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Windows95man

©EBU/Sarah Louise Bennett About Quick Facts NameTeemu Keisteri Born22 August 1985 Nationality🇫🇮 Finnish National SelectionUuden Musiikin Kilpailu 2024 In Eurovision2024 Malmö SongNo rules! (2024) Biography Teemu Keisteri, born in 1985 in Espoo, is a distinguished Finnish visual artist based in Helsinki. His fame largely stems from the creation of the Ukkeli character in the summer of 2008, a figure prominently featured on apparel, postcards, and tableware. Additionally, he is recognized for his persona as the Windows 95 man during his performances as a DJ. Keisteri explores cultural trends and the nuances of Finnish lifestyle with a distinct sense of humor, frequently incorporating his own persona into his work. His academic background includes studying photography at the Lahti Institute of Design, where he came to the realization that his true calling was in visual arts rather than photography. Beyond his work in visual arts, Keisteri has made a name for himself as a video artist and DJ. He operates Kalleria, his own gallery, located in the Kallio area of Helsinki. In a notable achievement, Keisteri and Henri Piispanen, performing together. Keisteri under the alias Windows95man. They clinched the title at the 2024 Uuden Musiikin Kilpailu (UMK) with their track “No Rules”. Henri Piispanen, born in 1994, is a prominent Finnish voice actor, singer, and presenter. His notable contributions include voicing characters such as Vainu in PAW Patrol, Lloyd in Lego Ninjago, Samu in Samu ja Salla, and Lauri in The Happy Robinson Family movie. Additionally, Piispanen is the lead vocalist and bass player for the band named Pasa. In 2012, he was featured as one of the seven hosts on the television series Summeri. The song, “No rules”, managed to reach the Grand Final of the Eurovision Song Contest. In the final itself, Teemu and Henri reached a 19th place. Entries No rules! Country🇸🇲 Country Yearyear Language🇬🇧 English LyricsHenri PiispanenJussi RoineTeemu Keisteri MusicHenri PiispanenJussi RoineTeemu Keisteri BackingsHenri Piispanen DancersJesse WijnansMatti Maxim Results Semi Points: 59Position: 7Running order: 10 Results Finals Points: 38Position: 19Running order: 17 https://youtu.be/7nidDtyS0Wo?si=id0ggiEaU2FBR_S7

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Jerry Heil

©EBU/Alma Bengtsson About Quick Facts NameYana Oleksandrivna Shemayeva Born21 October 1995 Nationality🇺🇦 Ukrainian National SelectionVidbir 2024Vidbir 2020 In Eurovision2024 Malmö SongTeresa & Maria (& Alyona Alyona) Biography Yana Oleksandrivna Shemayeva, widely recognized by her stage name Jerry Heil, is an accomplished Ukrainian singer, songwriter, and YouTuber, born on October 21, 1995. Shemayeva’s early years unfolded in Vasylkiv, located on the outskirts of Kyiv, Ukraine, where her parents are engaged in private trading. Her musical education spanned notable institutions, including the R. Glier Kyiv Institute of Music and the Kyiv Conservatory, where she honed her skills. Initial Steps At 15, Heil adopted her stage name, initially choosing Jerry Mouse after the famous cartoon character, before switching to Heil based on an arbitrary American surname she encountered online. She humorously reflects on the origin of her stage name as “moronic.” In 2012, Heil ventured into the digital world by launching a YouTube channel, where she shared vlogs and song covers, earning acclaim from fans and musicians alike, including Okean Elzy’s lead, Sviatoslav Vakarchuk. 2017 marked a turning point in Heil’s career when she signed with Vidlik Records, embarking on a professional journey with the guidance of the label’s founders and leading to the release of her debut EP, De miy dim, in October 2017. Her audition for X-Factor Ukraine in 2018 saw her progressing through the competition, though she did not win. This experience fueled her return to music, releasing singles including “Kava” and “Postil,” with the latter featuring her first music video. 2019 was a pivotal year for Heil, previewing her hit single “Okhrana, otmyena” on Instagram before its official release, which quickly became a sensation in Ukraine. Her debut album Ya, Yana, followed, showcasing her songwriting and performing prowess. Heil’s engagement with the Eurovision Song Contest began with Vidbir 2020, where her entry “Vegan” reached the final. She continued to participate in Vidbir, finishing third in 2023 with “When God Shut the Door” and winning Vidbir 2024 alongside Alyona Alyona with “Teresa & Maria,” setting the stage for their Eurovision 2024 representation. The song reached a 3rd place in the Grand Final of the contest. Heil is multilingual, proficient in Ukrainian, Russian, and English, and chooses to perform primarily in Ukrainian. A committed vegan, her lifestyle reflects in her personal and professional choices. In August 2018, Heil faced legal challenges over copyright infringement related to her use of “Believer” by Imagine Dragons. The ensuing dispute with Komp Music Publishing, a licensee of Universal Music Group in Ukraine, led to a temporary removal of her YouTube channel. However, through negotiations facilitated by AIR Music, the fines were reduced, and an agreement was reached, allowing Heil to continue her musical endeavors online. Entries Teresa & Maria (with Alyona Alyona) Country🇺🇦 Ukraine Year2024 LanguageUkrainian LyricsAlyona SavranenkoYana Shemaeva MusicAnton ChilibiIvan Klymenko Backings– Results Semi Points: 173Position: 2Running order: 5 Results Finals Points: 453Position: 3Running order: 2 https://youtu.be/d4N82wPpdg8?si=80O_WxaIGjRlRCYv

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Alyona Alyona

EBU/Alma Bengtsson About Quick Facts NameAliona Alehivna Savranenko Born14 June 1991 Nationality🇺🇦 Ukrainian National SelectionVidbir 2024 In Eurovision2024 Malmö SongTeresa & Maria (& Jerry Heil) Biography Aliona Olehivna Savranenko, known professionally as Alyona Alyona, is a distinguished Ukrainian rapper and songwriter, born on June 14, 1991. Originating from Kapitanivka, Novomyrhorod Raion, in Kirovohrad Oblast, Savranenko is a holder of two bachelor’s degrees, one of which she earned from the Gregory Skovoroda Pedagogical State University of Pereiaslav. Prior to her music career, she dedicated herself to teaching, initially working at kindergarten. After four years in the education sector, Savranenko stepped away from teaching as her music career began to take off. Alyona Alyona at Haldern Pop Festival 2019, Germany Alyona’s journey into rap began in the mid-2000s, initially performing under the stage name Alyona Al.kaida. Her quest for a broader audience took a significant leap forward when, under her now-familiar moniker, she released her debut music video for the song “Rybky” in October 2018. This was followed by a second, professionally directed video for the same song later that month, and then by the video for “Holovy”  in November, which achieved one million YouTube views within its first month. Further releases included the music videos for “Vidchynyai” and “Zalyshayu sviy dim”, the latter symbolizing her departure from her hometown, Baryshivka. Her career saw rapid expansion in 2019, marked by the release of her first album, Pushka, in April, featuring a mix of previously released and new songs, including a notable collaboration with Alina Pash on “Padlo” . Alyona Alyona’s unique approach to music and storytelling garnered her praise as “Ukraine’s most unlikely rap star” in that month’s Vogue. She continued to make her mark with performances at major festivals, such as the Sziget Festival in Budapest, and contributions to significant projects, including writing the lyrics for “Vilna”, performed by Tina Karol and Julia Sanina for the soundtrack of the Ukrainian film Viddana. In 2020, Alyona Alyona signed with Def Jam Polska, further solidifying her international presence. The following year, she received the Public Choice Award at the Music Moves Europe Talent Awards contest and participated as part of the Ukrainian jury for the Eurovision Song Contest 2021. Her most recent achievement includes winning the Ukrainian preselection for the Eurovision Song Contest 2024 alongside Jerry Heil with their song “Teresa & Maria,” highlighting her continued influence and success in the music industry. The song reached a 3rd place in the Grand Final of the contest. Entries Teresa & Maria (with Jerry Heil) Country🇺🇦 Ukraine Year2024 LanguageUkrainian LyricsAlyona SavranenkoYana Shemaeva MusicAnton ChilibiIvan Klymenko Backings– Results Semi Points: 173Position: 2Running order: 5 Results Finals Points: 453Position: 3Running order: 2 https://youtu.be/d4N82wPpdg8?si=pWldnZODF4xrJByN

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Nebulossa

© EBU/Alma Bengtsson About Quick Facts MembersMery BasMark Dasousa Founded2018 Nationality🇪🇸 Spanish National SelectionBenidorm Fest 2024Una Voce Per San Marino 2022 In Eurovision2024 Malmö SongZorra (2024) Biography Nebulossa is an electropop duo hailing from Ondara, Spain, consisting of vocalist María “Mery” Bas, born in 1968, and keyboardist and producer Mark Dasousa, born in 1974. The formation of Nebulossa was a fact in 2018. The duo’s name, inspired by nebulae, came about after a visit to an astronomical observatory during a trip to Port Ainé where nebulae were a frequent topic of discussion. The spelling of their name with a double “s” pays homage to the Valencian language, distinguishing it despite the standard spelling with a single “s” in the language. Nebulossa’s discography is a testament to their evolving sound and artistic expression, beginning with their debut EP “Ufo” in 2019, followed by a series of singles that showcase their versatility and lyrical depth. In 2020, they released “La Colmena,” “Océano de Palabras,” “Armada Roja,” “Alud de Inconformismo,” and “Anoche.” The year 2021 saw the release of “Glam” and their studio album “Poliédrica de mí,” marking a milestone in their career. Their journey in music saw a notable moment in 2022 when they expanded to a trio with the addition of Ophelia Alibrando. That year, they ventured into the international music scene by participating in Una voce per San Marino, aiming for a spot in the Eurovision Song Contest representing San Marino. However, they did not advance to the final. Their creative output continued in 2022 with singles “1N84,” “Conectados,” and “Histeria De Lo Nuestro.” In 2023, they added “Me Pones a Mil,” “Cuando Te Veo,” “Me Ha Dado Porno,” and “Zorra” to their repertoire Nebulossa made a significant impact at Benidorm Fest 2024, the Spanish national selection for the Eurovision Song Contest 2024. Their entry, “Zorra,” won them first place in their semifinal on January 30, 2024, and they went on to win the final, securing their place in the competition. In the Grand Final, they reached a 22nd place. Entries Zorra Country🇪🇸 Spain Year2024 LanguageSpanish LyricsMery BasMark Dasousa MusicMery BasMark Dasousa BackingsAna VillaMark Dasousa DancersCésar FerrioIosu Martinez Results Semi Points: –Position: –Running order: – Results Finals Points: 30Position: 22Running order: 8 https://youtu.be/FOMoQoHG5aU?si=RLswbh_YHKlykQ4V

