubt! I believe that we need to push more boundaries with regards to local music especially when it comes to writing lyrics in Maltese. I sincerely hope that this particular competition leads the way to similar productions in the future. Our language is a jewel, especially when combined with sweet music composed by so many talented musicians.
Would you like to say anything to our readers at escflashmalta.com?
I would like to encourage the audience to be part of this celebration of local talent; it means the world to us performers!