2016 Review: Bosnia and Herzegovina

After 3 years’ absence due to insufficient funding (and supposedly problems with broadcaster fee collection), BHRT found sponsors to bring Bosnia and Herzegovina back to the contest. The sponsors donated enough money to enter a song, a TV special with special guests Marija Šerfović, Nina Badrić, and Maya Sar for the song presentation, and a promotional tour. However, it appeared that the sponsors didn’t donate enough for the guests to sing live with microphones; they just stood (or in Maya Sar’s case, sat) in place for the audience to hear their entries on a backing track. In my dreams they either hid Broadway microphones in their hair or the building had such good acoustics that microphones weren’t needed. Unfortunately, that seemed really unlikely.

After about 2 hours of confusion outside of the ex-Yugo region since there weren’t any subtitles or translators, we finally got to hear the song “Ljubav je” (“Love is”), a Bosnian-language song by Dalal, Deen, Ana Rucner, and Jala.

Out of the 4 people, Deen’s probably the most well-known, as he participated back in 2004 with “In the Disco,” (described by Terry Wogan as “underwear music”). At first sight I couldn’t recognize him because after 12 years he seems to have changed from this:

To this:

Well at least now we know he sings more than disco party tunes…

Song-wise, “Ljubav je” starts out as a Balkan ballad (yay) that seems pretty heavy on timps and cello with three people in formalwear. Then Jala walks in wearing a hoodie and jeans to do his rap bridge, and while like Macedonia (FYR) 2010 it fits into the song pretty well in audio, it’s visually distracting. I like the song, but I’m also a little concerned that it’s going to turn into something like Poland 2006 where the acts don’t fit together and TV audience think that Jala is Bosnia’s more obnoxious version of Jimmy Jump. Also, according to the four, what is love?


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