Controversy about the Albanian entry

by Gafurr Sahiti 1,083 views

The Albanian broadcaster RTSH has confirmed that Identitet,  the winning song of the 51st edition of Festivali i Këngës, will be the Albanian entry at the 2013 Eurovision Song Contest in Malmö, but the authors of the song, the duo Bledar Sejko & Adrian Lulgjuraj have been heavily criticized by Albanian musicians for plagiarism.

Only a few weeks, the Albanian national music festival was held in Tirana. The duo, consisting of  the famous Albanian guitar player and the Albanian rock star from Montenegro Adrian Lulgjuraj,  won the strong competition with their rock song called Identitet.

Although the duo managed to get jury’s vote, the song has been heavily criticized by the Albanian musicians.

Singer and composer, Frederik Ndoçi (Albania 2007), has recently claimed  in interview with daily newspaper Sot that the song that won Festivali i Këngës 51 is around 80% plagiarism from a Serbian song called Plavi safir, sung by Bajaga & Instruktori.

It’s a good song and it was well performed in the big final of Festivali i Këngës,  but for me this a clear plagiarism, stated Mr.  Nester Kraja, Prof. at the University of Arts, for the biggest Albanian newspaper Shekulli.

There are still no charges for plagiarism. If this will be proven, the penalty is moral for the broadcaster, has recently spoken the director of the Office of Copyright in Albania, Mujë Buçpapaj for newspaper Panorama.

Musician and dean of the faculty of music in Tirana, Mr. Sokol Shupo, who also was a jury member at Festivali i Këngës, in an interview with daily newspaper Panorama has stated that the entry Identitet is not stolen, but it is consumed. Mr. Shupo says that despite not doing any verification for plagiarism, Sejko’s song is clearly based on the motives of North and Cham traditional dances. My problem with the winning song is rather moral. It is not a bad a song, in the opposite, the song was well sung by the guys, but I was not for it to win. I am not for nationalistic songs. For that reason I was the only jury member who didn’t give them the 12 pts. For me these songs are wasted. We have seen how far  such songs have gone at Eurovision, stated Mr. Shupo.

A debate between the winning duo, director of RTSH, artistic director of Festivali i Këngës 51 and composer Ardit Gjebrea was held on TV Klan. The director of RTSH, Mr. Petrit Beci denies the rumors about the plagiarism. I’m happy with results of  Festivali i Këngës 51 and glad that a rock song won this year, said Mr. Beci. Rock music is a style that entered the country very late and Bledar is one of the artists who developed rock music in Albania, said Mr. Beci.

He confirmed once more that the duo Bledar Sejko and Adrian Lulgjuarj will represent Albania at the 2013 Eurovision Song Contest. Mr. Saraçi, musician and the artistic director was happy with the organization of this year’s Festivali i Këngës edition. It’s impossible that Beldar has copied the song. He is an experienced musician and guitar player. Bledar is an unique personality, you can’t find such an excellent guitar player in Albania, added mr. Saraçi.

The singer Bledar Sejko who has written the song together with his wife Eda Sejko, has reacted in an open letter to the Albanian media.

My song is totally different from the one that has been spread on the internet. Sejko has explains that his song Identitet is based on the Albanian folklore, precisely in that of Tropoja dance, Cham dance  and some from the provinces of the South, which is presented in the song with drums, çiftelia (the Albanian traditional music instrument) has been replaced by the guitar. The southern iso-polyphony has been replaced by with violins, and the north calls hey which are sung by the chorus.

Adrian Lulgjuraj, the Albanian rock singer from Montenegro has stated during the debate at TV Klan that he has been honored to work together with Bledar Sejko. When Beldar asked me to collaborate, I answered on his request immediately, without hearing the song, said Lulgjuraj.

Bledar Sejko & Adrian Lulgjuraj – Identitet, the Albanian entry at Eurovision 2013.