October 18, 2019

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Despite the ever growing amount of competitions in the local music scene, artists are known to come together in a number of events with the aim of promoting good causes and one of such events is surely the one organized on behalf of the Malta Community Chest Fund known as 'L-Istrina' in which a lot of organizations benefit. This year, a theme entitled 'Mill-Qalb' which can easily be translated into 'From the bottom of my Heart' has also been adopted for the fundraiser. With such a strong basis on the Eurovision Song Contest, one would surely remember when in 2009 all of the singers that represented Malta in the prestigious event joined forces on the song 'Dinja Ġdida' composed by Dominic Galea and penned by Joe Friggieri. This time round, another bunch of artists have taken up the role to record the theme song which bears the same title as the theme adopted for this years' edition which will be aired through the local television stations on the 26th December 2011 from the Verdala Palace.

The brand new track entitled 'Mill-Qalb' has just been released officially online through this link here. It is composed by the aforementioned Dominic Cini and penned by Anthony Grech. It predominantly features ten (10) vocals including those of former Malta Eurosong participants; Dominic Cini, Neville Refalo, Josef Tabone, Dario Mifsud Bonnici, Vittorio Gauci as well as current Malta Eurovision Song Contest participants; Amber Bondin and Kaya but there are also brand new talents in the form of Letizia Seychell and Ylenia Vella and last but not least, former Għanja tal-Poplu winner; Ina Robinich. The production of the track was made by Dominic Cini at Freetime Productions whilst the actual video as show below was recorded by the well known television and radio host Frank Zammit. The song will surely make the airplay on all of the local radio stations and will be played to the maximum possible over the next couple of weeks promoting the event.

Source: Press Release

Maltese is the national language of the Maltese Islands but when it comes to the art of songwriting, many have opted to make use of one of the two official languages being English but then again, one competition which strives to promote the best of the nations' traits is the 'Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza' where singers are obliged to perform original tracks in Maltese. The popularity that it has obtained in recent years is justifiable noting the successes of Ira Losco, Claudette Pace, Fabrizio Faniello, Kaya, Klinsmann, Rita Pace, Miriam Christine and Mike Spiteri amongst others. The quality of the competition has always been quite high and therefore gaining entry has been somewhat difficult with such marquee names and therefore the committee of the festival led by Mark Azzopardi alongside the team of the entertainment show 'Sas-Sitta' came up with the idea to organize a talent competition entitled 'Passport 2 Indifest' in which one singer will gain entry into the 2012 edition of the 'Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza'.

The competition which we have been following over the past couple of weeks has been heating up with upcoming stars fighting for the opportunity to be a part of the spectacle in the coming September. It will be quite interesting to see which eight (8) will ultimately make it to the next phase of the competition. Tomorrow afternoon during the programme 'Sas-Sitta' hosted by Ray Attard and Janice Darmanin, the last two acts will take to the stage with Cherise Attard performing 'Turning Tables' by Adele and Debbie Axisa Farrell performing 'Cheek to Cheek; from the musical film 'TopHat'. Their performances will be judged by resident judges; Maria Abdilla, a renowned vocal coach as well as former Eurovision Song Contest representative Ludwig Galea but for another week, they will be joined by a guest judge, this time in the form of Debbie Scerri who also flew the banner for Malta back in 1997 with the song 'Let Me Fly'.

ESCflashmalta has spoken tot he main individual behind the process; Mark Spiteri Lucas who has told us that the 'level has been very high indeed' adding that he believes that 'eight (8) singers who will make it to the second phase will give their all to compete in the finals of the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza'. We will be on hand to follow the second phase and the rest of the competition now that things are heating up. The songs that will be performed in the next phases will be in Maltese but more details will be announced in due course. Make sure to stay tuned to ESCflashmalta for all of the latest news about 'Passport 2 Indifest' which airs during the programme 'Sas-Sitta' every Saturday on NET Television between 14:05 CET and 18:00 CET.

