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Sunday, 02 February 2014 18:30

MMAs 2014: Interview with Noel Magri (MMM)

Whilst the focus of the local music industry and most of the continent is on the upcoming edition of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest, it is worth pointing out that this years' edition of the Malta Music Awards are set to take place on Sunday 9th February at the Malta Fairs and Conventions Centre in Ta' Qali. Therefore, escflashmalta.com got in touch with Noel Magri, from Mega Music Management to oversee the preparations whilst having a look at former editions of the prestigious event.

On the 20th October 1995, Mega Music Management organised the first edition of the Malta Music Awards, a different time in the local music scene with the participation in the Eurovision Song Contest considered to be the elite point a vocalist or a songwriter could reach at the time. Looking back, why did you feel that such recognition had to be given, and was it too late a start?

At that time, efforts were being made by local singers and musicians to improve their standard and although many countries were honouring their artists for their achievements, there was nothing similar in Malta, and I thought of creating an Awards show giving due recognition to artists for their work throughout the past year, and to motivate them to better their standards.  The first edition was a huge success and all artists and those involved in the music scene wanted this kind of event be held yearly.

It is fair to say that the professional jury behind the choices made at the Malta Music Awards have been rather on the money in their choices for the Best Newcomer with recipients including; Olivia Lewis, Glen Vella, Miriam Christine, Hooligan, Red Electrick and Mikaela amongst others. How rewarding is it to see that artists who are bestowed this prestigious honour succeeding in their career?

Our intention has and will always be, to award the best talent at the time, and to help them succeed in their musical career.   It is rewarding to see artists who have won awards, being successful over the years, and that the MMA’s has given them that much needed confidence to move forward and improve their all round performance.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p3tbKWd0X_Y

In 2013 and 2014, the Public Broadcasting Services decided to conduct an experiment, and hold the Malta Music Weekender, which basically features a weekend of local talent, kicking off with the Malta Eurovision Song Contest and then following it up with the Malta Music Awards. This experiment has been seen to be extremely positive and has generated interest amongst both local and international audiences alike. What was your initial idea to such a proposal and will you be implementing any changes this time round?

From the very first edition, my aim was to help better the standards of local music in general, and to help artists succeed in the International scene.   Having a sound backing is important to hold such a professional show, and the idea of holding the PBS Music Weekender has been very successful.  Holding two major local events in one weekend has helped to attract more attention from the Maltese general public, and give the local artists a major platform to showcase their talent.

Cliff Richard, Blue, Peter Andre, Robin Gibb and Bob Sinclar have all been invited to Malta on behalf of Mega Music Management, making the Island a better attraction in the entertainment scene. It has become somewhat at the best interest of everyone to denote the best possible attractions that such events can promise. Should the public be expecting any foreign special guests during this years’ edition of the Malta Music Awards, possibly even performing at the Malta Eurovision Song Contest?

There will be foreign guest singers performing during the Eurovision Festival, coming from the Eurovision background, however this year’s edition of the MMA’s will see a very strong local line-up with 14 top performing acts, plus an after show concert by Xirka Rock which is expected to blow the roof down.  Certainly, not to be missed.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Hd1wE4UtzA

Gaia Cauchi, winner of the 2013 edition of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest was selected by the Public Broadcasting Services to represent Malta following her International Achievement Award at the Malta Music Awards last year. Would you go as far as to predicting the artist who might be doing the same honour for the country in a couple of months time and how proud as a company were you to be recognised in such a manner?

Last year, we recognised Gaia’s talent and we honoured her for her achievements.  PBS decision to select Gaia reaped benefits and I would go as far as proposing the same method be used to select our Eurovision representative in the coming years.  We are honoured to have exposed such young talent who achieved such a huge success.  There are various young promising singers who, if they are well looked after, can achieve success Internationally.

The Rifffs, Airport Impressions, Red Electrick, The Crowns, Norbert, Plan Zero, Andi, Sophie, The New Victorians, Ira Losco, Gaia and Winter Moods are all being given the opportunity to perform during this years’ edition of the Malta Music Awards. What should the public be expecting from these acts, and will there be any special surprises, maybe which you could reveal?

