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On Sunday 14th June, it was revealed by the producers of the Summer Hit Song Contest (#summerhit2015) that four entries had to be withdrawn from the competition due to other commitments during the recording dates. As a result, it was announced that another four (4) entries would be brought into the frame, keeping in mind the original result of the jury. On behalf of the editorial team at escflashmalta.com, we would like to wish Cherylis ("Unbreakable") Marilena Gauci ("Hurricane"), Simaria Galea ("Freedom"), and Sarah Crystal ("If I Only Knew") the very best of luck, whilst welcoming first time finalists Dorcas ("Our Last Goodbye") Jurgen Xerri ("Perfect"), Ryan Axisa ("C'est Moi") and returning finalist Dayle Camilleri ("Why?").

This year, a record number of 89 submissions were sent in for the Summer Hit Song Contest, with a professional panel of judges first whittling them down to 30, before eventually making the final selection, thus eliminating a total of 10 songs, all of which were deemed to be possible qualifiers. The idea of bringing in two songs from the reserve list continues to show the strength of submissions for this year's edition of the local music competition. In a statement to this portal, Deo Grech stated that 'another successful edition of the Summer Hit Song Contest' is on the agenda with a mixture of new, and established artists, all seeking the main prizes.

Amour (Philip Vella) - Danica Muscat

Astronaut (Marco Debono / Rita Pace) - Maria Cassar

Bandwagon (Pamela Bezzina / Emil Calleja Bayliss) - Sarah Bonnici

Bounce Back (Renato Briffa / Emil Calleja Bayliss) - Michela Galea

C'est Moi (Alexander Leu / Ryan Axisa / Nikos Sofis) - Ryan Axisa

Dangerous (Elton Zarb / Matt 'Muxu' Mercieca) - Jillianne Camilleri

Do It Better (Rita Pace) - Rita Pace

Eclipse (Andrew Zammit / Rita Pace) - Ana-Maria Grima

Escape (Carlo Gerada / Matt 'Muxu' Mercieca) - Stefan Galea

Feel (Joe George Micallef) - Odessa

Guess What? (Chan Vella / Alexia Schembri) - Christian Arding

Lessons in Love (Ray Agius / Rita Pace) - Dario Mifsud Bonnici

Lucky Me (Kaya / Rita Pace) - Graziella Vella

One of a Kind (Andrew Zahra / Rita Pace) - Michela Dalli

Our Last Goodbye (Dominic Cini / Rita Pace) - Dorcas Debono

Perfect (Dominic Cini / Rita Pace) - Jurgen Xerri

Remember (Yann Charpentier / Emilio Martinez Verdejo / Emil Calleja Bayliss) - Marie Claire

Shattered Dreams (Chan Vella / Alexia Schembri) - Annalise Psaila

Summer Time (Marco Debono / Doris Chetcuti) - Kurt Cassar 

Tabula Rasa (Augusto Cardinali / Giovann Attard) - Julie Pomorski

Why? (Kurt Aquilina / Alison Ellul) - Dayle Camilleri

In support of the local music scene, and the festival circuit, escflashmalta.com will be interviewing all of the acts competing in the 2015 edition of the Summer Hit Song Contest over the next couple of weeks and months, following the aftermath of the Eurovision Song Contest. We kindly urge you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com even through Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news about the 2015 edition of the Summer Hit Song Contest.

Source: F Living

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WQKwxQBv9Ww

On Saturday 18th April, a special edition of The Celebrity Night, hosted by Deo Grech on F Living led to the revelation of the finalists for the 2015 edition of the Summer Hit Song Contest. In a surprise twist, the organising committee thought it best to include 21 entries, rather than the original 17 for the simple reason 'that the quality of entries is much higher than in previous years'.

This year, a record number of 89 submissions were sent in for the Summer Hit Song Contest, with a professional panel of judges first whittling them down to 30, before eventually making the final selection, thus eliminating a total of 10 songs, all of which were deemed to be possible qualifiers. In a statement to this portal, Deo Grech stated that 'another successful edition of the Summer Hit Song Contest' is on the agenda with a mixture of new, and established artists, all seeking the main prizes.

Amour (Philip Vella) - Danica Muscat

Astronaut (Marco Debono / Rita Pace) - Maria Cassar

Bandwagon (Pamela Bezzina / Emil Calleja Bayliss) - Sarah Bonnici

Bounce Back (Renato Briffa / Emil Calleja Bayliss) - Michela Galea

Dangerous (Elton Zarb / Matt 'Muxu' Mercieca) - Jillianne Camilleri

Do It Better (Rita Pace) - Rita Pace & Audrey Marie

Eclipse (Andrew Zammit / Rita Pace) - Ana-Maria Grima

Escape (Carlo Gerada / Matt 'Muxu' Mercieca) - Stefan Galea

Feel (Joe George Micallef) - Odessa

Freedom (Elton Zarb / Matt 'Muxu' Mercieca) - Simaria Galea

Guess What? (Chan Vella / Alexia Schembri) - Christian Arding

Hurricane (Elton Zarb / Matt 'Muxu' Mercieca) - Marilena Gauci 

If I Only Knew (Pamela Bezzina / Sarah Crystal) - Sarah Crystal

Lessons in Love (Ray Agius / Rita Pace) - Dario Mifsud Bonnici

Lucky Me (Kaya / Rita Pace) - Graziella Vella

One of a Kind (Andrew Zahra / Rita Pace) - Michela Dalli

Remember (Yann Charpentier / Emilio Martinez Verdejo / Emil Calleja Bayliss) - Marie Claire

