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  • Writer's pictureKiel Egging

Eurovision 2024: The hype for Croatia's Baby Lasagna

Move over Alexander Rybak - in a few days time, Croatia's Baby Lasagna might write one of Eurovision's biggest fairytales.

Originally a reserve entry for his country's national final, DORA, he got the call-up after another artist pulled out - and then won the competition in a landslide.

He's become a cult hit with his relatable, hard-rocking entry 'Rim Tim Tagi Dim' and put Croatia on track for its best result in years and potentially their first-ever win.

So take a seat at the dinner table, and let's dig in (literally) to see what the fuss is all about.

Who is Baby Lasagna?

Baby Lasagna is 28-year-old Croatian singer-songwriter Marko Purišić, who hails from the town of Umag in the country's west. He started his music career in 2011 as a guitarist in a Christian rock band, Manntra. The group competed in Dora in 2019 and finished fourth.

Purišić decided to go solo last year as Baby Lasagna and released his first two songs - 'IG Boy' and 'Don't Hate Yourself, But Don't Love Yourself Too Much'. He then decided to enter 'Rim Tim Tagi Dim' for DORA 2024 and was listed as one of the four reserve entries in mid-December.

DORA domination

Everything changed in early January when one of the 20 finalists, Zsa Zsa, pulled out for unknown reasons - and Baby Lasagna took her place. Rave reviews came flooding in from fans worldwide after 'Rim Tim Tagi Dim' was released and he soon emerged as a potential winner.

In late February, despite hardly any prior live performances as a solo artist, Baby Lasagna mania swept Croatia and he won DORA in a landslide. Along with topping the jury vote, he received a whopping 247 public votes, almost ten times more than second-placed Alen Đuras (27).

Baby Lasagna's overall score of 325 points was almost four times higher than overall runner-up Vinko (82), and he received more points than the rest of the top five combined.

What is Rim Tim Tagi Dim about?

Lyrically, Purišić has said 'Rim Tim Tagi Dim' is all about having one last night of partying with friends and family before leaving home in search of a new life. It's an experience he says is very common with people living in Croatian villages and those in nearby countries.

The heartfelt lyrics of 'Rim Tim Tagi Dim' have struck a huge chord with pretty much anyone - not just those from Croatia - who have had a similar experience.

Here's a sample: Before I leave, I must confess

I need a round of decompress

One more time for all the good times


Gonna miss you all, but mostly the cat

Gonna miss my hay, gonna miss my bed

But most of all, I'ma miss the dance

So come on y'all, let us prance

As you'll see in the video, Purišić has filmed it in a Croatian regional village with the theme of a traditional family gathering. At the end, you'll see him in the early morning darkness with his suitcase, waiting for a boat to arrive.

How did this become such a hit?

As mentioned earlier, the lyrical themes have resonated hugely with any Eurovision fan who has had the experience of packing up and leaving home for a new life.

The song has also drawn comparisons to last year's runner-up - Finland's Käärijä and his hit 'Cha Cha Cha' - with parts of it sounding like something German metal kings Rammstein would put together. There's also a punchy chorus, plenty of 'Whoooah's' for the crowd to sing, and an easy-to-follow dance move in one of the breakdowns.

Baby Lasagna's live performances are also very energetic and his vocals have noticeably improved across the pre-party circuit and other live performances he's done on TV. In interviews, he's come across as a humble, likeable and down-to-earth person who speaks English very clearly.

If you need any more proof that Croatia is right behind their man, take a look at this video compiled by national broadcaster HRT of people dancing along to 'Rim Tim Tagi Dim' all over the country. There are cops, firefighters, cheerleaders, fisherman, ballerinas - the lot.

Can Croatia win?

Damn right they can! Baby Lasagna soared to the top of the odds not long after he won Dora and was confirmed as Croatia's entrant in Malmö.

He has been overtaken in recent weeks by Switzerland's Nemo as the bookies' favourite, but is in second place with a relatively comfy buffer over the third favourite, The Netherlands' Joost Klein.

EurovisionWorld has given Croatia a 17 per cent chance of winning Eurovision 2024, while Sportsbet is offering $4 to win (as of 27 April).

Additionally, Sportsbet has Croatia at $1.36 to finish top 5, a $1.33 favourite to win semi-final 1, and an almost un-bettable $1.005 to qualify for the grand final.

Croatia first entered in Eurovision in 1993, and their best result has been two 4th place finishes. These were in 1996 with Maja Blagdan's 'Sveta ljubav' and 1999 with Doris Dragović's 'Marija Magdalena'.

Is Baby Lasagna about to create history and will we be heading to Zagreb in 2025? We'll find out on 11 May!

Baby Lasagna will compete for Croatia in the first half of semi-final 1 at Eurovision 2024 in Malmö, Sweden on Tuesday, 7 May (Wednesday morning AEDT).

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