Elaiza: “For us being part of this show is already the jackpot!” [Interview]

Germany will choose their song for Copenhagen tomorrow, so we spoke to the wildcard act in tomorrow’s national final. They won the wildcard round in Hamburg a few weeks and will now try to win Unser Song für Dänemark: Elaiza! Read what their lead singer, Ela, had to say below! Hey Elaiza! First of all, thank you for taking the time to speak to us. How do you feel about being one of the acts for Unser Song für Dänemark?
Ela: Hey! Thank you so much for this interview:)
We are very exited about being one of the acts for Unser Song für Dänemark! It’s still unbelievable for us that we got the chance to share this moment with other big acts of Germany like Unheilig or Santiano! This is going to be awesome!:)
X: Could you tell us something about yourself?
E: My name is Ela, I’m the singer and piano player of the band and I write our songs. Yvonne plays the accordion and Natalie the contrabass. I was sixteen years old when I started to work as a singer-songwriter in the Valicon studios in Berlin. During my work there, I met Yvonne with her amazing accordion. We jammed a lot together and we decided to get a contrabass player into our project. But we wanted a girl, which made our situation a bit complicated 🙂 and then the funny part happene: Yvonne was invited to a party of a friend, who’s not only a musician but also a producer of a new liqueur called ,,Pijökel”. There she discovered a picture of a beautiful girl with a big contrabass on a pin board and got her contact very quickly:) We called her, showed her some of our ideas and yeah, she loved it. So we started our Band ELAIZA in early 2013.
X: There are many words possible to describe your music: Neofolklore, folkpop and one could go on for ages. How would you describe your style?
E: I was born in Smiela, Ukraine. My mother is Polish, my real father is Ukranian and we lived there until I was eight years old. When my father died we went back to our Polish family in Wroclaw, where my mom met my stepfather, who is Germany, so we then moved to Germany.
My story explains a part of our music. Ukraine, Poland, Germany – these are my roots, which we try to combine with a lot of different styles of music. But the other part are can be found in our instruments: accordion, piano and contrabass. These elemtns make our music complete! A lot of people describe our sound as Neo Folklore, which is true, but just for some of our songs. If you listen to our music, you understand that there is more. Some songs are more rock, some are combined with jazz elements and some songs are pop. The sound depends on our feelings. Just for example: I write a song on the piano and present it to the girls. After listening they got a lot of ideas for melodies or solos and sometimes a song get’s a complete different direction which is ok, because we feel it that way:) That’s the ELAIZA Sound.
X: Let’s go back to the Edelfettwerk in Hamburg. You performed first and won the show by quite a big margin. You looked rather surprised when you were announced as the winners. Didn’t you think you had a good chance of winning the wildcard?
E: To be honest, we haven’t expected that we would win the wildcard. There where so many good artists with great songs in Hamburg. We’ve just been so happy that we could present our song there. And don’t forget, we had to start the show! Therefore we’ve been so surprised about the voting:) And now we get the chance to present our music in Cologne to such a big audience! It’s so crazy, we gonna share the stage with all these big artists from Germany this Thursday! And we are so thankful that people voted for us and gave us this chance! It was the best feedback ever! Thank’s to everyone!
X: As mentioned, you’re the wildcard for Unser Song für Dänemark. How will you beat all those big names, such as Unheilig? What are your plans for the national final in Cologne?
E: We don’t think that we can really win the competition. The other artists are established and have big fanbases. For us being part of this show is already the jackpot! We just want to play our music and show who we are: direct, authentic and natural. Of course we would be very very thankful and happy if we could get in the second round to present our second song ,,Fight Against Myself” – but these are just dreams…we just want to have fun.
X: Why did you decide to apply for the wildcard round?
E: We thought that our music might fit for the Eurovision Song Contest. Especially because our music connects  three cultures: Ukaine, Poland and Germany. That’s the reason why we decided to apply for the wildcard contet. But no one thought that we would win, it’s still unbelievable.
X: Are you a Eurovision fan? Do you have an all time favourite Eurovision song?
E: Yes, of course I’m a big fan of the Eurovision Song Contest!!! I mean I grew up with the show! It’s always been so exiting to sit in front of the TV and enjoy the music of Europe, especially the artist of Poland, Ukraine and Germany.  I won’t forget Ruslana,she won the Eurovision Song Contest 2004! And I liked her song a lot.
X: Finally, do you have a message for the readers of 
E: We just want to say thank you to all readers of escXtra! For all the great support and all the amazing feedback! Thank you so much! We are very thankful that people voted for us in Hambung and we now want to show our music to an even bigger audience. In life, you never know what happens next, so we are curious what happens this week! would like to thank Ela for her answers. We’d also like to wish Elaiza the best of luck in tomorrow’s national final! You can listen to one of their entries, Is It Right, below!

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