All the major artists will be performing their songs for the first time in public, and obviously having such a majestic set-up and stage, we will be looking forward to their performances.    It is worth mentioning the new talent who will be exposed in this show and who I’m sure, will go down very well with the crowd.  People hear their music on Radio stations, but probably are not aware that these are Maltese!

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

The MMA’s have always been very well attended by the public, and my appeal is to keep on supporting this show which is promoting local music and motivating artists to improve their product. Ticket prices are only Eur 10.

Source: Official Page on Facebook

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UQ22gLzLgjs

Published in Interviews

On the official website of the Public Broadcasting Services, along with a simulataneous announcement on the hit television programme Xarabank, it was revealed that the star guest for both the semi-final and the final of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest will be none other than Emmelie de Forest. The Dane, winner of the 2013 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest with the song Only Teardrops co-written by Lise Cabble, Julia Fabrin Jakobsen and Thomas Stengaard is also set to be a guest act at the German national selection later on this year, in what seems to be an extremely busy year for the singer/songwriter.

On the night of the semi-final, it is expected that Emmelie will perform her winning entry of the international showcase, but the Public Broadcasting Services has secured an exclusive performance of a brand new track entitled Rainmaker, which will in turn be used as the theme song for the 2014 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest. Also, the finalists of the national selection in Malta, meaning the fourteen (14) left after the show on Friday will get the opportunity to perform with the renowned vocalist. Emmelie will not be the only guest act during the Malta Eurovision Song Contest with Winter Moods, The Crowns, Red Electrick, Gianluca, Ira Losco, Gaia Cauchi, Maria Yaremchuk and the winner of the Swiss national final this evening all taking centre stage. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all the latest news.

Source: Public Broadcasting Services

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k59E7T0H-Us

Thursday, 30 January 2014 18:30

MESC '14: More Opportunities for Local Talent

The Malta Eurovision Song Contest, a selection process organised by the Public Broadcasting Services in anticipation of the prestigious international music event, is the perfect hub to present the local music scene. For this reason, it has been decided that a number of special guests, rather well-known for their music through the radio and gigs across the country, will get the opportunity to perform either during the semi-final set to take place on the 7th February or the final which will be airing the following day on the 8th February at the Malta Fairs and Conventions Centre.

In the semi-final, as the public and the jury are reaching a verdict, two major headlining acts have been added to the list of special performers; Matthew James Borg and Peter Borg of Red Electrick who also co-wrote one of the entries in last years’ edition of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest, that being Never Walk Away by Chris Grech, which finished in a respectable fifth place; and The Crowns whose lead vocalist Victorio Gauci was also a finalist in the competition back in 2009, performing a duet with Dorothy Bezzina, entitled Promises.

On the night of the final, as had been previously revealed by escflashmalta.com, the winner of the 2013 edition of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest, Gaia Cauchi, will be opening the show with a choir from La Voix Academy headed by Miss G. Nevertheless, she will not be the only local entertainment on offer with the ever-so-popular duo Ġorġ u Pawlu performing their hit tracks Hot and Famous and Unique. The Public Broadcasting Services is also pleased to reveal that the band Winter Moods will be exclusively releasing a brand new single entitled Everlasting which follows their recent success with the track Days of my Life. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all the latest news about the 2014 edition of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest.

Source: Public Broadcasting Services

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Av96vK8lfJs

On the 7th and 8th February 2014, the Malta Fairs and Conventions Centre will be hosting this years’ edition of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest, featuring a total of twenty (20) entries, all of which will be hoping to represent Malta in the international competition and following the success achieved by Gianluca and his entry Tomorrow co-written by Boris Cezek and Dean Muscat. The editorial team of escflashmalta.com is currently in an exclusive position to reveal some details about the special guests of this years’ local showcase.

Gaia Cauchi, winner of the 2013 edition of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest, will be joined by a Choir from the La Voix Academy, under the vocal direction of Gillian Attard, who in turn also happens to be one of the co-writers on The Start, the winning song of the international competition. Joining Gaia will definitely be last years’ representative, Gianluca who was also asked to host this years’ edition of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest. Apart from treating the public to a special performance of Tomorrow, he is set to perform alongside fellow hostess Ira Losco, having been in the studio together recording some material as well as the Bezzina clan, according to yet unconfirmed reports.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=thje0DAh_lU

In the meantime, multiple sources have told us that the Public Broadcasting Services is currently working on getting some international guests, one of which seems to be none other than three time Eurovision Song Contest representative for San Marino; Valentina Monetta. The singer/songwriter is planning yet another endeavour on behalf of the micro-state nation with a song co-written alongside Ralph Siegel. At this point in time, it is unknown where the special guests who are yet to be confirmed will perform, whether in the semi-final or the final but nevertheless, most of them have accepted the invitation of the broadcaster and will thus be making an appearance. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for more news about the 2014 Malta Eurovision Song Contest.

Source: escflashmalta.com

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YirZIBi2vnY

Wednesday, 22 January 2014 20:00

Exclusive: Revelation of MMA 2014 Nominations

On the 9th February, the Public Broadcasting Services in collaboration with Mega Music Management will be hosting this years' edition of the Malta Music Awards at the Malta Fairs and Conventions Centre. In line with last years’ proceedings, the Malta Music Weekend will return, with the event coming hot off the feel of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest, which in turn would have taken place on the previous two (2) nights. During the course of the evening, six (6) awards will be given; Best Album, Best Song, Best Band, Best New Artist, Best Solo Artist and Best Video with a number of artists taking to the stage for a series of special performances.

In an exclusive announcement, escflashmalta.com is proud to present the nominations of this years’ edition of the Malta Music Awards prior to their respective announcement on Mixage, a television programme hosted by Peter Cossai on Television Malta which is set to air at around 22:30 CET. The showcase, for which you may purchase tickets here, has also finalised the line-up of performers with Airport Impressions, Gaia Cauchi, Plan Zero, Winter Moods, The Crowns, NORBERT, Red Electrick, Sophie, The Rifffs, The New Victorians, IraLosco and Andi all taking to the stage.

Best Solo Artist 

Chess

Gianluca

Ira Losco

Lyndsay

 

Best Band

Airport Impressions

Nosnow/Noalps

Red Electrick

The Crowns

 

Best Song

 Daphne (Lyndsay)

Hymns of June (Airport Impressions)

Me Luv U Long Time (Ira Losco)

The Runaway (Red Electrick)

Start the Revolution (The Rifffs)

 

Best Album

All things with love (The Shh)

Someone else (The Crowns)

Summer lovers (Skimmed)

The Fire (Ira Losco)

 

Best New Artist

Andi

Maxine Pace

Norbert

Plan Zero

 

Best Video 

Hymns of June (Airport Impressions)

Me Luv U Long Time (Ira Losco)

Marija s-Sabiħa (No Bling Show)

Tomorrow (Gianluca)

The Runaway (Red Electrick)

escflashmalta.com is also in a position to reveal that some of the performers during the course of the evening will be unveiling some brand new material or rather performing live for the very first time. As a matter of fact, The New Victorians will be performing an original track off their upcoming studio album for the very first time, whilst Airport Impressions will give their first live rendition of Hymns of June. For the first time on television, The Rifffs will perform Start the Revolution and Ira Losco will be performing the brand new single The Way It’s Meantto Be whilst also airing the music video shot in London. Stay tuned to this portal for all the latest news.

Source: MMM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p3tbKWd0X_Y

Published in Local Music News

As Editor-In-Chief of escflashmalta.com, I would like all of our readers an extremely Happy New Year and sincerely hope that it would prove more satisfactory than the one preceding it. In terms of music, it is going to be an extremely difficult year to follow up with Malta achieving success both at the senior and the junior level of the Eurovision Song Contest with Gianluca and his entry Tomorrow co-written by Boris Cezek and Dean Muscat finishing in eighth place, the best result since 2005 and Gaia Cauchi and her song The Start co-written with Elton Zarb, Matt Mercieca and Gillian Attard finishing on top of the leader board giving the nation their first ever success in an event organised by the European Broadcasting Union.

In recent days, we have been in touch with Gillian Attard, in hope of getting extremely special greetings for the brand new year, and indeed, being so courteous and kind, she gave us the go ahead and made sure that a couple of videos are recorded as the new year dawns on both Malta and the rest of the world. All the students who have been selected are coached by Gillian Attard, otherwise known as Miss G at the illustrious La Voix Academy whose track record with children in competitions is beyond amazing. It is no secret that the institution is run with a professional attitude and that several teachers should follow such an astonishing example as is being set forth by Gillian. Kicking off the special video messages is Gaia Cauchi.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YK71lO3MYPo

Gaia Cauchi, winner of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest 2013, and also the illustrious Sanremo Junior a couple of months back decided to sing a special rendition of Happy New Year originally by Abba, and then covered by the likes of Niamh Kavanagh, Chiara, Paula and Ovi during the Romanian national selection. The second video is that of Shauna Vassallo, an upcoming artist who had the opportunity to perform on a regular basis on the programm; Io Canto which airs on Canale 5. This was the same show which had given us the likes of Danica Muscat, a two time qualifier of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nES9EnaLblk

The final video is that of the wonderful Veronica Rotin, another starlet of the La Voix Academy who had been given the opportunity to perform on Io Canto, and also managed to get through to the final stage of the competition, something which no other Maltese had ever done. It is not easy achieving success on an international level, but with sheer class and talent, anything is possible. Once more, on behalf of the editorial board, and also EXOR Group, proud sponsors of escflashmalta.com, we would like to wish you a very Happy New Year filled with everything your heart desires.

Source: La Voix Academy, escflashmalta.com

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NvYDZ6mbW04

Published in Local Music News

The 2014 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest is months away but several countries have either confirmed their participation or released their regulations for national selection processes. Apart from the means of FM Radio in the Netherlands on FM 106.8 and the audio stream from the studio via www.radiointernational.tv and on Digital Cable 781 & Cable 8.1Mhz in the Netherlands, the show will also be web-televised via the Radio International TV Channel from the studio and linking up the many international Eurovision fans and friends and play your requests and read your messages out on air. The simulcast will be from 2000 – 2300 hours CET when fans can join in and chat amongst each other via the Chat Room and request their favourite Eurovision entry.

Gaia Cauchi, the recent winner of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest with the song The Start co-written alongside Matt Mercieca, Elton Zarb and Gillian Attard will be sharing her experience in Kiev, Ukraine in a phone-in interview that will take place during the course of the show. Gaia will surely explain how much this victory means to her personally and to the country on an international level. Her recognition in Malta has sky rocketed in recent days and it seems that reaching for the stars will not be difficult for the young songstress. Other interviews which will be airing on this evenings' show are with the second runner-up of the Eurovision Song Contest, Zlata Ogvevich as well as Timur Miroshnychenko who co-hsoted the Junior Eurovision Song Contest alongside her.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=thje0DAh_lU

As the dawn of a brand new season approaches, Radio International will be hosting a brand new feature, one entitled Denmark's Eurovision Song Contest History which will be reflecting on the entries that the Scandinavian nation sent to the annual music competition. David Mann will continue to look at cover versions from the event whilst the latest news from escXtra and escflashmalta.com will be read out. In the meantime, former representatives of the Eurovision Song Contest are always looking for ways to please their fans and thus new music is being recorded and published throughout the year. Radio International will be playing the most recent singles as sent in by several record labels. We urge you to tune into Radio International this evening at 20:00 CET in order to request your favourite entry from the Eurovision Song Contest and listen to the special features.

Source: Press Release

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BMxpv8naRd8

The 2014 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest is months away but several countries have either confirmed their participation or released their regulations for national selection processes. Apart from the means of FM Radio in the Netherlands on FM 106.8 and the audio stream from the studio via www.radiointernational.tv and on Digital Cable 781 & Cable 8.1Mhz in the Netherlands, the show will also be web-televised via the Radio International TV Channel from the studio and linking up the many international Eurovision fans and friends and play your requests and read your messages out on air. The simulcast will be from 2000 – 2300 hours CET when fans can join in and chat amongst each other via the Chat Room and request their favourite Eurovision entry.

