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Archive for the ‘Eurovision 2009’ Category

I could list about 101 reasons as to why I have not written a new blog since 2009… But the truth is, it really has been so manic, time and again it came down to either writing a blog or a new chapter for the book. A tough call when you’re on a deadline, but at the same time, I’ve missed blogging so much – it’s good to be back!

On the one hand, I’d love to write a whole update of what’s been happening since the back end of the year… But I wonder if it might be a handful to digest – and a fine line between enthusiasm and, quite frankly, narcissism. Ha, I’ll save myself the aggravation 🙂

While I’m nearly halfway through the memoir with Chuck Taylor and my amazing agent, Colleen, music has really become the central point of my career – and quite rightly so. I feel that I’ve been blessed with so many different opportunities (and jobs!) over the past few years, I barely had any time to make music… Until I came straight back to what I love the most since the Kobalt Publishing deal knocked on my door in July of last year (shortly after Eurovision).

I’ve been blessed to have met so many wonderful songwriters and producers since then – and have written for some fabulous artists, which is an honor in itself, and a great source of fun and creativity, too. Would list their names but let’s wait for the records to “drop” in the digital stores first, OK? Particularly excited about the French cut AND a new record coming out in Britain… No escape from my London days, that’s for sure!

Before I dash off to my rehearsal on Memorial Day Weekend (Aww, did I mention we started rehearsing for the Broadway show? Yippee…) I’d like to thank you all for hanging in there and being so patient with my insane schedule — it’s all really falling into place now, hallelujah, I feel so blessed and fortunate… And so very excited, it’s surreal!

Do promise to try my best and stay in touch… And watch this space for a super-fun new website (official Tinatin Music homepage) in the works and due to be launched very soon!

Blessings to you all,

T xx

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The year is almost over and I’m still reeling from everything that’s happened in the last 12 months… I couldn’t feel more blessed about this past year’s adventures, unexpected twists and turns, surprises and the most exciting news that kept flooding in, week after week. Looking back on it now, after the month of May, it all changed – drastically. The build up, granted, was intense and very gradual but nevertheless, I couldn’t be more grateful for every bit of it.

After our song, “Is It True?” came second in the Eurovision Song Contest, was later voted the Eurovision Song of the Decade and most recently (or precisely – today) hailed by ESC Awards in Europe as the Song of the Year and yours truly, alongside co-writers Chris Neil and Oskar Pall Sveinsson, Lyricists of the Year, and was also recorded by Swedish Idol winner, Erik Gronwall for his debut record which was released this past Monday, it seems that unlike what we had expected, the song has really brought on some major changes that would have been totally unheard of a year ago. Nothing comes easily, of course, and the amount of work that I had to undertake shortly after the tune took off has still got me reeling from excitement, sleepless nights and incessant creating, planning and executing 24/7.

For those of you who have waited patiently for the book (a work of fiction that is now being reworked as a memoir) – well, I can’t wait either! I’m now on Chapter 9 and quite frankly, writing and rewriting the same story can be a little daunting at times, but also super-exciting. Plus, now I’ve got a fantastic collaborator by my side, Chuck Taylor (if you look him up on Google or Wikipedia, your jaw will drop, I’m so blessed!) so it doesn’t feel all the overwhelming anymore… But it is a major responsibility, nonetheless.

In addition, we’ve got a Broadway project in the works, a record (some very surprising song choices, unlike what you’ve heard on MySpace! Stay tuned for details!) and of course the solo gig at the Metropolitan Room… Be sure to make it! Can’t believe it’s already happening in a matter of weeks. So many songs to master, lyrics to learn by heart (ooooh, hate that part, but it’s a must, what can I say!) and fortunately some of the most incredible musicians to rehearse with in the coming weeks… That’s the best part. Billy Stein, my musical director, co-writer, producer and the most amazing, creative and witty person I’ve come across – it’s really something working with Billy… We played at SteveStocking 2009 last Tuesday and that was so much fun!! Especially the Christmas number… “White Christmas” …. One of my all-time favorites!