Shattered Dreams (Chan Vella / Alexia Schembri) - Annalise Psaila

Summer Time (Marco Debono / Doris Chetcuti) - Kurt Cassar 

Tabula Rasa (Augusto Cardinali / Giovann Attard) - Julie Pomorski 

Unbreakable (Marco Debono / Rita Pace) - Cherylis

In support of the local music scene, and the festival circuit, escflashmalta.com will be interviewing all of the acts competing in the 2015 edition of the Summer Hit Song Contest over the next couple of weeks and months, following the aftermath of the Eurovision Song Contest. We kindly urge you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com even through Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news about the 2015 edition of the Summer Hit Song Contest.

Source: F Living

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WQKwxQBv9Ww

On the 18th April, a special edition of The Celebrity Night will be airing on F Living, as the revelation of the acts, and their respective entries for the 2015 edition of the Summer Hit Song Contest will be made public by Deo Grech. Following the initial submission process, where F Living received 89 entries, a shortlist of 30 entries has now been made available on escflashmalta.com and the Official Facebook Page.

Even though the competition will feature 18 different acts, 1 has already been given the greenlight to proceed, having been given the opportunity to compete as a result of the Public Choice Award given in 2014. As a matter of fact, Rita Pace & Audrey Marie will be competing in a duet for the second consecutive year. A quick glance at the list will instantly denote a mixture of upcoming and experienced artists, proving once more that this competition is seen as a true springboard for talent.

Amour - Danica Muscat 

Astronaut - Maria Cassar 

Bandwagon - Sarah Bonnici 

Bounce Back - Michela Galea 

C'est Moi - Ryan Axisa

Dangerous - Jillianne Camilleri

Eclipse - Ana-Maria Grima

Escape - Stefan Galea 

Feel - Odessa

Freedom - Simaria Galea 

Guess What? - Christian Arding

Hurricane - Marilena Gauci 

If I Only Knew - Sarah Crystal

Keep on Playing - Roberta Briffa

Lessons in Love - Dario Mifsud Bonnici

Lucky Me - Graziella Vella

My Own Best Friend - Nakita Ambinette

One More Try - Joseph

One of a Kind - Michela Dalli

Our Last Goodbye - Dorcas

Perfect - Jurgen Xerri

Precious - Daniel Muscat

Remember - Marie-Claire

Shattered Dreams - Annalise Psaila

Summer Time - Kurt Cassar 

Tabula Rasa - Julie Pomorski 

Unbreakable - Cherylis

We Can - Christian 

Weight On Me - Ann Marie Ellul

Why? - Dayle Camilleri

In an official statement published through social networking website Facebook, "The producers and organisers would like to thank all the songwriters and singers who submitted their entries but did not make it to the next round." We urge you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com, even through Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news about the Summer Hit Song Contest as soon as it becomes available.

Source: F Living, Summer Hit Song Contest

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WQKwxQBv9Ww

On the 15th March, Sir Temi Żammit Hall played host to the 38th edition of L-Għanja tal-Poplu, a revitalised music competition for which there were a total of seventy-one (71) submissions, sixteen (16) of which were presented to the audience present in the venue and at home with ONE Television broadcasting the event directly in real-time. Josephine Ebejer Grech & Clint Bajada presided over the competition as hosts, not only introducing the song title, artists and songwriters but even the musicians on stage, something which was innovative and well planned. Supported by the Malta Arts Fund and Fondazzjoni Ċelebrazzjonijiet Nazzjonali, it was truly an evening to remember.

David Aloisio, Vince Fabri, Rosabelle Bianchi, Eric Montfort, Elaine Falzon, Kevin Farrugia, Maria Abdilla and David Azzopardi were the professional panel of judges for the competition and they selected a worthy bunch of winners, all of which were mentioned by the public present during several points throughout the evening. Nevertheless, it seems like the jury and the public agreed greatly on the winning entry Jien Ma Naħdimx with music by Mark Scicluna, lyrics by Rita Pace and vocals by songbird, Karen DeBattista. In second place was the comical upbeat song about social media entitled Kif Xrobtuli l-Menti, written by Frank O'Neill, who performed it with Christabelle Curmi and Il-Lajks, leaving in third place a soft beautiful ballad entitled Wara l-Kanċell penned by Joe Julian Farrugia to the music of Miriam Christine who also performed the song in a duet with Olivia Lewis.