Source: Spiteri Lucas Entertainment

The 4th edition of Xirka Rock - Stairway to Xmas is going to be held at Sky Club in Paceville on Friday 16th December at 9.30pm. Xirka Rock brings together Maltese men and women of all ages and description who love rock in all its forms. From classic to pop rock, from unplugged to reggae, from soft to heavy rock, from rock & roll to progressive rock. And beyond. Xirka Rock is a network set up to exchange views and opinions and to make it easier for promoters to organise and market rock concerts.

At the heart of Xirka Rock is the idea that through facebook, its members have a direct say in how it works and what it does. Tickets for this event cost just 5 Euros (pre-booked) or 7 Euros at the door. Pre-Booked tickets can be purchased from Ministry of Music Birkirkara or from Malta Ticket. Line up for Xirka Rock’s upcoming event includes : Errol Sammut (Airport Impressions), Matthew James Borg (Red Electrick), Mikaela, Ivan Filletti, Frank Calleja (Beheaded and Slit), Leo Stivala (Forsaken), Talitha, Pawlu Borg Bonaci, Kenneth Calleja (Fire), Chris Grech (26 Other Worlds), Jotham Saliba (Scream Daisy) and many more guest musicians. So make sure to be there to enjoy a great ‘rock’ night out!

Source: Press Release

The festive season is known to bring about joy for many people who get together throughout this period but then again, one of the best ways to bring about such a message of happiness is through music and one of the leading male artists in the local music industry being Aldo Busuttil has come up with the idea of hosting a live Christmas Concert. This idea has been somewhere in the abyss of the mind of the young tenor for quite some time and in the past couple of months, he has been trying to actualize it in the best possible way by recording a collection of spiritual music. The aim of this concert is the same as the aim of the festive season, meaning to bring about family together. The respective ideas of Aldo were passed onto the Fgura Local Council whom together they will be organizing a series of events to be held on the 12th December 2011 under the title name 'Milied Imdawwal'.

The Concert which Aldo Busuttil will be taking centre stage in has been given the title name 'The Prayer' and it will be staged in the Fgura Parish Church. It will comprise of sixteen (16) musical pieces under the arrangement of the well known musical director; Maestro Paul Abela, all of which will be released in an album bearing the very same name. This compilation along with the event will include tracks suvh as 'The Prayer', 'You Raise Me Up' and 'Nella Fantasia' amongst others. He will not be carrying out the task alone as he will be duly accompanied by the 'Voca Choir' led by Nathalie Camilleri. Amongst the sacred arias that are set to be performed there are, ‘Panis Angelicus’ and ‘Ave Maria’ by Schubert, Gounod and Caccini as well as 'The Millenium Prayer'. Due to the fact that this is a time for festivities, there will also be Christmas Carols such as 'Adeste Fidles' and 'Silent Night' sung in more than one language including Maltese, Italian, English and Latin. Other tracks to be performed in Maltese, there are; 'Tini Tini Zmien il-Milied’, Charles Dalli (X-Tend) and ‘Gej il-Milied’.

During the concert, there will also be moments of poetry in order to show artistic treasures from Malta with the traditional Child Christmas Sermon and also a collection of funds for the Inspire Foundation. Once again, this event will also serve as an album launch because as aready stated, all o fthe tracks aided by the 'Voca Choice' and an eighteen (18) piece orchestra led by Maestro Paul Abela will be released in a compilation. The concert is set to start at 18:30 CET and the admission is completely free of charge. For more information, please visit, the official website of Aldo Busuttil.

After the concert at around 20:15 CET, a number of attractions will have been put up around the area of the Fgura Parish Church including a live crib animated by members of the 'Pageant Group' found in the middle of Reggie Miller Square whilst the Children's Choir of Fgura known as the 'Flower of Carmel' under the direction of Ms.Lilian Plumpton will sing traditional Christmas Carols b Candlelight. The Band Club known as the  ‘Our Lady of Mount Carmel’ have prepared a surprise for those present. Other stands of food, drinks and decorations will be found around the square. One final note is that a huge show will be taking place in Carmelitans Street with a number of well known performers including former Eurovision Song Contest representatives; Georgina (1991) and Renato (1975) joining the comedian Joe Demicoli in an evening hosted by the well known couple Joe and Veronica Farrugia. Just in case, bad weather spoils the fun, all of the activities will be cancelled except for the live concert in the Parish Church.

