Welcome to our new series of posts – “The Looker” where we will share our wish list of artists participating in Eurovision.
But before we start, let us remark that our recommendations will not necessarily come true (as for example some countries select their artists by reality shows)
The previous chapters in the series are available as well:
1st post (Belgium, Israel, The Netherlands)
2nd post (Denmark, Iceland, North Macedonia)
3rd post (Finland, Norway, Sweden)
4th post (Austria, Czech Republic, Germany)
5th post (Bulgaria, Greece, Romania)
6th post (Australia, Ireland, the UK)
7th post (Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania)
8th post (France, Portugal, Spain)
This time we will concentrate on 3 countries: Moldova, Russia, Ukraine
#1. Vera Țurcanu
Vera Țurcanu is a Moldovan singer. She has participated in the “Star of Chișinău“, “X Factor Romania“, “The Voice of Turkey” (O Ses Türkiye), and Romanian singing competition “Cântă Acum Cu Mine“.
Vera is well known for her 3 participations in Moldova‘s national selection for Eurovision in the years 2015, 2018 and 2019.
In 2015, she performed the duet “Faith” with Diana Popa (and they didn’t qualify for the final):
In 2018, she performed the song “Black Heart” and ended in 2nd place:
In 2019, she competed with the song “Cold“, and ended up in 4th place:
In 2019, she released the song “Umbrele” (Eng: Umbrellas)
In 2021, she released the song “Ma arunci spre nori” (Eng: you throw me to the clouds)
In 2021, she released the song “Dulce sau sarata” (Eng: sweet or salty):
With a great passion for Eurovision, a powerful voice, and being able to perform power ballads as well as electro-pop songs, Vera Țurcanu seems like the right choice for Eurovision.
#2. Irina Rimes
Irina Rimes is a 29 year old Moldovan singer and songwriter. Nowadays, she works and lives in Bucharest, Romania. After finishing high school, she entered the Academy of Music, Theater and Plastic Arts in Chișinău. In 2012, Irina Rimes participated in the talent show “Fabrica de staruri” where she was a finalist.
In 2016, the singer moved to Romania where ahe signed a contract with Quantum Music. She released her first single “Visele” (Eng: the dreams) in the same year. The song was a huge success, peaking at number 1st on the charts. In 2017, she was awarded best debut at the Radio Romania music awards. In 2017, the singer signed a contract with Universal Music which led her to release 3 studio albums so far:
- “Despre el” (Eng: about him) – 2017
- “Cosmos” (Eng: Cosmus) – 2018
- “Pastila” (Eng: Pills) – 2020
Besides focusing on her music, Irina has written songs for other Romanian singers as well.
In 2018-2019 she was one of the four coaches in “The Voice of Romania” (8th and 9th seasons).
Here are 3 of her songs:
IN 2019, she released the song “In Palme“:
In 2020, she collaborated with Cris Cab, and they released the song “Your Love”:
In 2021, she released the song “N-avem timp” (Eng: We don’t have time)
Irina Rimes is one of the most successful singers in Moldova and Romania. She has achieved numerous views on YouTube and a strong fan base. In addition, we can’t trust her not only as a singer, but also as a songwriter.
#3. Mark Stam
Mark Stam is a 23 year old Modovan singer.
Mark has shown an interest in music since a young age. He taught himself to play guitar and piano from YouTube tutorials.
He rose to fame in 2013, when he participated in the TV Show “Moldova are talent“.In the beginning, he signed a contract with Spoiala Brothers with whom he achieved recognition in Moldova.
Following his participation, he signed a contract with Global Records.
In 2019, he was awarded the best new artist at The Artists Awards.
His music is popular in Romania and Moldova. Mark hasn’t released his debut album yet, but he has released several singles.
In 2017, he released the song “A murit iubirea” (Eng: Love is dead)
In 2018, he released the song “Impar” (Eng: strange):
In 2021, he collaborated with Sore on the song “E Ok” (Eng: OK):
Mark Stam is a talented young singer with the potential to become worldwide popular. His music combines the elements of pop music together with R&B, folk and soul. Therefore, he might be the one who takes Moldova in another direction.
Yulia Zivert (better known as Zivert) is a 30 year old Russian singer and model.