So much more to report but daren’t keep this too long. Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas, Happy Holidays and above all, may the New Year bring you all more happiness, joy, prosperity, inspiration, health, stability (oh yes, in every way!) and peace….

Countless blessings and thanks so very much to each and every one of you for your incredible support throughout this year and all the years past,

Tinatin xxx

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sod_logo_smallThere are times when I really miss the daily blogs followed by instant reactions that usually developed into full-on electronic dialogues. But for better or worse, I can only count on a few minutes here and there to post my regular (or nowadays “irregular”… My bad!) updates. Not surprisingly, though, it takes me so long to actually get to the computer for these overdue “news blogs” that I tend to forget half of them by the time I’m typing away yet again!
So, first things first… Earlier this afternoon, we heard from our European counterpart that the authors of “Is It True” (Christopher Neil, Oskar Pall and yours truly) performed most gloriously by Yohanna, have been awarded for the #1 Eurovision Song of the Decade as voted by the ESC viewers and ESC Today readers worldwide. Did we really beat some of the greats, such as Andrew Lloyd Webber, Diane Warren, Ronan Keating, Patricia Kaas, etc. to name but a few? I’m still reeling from this, to be honest!
And from Sweden – this very song was performed at the Swedish Idol semi-finals (and won the semi’s!) by Erik Gronwall last week… which, by the way, you can hear (and see) right here.
Now, on a political note… As I’m getting ready to return to the UN Radio HQ next week to resume my weekly UN Uncovered show on Progressive Radio Network (it’s been over a month, I can’t believe it!) I am still trying to keep up with international political affairs… Believe it or not, I do read the Financial Times – still, even a year after the August War back home… So…. The other day, as I was surfing the web and reading the online Friday edition of the FT, I came across this article:
“Iceland after a year of financial crisis
Financial Times – London, England, UK
‘Is it true? Is it over? Did I throw it away?’ Seldom can the words
from an entry in the Eurovision Song Contest be more appropriate…”
To read more, please go to: FT.com
If you read on, you’ll be equally surprised by the sudden twist – a pop song lyric in a heavily political piece? I couldn’t be more excited, though, I admit!
And pop songs aside, I can proudly confirm that I am about to start working with the great Timothy Graphenreed, who wrote my very first song for me back when I was 16 years old, on our Broadway-themed concert to take place in NYC (theater, date, etc. TBC) in the new year – a variety of songs, ranging from American standards and some of my own tunes… Quite a challenge, but I’m extremely excited and really, really psyched!
While brand new material is on its way, I can already give you a quick hint – there’s about 4-5 new tunes that I’m dying to post on here asap, but it will have to wait until it’s been sent to my publishers at Kobalt Music and straight onto my homepage.
Please do stay tuned for more news and I promise to keep this blog up to date as much as possible… But for now, happy holiday to everyone (Columbus Day, if you haven’t noticed – some of the stores are closed today…. Brrrr…..!)

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300px-Mad_scientist.svgA crazy month so far… And the summer has only just kicked off!

Negotiating contracts, meeting with lawyers, publishers, agents and new
songwriting partners can be fascinating, exhausting and at times really
exciting, but what about some free time for a bit of fun and entertainment?

It’s becoming increasingly difficult to take the entire day off, let alone a
proper weekend off work, without feeling somewhat guilty deep down (“I
should be working, not hanging out!”) Although having said that, recharging
my batteries is definitely one of my priorities for the next couple of
months or so. That, along with a couple of trips that have been on the cards
for way too long, including London and possibly LA, but not excluding an
imminent return to Moscow for a potential project that is currently in the
works… Something massive but not yet finalized negotiation-wise, so I
daren’t say more!

All in all, a very exciting time but it’s also quite disappointing that I’ve
barely managed to catch up with any of my friends in-between the mad weeks
here and there. I don’t regret it for a second, of course, but sometimes I
genuinely worry that my friends will soon start accusing me of ignorance –
and that would make me feel awful!!! 😦 I wish I could place everything on
hold – or maybe a pause button? – for a day or two and just concentrate on
catching up with each and every one of them!

Oh, and guess what else is happening next weekend? A gig in Central Park!
But more on that later… with pictures and possibly even a youtube video!