Source: Press Release

The 8th edition of the 89.7 Bay Music Awards preparations are in full swing now, with the event set to take place on Monday 12th December, eve of a public holiday. The Bay Arena will be the venue for the show, whilst this year’s hosts are the ‘breakfast’ man, Drew, Drive time’s Nathan and the station’s newest addition, Ben Glover. This year’s slogan “Are you ready to SCREAM” highlights Bay’s continuous commitment to providing the best show possible, with this year’s edition promising to be ‘simply the best’!

Plenty of surprises are in store during the event and also leading up to it; ESCFlashmalta will surely keep you updated throughout the coming weeks. In the meantime, during last Tuesday’s press conference, all nominations were officially presented. Each category has 5 nominations and a respective sms voting number. Here are the nominations:


Best Newcomer

1. Three Stops to China

2. Bridget Bone

3. Davinia

4. The Crowns

5. Funk Initiative

SMS Number to vote: 50 615 301


Best Dance Tune or Remix

1. Carlo Gerada ft. Scott Walker & Chess – ‘Never Meant’

2. JJoy – ‘King of the Night’

3. Corina ft. Toby – ‘Someone New’

4. Alvin Gee & Wayne Micallef – ‘Hold on to Me’

5. Kristina Casolani – ‘I Need You’ (Ruby & U-bahn Remix)

SMS Number to vote: 50 615 302


Best Band

1. Airport Impressions

2. Saving Alexis

3. nosnow/noalps

4. Red Electrick

5. Dolls for Idols

SMS Number to vote: 50 615 303


Best Solo Artist

1. Lyndsay

2. Christabelle

3. Muxu

4. Ivan Filletti

5. Aaron Benjamin

SMS Number to vote: 50 615 304


Best Song

1. Airport Impressions – ‘Elusive’

2. Andre – ‘Can’t be Friends’

3. Ellie and the Oscars – ‘Dancing in the Rain’

4. Lyndsay – ‘Love Sick’

5. Ivan Filletti – ‘Sticks and Stones’

SMS Number to vote: 50 615 305

Source: Bay Radio

The month of November is already coming towards an end and with December looming, that means one of many things in the Maltese Islands but then again, the most important event in the local music calender that takes place is surely the Bay Music Awards which have been announced to be taking place on Monday 12th December, the eve of a public holiday. Until then though, the artists will surely continue releasing material because it is their art at the end of the day and some of the tunes that are being emitted on radios at the moment are purely fantastic pieces with stunning productions. Nathan D continues to count down the local hits on his show through Bay Radio on Saturday afternoon between 13:30 and 14:30.

The releases have not stopped and each and every week, artists are bringing out their material. Some of the artists inter-related with the world of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest who have just released brand new songs include none other than Corazon (2009) and Jean Claude Vancell (2008) amongst others but then again, there are two new entries in this weeks' chart update. Commencing at number #10 are Ellie & The Oscars whose brand new song 'The Enemy' will surely be hoping to emulate the success achieved with predecessor songs. Joining them as a new entry are the group Funk Initiative who have changed their style completely with their second track entitled 'The Liberators'. This latter track works out the basics of classical music as well actually and fits in the typical winter weather which Malta seems to be coming accustomed to quite quickly. Amongst the new entries, there also marks a non-mover in the chart coming in position number #5 in the form of Corina ft. Toby with the track 'Someone New' which has been in the chart for quite some time.

In the meantime, it is quite notable that some entries do not spend a lot of time in the chart or when they do, eventually they lose their status and start headlining the lower echelons before finally leaving the chart completely to make space and room for brand new tracks which the people would love to listen to instead. Coming in position number number #6 is Kristina Casolani with the track 'I Need You', which has been worked on by Ruby and Mark U-Bahn. This is a song which has for example been nominated for the best remix of a track in the upcoming edition of the Bay Music Awards. Joining the downfall as well is a song which is a little bit higher at position number #3 and had been the leader for the past three weeks. I am speaking about the group Bridget Bone whose track 'Jackie The Stripper' maintains enough momentum to spend a month in the top three.