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Nigar Jamal

About Quick Facts NameNigar Aydın qızı Camal Born07 September 1980 Nationality🇦🇿 Azerbaijani National SelectionMilli Seçim Turu 2011 In Eurovision2011 Düsseldorf SongRunning Scared (with Ell, 2011) Biography Nigar “Nikki” Aydin qizi Jamal, born Nigar Mutallibzadeh on September 7, 1980, in Baku, is a celebrated Azerbaijani singer. Before embarking on her singing career, Jamal spent five years as a housewife. She attended Khazar University from 1997, studying economics and management for three years.  Her journey in the Azerbaijani music scene began in December 2010 with her participation in Milli Seçim Turu 2011, the national selection for Eurovision. Jamal’s initial performance in Heat 7 led to a joint first-place finish and advancement to the semi-finals. Ultimately, she and Eldar Gasimov triumphed in the final on February 11, 2011, earning the privilege to represent Azerbaijan at the Eurovision Song Contest 2011 in Düsseldorf, Germany. Performing as Ell & Nikki, their song “Running Scared,” penned by international songwriters, secured victory with 221 points. Following their Eurovision win, Jamal and Gasimov toured various countries to perform their winning song. Azerbaijan honored their achievement by issuing 15,000 commemorative postage stamps. In September 2011, Jamal made a guest appearance in the Turkish comedy series Yahşi Cazibe. In 2012, Jamal was selected as one of the five Azerbaijani jury members for Denmark’s Eurovision contestant selection. On December 1, 2011, she debuted her post-Eurovision solo track “Crush on You,” along with its music video. Subsequent releases included collaborations with Miri Yusif on “Qal” (“Stay”) and Eurovision 2008 winner Dima Bilan on “Come Into My World.” August 11, 2012, marked the release of her debut album “Play With Me,” featuring work with Danish songwriter Boe Larsen.  In early 2014, Jamal served as a judge on the Turkish edition of X Factor, where she played a pivotal role in producing the show’s winner. In 2015, she reached the no. 1 spot in the Turkish charts with the song “Broken dreams”. She teamed up with Berksan for the song “Herhalde”. A year later, she released the single “Çağıran da ürəkdi” and in 2017 she came up with “Sus”.  In 2023, she recorded several songs with Ell. Entries Running Scared (Ell & Nikki) Country🇦🇿 Azerbaijan Year2011 LanguageEnglish LyricsSandra BjurmanStefan Örn MusicSandra BjurmanStefan ÖrnIain James Farquharson BackingsLisa StadellVera PradaJessica MarbergerÅsa Engman Results Semi Points: 122Position: 2Running order: 18 Results Finals Points: 221Position: 1Running order: 19 https://youtu.be/_0tlQUW5X0U?si=zWTMOFFGj20ZpRnk

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Eldar Gasimov

About Quick Facts NameEldar Pərviz oğlu Qasımov Born04 June 1989 Nationality🇦🇿 Azerbaijani National SelectionMilli Seçim Turu 2011 In Eurovision2011 Düsseldorf SongRunning Scared (2011, & Nikki) Biography Eldar “Ell” Parviz oglu Gasimov, born on June 4, 1989, is a renowned Azerbaijani singer. Eldar Gasimov hails from a distinguished artistic lineage, being the great-grandson of celebrated Azerbaijani actors Abbas Mirza Sharifzadeh and Marziyya Davudova, and grandson of actress Firangiz Sharifova. His musical journey began in early childhood, leading to numerous performances across Azerbaijan and Russia. Between 2001 and 2005, he honed his skills in music and piano. Gasimov is an alumnus of Baku Slavic University, where he double-majored in international relations and regional geography. He pursued postgraduate studies in international relations at the same institution since 2010. Fluent in Russian and German, he also possesses proficiency in English. Gasimov’s Eurovision journey commenced with the Azerbaijani national selection, Milli Seçim Turu 2011. His initial performance in Heat 6 earned him second place, leading to the semi-finals and eventually the final on February 11, 2011. Teaming up with Nigar Jamal as Ell & Nikki, they represented Azerbaijan at the Eurovision Song Contest 2011 in Düsseldorf, Germany. Their song “Running Scared,” composed by international artists, clinched victory with 221 points. Post-Eurovision, Gasimov, alongside Jamal, toured various countries to perform their winning song. Azerbaijan commemorated their victory with 15,000 postage stamps featuring the duo. In 2012, Gasimov was a jury member for Denmark’s selection of its Eurovision contestant.  His first single post-Eurovision, “Birlikda nahayat” (“At last together”), was released in January 2012. Gasimov also co-hosted the Eurovision Song Contest 2012 in Baku. July 17, 2012, marked the release of his acoustic single “I’m Free,” with its official video following in September. The track, a collaboration with Azerbaijani DJ/producer ALIGEE, was produced by Farid Mammadov and Ali Abasbeili. In the academic sphere, Gasimov joined Baku Slavic University as a lecturer in international relations in October 2012. Eldar released a lot of singles, in English, Azerbaijani and Russian. He teamed up with Nikki again in 2013 for the single “Music’s Still Alive”. In 2014 he recorded “Ice On Fire”, a duet with Zlata Ognevich. In 2015 he teamed up with Rustam for the song “Gülümse”. In 2019, Eldar expressed support for the LGBT community through a post on his personal Instagram account. In 2020, he and VoColor released the song “Until The end”. From 2021 to 2022, Gasimov was a coach on The Voice of Azerbaijan‘s second season. His protégé, Nadir Rustamli, won and represented Azerbaijan in the Eurovision Song Contest 2022, achieving 16th place. In 2023, he released a new single and video, “Break Free”, and recorded several songs with Nikki. Entries Running Scared (Ell & Nikki) Country🇦🇿 Azerbaijan Year2011 LanguageEnglish LyricsSandra BjurmanStefan Örn MusicSandra BjurmanStefan ÖrnIain James Farquharson BackingsLisa StadellVera PradaJessica MarbergerÅsa Engman Results Semi Points: 122Position: 2Running order: 18 Results Finals Points: 221Position: 1Running order: 19 https://youtu.be/_0tlQUW5X0U?si=7_mUm-omYWujabhE