In the meantime, this competition is known to award a number of other trophies, in order to point out the exceptional quality of talent that Malta is known to have. Christian Arding was awarded with the Best Interpretation for his entry Il-Karba tal-Mument composed by Chan Vella to the lyrics of Kevin Tanti whilst Denise Spiteri was given the Best New Artist accolade for her stunning performance of Pupa written by Mark Laurence Zammit. The coveted Social Theme award which is given to the lyricist who challenges the stereotype and comes up with a brilliant all around combination went to Rita Pace for the wonderful Il-Quċċata which she wrote to the music of Jeffrey Scicluna, performed by 7 Spadi leaving only the singer/songwriter award which went for the aforementioned Frank O'Neill.

We would like to thank the organising committee of L-Għanja tal-Poplu for their fantastic support throughout these past couple of weeks, giving us the opportunity to speak to the artists, and making the songs available beforehand, giving the event positive publicity. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all the latest news about the local music scene and participation in the Eurovision Song Contest as soon as it becomes available.

Source: Official Website, Official Facebook Page

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RLzDgaoTSls

Published in L-Għanja Tal-Poplu
Saturday, 15 March 2014 18:00

Malta: L-Għanja tal-Poplu 2014 - LIVE

Il-Lejl it-Tajjeb! On the 3rd February, the organising committee of L-Għanja tal-Poplu released the song titles and the names of the songwriters of each of the sixteen (16) qualifiers. It was also announced that seventy-one (71) submissions were received, the highest since its return to the local music scene a couple of years ago, denoting that the changes made to the competition have been appreciated by artists, songwriters and producers alike.

In the past of days, escflashmalta.com had the opportunity to speak to almost all of the finalists in a series of interviews published under the logo acronym GħTP. It was a scintillating experience, and one got to know more about the artists, and the songs they are presenting in the competition. For the very first time in a relatively long period of time, the event hosted by Josephine Ebejer Grech and Clint Bajada will be airing LIVE on ONE Television as from 20:15 CET, and therefore we thought it best to cover the proceedings as they occur in a song-by-song account. Those who wish to view the event on internet may also do so through the official website of the private broadcaster, ONE Television.

The Show (Part 1)

Il-Lejla t-tajba. We kick off the show with the choir of the night! It is a colourful mixture of kids and young singers. What a pleasant energy they are radiating! It is a medley comprising of succesful songs from past editions such as Wellidni and It-Tfal tal-lum.  

Clint and Josephine now appear on stage opening the 38th edition of this festival, thanking main sponsors and contributors. Moreover, Clint encourages all present and those watching to sit back and relax, enoy such a very relaxing show, which has a history of being very calm and enjoyable! 
 

Running Order

01. Mara - Marie Claire Attard Bason (Emil Calleja Bayliss, Andrew Zammit)

The very first song is a relatively powerful one. It's a celebration of the power of women and the music blends really well with the message of the song, uttered by the woman narrating abuse and lack of respect from others, mainly from her male counterparts. Attard Bason looks very confident and on stage there are 8 people, two of them backing vocalists but the attention is still on the singer. The determination and consciousness of the woman narrating her past and today's courage are marked very well on her face and in the firmness of her voice! An absolutely great entry! 

02. Il-Quċċata – 7 Spadi (Rita Pace, Jeffrey Scicluna)

The first male singer for the night and he seems very sure of what he is singing about and the anger for that someone that is corrupt and doing what he used to complain about is very evident in his voice! It's like he is telling him off in reality! The chorus is quite catchy and basically delivers a good lesson to those who are ready to do anything to garner power despite the harm they might inflict on others! The title of the song itself represents this fight for power. It's quite a good entry and I would love to listen to it once again! A job well done.  

03. Numri - Estelle Fenech Imbroll (Paul Attard, Mark Scicluna)

Estelle looks very elegant and delicate but there's something in her first moves that tell me she's a bit anxious, the first singer to make me think about this. But she now settles down and focuses on her emotions, looking very pensive and nervous, narrating a difficult life of vice and vicious circles going into one another. The atmosphere on stage is absolutely adequate for this song and the blue is very calm. "Ħajti vojta jekk ma nissugrax" champions the prevalent theme of abuse and harshness of life for this festival. This is a very emotional song delivered by a charming lady doing justice to her song! Thumbs up Estelle!

04. Rutina – Tmien Ħabbiet (Jonathan Laferla, Charlie Bonnici)

  Rutina, sung by Tmien Ħabbiet kicks off with a very systematic rythm which am not sure whether is running in some bad order. It does not convince me at times and the singing does not really blend will with the  lyrics. The voices too, they do not mix really pleasantly either but i DO like the kind of interval in singing for "Hawn Sabiħa!". It's quite authentic. Listening to this once is enough I think. 

