On March 11th, Azerbaijan premiered their entry for this year’s Eurovision, ''Skeletons'' by Dihaj - and on Saturday evening, she, and her band, held a small, intimate concert at a bar in Baku called ‘Etud’.
While unfortunately she didn’t perform Skeletons last night, they did bring their A-Game and performed some of their famous songs, including 'I break down' and 'Gecələr keçir' / 'Nights are passing' (originally performed by Aygun Kazimova).
The audience were dancing and enjoying themselves, in the near two hour long set they played. Personally, I really enjoyed the music and her voice, but do feel a bit ashamed that, as an Azerbaijani myself, I wasn’t better familiar with her body of work. The songs are very rhythmical and interesting, many which you get pulled in to, taking you on a journey to faraway places.
This isn’t Dihaj’s first run for Eurovision. Back in 2011, she participated in the national selection process in Azerbaijan, but didn’t manage to reach the finale show, ending 4th in heat 6. And last year, she played a part in Samra’s “Miracle” as one of the backing vocalist, though not in the live shows.
This year, ITV again held an internal selection of who should represent Azerbaijan in the Eurovision Song Contest, announcing back in early December that Dihaj has been selected. And yesterday her song ‘Skeletons’ was then finally revealed, an uptempo song with some heavy electro sounds.
The team behind the song is the Azerbaijani composer Isa Malikov, and Sandra Bjurman, a Swedish songwriter. Previously, this team also worked on Azerbaijani's winning song of 2011.
Dihaj will be competing in the Semi-Final One, on May 9th.
This article has been contributed by Tural Abdulla, and is also available on his personal blog which you can view here
Watch Eurovoxx's Stina's reaction to this years' Azerbaijani entry here...