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Stereo Mike

About Quick Facts NameMihalis Exarchos Born04 July 1978 Nationality🇬🇷 Greek🇬🇧 British National SelectionEllinikós Telikós 2011 In Eurovision2011 Düsseldorf SongWatch My Dance (& Loucas Yiorkas, 2011) Biography Mihalis Exarchos, widely known by his stage name Stereo Mike, was born in 1978 in Piraeus, Greece. His heritage is a blend of Greek from his father’s side and Croatian from his mother, who hails from Rijeka. At 18, Exarchos ventured to the UK to pursue higher education in music, attending Leeds Metropolitan and the University of Westminster. There, he earned a Bachelor’s degree in Music Technology and a Master’s degree in Sound Production. During his academic years, Exarchos honed his skills as a sound producer at Vault Recording Studios in Hackney, London. His work there involved collaborations with notable British hip hop artists such as Klashnekoff, Bury Crew, Skinnyman, Taskforce, Iceberg Slimm, Mike GLC, and JMC. His career took a significant turn when he joined AMG Records, leading to his first recording contract under the name ‘Stereo Mike’ with Mo’ Money Recording$. His debut album, “Satirical Nomads,” released by Mo’ Money Recording$ and licensed to Universal Music Greece, featured impactful singles like the anti-racism anthem “O Allos Babis” and the remix “I Polis.” Apart from his recording career, he also took up a post-graduate lecturing position at the University of Westminster in London, sharing his expertise in music production. Stereo Mike’s impact in the music scene was further recognized when he was nominated for the Mad Video Music Awards in 2005 and 2008, in categories including “Best Hip-Hop Video Clip” and “Video Clip of the Year.” His second album, titled “XLI3H” (leet speak for the Greek word “Εξέλιξη,” meaning “evolution”), marked another milestone in his career and was signed with Minos EMI. Concurrently, he engaged in research work towards a PhD in music. A significant highlight in Stereo Mike’s career was becoming the first MTV EMA Award winner in the “Best Greek Act” category following MTV’s regional launch in Greece in 2008. His recognition expanded to a nomination for Europe’s Favourite Act in the same year. In 2011, Stereo Mike teamed up with Loucas Yiorkas to represent Greece in the Eurovision Song Contest in Germany. Their performance of “Watch My Dance” earned them a respectable seventh place, scoring 120 points and further cementing Stereo Mike’s status as a prominent figure in the Greek hip-hop scene. Right after the Eurovision Song Contest, the single “Apla zoi” was released, followed by “Boro”, a single chosen by fans via Facebook. As a part of the project Schizm he released the single “Akoma” with Constantine. In 2012 Stereo Mike released a new single, “Opou me pai mousiki”. He collaborated with Despina Olympiou in the song “To neo tragoudi tis”. In October 2012 he signed with Imiz Biz Entertainment. In March 2013 Stereo Mike got the opportunity to perform at the festival SXSW in Austin, Texas. There was a documentary made about this journey. In November of the same year he teamed up with Mindtrap and Irène for the track “Tonight and Forever”. In 2014 he featured in D-Light’s “Anthrope xypna”. He produced the song “Dream Big” for Hellena, which became an international hit. He was also member of her band. He also released a solo single, “Akoma edo”. In 2015 the contract Stereo Mike had with EMI ended. However, Mike kept on performing and recording. He did his producing work in his home studio. In 2016 he started the Hip Hop Time Machine; a doctorate research – passion music project of Stereo Mike. His aim? To apply vintage production techniques to contemporary Hip-Hop in pursuit of ‘sample-based’ impact and authenticity: producing multiple records within a record. In the same year, Mike also performed with the band LaKlikaria and their song “GoogleDatShit”. In 2019, Stereo Mike went on tour with Asympt Man, as a bass player now. They performed in the USA. In December of that year, he contributed to the Innovation in Music conference in London. In 2020 he made a Cambridge Scholar Publishing: Interpreting the Synthesizer – Meaning Through Sonics.  Mike contributed to the (digital) book Analyzing Recorded Music – Collected Perspectives On Popular Music Tracks and released his own book Reimagining Sample-based Hip Hop in July 2023. It came along with the dual album “KATALH3H (Beats Deluxe)”. Entries Watch My Dance (& Loucas Yiorkas) Country🇬🇷 Greece Year2011 LanguageEnglishGreek LyricsEleana Vrachali MusicGiannis Christodoulopoulos DancersPavlos ManogiannakisManos DavariasGiannis SaikinMichalis Spiridis Results Semi Points: 133Position: 1Running order: 19 Results Finals Points: 120Position: 7Running order: 9 https://youtu.be/qVdMs2-dwGE?si=WsCasxfLtbBQ4cFj