In the meantime, of course, the UN Uncovered radio show and the BTR Russkiy
in the Mix show are still very much on air and in production on weekly basis
– it’s a way of switching off once a week, I guess, and thinking about the
bigger picture every now and then!

And the book… The synopsis for the sequel is already done, while the first
book is currently being reviewed and edited by the critics, so I’m excited
and just a little nervous!

Wow, would you believe that “Is It True?” is still in the charts and still
going strong? While “Thinking of Someone Else” is #2 on the iDanceFM charts
and we’ve just completed a pop cross-over radio mix in the UK, which I’ll be
posting shortly on myspace! And by the way, it has just been picked up by
Hit FM and Europe Plus, a couple of leading Russian commercial radio
stations and will probably be added to a few more top stations throughout
Russia in the next couple of weeks or so.

I’ll do my best to keep the blogs coming on regular basis and keep you all
posted at all times… My apologies again for not getting back to everyone
in timely manner but I promise to get better at it – I’m really not as good
as I used to be 😦 But I’ll improve, promise! 🙂

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Tinatin, Chris Neil & Oskar Pall at ESCI couldn’t be more excited and thrilled with the results following the Eurovision extravaganza earlier last month… While most of us expected the ESC madness to be over following the grand finale on May 16, shortly thereafter, I realized that the craziness had only just begun as the phone started ringing like never before with 2 min intervals the moment my plane touched down in New York City!

First things first – the European chart report as of this week:

“Is It True?” single (EMI)

Norway: 1
Sweden: 2
Belgium: 23
Denmark: 16
Switzerland: 9
Finland: 6
U.K.: 49

ESC 2009 COMPILATION (Capitol)

U.K.: 14
Sweden: 1
Switzerland: 3
Norway: 6
Denmark: 21
Austria: 13
Spain: 13
Germany: 3

And the sales + chart positions are building up by the week, and so are my responsibilities…! Plus more covers of “Is It True?” in various languages by top artists in Germany, Russia… even South Africa and more! TBC asap!

New and exciting co-write opportunities with some of the best songwriters and production outfits across Europe and the U.S. that I could have only dreamed of last month are now becoming my collaborators in the studio. How do I feel? Too insane to be proud of it and I wouldn’t dare relax at this point either… But the anticipation of the next big chart-topper is so intense!

Tinatin at EuroClub in Moscow There are some incredibly exciting projects (music, books, bands, etc. – you name it! But I’ll say no more…) and collaborations in the pipeline, but I keep reminding myself that there are only 24 hours at my disposal per day. How can I make the most of it? Sleep, oh how I miss that minor form of escape on daily basis.

And just in case you haven’t heard this week’s Russkiy in the Mix, be sure to tune on June 2nd @ noon NY time (or straight afterwards – in the archives on the website) at http://www.breakthruradio.com to hear some of my favorite tunes that I picked up while I was in Moscow last month. Make sure you check out “Moscow Never Sleeps” – undoubtedly my favorite track of the month and a constant reminder of how much fun we had whilst there in-between the crazy meetings, shoots and rehearsals.

Missing it already!
Tinatin at TV studio
Time to say goodnight yet again… But in the meantime, one little secret – a sequel of my debut novel (which is being edited as we speak by my agents and editors in London and NY!) that I’m currently developing… So many exciting stories and adventures that I had forgotten about… Ohhh, the beauty of writing a novel based on a true story! Daren’t say any more – hush my mouth! 🙂

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Picture_3It’s not only true, but it’s also over (the madness, the excitement, the 24 hour schedule with no time to sleep, et cetera). But what a fantastic ride it’s been, and what a great payoff in the end! I couldn’t be more ecstatic about the results…

Iceland came in second, with 218 points, including ‘Douze Points’ from three countries: Norway, Malta and Ireland. Ironically, one of the co-writers of our song – the legend, that is – happens to be an Irish-born Brit, Christopher Neil. I have to admit, getting 12 points from Chris Neil’s native Ireland was rather special for us. I sat next to him during the televoting and clutched his hand tightly with excitement throughout.