In 2017, she signed a contract with Russian label First Music Publishing. In 2017, she released her first 2 singles (although the video clip of the second single was published in 2018).
In April 2018, she released her debut EP “Сияй” (Eng: Shine).
In 2019, she released her debut album “Vinyl #1“.
Zivert won several awards throughout the years:
- Breakthrough of the year – Muz TV Awards 2019
- Powerful Start – RU.TV Awards 2019
- Best Pop Artist + Song of the year + Discoverry of the year – Russian National Music Awards 2019
- Breakthrough of the year + Best female artist + Best single – “New Radio Awards” 2020
Here are 3 of her songs:
In 2018, she released the song “Еще хочу” (Eng: Want more):
In 2020, she released the song “Многоточия” (Eng: Elipses)
In 2021, she released the song “Del Mar“:
Zivert is one of the biggest stars in Russia and we can definitely explain why.
With a charming personality and impressive repertoire, she is ready for Eurovision.
JONY (real name: Jahid Afrail Oglu Huseynli) is a 25 year old Russian singer and songwriter of Azerbaijani origin.
He was named JONY by his mother, following the fact he really liked the cartoon “Jhonny Bravo” as a child.
He was born in Azerbaijan and moved to Russia at the age of 4. In the first grade, he started singing in the school’s choir and impressed his teachers. His father didn’t support JONY‘s choice to focus on music career. Therefore, JONY entered the faculty of International Business at State University of Management. While he was still in University, he started to record covers and publish them on his Instagram page. He has gotten the attention of Elman Zeynalov who invited JONY to RAAVA Music team. JONY began working on his songs at the end of 2018 and published 5 original songs until March 2019.
In June 2019, he released his debut album “Список твоих мыслей” (Eng: List of your thoughts). In August 2020, he released his second album “Небесные розы” (Eng: Heavenly roses).
In 2019, he released the song “Аллея” (Eng: Alley):
In 22019, he released the song “Комета” (Eng: Комета)
In 2019, he released the bilingual song “Love Your Voice“:
In 2021, he released the song “Blue Eyes”:
JONY is a young pop star with tons of charisma. He knows how to create songs that will sit in the center of the mainstream.
#3. Yulianna Karaulova
Yulianna Yurievna Karaulova is a 33 year old Russian singer, who is best known as the former lead singer of the 5sta Family band.
Yulianna was born in Moscow. At the age of 4, she and her family moved to Bulgaria following her father’s diplomatic service. At the age of 11, she returned to Moscow. In 2004, she participated in the Russian “Fabrika Zvyozd 5” music show. She was mentored by Alla Pugacheva (who represented Russia in Eurovision 1997) and reached the finals. Thereafter, she spent 6 months studying music in London. In 2011, she became the lead singer of 5sta Family. She was the band’s lead singer until 2015. During this period, the band recorded several hits and won a number of music awards.
So far, the singer has released 3 studio albums:
- “Чувство Ю” (Eng: Feeling you”) – 2016
- “Феномены” (Eng: Phenomana) – 2017
- “Быть Сильными” (Eng: Be strong) – 2019
In 2016, she released the song “Внеорбитные” (Eng: Out of orbit):
In 2019, she released the song “ДИКАЯ ПУМА” (Eng:Wild Puma):
In 2019, she released the song “Танцы на нервах” (Eng: “Dancing on the Nerves”)
Yulianna Karaulova will be the right artist to represent Russia if Russia wants to bring “pure” Russian pop to the contest.
ONUKA (Eng: granddaughter) is a Ukrainian electro folk band. The band was formed in 2013 by Ukrainian musicians Yevhen Filatov and Nata Zhyzhchenko.
The band members are: Nata Zhyzhchenko (lead singer), Daryna Sert (keyboardist and backing vocalist), Mariya Sorokina (percussionist) and Yevhen Yovenko (banduryst).
The band’s instrumentation includes electronic drums, trombones, French horns and Ukrainian folk instruments bandura and sopilka.
Before being part of ONUKA, Nata Zhyzhchenko formed a band with her brother – “Tomato Jaws“. The band was active from 2003 and 2014.
The band released their first EP in May 2014 and it became the best-selling album of iTunes Ukraine in 2014.