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Loucas Yiorkas

About Quick Facts NameLoucas Yiorkas Born18 October 1986 Nationality🇨🇾 Cypriot National SelectionEllinikós Telikós 2011 In Eurovision2011 Düsseldorf SongWatch My Dance (& Stereo Mike, 2011) Biography Born on October 18, 1986, in Aradippou, Cyprus, Loukas Yiorkas began his journey in a small town, fostering a passion for music that would soon define his career. Balancing his artistic pursuits, Yiorkas also delved into academic studies, choosing to study Biology at the University of Patras, demonstrating his multifaceted talents. Yiorkas’ ascent to fame began with his participation in the Greek version of “The X Factor”. It led him to victory in the first season of the show in 2009. This win was not just a milestone in his career but also a stepping stone towards greater musical endeavors. Following his success on “The X Factor,” Yiorkas quickly capitalized on his newfound fame. In September 2009, he released his first EP titled “Mazi,” which was warmly received and attained gold certification.  Yiorkas’ discography showcases his evolving musical style, marked by a blend of contemporary and traditional Greek elements. His notable singles include “Tha Peso, Tha Sikotho” (2010), the Eurovision entry “Watch My Dance” featuring Stereo Mike (2011), and a series of hits like “Gia Proti Fora” (2011), “Ematha” (2012), and “Eklapsa” (2013). Each year brought new singles, expanding his musical repertoire and reinforcing his position in the Greek music scene. His recent works include “Mona Liza” and “Pame Ap’ Tin Arxi” (2020), “Mou Eleipses Poly” and “Gia Tin Ellada” (2021), and “An M’ Agapas” (2022). A highlight of Yiorkas’ career was representing Greece in the Eurovision Song Contest 2011 in Germany. Teaming up with Stereo Mike, they performed “Watch My Dance,” securing a commendable seventh place with 120 points.  Entries Watch My Dance (featuring Stereo Mike) Country🇬🇷 Greece Year2011 LanguageEnglishGreek LyricsEleana Vrachali MusicGiannis Christodoulopoulos DancersPavlos ManogiannakisManos DavariasGiannis SaikinMichalis Spiridis Results Semi Points: 133Position: 1 Running order: 19 Results Finals Points: 120Position: 7Running order: 9 https://youtu.be/qVdMs2-dwGE?si=HWoglNlZBholMeao