There are also a number of tracks which have gained prominence over the past couple of days and in fact, a number of new entries of the past week have managed to garner support. Starting with the lower echelons of the charts, one would find the collaboration with the group Red Electrick formerly managed by Jagged House along with Ray Mercieca of the group 'The Riffs'. They come in position number #8 with a track which bears the name 'It's A Shame'. Just above them, is the best male artist of the 2011 Malta Music Awards in the form of Aaron Benjamin whose track entitled 'Let's Dance' makes its mark at position number #7. It is typical of the style that the singer has been coming up with but works its way beautifully to a climax. Having come into the chart just last week, the group Dolls for Idols manage to peak at number #4 already with their new track 'Rave N Roll'.

There are another two songs which have managed to peak though and these come in the best positions in the chart, meaning number #2 and number #1 and commencing with the former, one would see a track which has been taking up a spot for more than a month now in the form of 'I Mean It ... I Want It' performed by none other than the duo known as Of the Owl but then again, at the top position for the very first time, the nominees of the best new artist in the 2011 edition of the Bay Music Awards, Three Stops to China with their latest track 'Enemy Club Song'. One could note a distinct sound for this group, one which the people seem to very much enjoy. This is their first time at the top of the charts and it will be interesting to see whether the people will keep them there for yet another week when Saturday comes and the latest chart in announced. Until then, thanks for following ESCflashmalta's latest chart update as announced by Bay Radio.

Source: Bay Radio

One of the events that will be dominating our television screens over the next couple of months will actually be the Malta Summer Hit Song Contest 2011 which will be aired through ONE Television's main summer programme 'Celebrity Weekends' set to be hosted by local personality and author, Deo Grech who was also a member of the Advisory Team at the Public Broadcasting Services back in 2009 and former Mayor and huge fan of the Eurovision Song Contest, Ignatius Farrugia. On Sunday, evening the list of finalists for the event was released.

The judging session of the submissions that were sent in the prior week was made during the same Sunday and the organizing team confirmed to us that the people who chose the songs were made up of professionals within the industry including Disc Jockeys from local radio stations. The level was quite high because one could note that the list does not feature twelve (12) entries as stipulated in the rules but eighteen (18). The decision to make such an extension was approved by all of the team behind the festival itself. You can see the list of finalists below but before, we would like to wish them all Good Luck! In fact one has to note that the total number of submitted entries this year amounted to 64 which is quite a strong number as the festival tries to reinvent itself.

A panel of 5 professional members of the jury who are directly involved in the local music scene selected the entries and these consisted of Jean Claude Micallef (former XFM breakfast show host, TV & Radio host/producer, Events organiser and promoter), Mario J. Farrugia (lyricist among which worked closely with Kevin Borg, winner of Swedish Pop Idol in 2008), DJ Charlo (Music Events organiser and promoter, Clubs & Radio Dj, Eurovision DJ at Euroclubs including Dima Bilan's party in Athens 2006); Ignatius Farrugia (Music events organiser and promoter, artists promoter, former member of the International Malta Hit Song Contest organising committee, jury member in various international song festivals) and Yvette Grech Soler (Music Events organiser and promoter including concerts of international artists).

Running Order:

01. Love Trap - Domenique (public voting winner - Malta Hit 2010)
Composer: Clinton Paul
Author: Clinton Paul

02. Hysterical - Joanna Attard (winner Fresh Youth Song Festival 1999 as 'Joanna Sciriha')
Composer: Elton Zarb
Author: Rita Pace

03. Galaxy - Marlon Chircop
Composer: Marlon Chircop
Author: Marlon Chircop

04. Queen of My Heart  - Joseph Refalo
Composer: Miriam Christine
Author: Gerard James Borg

05. Stay - Ina Robinich (winner Ghanja tal-Poplu 2004)
Composer: Andrew Zahra
Author: Rita Pace

06. Let's Party - minik ft Siconix ('minik' - Malta Hit 2009, 2010 as 'Dominic Cini')
Composer: Siconix
Author: Siconix

07. Memoirs - Karen Debattista
Composer: Mark Scicluna
Author: Daniel Muscat

08. Someday One Day - Marie Claire (Malta Hit 2010)
Composer: Mark Scicluna
Author: Billy J.

09. Turn on the lights - Walter Anthony
Composer: Philip Vella
Author: Philip Vella

10. Ain't My Kind of Love - Janice Mangion  (Malta Hit 2008, 2010)
Composer: Mark Scicluna
Author: Rita Pace

11. Ale'O - Malcolm Pisani
Composer: minik
Author: Billy J.

12. Heaven Awaits - Francesca Borg (Malta Hit 2009)
Composer: Marco Debono
Author: Rita Pace

13. Labyrinth - Christian (3rd at Malta Hit 2010)
Composer: Philip Vella
Author: Mark Amaira

14. Thank You - Floren (Malta Hit 2010)
Composer: Elton Zarb
Author: Rita Pace

15. Ladies Night - Izzy
Composer: Elton Zarb
Author: Muxu

16. Day after Day - Kylie  (Malta Hit 2009)
Composer: Andrew Zammit
Author: Joe Julian Farrugia

17. Silver Rain - Luisana Bartolo
Composer: Philip Vella
Author: Luisana Bartolo

18. Forget my Name - Petra (2nd - Ghanja tal-Poplu 2010)
Composer: Heathcliffe Balzan
Author: Natasha Turner

Source: Malta Summer Hit Song Contest Organizing Committee

The launch of a new schedule is always particularly exciting for many people especially due to the fact that a particular program of interest might come out into the open. This will be the case for music lovers on Saturday afternoon as the show entitled ‘Celebrity Weekends’ hosted by Deo Grech and Natius Farrugia. The show which will be taking the viewers through the busy world of the music industry, promoting the arts in every possible way will also serve as the platform for the Summer Hit Song Contest promoting eighteen different entries, nineteen different singers with the talent ranging from established individuals to up and coming ones. The artists, a very young bunch so to speak all met during a press conference held last Saturday and during a clip filming session last Monday.

With exclusive insight to the event and the program, ESCflashmalta, represented by myself and the local affairs news coordinator Emil Calleja Bayliss, the preparations are well underway and the show should be looking quite strong so to speak. Starting off with ‘Celebrity Weekends’, the show in itself will kick off with the background of the Eurovision Song Contest with the first three shows dedicated to the previews of the songs rather than the Summer Hit Song Contest and this was actually quite important noting that it is the only program which is carrying out such previews with live special guests, a nice addition to the Maltese broadcasting noting the panels that take up the songs in Finland and Sweden for example, judging the song with so called ‘experts’. The show in itself has enlisted the help of these individuals:

·    Marc Calleja Bayliss (Editor-In-Chief of www.escflashmalta.com)
·    Wayne Aquilina
(Host of Eurovision News and ONE Producer)
·    Nathalie Zammit
(Eurovision Fan and Judge during Malta Hit 2010)
·    Debbie Scerri
(1997 Eurovision Song Contest Representative)
·    Georgina Abela
(1991 Eurovision Song Contest Representative)
·    Andrew Zahra
(Brother of Julie Zahra (ESC 04) and Lyricist)

This will be quite an interesting show to watch so please, tune in to ‘Celebrity Weekends’ next Saturday at 16:00 CET in order to see what the above individuals had to say about the overall impact of the first fourteen songs within the first semi-final. In the meantime, the Summer Hit Song Contest has also got to a quick start this year especially when one notes the fact that the short clips that will be marking quite a number of appearances on the television screens recorded along with the introductory postcards that will be shown prior to the performances. This year, the level of the songs is quite high actually with the ranges of styles mashing up from all sorts of backgrounds including power ballads, pop tunes, dance anthems and the typical Mediterranean feel which is also present. Each week starting at the end of next month, there will be a presentation of songs, so that they will be heard quite a number of times before the actual final performance.