ONUKA released 3 studio albums, 2 EPs and 2 live albums:
- “Look” – EP 2014
- “Onuka” – 2014
- “Відлік” (Eng: readout) – EP 2016
- “Live with NAONI Orchestra” – Live Album 2017
- “Mozaїka” (Eng: Mosaic) – 2018
- “Mozaїka Live with NAONI Orchestra” – Live Album 2019
- “KOLIR” (Eng: color) – 2021
In 2017, ONUKA performed as an interval act in Eurovision 2017 (that was held in Ukraine):
In 2016, they released the song “Vidlik“:
In 2019, they released the song “Zenit“:
In 2020, they released the song “CEAHC“:
After Go_A ended up in 2nd place in Eurovision 2021 televoting, it is clear that being brave is worth it. Ukraine has managed to stretch its music limits over the years at Eurovision. It seems natural that ONUKA will try their luck at Eurovision. The band has a unique sound, relying on plentry on traditional music instruments. For me, they can even bring Ukraine an additional win.
#2. Max Barskih
Mykola Mykolaiovych Bortnyk (better known as Max Barskih) is a 31 year old Ukrainian singer – songwriter. He rose to fame in 2008, after participating in the Ukrainian talent show “Fabrika Zirok 2” (Eng: Star Factory). In 2010, Max won “Best Ukrainian Act” at the MTV European Music Awards.
In 2012, Max competed in the national selection for Eurovision 2012 – “Evrobachennya 2012 – Natsionalyni Vidbir“. He performed the song “Dance” and ended as the runner-up.
Max has won several awards in his career, including:
- “Singer of the year” – Baltic Music Awards 2011
- “Singer of the year” + “Pro-European artist” at Crystal Microphone Awards 2011
- “Breakthrough of the year” – Muz-TV Awards 2012
- “Best song of the year” – Pesnya Goda 2013
- “Best Song of the year” – “Inter TV 2014“
- “Best Male Singer of the year” – “M1 Music Awards” 2015
- Best Singer + Best Music Video + Hit of the year – “M1 Music Awards” 2017
- Best Music Video – Love Radio Awards 2017
- Best Male Artist of the year – New Radio Awards 2019
- Most popular singer + Music Video of the year – Top Hit Music Awards 2020
So far, Max has released 6 studio albums, 1 Compilation album and 1 EP:
- “1:MAX BARSKIH” – 2009
- “Z.Dance” – 2012
- “По Фрейду” (Eng: By Freud) – 2014
- Mickolai (EP) – 2015
- Words (Compilation album) – 2015
- Туманы (Eng: Mists) – 2016
- “7” – 2019
- “1990” – 2020
Let’s listen to 3 of his songs:
In 2020, he released the song “Silence“:
In 2020, he released the song “Армагеддон” (Eng: Armagedon)
In 2021, he collaborated with Zivert on the song “Bestseller”:
With excellent stage presence, modern production and catchy electro dance pop music, Max can take Ukraine in another direction at Eurovision while preserving the country’s wonderful achievements.
Marina Valerievna Krut (better known as KRUTЬ or KRUT) is a 25 year old Ukainian singer, poetess, composer and bandura player.
Marina graduated from Khmelnytsky Children’s School of Arts with a degree in bandura.
Thereafter, she continued her studies at the Khmelnytsky Music School. VI Zaremba. She has won numerous national and international music competitions.
At the age of 15, she started to earn money by playing independently at various events in order to help her family.
In 2017, she participated in the 8th season of “X-Factor” Ukraine, but didn’t advance for the live shows.
In 2018, she released her debut album “Arche” and in 2019 she released the EP “Albino“.
In 2020, Krut competed in “Vidbir 2020” – Ukrainian selection for Eurovision 2020. She performed the song “99” and ended up in 3rd place in the final.
In 2019, she released the song “OK”:
In 2020, she released the song “Забери мене до себе на Різдво” (Eng: Take me home to Christmas):
In 2021, she released the song “Hey Little Bird“:
KRUTЬ suugests not only music, but also art. Her musical style can be described as indie soul with bandura sound – a combination that stands out. Sometimes, this is all Eurovision is about – uniqueness, simplicity, and art.
What do you think about our recommendations? Which artists would you like to see representing those 3 countries?
Stay tuned for more recommendations to come, next time we will travel to other countries