Here is the third song of UMK23

The third song of this year’s Uuden musiikin kilpailu (UMK) has been released. You can listen to the song ”Girls Like You” by Robin Packalen here:

Robin Packalen (previously known as his artist name Robin) is one of the most successful Finnish pop singers. In 2008, when he was 10-year-old, he won children’s singing competition called Staraskaba, and in that same year he represented Finland in New Wave Junior -competition in Moscow, Russia. New Wave Junior had over 100 million viewers worldwide, and Robin also visited the contest the next year, when it was held in Ukraine. 

The big success for Robin started in January 2012, when his debut single ”Frontside Ollie” was released. The song and its music video became an Internet phenomenon, and Robin became one of the biggest names of the Finnish music at the age of 13. Robin’s debut album Koodi was released in February 2012, and it was a big success. During the next five years Robin released one hit song after another, for example the songs ”Puuttuva palanen” (“The Missing Piece”), ”Boom Kah”, ”Milloin nään sut uudestaan” (“When will I see You Again”), ”Sua varten” (“For You”) and ”Hula hula”, which was a duet with Nelli Matula. 

In the spring 2017 Robin participated a popular Finnish tv-series Vain elämää, which is a Finnish version of the Dutch tv-format De beste zangers van Nederland. In Vain elämää Finnish musicians share their thoughts about their careers and make new versions of each others songs. In the same season of Vain elämää also the artists like the Finnish Eurovision representative 2002 Laura Voutilainen and UMK23 host Samu Haber participated in the show. Many of the cover versions performed in the show have become big hits in Finland, and also Robin’s version of Samu Haber’s band Sunrise Avenue’s mega hit song ”Hollywood Hills” got a lot of playing time in the Finnish radio stations.

In 2019, after a 1,5-year break, Robin released new music and changed his singing language from Finnish to English. His first single in English was ”I’ll Be With You”, and Robin changed his artist name from Robin to his full name Robin Packalen. Robin told he would concentrate on creating an international career. 

According to Yle, Robin is ready to conquer Europe with his energy and genuineness. Robin also tells that a good aspect in becoming famous at the young age is that one’s not afraid of anything and have a lot of energy. On the other hand, one has to become adult very fast. When making music, Robin likes to trust his own intuitions: there is no need to put songs in categories or stick to the same style forever.  

Robin tells Yle that now it is finally the right time to participate in UMK. Many have hoped to see Robin entering the contest for years, and also the artist himself have considered it, but he hasn’t felt ready until now. ”And, this song is so good that the whole world should hear it”, says Robin. 

This is what the jury of UMK23 said about Robin and his song ”Girls Like You”:

It’s so good to have one of Finland’s most successful pop stars of all time competing in the Contest for New Music UMK! Girls Like You is precisely the kind of music Robin Packalen wants to make: groovy, catchy and feelgood pop performed in English, which suits UMK to a T. Even though the song has clear Bruno Mars and Justin Timberlake influences, Robin makes his own mark with his familiar vocal style. Written in Los Angeles, the song is like a sunny day squeezed into a three-minute audio file.

What is YOUR opinion of “Girls Like You” by Robin Packalen? Do you think it has what it takes to win UMK23 and carry the Finnish flag in Liverpool? Let us know in comments or our social media channels!

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