Albania - Michele Acott

Exiting news is that the first country with a song and artist for Eurovision 2017 is Albania.  My favourite Albanian Eurovision entry has to be from 2012 when Rona Nishliu sang ‘Suus’.  It still gives me chills.

Lindita (also known as Linda) Halimi was chosen at Festivali Këngës to represent Albania in 2017 with her song ‘Botë’. Botë translates as ‘World’ and is written by Klodian Qafoku and Gerald Xhari.  The song is bold and dramatic and very much a power-ballad.

Lindita was born on 24 March 1989 in Kosovar, Albania. She is a singer/songwriter, currently lives in Atlanta, USA and is married to an American.

She found fame in 2009 after winning the Albanian song contest Top Fest. She also won or placed in other Albanian song contents after this time.

 

In 2013 Lindita moved to America, but returned to Albania in 2014 to compete in Festivali Këngës with her entry “S’të fal” for which she placed third.  Elhaida Dani was the eventual winner that year and went on to place 17th at Eurovision 2015. Interestingly, Lindita wrote the English lyrics to Elhaida’s eventual Eurovision entry “I’m Alive”.

Early in 2016 Lindita made the top 51 of American Idol but missed out on a place in the final 24.  She lost 150 pounds prior to her audition. As you can see from the following clip, she’s got a great voice. It’s strong, soulful and her message is believable.

 

Lindita is a personal trainer.

Already the rumours are flying around – some saying that Lindita will sing Botë in English to make the message more universal and others saying that she will sing a completely different song like Elhaida did in 2015.

Will she win Eurovision 2017?  I don’t think so. Undoubtedly she has an outstanding voice, but I don’t think it’s enough to stand out against others and the song definitely won’t be enough for a win.