Serbia’s Željko Joksimović is pulling out all the stops in his latest bid to lift the Eurovision trophy with his song Nije ljubav stvar. After missing out on his previous outings at the Eurovision Song Contest, Željko is not leaving anything to chance this time. As well as the familiar tactic of recording his song in various languages, recent days have seen Željko unveil further surprises.
First came the song recorded in Serbian (Nije ljubav stvar), English (Synonym) and Russian (Любовь не вещь), complete with the story that the Russian lyric had been translated from Serbian by Belarussian-based fan Viktoria Lapeho. This week a further was recorded with a Belgrade symphony orchestra, which would have been plenty for most people to take on. Not so Željko, who instructed his team to come up with something special to promote his appearance.
Their first port of call was well-known Serbian photographer Nebojša Babic, who agreed to shoot the official video for the song. The creative partnership of Željko and Nebojša has paid off, producing a video with an interesting twist: the lyrics will be signed for the hearing impaired. The sign language will come courtesy of another creative Serb, Nenad Mahmutović, winner of Serbia’s talent show Ja imam talenat 2011.
Still not content, Željko and his team at RTS came up with an unusual video to support the special ‘summer instrumental’ version of the song. In this entertaining promotional film, Željko mimics and plays fifteen different instruments that are featured in the recording.
As well as being widely circulated on social networks, the various versions and videos are available on iPhone and Android phones. A slick mobile phone application, linking to Facebook and Twitter accounts, has also been released and is attracting great interest among fans.
Željko will perform first in the second semi-final of the Eurovision Song Contest, on 24 May. While Željko has sufficient Eurovision awareness to attract interest, being first out of the blocks is never an easy spot. This is a key reason why Željko is drumming up all the support he can muster to get enough votes to see him through to the Final on Saturday, 26 May. By the time he performs the orchestral version in Baku next month, Željko will have to rely on the quality of his performance rather than promotional gimmicks. That is when he will hope that experience will help carry him through.