This week it was announced that DJ Darude alongside vocalist Sebastian Rejman will represent Finland at Eurovision 2019. How did they get involved in the Eurovision adventure?
Finnish broadcaster YLE recently revealed that DJ Darude (born Ville Virtanen, Hinnerjoki, Eura, 1975) will represent the country’s colours in Tel Aviv, together with singer Sebastian Rejman (Kallio, Helsinki, 1978) – two well-known names in the Finnish music industry, plus Darude has considerable international acclaim to boot.
How did the two musical colleagues and friends get involved in their Eurovision-adventure? In an interview with newspaper Ilta-Sanomat they shed some light on their Eurovision journey and project.
First a refusal
Interestingly enough, Darude initially wasn’t very keen on participating in Eurovision. He explains:
There wasn’t much attraction to it. There was one phone call. We went through Eurovision Songs and I said ‘no’. I did not say ‘yes’ mainly because of my own plans. Another reason is that I didn’t know if I could fit within the Eurovision Song Contest. Is it a concept I agree with?
Yet Darude decided to weigh the pros and cons:
After a while, I was pleased with the pros and cons, and I called Anssi Autio (UMK producer). It was decided, I was told that I got hands free to make songs and then it was on paper. That was the thing. I can be there as myself and make my own song.
Secret songs and the help of Sebastian
Darude startet to work on songs in the autumn of 2018. He says:
I had about 10-15 demos. I asked the producer circuit for more songs. I went through a total of 30 songs, three of which I started to work with.
Having a great composition is a good start, but of course the Eurovision rules state that a vocalist must be involved in the song. So Darude invited colleague and friend Sebastian Rejman for his Eurovision project. Sebastian is a Finnish singer and frontman of the group The Giant Leap, and he already collaborated with DJ Darude on the song Moments in 2015. Darude says:
Sebastian is a goldsmith and an A-class guy. Quite frankly, when this dude enters the stage, the men and the women think that he is adorable.
Although dance songs often have a female vocalist accompanying a DJ, Darude is pleased with Sebastian. He considers the matter:
It works and it would have been wonderful to start making songs with someone you don’t know. But then I would have chosen only on the basis of someone’s CV. Now that many months have been done together, friendship weighs a lot in that matter.
Sebastian Rejman replies, jokingly:
Let’s see if we’re still friends at the beginning of June!
Staying true to their style
The public should not expect acrobatic antics from Darude or Sebastian Rejman. They take their Eurovision project serious, yet want to stay true to their own style. Sebastian states:
We’ve come to say that the presentation is what we look like. We can’t be anything else than who we are. We are both very approachable and open. We are going to let people follow this trip in social media from start to finish.
Watch the interview with Darude and Sebastian Rejman (in Finnish) here.
Uuden Musiikin Kilpailu 2019
Darude feat. Sebastian Rejman will present three songs in the Finnish selection Uuden Musiikin Kilpailu 2019, from which a professional jury and the public will choose the Finnish entry for the 2019 Eurovision Song Contest in Tel Aviv. UMK 2019 will take place on 2 March in Turku.
In the meantime, get a taste of DJ Darude and Sebastian Rejman with their song Moments: