International Eurovision Fan of the Week - Dritero from the USA
This week's international Eurovision fan we are profiling is Dritero from the United States aka @duavision . However Dritero is well known on Twitter for being a big fan of Albania, and for good reason. Read his full Q&A to find out more.
What is your name and where are you from?
My name is Dritero, and I was born and raised in the United States, but my parents are both Albanian, my mom from Kosovo, my dad from Macedonia. I'm closer to my mom's side of the family so I consider myself an Albanian from Kosovo.
What do you do or tell us something interesting about you?
I am a student for now, studying anthropology at university. This probably isn't interesting but I speak 4 languages, English, Albanian, Spanish, and Portuguese, and am currently learning 5 languages, those being Italian, French, German, Greek, and Arabic. In the future, I'm hoping to also study Mandarin, Turkish, and Serbo-Croatian.
Anthropology wow! And again we are always super impressed with anyone with multiple language skills. Nice stuff! ~ Aussievision
When did you first get into Eurovision?
I first got into Eurovision in 2015, when my mom was watching the final to see how Elhaida would do. We tuned in as soon as A Million Voices was playing and it is still one of my favorite songs and performances today.
You are based in the United States, but you're very much an Albanian supporter. Tell us about that.
I feel like it's really important to me to connect with my culture and my roots. This is mainly the reason why I identify more as Albanian than I do as American. There was a period in my life when I would ignore everything Albanian and try to be 100% American, and today that's one of the things I regret doing most. So I make up for it now by trying to immerse myself in Albanian culture, I even visited Kosovo from June to August, which was an incredible experience.
It's something a lot of people do with many different parts of themselves, run away from but then go through the stage of accepting it and then most importantly celebrating it.
Which is your favourite Eurovision year and why?
This is probably a common answer honestly, but 2018 is definitely my favorite year. The songs are absolutely great, there are very few that I dislike. The results were really great (Yes, Cyprus is my winner for 2018, but she got their best result ever and I'm proud.) Basically everything was flawless, except I would've gotten rid of two certain hosts....
If you could only listen to three Eurovision songs for the rest of time, what would you choose?
Oof let's see. Fuego, for sure, is one of them. Hajde Da Ludujemo also. And finally, I choose Qami, to have at least something different from the other two.
Fuego is a bop, Tajci is a classic (and surprised it didn't come higher) and wow... Qami... I actually liked the song but wow, that's a big call! ~ Dale
If you could change one thing about Eurovision it would be...?
I would require the juries to vote individually and on the day of the final as opposed to the jury final, and confiscate their phones so they are unable to vote in the televote as well. If a jury member is found to break any of these rules, their vote will not be used. A bit intense, but honestly, it's necessary.
The jury voting on a different show (where vocal can be v different) is something we do feel causes an issue and creates confusion.
Which Eurovision song:
Had the best staging?
I don't wanna get too repetitive, so I won't say Fuego. I'll go with I'll Be Waiting For This Night, especially that part with all the light through the steam and when he jumps from the trampoline.
Totally - Donny Montell wasn't even close to our top 10s but that live was perfect for TV watchers.
Best live vocal?
Gotta go with my man, Eugent Bushpepa, he served those flawless vocals both in the semi and in the final, and finally gave us a (almost) top 10 finish.
LIJEPA TENA. That's that on that.
Wow interesting choice, quality Balkan ballad, just a tough year in 2009!
From before 2000 is your favourite?
Anyone who follows me should know it's Hajde Da Ludujemo. Dinle is also VERY close behind though.
Do you enjoy more now, than when they performed?
If you mean the song that grew on me, I think that would be Grab the Moment. For some reason, that's the first song that came to my head. If you mean a song that has a good studio version but not so good live version, then I would say Dance You Off.
Did you last play?
If you include national final songs, then it would be J'ai Pas Le Temps, by Lautner. If not, then I think it was Fuego, a couple days ago.
Is your guilty pleasure?
I don't really have a guilty pleasure song that I can think of, but one that I like that not many others do is Coming Home by Firelight.
Good choice - I like this! ~ Mike
Any other interesting honourable mentions?
A lot of them, Origo is great, so is My Number One, Dinle, Golden Boy, and also Marija Magdalena is a masterpiece everyone should experience.
What do you think of the Albanian entrant this year?
Jonida has a lot of potential. First of all, get rid of that dress gurl. The song could use a small revamp, but not the usual Albanian revamp where they change everything. I really hope she could do well, as the song gives me 1944-esque vibes. Can't wait to see what Shqipëria will do!
It certainly got a good reaction from many, just a few tweaks and it should be another great Albanian entry.
What national finals are you most looking forward to?
Vidbir, Melodifestivalen, Dora, Eesti Laul, UMK, MGP, and Montevizija. In that order. Meanwhile, while y'all are reading this, stan Vera Kekelia and Tayanna at Vidbir and Wiktoria at Melfest!
Good mix there and don't worry I will stan Wiktoria! ~ Dale
What do you think of Australia being in Eurovision?
I WANT YOU TO STAYYYYYY. Channeling a bit of Latvia 2016 there. But yeah, I love Australia in Eurovision, and I just hope one day y'all will be able to win. The only thing that bothers me is that they're using a national final now as opposed to an internal selection, but either way it should be great!
National final did worry us, but we are won over... it's a good way to grow the contest here. But get where you are coming from, it's a risk!
Tonight Again, Sound of Silence, Don’t Come Easy or We Got Love?
We Got Love, easily. Her live may not have been so good but I'm talking about the song here!! Jessica's voice fits the song perfectly. It's an anthemic song and I love those kinds. It's one of those "drug songs" for me, where you hear it once, and you want to listen to it again and again. I even heard it play here in the USA once in a mall and it was the greatest experience I've ever had in my life, and after it stopped playing, I, naturally, immediately opened up Spotify and put it on repeat.
Absolutely love that you chose this, it is and will always be a cracking song. The mall story is brilliant!
Thank you so much for your time Dritero!
Thank you for having me!