Sofia Rubina-Hunter: ‘I always like to send songs to Eesti Laul, I’ve actually been doing it every year!’

On Thursday 31st January, the 2019 selection process for Estonia returns with the much loved format, Eesti Laul. Changes for the 11th season include a new Producer of the show, Tomi Rahula and the introduction of live semi finals.

In the first Semi Final, to be held in Tartu, we welcome back a singer who has entered the Estonian selection 3 times. Sofia Rubina-Hunter previously participated in Eurolaul 2004 (10th), Eurolaul 2006 (7th) and Eesti Laul 2014 (10th in Semi Final 2).

We spoke to Sofia about her 2019 entry ‘Deep Water’, her background in music and the haunting lyrics of her song:

Hi Sofia, congratulations for being selected as a semi finalist this year for Eesti Laul. You last took part in 2014 with the song ‘City Lights’, what made you decide to return this year, particularly after a gap?

I always like to send songs to Eesti Laul, I’ve actually been doing it every year! Sometimes they go through, sometimes not….🙂. Last time I produced a really cool funk song but unfortunately it didn’t make it into Eesti Laul. Every year we experiment with songs, sounds and I hope people will like our song this year. It’s still house but more on the commercial side…

You have a rich background in music, having studied both in Estonia and the United States and you have released and performed music in many styles such as jazz, soul and dance music. How reflective is this song of where you are musically?

Yes, I studied jazz and soul at the Berklee College of Music however the song I’ve entered for Eesti Laul it’s definitely my other side…a more pop music side! Usually what I love is soul music like Jill Scott, Erykah Badu, Hiatus Kaiyote etc. So this song is not exactly what I would sing at my concert but I will definitely will sing this song at night club performances…:)) and shows!

The lyrics of ‘Deep Water’ seem to indicate moving on from a dark place in life and into an optimistic unknown future. Are these lyrics in any way personal to you? How do you intend to portray the interesting message of the song on stage?

When I sing the song on stage we will have some show elements that currently trying out. In terms of the message, of course everyone can relate to it because through hard times we discover how to be more happy, how to overcome some hard times in life and just love yourself – deeply. How to be brave to actually go forward and move on from darker places…

So if you were to win you would have the honour of representing Estonia at the Eurovision Song Contest, are you are a fan and have you watched Eurovision in the past? What was your favourite Estonian entry?

I think my favorite Estonian entry is the song which brought Estonia the 1st place! ‘Everybody’ is such a funky song and I loved the way Dave Benton was singing!

Thank you for your time Sofia, the team at ESCBubble would like to wish you the very best for the first Semi Final.

Thank you! I’d love to let your readers know that I’ve just released my soul album called ‘Where It Begins’, you can check it out here:

You can preview ‘Deep Water’ by watching the video below:

Alternatively you can find it on Spotify here:

Which six songs would you like to see qualify from Semi Final 1 at Eesti Laul? You can let us know by voting in our poll below. Don’t forget ESCBubble will have a live blog for both semi finals and we’ll be present in Tallinn on 16th February to bring you exclusive content from the final itself!

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