We can also exclusively reveal that ESCflashmalta will be covering the songs of this years’ edition of the Summer Hit Song Contest by publishing short biographies, asking them a couple of questions and then also reviewing them through the power of expert judges which will be announced in the coming weeks, as the feature commences after the Eurovision Song Contest coverage ends for this year. We would like to thank Deo Grech and the rest of the team at ‘Celebrity Weekends’ for their help with regards to the show and hope that this venture will turn out to be a successful one in the long run.

Source: Angelo Caruana (Photograph)

Celebrity Weekends, the programme that will give promotion and host the Summer Hit Song Contest kicks off today. The clips of each of the 18 finalists that will be taking part in the contest will start airing on TV from the fourth show, after the Eurovision Song Contest. The programme will start with a trilogy of Eurovision dedicated programmes before shifting the entire focus on the Summer Hit Song Contest and other local celebrities. The programme hosted by Deo Grech and Natius Farrugia will air at 16.00 on ONE TV.

In the upcoming weeks, the finalists will be invited to perform their entries and a surprise is in store for the fans. Keeping in mind the title of the the programme, Celebrities will play an important part on this surprise.In the meantime, all the participants were given permission by the organizers to put their songs online, and by coinicidence the last few songs were uploaded in recent days and therefore it is time to share them with all local music fans.

01. Love Trap - Domenique (Composer: Clinton Paul, Author: Clinton Paul)
02. Hysterical - Joanna Attard (Composer: Elton Zarb, Author: Rita Pace)
03. Galaxy - Marlon Chircop (Composer: Marlon Chircop, Author: Marlon Chircop)
04. Queen of My Heart - Joseph Refalo (Composer: Miriam Christine, Author: Gerard James Borg)
05. Stay - Ina Robinich (Composer: Andrew Zahra, Author: Rita Pace)
06. Let's Party - minik ft Siconix (Composer: Siconix, Author: Siconix)
07. Memoirs - Karen Debattista (Composer: Mark Scicluna, Author: Daniel Muscat)
08. Someday, One Day - Marie Claire (Composer: Mark Scicluna, Author: Billy J. McBee)
09. Turn on the lights - Walter Anthony (Composer: Philip Vella, Author: Philip Vella)
10. Ain't My Kind of Love - Janice Mangion (Composer: Mark Scicluna, Author: Rita Pace)
11. Ale'O - Malcolm Pisani (Composer: Dominic Cini, Author: Billy J. McBee)
12. Heaven Awaits - Francesca Borg (Composer: Marco Debono, Author: Rita Pace)
13. Labyrinth – Christian (Composer: Philip Vella, Author: Mark Amaira)
14. Thank You – Floren (Composer: Elton Zarb, Author: Rita Pace)
15. Ladies Night – Izzy (Composer: Elton Zarb, Author: Muxu)
16. Day after Day - Kylie (Composer: Andrew Zammit, Author: Joe Julian Farrugia)
17. Silver Rain - Luisana Bartolo (Composer: Philip Vella, Author: Luisana Bartolo)
18. Forget my Name – Petra (Composer: Heathcliffe Balzan, Author: Natasha Turner)

The annual, interactive, televised music contest, with participants from countries all over Europe known as the EuroVoice is currently being held. The President of EuroVoice is Eric Serra who is one of the worlds' most renowned producers and composers having scored the soundtracks to the films Leon, Nikita, Joan of Arc, and The Fifth Element. Now the Maltese Islands will be represented by none other than Lawrence Gray in this years' edition.

The Popular Maltese singer Lawrence Gray is one of the most noted vocalists on the Maltese Islands with a record to show for it having participated in the Maltese selection for the Eurovision Song Contest in 1998, 1999, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004 and 2010 managing several top ten positions including two runner-up finishes with the songs The Right Time losing out to the Times Three and their entry Believe In Peace as well as Why Not losing out to Lynn Faure and her entry To Dream Again. In the meantime, his entry in the EuroVoice European Music Contest  is none other than his Eurosong 2010 entry Stories composed by Ray Agius and Godwin Sant who are gaining quite the popularity at the moment. We are going to keep you updated on this matter as soon as more news comes in from our partners at Oikotimes.com

Source: EuroVoice, Oikotimes