05. Kif Xrobbtuli l-Menti - Frank O'Neill, Christabelle Curmi u l-Likes (Frank O'Neill) 

This is a very avantegarde song making use of a huge number of words recently doing their way into the Maltese parlance, such as wajers, plajers and the very popular STESSU. Frank's hat is quite original and Christabelle's facial expressions are absolutely flawless, accompanying the lyrics . The band resembling that of the village festa is quite authentic as well! Great! Not amongst my favourite but I did enjoy this! 

06. Il-Karba tal-Mument - Christian Arding (Kevin Tanti, Chan Vella)

Christian appears on piano in a very quite and calm posture. He is well focused and lets the words out very pleasantly but also in a strong voice, narrating the unfortunate destiny of a lonely individual lacking parents' affection. However, this atmosphere ought to be consolidated by everyone on stage and no just the singer! One of the guitarist strangely smiles a bit too much and it really did not go down well with me! Another one about the negatives of life! This is well expected in this festival! I like this!

07. Fejn Huma? - Daniel Borg (George Cassar, Daniel Borg)

 Wow! This song begins without the music and it allows all attention on the words and his manner of delivery is like a very casual daily conversation! Interjections such as "Illaħwa"  and "illistrina" turn this song into a relevant message accompanied by music, making reference to recent issues that on a national basis made it to the headlines quite a number of times, such as the Mistra issue. The theme is quite common but it has been transformed quite well and this stands out: "Malta fittex erġa' ejja lura għal li kont"! If only this becomes true! Brilliant!

08. Jien Ma Naħdimx - Karen DeBattista (Rita Pace, Mark Scicluna)

Another elegant singer! Karen has something in her eyes giving power to this fragile female housewife, and she too seems quiet. The lyrics make me go nuts literally for they kind of support the stereotype rather than try and challenge it but the hell with this! I like this song, I like the singer and also the fact that the audience goes clapping in the midst of it! "Jien ma naħdimx imma ma nieqaf qatt", ok it does not challenge the stereotype but it does give us a clear indication of the pity reality many women are living in nowadays! Amazing song, amazing stage setting and choice of everything really! Kudos Karen! To the top three she must go!

09. Immigrant Regolari - Teddie Zammit (Rita Pace, Teddie Zammit)

What strikes me most is the energy that Mark Lawrence is radiating! He seems so passionate playing the piano. Teddie with quite an emotion narrates the life in transition of a migrating bird  and it does remind me of the fate of human immigrants but it really does not stand out, except for the last bit, whereby the music changes course. Still, does not impress me.

10. Pupa - Denise Spiteri (Mark Laurence Zammit)

Denise to me appears like a younger Corazon, delivering a very strong interpretation of her song! I like all the energy and the control she has on her voice. Simply calm and pleasant! Thumbs up to this too!

11. Il-Bamboċċu, Il-Bambinu u l-Budaj - Frans Casha (Frans Casha)

And off we go to a year or two back. Something went wrong but we're now back on track and the song kicked off as expected seconds later. This might seem old fashioned, considering all songs preceding it and looking at the backing vocaist wearing a traditioanlly Maltese dress and head piece but it does make us think of the prevalent music of the past. The dominant colour on stage is red and White, a strong link to the Maltese flag and identity. Frans Casha is accompanied by a female voice which blends quite well but does not blend quite well all the energy of the the young man behind him on the synthesizer. Frans's calmness contrasts quite well with all his head movements! It does not do justice really! A very average entry.

12. Wara l-Kanċell - Miriam Christine u Olivia Lewis (J J Farrugia, Miriam Christine)

Miriam Christine starts off the song playing the piano and she immediately immerses us in their mysterious world. Olivia is on the other hand standing in centre stage and their voices are kind of AMAZING! They perfectly accompany each other without any faults! Olivia delivers the song firmly and Miriam Christine is all focused on the playing and her singing! It's quite a breathtaking entry! I really do not want this to reach its final seconds! They have the perfect pronounciation and synchronisation! Ought to WIN. 

13. BħalGħasfura - Mario Debono (Mario Debono)

Do not know wheter David Azzopardi with his Pastizzi chant or the Greenfields have taken over the stage but Mario is managing to make me sing to his tune! It's quite a relaxing song but I would have preferred him singing alone rather than along the backing vocalist! The melody is quite enjoyable too. This probably will be forgotten very soon. 

14. Djarju ta' Tifkiriet - Simone Gauci (Emil Calleja Bayliss, Mark Spiteri Lucas)

Simone seems very focused and all serious but then she breaks into a very sweet smile and her emotion follows the lyrics! She delivers her song with a delicate passion that is convincing. The chorus is absolutely fascinating, magical I dare say, it's flowing pace is quite authentic too. Standing on the same spot with a standing microphone is the right choice and Simone's gaze at the end completes the circle! This is a promising entry! Would like to listen to it once again! 

15. Liberat – Teddie Zammit (George Cassar, Teddie Zammit)

And once again, it's Teddie. But he's back with another song that does not really impress me! The stage setting suits the song really well and this time round this guitarist does make justice to the song for he follows the correct emotion and gestures, so thumbs up to this young champ! I like the ending and how the song fades away to its final seconds. 