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🇳🇴 Blast from the Past: Norway 1980

photo: Nationaal Archief, Den Haag We know a lot about Eurovision and we want to share this knowledge with you! Therefore we’d like to bring you a blast from the past. Today: Mattis Hætta and Sverre Kjelsberg, representing Norway in 1980 with the song “Samiid Ædnan”. Norway in the Eurovision Song Contest Norway has had a long and varied history in the Eurovision Song Contest, which they first entered in 1960. Over the years, Norway has experienced both highs and lows in the competition.Norway has won the contest three times: 1985 – Bobbysocks: The duo, consisting of Hanne Krogh and Elisabeth Andreassen, won with the song “La det swinge” (Let it swing). This victory was a landmark moment for Norway, as it was their first win in the contest. 1995 – Secret Garden: An instrumental piece, “Nocturne”, with just 24 words sung by Norwegian violinist Rolf Løvland and Irish violinist Fionnuala Sherry, secured Norway’s second victory. 2009 – Alexander Rybak: The singer, violinist, composer, and actor won with a record-breaking 387 points for his song “Fairytale”. This score remained the highest in Eurovision history until the voting system was changed in 2016. Despite their victories, Norway is also known for having finished last a number of times, often with the infamous ‘nul points’. Some of these instances have become iconic in Eurovision history, showcasing the unpredictable nature of the contest. Melodi Grand Prix 1980 The national final, Melodi Grand Prix, was held on March 22nd at NRK Studio 2 in Oslo. Åse Kleveland, participant in 1966 and hosting Eurovision in 1986, was the host of the show. Note that she also traveled along with Mattis Hætta and Sverre Kjelsberg to The Hague to introduce the duo. Every country had their own host in the 1980 show. The songs were: “Stjerneskudd“, by Anita Skorgan, 48 pts, 6th “Ja“, by Jahn Teigen, 32 pts, 9th “Parken“, by Radka Toneff, 43 pts, 8th “Bjørnen sover“, by Åge Aleksandersen og Sambandet, 61 pts, 1st “Maestro“, by Hilde Heltberg, 32 pts, 9th “Auståvind“, by Hennig Sommerro, 45 pts, 7th “Univers“, by Alex, 58 pts, 3rd “Rudi“, by Nina Askeland, 58 pts, 3rd “Svart fortid“, by Inger Lise Rypdal, 57 pts, 5th “Samiid ædnan“, by Mattis Hætta and Sverre Kjelsberg, 61 pts, 1st As there was an ex aecquo between both the songs, all the juries had to give one vote for one of the winning songs. In that voting, “Bjørnen sover” received 4 points while “Samiid ædnan” got 5. Age Aleksandersen, the other winner Mattis Hætta and Sverre Kjelsberg Sverre Kjelsberg was a multifaceted Norwegian musician, born on October 18, 1946, in Tromsø, and passing away on June 18, 2016. He began his musical journey as a bassist and vocalist for the popular 1960s rock band, The Pussycats. Known for their Beatlesque style, the band enjoyed considerable success domestically. After the band’s dissolution, Kjelsberg’s musical style evolved, incorporating elements of pop, rock, and folk. Sverre Kjelsberg is perhaps best remembered on the international stage for representing Norway in the Eurovision Song Contest in 1980, alongside Mattis Hætta, with the song “Sámiid Ædnan.” Mattis Hætta was a Sami singer and artist renowned for his contribution to the preservation and popularization of the traditional Sami form of singing, known as joik. Born on March 24, 1959, in Maze, Norway, Hætta was a prominent figure in the indigenous Sami community. His musical journey was intertwined with his cultural identity, and he has used his artistry to advocate for the rights and recognition of the Sami people. Mattis Hætta has continued to advocate for indigenous rights and remains a celebrated figure in Norway for his cultural contributions and activism. He passed away on November 9, 2022. Who are the Sami? The Sami are an indigenous people inhabiting the Arctic region known as Sápmi, which spans across the northern parts of Norway, Sweden, Finland, and the Kola Peninsula of Russia. Numbering approximately 80,000 to 100,000, the Sami have a rich cultural heritage deeply intertwined with the natural landscapes they inhabit. Traditionally, the Sami have engaged in diverse livelihoods, including fishing, fur trapping, and sheep herding. However, reindeer herding is perhaps the most emblematic aspect of Sami culture, with specific communities having developed semi-nomadic lifestyles centered around reindeer migrations. The Sami have their own distinct languages, which belong to the Uralic linguistic family. While there are multiple Sami languages, many Sami people also speak the languages of the countries they reside in. Sami traditional clothing, known as “gákti,” is vibrant and distinctive, often adorned with colorful bands of decoration and intricate beadwork. The designs and colors can indicate a person’s geographical origin, marital status, and other personal details. Despite facing historical oppression and forced assimilation policies, the Sami have persevered in maintaining and revitalizing their cultural heritage. Today, they continue to advocate for their rights, including land rights, cultural preservation, and political representation within the Nordic countries and Russia. Apart from Mattis Hætta and Sverre Kjelsberg, also Keiino brought the audience something of the Sami culture. Sami rapper Fred Buljo brought us the sound of the joik too! Samiid Ædnan “Sámiid Ædnan” is a significant and memorable song that represented Norway in the Eurovision Song Contest in 1980. Sung by Sverre Kjelsberg and Mattis Hætta, the song is a powerful melding of pop music elements with the traditional Sami form of singing known as joik. The title “Sámiid Ædnan” translates to “Sami Earth” and the song’s lyrics are a call for recognition of the indigenous Sami people and their rights. The song is performed in both Norwegian and Sami languages and emphasizes the unity and connection of the Sami people with their land. What made the performance standout in the Eurovision contest was Mattis Hætta’s joiking and the duo’s choice to wear traditional Sami clothing. This was an act of cultural pride and a political statement about indigenous rights. The song was written as a protest against the construction of a dam in the area where the Sami live. So,

