ESC Wish List: Arisa
Over time, I’ve noticed that one year’s winner becomes the next year’s Eurovision trend. For example, the year after Ruslana won with the energetic, folk-inspired “Wild Dances“, we saw Hungary’s “Forogj, Világ” and Greece’s “My Number One“. After Lordi’s victory with “Hard Rock Hallelujah“, there was an explosion of rock (or at least more pop-rock) from nations like Moldova, Finland, Andorra, Iceland, Estonia, and the Czech Republic. And after Russia used a Stradivarius for their winning performance of “Believe” in 2008, the next year saw a heavy use of strings from Norway, the United Kingdom, Estonia, Slovenia, Slovakia, and the Czechs. So, now that Germany has taken home the victory with fresh-faced Lena Meyer-Landrut (and we know that she’ll be returning to defend her title next year), it might not be a stretch to assume that we’ll see a bit of an upswing in sweet, low-key, youthful pop.
If Italy does return to Eurovision, I’ve got just the girl in mind for them.
The Sanremo Song Festival, which I mentioned in my last entry, has a section made just for newcomers. This sub-contest has introduced the world to such famous names as Eros Ramazotti, Laura Pausini, Paola & Chiara, and even Andrea Bocelli. In 2009, the Newcomer’s Trophy went to Arisa (real name: Rosalba Pippa…her stage name comes from the first initials of every member of her family), with her song “Sinceritá (Sincerity)”.
Once you get past Arisa’s strong resemblance to Rachel Maddow (which I personally think is a good thing!), you get into her general sweetness and, for lack of a better word, sincerity! Like Lena before her, Arisa is fresh and unpolished…a neophyte with genuine talent. She may seem somewhat wooden in her live performance of “Sinceritá”, but her full music video, shown here, shows how engaging she can be. Her first full-length album made it to #5 on the local charts, and has gone platinum (which, in Italy, means that over 60,000 copies have been sold). She’s already released her second disc, “Malamoreno (But-not-love)”, to general acclaim and success. Here’s the title track, also performed at San Remo:
I mean, how cute is she? Between her general accessibility and the fact that major ESC fans are practically begging Italy to jump back into the game…with the right song (probably something with a decently high level of energy, like “Malamoreno”), I think that Arisa could do pretty well in Eurovision.