16. Insellmulkom - Domenique (Joe Chircop, Philip Vella)

And the final song, entitled Insellmulkom looks like it is hinting the final entry for this 38th edition of the festival! But it surely does NOT deserve a final ranking for it is a very powerful song! Domenique is not new to such festivals and surely not with this theme! It reminds me of the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza and it stands out particulary tonight for it's the sole song bearing a patriothic theme. She goes very high in her notes and looks determined to succeed and make our ex Presidents and Prime Ministers feel very proud! It's a song thanking all those who stood up for our country and showed courage! She looks magnificent and does great justice to the lyrics! Another song chasing the trophy for the night!

The Show (Part 2)

All 16 songs are now being scrutinised by the Jury, comprising of David Aloisio, Vince Fabri, Rosabelle Bianchi, Eric Montfort, Elaine Falzon, Kevin Farrugia, Maria Abdilla and David Azzopardi. 

In the meantime there's a long intermission.  

There is now an interview with Walter Micallef about the history of the Maltese song during turbulent times and the need to give the song in Maltese the respect and attention it deserves! 

Corazon follows Walter and speaks about her first debut at the l-Għanja tal-Poplu way back in 2006 with Kieku Taf.  She ends by emphasising the need to keep on producing good quality songs in Maltese so as to keep the pace and keep on developing and safeguarding our national language. 

And back to Sir Temi Zammit Hall. 

Clint points out that this is a celebration of anything that makes us Maltese!
Now it's time for the Għanja tal-Poplu Choir with its contribution entitled L-Għanja tal-Maltin.  

Now Corazon is delivering three of her songs included in her recent album: Hawn Jien. The first one was Illejla b'Xejn and now she's delivering Id-Dar tan-Nanna.  Before delivering the last song, she elaborates a bit on this album and emphasises that good quality music in Maltese may arouse very strong emotions. Her final song is going on now and it is Jgħidu Kien Hawn Raġel. 

And it is now! Results are soon to be released!

The best Young Talent: Pupa (Denise Spiteri) 
The Best Interpretation: Il-Karba tal-Mument (Christian Arding) 
The best Singer/writer: Kif xrobtuli l-Menti (Frank O'Neil) 
The best Social Theme:  Rita Pace (Il-Quċċata)
2nd Runner up: Wara l-Kanċell (Miriam Christine and Olivia Lewis) 
1st Runner up: Kif Xrobtuli l-Menti (Frank O'Neil, Christabelle Curmi u l-Likes)
WINNER: Jien ma Naħdimx (Karen DeBattista)

Published in Local Music News

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 sixth act in our series; Christian Arding who will be performing the song Il-Karba tal-Mument composed by Chan Vella to the lyrics of Kevin Tanti.

Christian, surely the most experienced male vocalist in this competition, having been a part of L-Għanja tal-Poplu, Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza and the Malta Eurovision Song Contest in the past. Each experience spells out new memories but which one do you keep close to heart and what do you aim to achieve with this participation?

I keep my participation in the 2006 edition of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest close to my heart because it was indeed one of the best years in my career. My aim with this participation is to push forward a message of hope to those families who are facing trouble following seperation.

Il-Karba tal-Mument, composed by Chan Vella to the lyrics of Kevin Tanti 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 meaning of the song is based on my actual life at the moment. It is about a child who is passing through really hard times since the parents are separating and what kids do think about it like for example. My kids ask me if they are the reason why our family ended and this is one message which I wanted to depict.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GpYTf_cgkbo

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?

Yes, I support these kind of music showcases, because it is not a festival where there is a lot of competition, like the Malta Eurovision Song Contest. I believe that the adopted attitude should be present in other events encompassing the scene.

Would you like to say anything to our readers at escflashmalta.com?

I would like to thank all the individuals who support my music, and those who support the local music scene in general because without people like you, we would not do this!

Source: Official WebsiteOfficial Facebook Page

Published in Interviews
Thursday, 27 February 2014 00:55

GħTP 2014: Running Order for Final Unveiled

On the 3rd February, the organising committee of L-Għanja tal-Poplu released the song titles and the names of the songwriters of each of the sixteen (16) qualifiers. It was also announced that seventy-one (71) submissions were received, the highest since its return to the local music scene a couple of years ago, denoting that the changes made to the competition have been appreciated by artists, songwriters and producers alike. In the coming days, escflashmalta.com will be publishing a series of interviews with each of the artists confirmed as participants in this years’ edition of L-Għanja tal-Poplu, dealing with the social theme, and also past experiences in the music industry.

