Montevizija 2018 is taking place next Saturday, and only a week before the final, we spoke to one of the five finalists – Vanja Radovanovic, who is going to be competing with a song he wrote by himself – “Inje” (Eng: Hoarfrost).
In our chat, Vanja Radovanovic was telling us about his career, his participation in the Serbia & Montenegro national final where he took part, and he told us all about “Inje”. Check it all out here in this interview:
Hello Vanja! Thank you for taking your time out for talking to us! First of all, what can you tell us about yourself and your music career up until now?
I would rather call it a musical path, because music is a way of life for me, and only after this it is a career or a job. I always tried to say something new with every new song of mine, which would be something slightly different to the previous one, and this would be an expression without any limitations, both musically and poetically. I released two albums so far, approximately 10 solo singles, as well as five singles with my friends from the band called “VIII2”.
How did you decide to submit a song to Montevizija this year?
My better, more beautiful and smarter half Ivana, and my sister Zana convinced me to do so. I don’t experience music as a competition, but something above that. And on the other side, as an author, I always felt the challenge to create a song which is going to tell a whole story it needs to in only three minutes time. It can’t remain undone, and it needs to fully comply with its form and pass on the emotion. I think I succeeded in all of this with this song. And seeing that Eurovision is a festival of composers, I am proud to have a chance to show myself in this role, and also would love the chance to represent Montenegro in the best possible way, because even though we are a small nation, we are very well known for our big artists. Artists are expected to be allrounders. At least I was taught to be one.
What was your reaction when you found out that you were one of the five finalists of Montevizija? Did you expect this?
I did, considering that I know what kind of a song I have. “Inje” is probably the most serious song I have ever written.
You tried representing your country in Eurovision in the past. What sort of memories does that festival bring back to you, and do you think taking part in it would give you any sort of advantage towards other contestants?
Back then I wasn’t competing with the intention of being competitive, but to be a part of a festival which had fantastic publicity, it was one of the best ones, but unfortunately it ended up in a way where music didn’t matter anymore. That is when I understood that I don’t want to take part in such festivals anymore, and I haven’t. But here I am back on a festival 12 years later, but this time I am sure that there will be no scandals, and that music will be the only thing that matters.
Can you tell us more about your song?
“Inje” is a big song in every sense of that word, with a strong emotion, and it tells a story about loving someone who doesn’t love you back, which even though is not sad nor tragic, but paradoxically, it gives strength and power to the one who loves. The magnificent music arrangements done by Bole Martinovic fill up this strong emotion, and it points out the lovely melody with motives of Montenegrin music heritage. I am extremely proud of what we managed to do.
Do you normally compose your own songs?
Yes, absolutely. I always thought that I express myself better through lyrics than through a normal conversation. My wife Ivana knows it best how many times I have messed up the simplest conversation, and later had to find my way out through songs. If you give a listen to the song “Odri”, and you will understand what I’m talking about (if you speak Montenegrin).
Have you got some ideas already how everything is going to be, and look like in Montevizija during your performance?
We have a couple of options, and I can tell you that the main attention will be on the song itself.
What would it mean for you to represent Montenegro in Eurovision in Portugal?
Personally, as an author, it would mean going to the European scene and see where I am in all of this, and the same as a performer. On the other side, as an unaccomplished football player, I always had the desire to represent my country in a huge competition. Seeing as I failed in that, I think that this would be the ideal chance for me to do so. I’m sure that “Inje” would represent the Montenegrin music heritage very well, and if any song can do it it’s this one.
Why should you be the one to win Montevizija?
Because “Inje” has everything a Eurovision song needs to have – a lovely melody, great lyrics, a fantastic atmosphere, dynamics, and terrific music arrangements.
What inspires you normally?
There’s no philosophy here, it’s usually the little everyday things, and the most important is the angle you look at them from. The key is to say things that happen to everyone in just a slightly different way. It’s about the little things, and the key is always in the details.
What type of music do you like to listen to in your free time?
I listen to all sorts of music. I don’t limit myself to genres, but to what suits me and what makes sense musically and poetically.
When you are not performing and not doing music, what do you normally do?
I like to spend time with my family, because that is priceless. Ivana, David and Iskra are my life.
Did you watch Eurovision in the last couple of years, and do you happen to have a favorite song from the Contest?
Of course I watched it, and there were loads of amazing songs, but whenever someone mentions Eurovision, the first song I think of is “Pokusaj” by Laka. I am a huge fan of his, and I was just so fascinated by the whole album he released after that Eurovision that I called the man who produced it, and recorded my second album “Svi zivoti moji” together with him. I’m talking about Denis Mujadzic Denyken.
Thank you very much for your time Vanja, and we wish you the best of luck in Montevizija!
Thanks for your wishes, and hope to speak to you soon again!
To keep up with all the latest news on Vanja Radovanovic, make sure you follow him on Facebook. And whilst we are waiting for the release of “Inje”, give a listen to one of Vanja’s hits – “Svi zivoti moji” right here: