Jonatan Cerrada, who represented France at the Eurovision Song Contest of 2004, has announced that he will not be continuing his musical career.
On 7 May 2014, Jonatan Cerrada’s 32-year-old brother Julien, a father of two young children, was killed in a horrific accident while working as an electrician in the Belgian town of Sint-Truiden.
Jonatan has been based in Bali, Indonesia since the tragedy. Thanking his fans for their messages of support, he explained his career decision via his Facebook page:
My family and I have been devastated by the loss of my brother Julien and this is by far the most terrible thing that has ever happened to us. It has now been seven and a half months since it happened, and somehow we try to overcome this ordeal a little bit more every day. During the past few months, I have tried several times to get back to the music. Initially, I thought that music would come as my escape.. I would say that this is not the case, unfortunately not.
I realise that if the music still fascinates me so much, I am also forced to note that if I really listen to myself and try to read the signals my recent musical experiences have sent me, I must admit that at the moment I do not dream of a new album. It is as if I felt completely at odds with the middle and the people who constitute it. Far be it from me to judge anyone but I’m not a buzz guy. I’m not done either for cronyism and even less for this new kind of TV which relies on the old glories. It may offer new opportunities to those who seek them, but honestly, my aspirations lie elsewhere and I just think I dream of a simpler life elsewhere. For now, I just need to listen to myself and make choices based on who I am today, devoting myself to other projects more fulfilling.
Born in the Belgian city of Liège in 1985 to Spanish parents, Jonatan Cerrada first rose to prominence as the winner of the first season of the Francophonie talent competition À la Recherche de la Nouvelle Star, which aired on the M6 TV channel in 2003.
Jonatan represented France at the Eurovision Song Contest 2004 with the ballad À chaque pas. Qualifying automatically for the Grand Final of the Istanbul hosted competition as a “Big Four” entry, À chaque pas (translating as With every step) finished in 15th place in a field of 24 competitors, garnering a total of 40 points. The contest of that year was won by Ukraine, with Ruslana’s Wild dances securing her country a first ever Eurovision victory.
Jonatan Cerrada released two albums following his Eurovision participation: Siempre 23 (released 2003) and La preuve du contraire (from 2005). In 2008 Jonatan took part in Je m’voyais déjà, a touring production based on the songs of Charles Aznavour, finishing the tour in 2009.