On Wednesday evening, the organising committee of L-Għanja tal-Poplu unveiled the running order for this years’ edition having just finished a series of promotional shoots, one for the postcards which will accompany each entry as well as the photographs which will be used for press releases in leading local tabloids. At this point in time, we have no clue with regards to the quality of the songs, but nevertheless, the professional jury had an extremely difficult time to decide which sixteen (16) deserved to get through. escflashmalta.com has permission to air a 30 second snippet from each song, these accompanying the questions and answers to be publishing in the coming days.

01. Mara - Marie Claire Attard Bason (Emil Calleja Bayliss, Andrew Zammit)

02. Il-Quċċata – 7 Spadi (Rita Pace, Jeffrey Scicluna)

03. Numri - Estelle Fenech Imbroll (Paul Attard, Mark Scicluna)

04. Rutina – Tmien Ħabbiet (Jonathan Laferla, Charlie Bonnici)

05. Kif Xrobbtuli l-Menti - Frank O'Neill, Christabelle Curmi u l-Likes (Frank O'Neill)

06. Il-Karba tal-Mument - Christian Arding (Kevin Tanti, Chan Vella)

07. Fejn Huma? - Daniel Borg (George Cassar, Daniel Borg)

08. Jien Ma Naħdimx - Karen DeBattista (Rita Pace, Mark Scicluna)

09. Immigrant Regolari - Teddie Zammit (Rita Pace, Teddie Zammit)

10. Pupa - Denise Spiteri (Mark Laurence Zammit)

11. Il-Bamboċċu, Il-Bambinu u l-Budaj - Frans Casha (Frans Casha)

12. Wara l-Kanċell - Miriam Christine u Olivia Lewis (J J Farrugia, Miriam Christine)

13. Bħal Għasfura - Mario Debono (Mario Debono)

14. Djarju ta' Tifkiriet - Simone Gauci (Emil Calleja Bayliss, Mark Spiteri Lucas)

15. Liberat – Teddie Zammit (George Cassar, Teddie Zammit)

16. Insellmulkom - Domenique (Joe Chircop, Philip Vella)

The 38th edition of L-Għanja tal-Poplu is being organised with the help of the Malta Arts Fund and in collaboration with Studio 7. Authors, composers, singers and musical groups wishing to participation can find all the required information through the Official Website, or the Official Facebook Page. The renowned local competition which has been given a true facelift in recent years is also being given a brand new visual identity in 2014 with emerging artist Darren Tanti responsible for a new logo, one which encompasses the idea of live music and singing, elements of L-Għanja tal-Poplu. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for the latest news.

Source: Għanja tal-Poplu (Facebook)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wLOCT-U-dVQ

Published in L-Għanja Tal-Poplu

Fabrizio Faniello, a two time representative on behalf of Malta at the Eurovision Song Contest finally managed to triumph in the only song competition which had eluded him, that being the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza. His entry entitled Aħfirli Jekk Trid composed by Minik to the lyrics of Rita Pace had been seen as a front runner-up in the weeks leading up to the competition and had also finished in first place on the escflashmalta.com poll which in turn garnered votes from more than 600 individuals. Media.Link Communications in accordance with the Organising Committee of the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza published the full results of both the Established and Teenage Categories.

Deborah C, Alison Ellul, Ronald Briffa and Clint Spiteri who were judging last nights' competition seemingly disagreed with the result in general noting that the votes were extremely close. Prior to this year, the system of giving out points was set on forty (40) points for the live performance, thirty (30) points for the music and another thirty (30) points for the lyrics but nevertheless, this system has seemingly been abolished as the points are out of one hundred (100). In the meantime, with an even number of judges, it is highly predictable that you would get a series of ties or close results as seen in the final list published earlier this morning. Fabrizio Faniello had participated in the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza on another three occasions, always managing to finish in the top three without achieving the top spot.

  1. Aħfirli Jekk Trid - Fabrizio Faniello (Rita Pace / Minik): 89 points
  2. Hemm Miegħek Jien - Neville (Rita Pace / Minik): 85 points
  3. Ħallini Ngħidlek - Nicole Brincat (Minik / Stephen Baldacchino): 84 points
  4. Perper Rebbieħa - Marie Claire Attard Bason (Minik / Stephen Baldacchino): 75 points
  5. Gloria - Mauro u Kim (Rita Pace): 74 points
  6. Ejjew Lkoll - Roseann Cordina (Mark Spiteri Lucas / Paul Ellul): 73 points
  7. Armonija - Minik (Minik / Stephen Baldacchino): 72 points
  8. L-Ewlieni - Danica Muscat (Philip Vella / Emil Calleja Bayliss): 71 points
  9. Mhux Pupa Biss - Raquel Galdes (Minik / Rita Pace): 70 points
  10. Magħqudin - Francesco Catania (Ludwig Galea / Augusto Cardinali): 69 points
  11. Inwiegħdek - Josef u Johanna (Minik / Stephen Baldacchino): 68 points
  12. Fejn Hemm L-Għaqda, Hemm Is-Saħħa - Christian Arding (Chan Vella / Alexia Schembri): 67 points
  13. Nibqa' - Janice Mangion (Chan Vella / Alexia Schembri): 67 points
  14. B'Ħarsitna 'l Fuq - Domenique (Mark Spiteri Lucas / Paul Ellul): 67 points
  15. Int Kont Hemm - Daniel Muscat (Mark Spiteri Lucas / Stephen Baldacchino / Marlon Polidano): 67 points
  16. Fraħt Għax Sibtek - Laura Sammut Bruno (Frederick Camilleri): 65 points
  17. M'Intix Waħdek - Kylie Coleiro (Philip Vella / Manila Bottone): 63 points
  18. Riflessi - Karen DeBattista (Mark Scicluna / Emil Calleja Bayliss): 62 points
  19. Rebbiegħa - Kristen Camilleri (Philip Vella / Cher Vella): 61 points
  20. Li Jien Illum - Simarija u Mikhail (Elton Zarb / Natasha Turner): 56 points

