Thursday again, and we take a look at the talent across Europe for Eurovision 2014. We look to Malta today. You all know that we love our friends in Malta – we like to call it “Island Solidarity”. However Malta over the past few years have brought us some of the catchiest songs at Eurovision and we have to say – they have been one of the kindest delegations to us here at Eurovision Ireland since we met with them in Düsseldorf in 2011.
So today we wanted to look at some of the amazing talent that the island has to offer. For a country so small they certainly have a wealth of singing and song writing talent. So who would we like to see at the Maltese National Final is 2014? Well we linked up with our good friend Marc Calleja Bayliss at ESCFlashMalta.com to take a look at the Maltese Music scene. 4 acts for you to ponder over for potentially consideration at the Maltese National Final 2014 for Eurovision.
- The Crowns
- Ira Losco
- Lauren Aquilina
- PT Etc
“The Crowns” are a pop/alternative rock band from Malta. They are a 5 piece band made up of Victorio Gauci (Vocals), Gianluca Cappitta (Guitars), Chris Ciantar (Bass), Jean-Paul Mollicone (Keyboards) and Luke Vella Clark (Drums). They are a band that have been together for over 3 years now and it shows in their strong live performances and song writing skills. Their first singles were instant hits in Malta – “Memories” and “Out of Nowhere”.
They cite their musical influences ranging from The Killers, Snow Patrol, Muse, Placebo to Coldplay and The Temper Trap. You can definitely see how those bands have helped “The Crowns” find their sound. They are excellent musicians and performers – and that comes from constant live performances. I think that a European audience could easily relate to their music and style. A definite possibility we think.
Their most recent song has been the wonderful “Home” that came out in April this year.
Ira Losco came so close to winning the Eurovision song contest for Malta back in 2002 with the still wonderfully catchy “7th Wonder”. Just 12 points denied her victory over Latvia. A Eurovision tragedy if you ask us here at Eurovision Ireland.
So what has Ira been up to since her Eurovision appearance? Well she has become a very exciting artist and describes herself as an urban pop artist now. This is very true as she has experimented with many sounds on her albums since 2002, to become one of Malta’s favorite and successful singers.
Her recent song “The Person I am” featuring David Leguess is an electro/pop/rock song and sees Losco put in an edgy and enigmatic performance. What I like are the sweet tones in her voice being mixed with harder sounding music. The contrast is very interesting and leaves you coming back for more.
Over the years she has gained some notable fans – none more so that Jack White of “The White Stripes”. Eurovision has given her the opportunity to perform outside of Malta at festivals and she has even sang and opened for acts like Elton John and Rod Stewart to sharing the stage with Akon and Maroon 5. She has achieved countless #1’s in Malta and has won accolades from the Maltese Music Industry – the “Malta Music Awards” and “Bay Music Awards”. Performing live to millions is certainly not an issue for Ira and we think that she would be a strong contestant at Eurovision again.
18-year-old pop-folk tinged songstress Lauren Aquilina, has been on a roller coaster of a musical ride for the last year. 12 months ago she independently released the EP “Fools”. EP pre-orders alone were enough to see the EP rise to reach number one in the Maltese iTunes chart overtaking Adele and Coldplay amongst others.
Lauren is half-Maltese/ half-British Bristol born teenager and “Fools” featured 4 self-penned tracks written over the course of a year. According to her “It details the struggles faced in the pursuit of dreams, the weight of expectation and loves gained and lost along the way.”
To say that she is talented beyond her years is an understatement. Her music reminds me of Vanessa Carlton (A Thousand Miles fame), Ellie Goulding and a young Kate Bush. She has that special quality of being unassuming yet at the same time totally intriguing. At the age of 18 she has an innocence about her style of music and performance which comes from writing her own material.
She is certainly a singer whose star is going to be rising! She is undertaking a tour that begins in the UK on July 26th and makes its way to Malta, New York, back to the UK and then finished up in Ireland in September. Lauren is the type of Act at Eurovision that would easily appeal to both the Juries and the Public. I would certainly love to see her in the Maltese National Selection.
PT etc is a project whereby PT writes songs and gets musicians to work with him on the recordings. Maybe a slightly unorthodox way to work but when it produces a song like “Absence Makes the Heart Grow Fonder” you have to admit that it works!
Now you all know that we are big fans of Gianluca – Malta’s Eurovision Representative 2013 – and that we also loved the band “Funk Initiative” where we first came across Gianluca. Well PT etc aka Paul Torpiano, has also come from one of our favorite bands too. In Funk Initiative Paul played Keyboards and sang Backing vocals. Now he takes center stage in PT etc.
Paul is classically trained but thankfully for us has moved into a more Jazz/Funk/Easy Listening genre of music – That we LOVE!. His first song that he has released – “Absence Makes the Heart Grow Fonder” – Paul wrote the song and provides the lead vocals plus the keyboards, xylophone and ukelele – a busy man. Fabian Bonello plays the saxophone and Nikki Gravino the drums. What you get is an instant hit and is currently up to #6 in the local charts.
PT etc aka Paul has a fresh sound that I know that Europe would sit up and listen to at Eurovision. Another act that we would love to see at the Maltese National Final in 2014. Maybe he could get Gianluca and his Funk Initiative friends to accompany him on stage? Either way we love his sound! Bravo.
So there you have our 4 suggestions to enter the Maltese National final for Eurovision 2014. Each one different, unique and talented. Let’s hope that they do decide to enter the Maltese National Selection process – what a show that would make!
Again thanks to our good friend Marc at ESCFlashMalta.com for working with us on selecting 4 great acts that you could be seeing next year – with some luck. Now I must book my flight to Valletta for Malta Song 2014!
Author/Website co-founder and Editor in Chief Garrett Mulhall
Source – Eurovision Ireland and EscFlashMalta