Gaia Cauchi, the recent winner of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest with the song The Start co-written alongside Matt Mercieca, Elton Zarb and Gillian Attard will be sharing her experience in Kiev, Ukraine in a phone-in interview that will take place during the course of the show. Gaia will surely explain how much this victory means to her personally and to the country on an international level. Her recognition in Malta has sky rocketed in recent days and it seems that reaching for the stars will not be difficult for the young songstress. Other interviews which will be airing on this evenings' show are with the artists who represented Ukraine, Belarus, Russia, and Georgia who finished in that rank order respectively. It is worth pointing out that the final interview is with Victoria Romanova, Deputy Director of NTU and individual responsible for the organisation of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest.

As the dawn of a brand new season approaches, Radio International will be hosting a brand new feature, one entitled Denmark's Eurovision Song Contest History which will be reflecting on the entries that the Scandinavian nation sent to the annual music competition. David Mann will continue to look at cover versions from the event whilst the latest news from escXtra and escflashmalta.com will be read out. In the meantime, former representatives of the Eurovision Song Contest are always looking for ways to please their fans and thus new music is being recorded and published throughout the year. Radio International will be playing the most recent singles as sent in by several record labels. We urge you to tune into Radio International this evening at 20:00 CET in order to request your favourite entry from the Eurovision Song Contest and listen to the special features.

Source: Press Release

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=thje0DAh_lU

Gaia Cauchi from Malta, winner of this years’ edition of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest with The Start co-written alongside Matthew Mercieca, Elton Zarb and Gillian Attard is set to be conferred the highest honour of the nation in an upcoming ceremony taking place on the 13th December. The Ġieħ ir-Repubblika  is only given to the most distinct persons in the country, and one other artist who has also been awarded with such an honour was Ira Losco, following her near success at the senior event of the Eurovision Song Contest back in 2002.

Malta's first success at any events organised by the European Broadcasting Union came at the hands of Gaia and this was witnessed by an astonishing homecoming at the Malta International Airport. The victory was somewhat unexpected but following such a performance, many had noted The Start on behalf of Malta to be a favourite. Anton Attard, Chief Executive Officer of the Public Broadcasting Services, has confirmed that discussions with the European Broadcasting Union have begun in order to host the upcoming edition of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest. Gaia Cauchi is set to become the youngest recipient of the Ġieħ ir-Repubblika Award but she will not be the only one with Elton Zarb, Matthew Mercieca and Gillian Attard also being nominated for the prestigious accolade. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all of the latest news.

Source: Times of Malta

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=thje0DAh_lU

Published in Local Music News

In 2014, Malta will be represented at the Eurovision Song Contest by two artists, one which will be the winner of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest and the other being Gaia Cauchi, winner of this years' edition of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest with the track The Start, co-written alongside Elton Zarb, Matt Mercieca and Gillian Attard. In a bid to revamp the competition, the European Broadcasting Union has made a number of alterations with one of them being that the winners of the Senior and Junior editions of the international showcase performing at each others' event. Emmelie de Forest, winner on behalf of Denmark with the song Only Teardrops earlier this year was a special guest last night.

It is somewhat surreal to see a local artist being invited by the European Broadcasting Union and the host broadcaster, DR to perform at the Eurovision Song Contest whilst it is more unbelievable that Malta has succeeded in winning the Junior Eurovision Song Contest. I had personally gone on record stating that we would win the event but the feeling of winning it is sinking in ever so slightly. Once more, as editor-in-chief of escflashmalta.com, I would like to congratulate the Maltese delegation on a well earned victory and also our special team of reviewers, including none other than Trevor Fenech, Daniel Testa and Sophie DeBattista. A notable mention goes out to our Head of Communications, Emil Calleja Bayliss for leading the report. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all of the latest news.

Source: DR, Eurovision.tv

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=thje0DAh_lU

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