The evening was hosted by Christine Haber, a veteran of the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza at just twenty-two years of age and Mark Azzopardi, Chairman of the Organising Committee. Despite apparently overseeing proceedings with regards to the competition, the male counter-part was constantly on stage every five (5) entries leaving backstage, jury members and the sound personnel unattended to. This is something that Media.Link Communications and NET Television should address for the following year. As a matter of fact, this point was brought up by Frederick Zammit, former Chairman of the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza whose tenure came to an end in 2010, with Amber and her entry Trid Tapprezza, funnily enough, the last contest which critics denote as not bringing up any controversy what so ever. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all of the latest news as soon as it becomes available.

Source: Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza (Official Facebook Page)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ltmSGaXXpgo

Thursday, 19 September 2013 16:35

KKI 2013: The Night of the Final has Arrived

Mark Azzopardi and Christine Haber will be hosting the 2013 edition of the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza on the Granaries this evening which is set to incorporate twenty-three (23) performances, three (3) which qualified last week from the Teenage Talent Category and another twenty (20) from the Established Talent Category which were selected through an internal jury appointed by the committee. The event organised by Media.Link Communications has managed to modernise itself within recent years with the inclusion of preview video recordings for example and a television programme which aims to promote all of the finalists in each respective category. The set-up has been known to be quite different every year and visually speaking, everything has been of a high standard.

Amber, Mike Spiteri, Claudia Faniello, Eleanor Cassar, Miriam Christine, Kaya, Roger Tirazona and Nadine Axisa have all enjoyed their time in the spotlight when it comes to the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza upon being crowned winners. The music competition enjoys great respect in the industry and has managed to pave the way for a number of hit tracks in Maltese, a language which is nationally endowed in history. Tonight, each of the entries is considered to be of a very high standard and with escflashmalta.com being at the rehearsal earlier today, it is going to be quite a difficult decision for the panel of judges to mark their favourite entry. Seperate awards will be given to the entry which receives the most votes through tele-voting as well as the entry which receives the most votes from the audience present in a new initiative revealed by Mark Azzopardi.

Talent Żagħżugħ (Teenage Talent)

Demgħa - Christian u Jasmine (Minik / Stephen Baldacchino)

Il-Ħolma - Jean Claude Azzopardi (Minik / Stephen Baldacchino)

Kliem Maġija - Kimberly u Lyann (Minik / Lyann)

Talent Stabbilit (Established Talent)

Li Jien Illum - Simarija u Mikhail (Elton Zarb / Natasha Turner)

Fraħt Għax Sibtek - Laura Sammut Bruno (Frederick Camilleri)

Mhux Pupa Biss - Raquel Galdes (Minik / Rita Pace)

Magħqudin - Francesco Catania (Ludwig Galea / Augusto Cardinali)

Ħallini Ngħidlek - Nicole Brincat (Minik / Stephen Baldacchino)

Riflessi - Karen DeBattista (Mark Scicluna / Emil Calleja Bayliss)

Perper Rebbieħa - Marie Claire Attard Bason (Minik / Stephen Baldacchino)

Gloria - Mauro u Kim (Rita Pace)

Rebbiegħa - Kristen Camilleri (Philip Vella / Cher Vella)

Inwiegħdek - Josef u Johanna (Minik / Stephen Baldacchino)

Nibqa' - Janice Mangion (Chan Vella / Alexia Schembri)

Hemm Miegħek Jien - Neville (Rita Pace / Minik)

M'Intix Waħdek - Kylie Coleiro (Philip Vella / Manila Bottone)

L-Ewlieni - Danica Muscat (Philip Vella / Emil Calleja Bayliss)

Aħfirli Jekk Trid - Fabrizio Faniello (Rita Pace / Minik)

Ejjew Lkoll - Roseann Cordina (Mark Spiteri Lucas / Paul Ellul)

Armonija - Minik (Minik / Stephen Baldacchino)

Fejn Hemm L-Għaqda, Hemm Is-Saħħa - Christian Arding (Chan Vella / Alexia Schembri)

B'Ħarsitna 'l Fuq - Domenique (Mark Spiteri Lucas / Paul Ellul)

Int Kont Hemm - Daniel Muscat (Mark Spiteri Lucas / Stephen Baldacchino / Marlon Polidano)

Christine Haber and Mark Azzopardi will be taking to the stage to host this evenings' edition of the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza. It is the first time that the two will be hosting together and it will surely be a show for everyone to enjoy. Special guest stars who will be making an appearance include none other than; Gianluca who represented Malta at this years' edition of the Eurovision Song Contest, Deborah C who was the winner of last years' edition of the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza and two foreign guests, being Jamie Knight and Hesael. The event will commence at 20:30 CET and will be aired LIVE on NET Television. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all of the latest news as soon as it becomes available.