After all, it wasn’t just about Iceland anymore, was it? It was about a great singer singing a song that Graham Norton, the BBC commentator (and a huge UK TV personality) referred to as “a real song” in a song contest. 

Countless TV interviews, shoots and meetings back to back – how does one leave such an artistic haven in the very heat of the moment? Truth be told, I should really be staying here for another week or so, but who could have predicted the outcome? The pre-ESC live primetime TV show, which broadcasted both nationwide and internationally, targeted  millions of Russian-speaking viewers that certainly helped. And singing the song in Russian, in front of my colleagues in Moscow, well, it was simply unforgettable!

What’s next, I wonder? Apart from a flight to New York first thing in the morning, as well as tons of work waiting for me on the other side of the world, it’s probably wisest to strike the iron while it’s hot, and not relax for a second. Otherwise, how often does one compete and, moreover, beat songs written by Andrew Lloyd Webber,  Diane Warren and Ronan Keating? I’m so proud of our achievement, and of course so thrilled with Yohanna’s final performance on the last night (and all the nights prior to the grand finale – she’s been amazing throughout!) As a young songwriter, I’m humbled, but I’m also over the moon to be on the same songwriting team with real pros such as Christopher Neil and Oskar Pall Sveinsson!

It really has been a thrill and a great adventure taking my friends, readers and listeners along on a special Eurovision ride to Moscow, but everything has to come to an end at some point. But, rest assured that when the next big opportunity comes along (and there are a few ideas in the works, more on that later!) you’ll be the first to hop on the train and come along with me. There will be new stories, new characters and more unpredictable adventures. Indeed, there is a lot to look forward to!

In the meantime, thank you all so much, from the bottom of my heart, for sharing this very special moment with me from Day 1. Don’t forget – Chapter 2 is just around the corner!

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Eurovision writersI couldn’t be happier or more proud! Making it to the finals has most definitely been the highlight of my trip so far. Isn’t that why we are here, after all? 

Rumor had it, just before the semi-final gala kicked off, that Iceland would either be the first to go through, or it would simply miss out by a couple of votes. The polls across the Olympiisky Stadium walls, however, had been very promising during the week. We were placed at the very top of the list, as the most likely contender for the finalist spot.  I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t confident… in fact, overly confident, particularly after hearing Yohanna’s semi-final performance in the Green Room – we were so proud!

But suddenly it all turned into a real Eurovision nightmare, as the finalists were announced one by one, each flag pulled out individually from the electronic envelopes. There were 10 of them in total. 1, 2, 3, 4, it wasn’t getting any easier, although what helped was the constant reminder that the results were being disclosed in random order. But still, were we going to make it? By #9 we knew it was going to be either Belarus or Iceland – or maybe neither, as Eurovision has always been famous for being completely unpredictable!

When the very last envelope was pulled out of the batch, I looked away from the screen and closed my eyes and ears. It was getting a little too intense! Would I be able to face another flag, other than our Icelandic one, when I opened my eyes? 

The singersI honestly cannot recall seeing our flag on the screen and neither can I remember hearing “Iceland” or “Is It True?” as we sat holding hands in our cozy Green Room. Yet, I do remember our screams and tears once it had finally hit home – we had made it to the finals, 10 out of 18 semi final entries! I wish I could describe how it felt without sounding too cliché,  but I can’t help it – it really was THAT amazing!!!

What’s next for our team in the coming days? Well, a couple of top notch TV shows and exclusive interviews, which have already kicked off following our big night. And it’s going to get even bigger and all the more exciting (and perhaps even more nerve-wracking) on May 16th – the Grand Finale! Dare I make any predictions? Let’s wait and see. I’m just enjoying the moment, anticipating the unknown and making the most of this fantastic experience. Had I known it was so good, I would have made my first Eurovision attempt quite a few years ago. But I suppose it’s better to do it later than never at all!

Counting down and waitingAnd now it’s time to face another crazy day filled with intense drama, excitement, madness and a whole load of fun! Who knows what the rest of the week has in store for us? It just keeps getting better…. And tougher, too!

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