Emanuela – Pop Folk Chameleon

Here at Balkania Fanzine we believe that the most interesting things happening in Balkan pop music are at the smaller record labels. Payner may have the JJ Abrams-lense-flare-glamour-formula down to a science but Diapason and Ara records are responsible for artists taking risks with their image. Be-it experimentation, or simply a product of ‘making-due’ with limited resources, Ara-starlette Emanuela has repeatedly turned out hits and looks from the shimmery sidelines of the Chalga mainstream.

Emanuela’s brand is emulation— transforming from a Britney Spears-Toxic bedazzled bombshell in one scene to a controversial black-faced gogo-girl in the next. Her explicit style references in videos like Otzadi Mini and Pak Skandal (more a remake than an homage of Madonna’s Erotic) show a post-originality attitude toward image making. Innovation and the emergence of genuinely new forms is no longer a goal. Instead, value is placed on the fidelity of the remix, the re-appropriation and the republishing of existing visual ideas. The derivative is the new ideal.

Emanuela’s Rom Pom Pom, composed by Bulgarian mega-producer Martin Biolchev shows how some music makers are approaching “derivative” as a business model. Costi Ionita has long franchised his songs to different Balkan markets, releasing the same composition with different starlettes simultaneously in Bulgaria, Romania and even pan-Arabia. Now it seems Biolchev is getting into the game. He originally produced Rom Pom Pom for little known Russian singer Shamil several months ago and then gave it a subtle Chalga gloss-coating for a re-release to Bulgarian audiences.

Honestly, Rom Pom Pom is easily the most refreshing, crisp-sounding chalga track to drop this summer amongst a flurry of dismally and self-referentially derivative releases. The Emanuela + Biolchev formula is clearly working— original or not.

This entry was written by Balkania, posted on August 6, 2012 at 1:05 am, filed under Bulgaria, Chalga Diva, Image, Music Videos, Sexbomb and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

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