Source: Media.Link Communications, escflashmalta.com

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RbvPJppoNlo

In this years' edition of the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza, the females outweigh the males when it comes to the art of performing but nevertheless, Christian Arding has also managed to make the cut into this years' showcase with the song Fejn Hemm L-Għaqda Hemm Is-Saħħa composed by Chan Vella to the lyrics of Alexia Schembri. Below, our editorial board devised a set of questions in order to get to know Christian a little bit better whilst Chris and Moira have also heard all of the entries in order to comment on them. With regards to Christian, they stated that 'he has a good voice but that the song is poorly produced.' ultimately awarding him with just five (5) points.

Christian Arding was one of the surprise packages during the 2006 edition of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest, having been asked to perform the song Stronger composed by Charlene Grima to the lyrics of Deo Grech after the original performers had to compete with their other entry Echoes of Gaia. You were revealed to have managed a fifth place finish on just your second attempt within the competition with the public falling in love with both the song and the actual performance. How did you get to perform the track and seven years on, would you have done anything differently? 

I could not say no to my cousins and to a fiend like Deo. Obviously at that stage in 2006 I was still trying hard for the Eurovision song contest though I had my first performance the year before in 2005 when I sang a duet with Andreana. Even now a days I would have never  done anything differently.

This is your third participation within the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza, but nevertheless your solo debut having previously been in a duet with Justine entitled Le Ma Nibżax composed by Chan Vella to the lyrics of Rita Pace in 2005 as well as part of the trio known as Silent Shout during the performance of the track Għada Fadal Għada composed by Chan Vella to the lyrics of Alexia Schembri. This time round, your entry bears the name Fejn Hemm L-Għaqda Hemm Is-Saħħa and is also composed by Chan Vella with lyrics by Alexia Schembri. Which track would you rate at the best out of the three and how important is it for an artist to work with the same songwriter?

Actually I would never say that a song is better than the other one because every song has its own performance and style and a singer has to know what is best and how to perform .. working with the same song writer is very good when you have the opportunity. It is good when a song writer knows the singer and be able to share good ideas because a song writer has to know what a singer likes as his own style though a singer has to be versatile.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=walywtEOAac

Throughout the years, you have earned a reputation for taking on tracks which were not originally meant for you and technically speaking, that is also happening this time round as your entry Fejn Hemm L-Għaqda Hemm is-Saħħa was submitted as a duet between Dario and Grecia Bezzina in last years’ edition of the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza. It has become more common for duets to be re-worked into solo entries but nevertheless, were you able to listen to the original version in order to give your own track a complete twist and are you happy with the final product?

When you earn tracks that are not meant to be for you it is much more difficult to set your own feel of the song because you already have listened to a track with an other singer or production but it is there when a good singer has to enter his experience on what he knows what it is good and not for the song and performance.. I’m very happy with the final product and I believe also in the song.

In recent years, Christian Arding has been slightly absent from the local music scene as a lead vocalist, taking a step back and garnering experience as a backing vocalist. In 2012, you were one of the male accompaniments during the performance of Answer With Your Eyes composed by Paul Giordimaina with lyrics by Fleur Balzan and vocals by Amber. The track was the second runner-up at the end of the evening, behind the likes of Kurt Calleja and Claudia Faniello. What was the reason behind taking this difficult decision in stepping back and do you believe it was the right thing to do at the time?

The reason behind taking a step back is not a big deal especially in our country in the small Island of Malta. It was also a good thing to do for me because I had no tv shows on any local tv stations in 2012 so I took 1 year break from tv shows and most of the Maltese people and especially Eurovision spectators think that if a singer dose not participate in the Eurovision song contest does not sing anymore, believe me I never stop or stopped singing because now a days and also before and during 2005 and 2006 on words I was already busy with gigs in hotels and weddings with no chance for other activities. Since I was the age of 14 I started working as a one man band in hotels and gained a lot of experience an stages and spatially live events as this has been my full time job since I was 14 years old.

What would you like to tell our readers at escflashmalta.com?

To all the readers, do not think that the best singers are only on the stage of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest, Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza, or other festivals in the country. You have to think outside the box and look for local talent beyond such showcases! Thanks!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DikNIW0JV3Q

Published in Interviews
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