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Bledar Sejko

© Albin Olsson About Quick Facts NameBledar Sejko Born10 September 1972 Nationality🇦🇱 Albanian National SelectionFestivali i Këngës 2012 In Eurovision2013 Malmö SongIdentitet (2013, with Adrian Lulgjuraj) Biography Bledar Sejko, born on February 19, 1971, is an esteemed Albanian guitarist, songwriter, and vocalist.  In the late 1980s, during an era when Communist Albania suppressed pop music, Sejko pioneered one of the nation’s initial pop bands. This group, which also featured artists like Redon Makashi and Elton Deda, navigated the restrictive landscape to produce music clandestinely. Fondly nicknamed “Qepa” (translates to “Onion” in English), Sejko mentored Makashi in guitar and has always been celebrated as a master of the instrument in Albania. Furthermore, he’s credited for founding “Megahertz,” recognized as Albania’s inaugural rock band. Sejko last graced the Festivali i Këngës stage in 1992 with his band, Thunder Way. Their entry, “Legjenda e Heroit” (translates to “The Hero’s Legend”), unfortunately, secured the last position in that edition of the festival. He had graced the Eurovision stage in 2011, accompanying Aurela Gaçe on her track, “Feel the Passion.” He gained international attention when he represented Albania at the 2013 Eurovision Song Contest in Malmö, performing “Identitet” alongside Adrian Lulgjuraj. Sejko notes that this song was influenced by motifs from Northern Albania and Chameria.  In 2014, Sejko took part in Festivali I Këngës again, but now as a composer. Jozefina Simoni sang his song “Mendje trazi” and reached a 12th place with it. He started performing with a band called Bledar Sejko & Friends. Entries Identitet (& Adrian Lulgjuraj) Country🇦🇱 Albania Year2013 LanguageAlbanian LyricsEda Sejko MusicBledar Sejko BackingsErgys AbdyliEldi SmajaErdis KrajaErgys Turku Results Semi Points: 31Position: 15Running order: 14 Results Finals Points: –Position: –Running order: – https://youtu.be/3u5Se-vJ6MA?si=YBTCDKUVHUyOMXhV

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