PUR:PUR: “The world is ready to change and we sing exactly the same” (Ukrainian Semifinalists – Exclusive Interview)

ESC+Plus has talked PUR:PUR, semifinalists of this year’s Ukrainian national selection for Eurovision. The band will perform “We Do Change” in the second semifinal to take place tomorrow.

ESC+Plus: Hello! First, thank you so much for your time and congratulations for having been qualified to take part in the Ukrainian national selection for Eurovision 2016!

E+: Can you tell us about you, your musical career and important achievements?

First, let me express our sincere gratitude for you kind interest in our creative work. The “PUR:PUR” band started to exist in 2008. Nata Smirina (singer-lyricist) and Eugen Zhebko (songwriter), both self-taught, set up the band. Due to the utmost sincerity of our lyrics, simplicity and tenderness of our music, overwhelming enthusiasm and strong desire to make music, quickly led us to a busy concert schedule and participation in massive music festivals and events (Koktebel Jazz Festival, Usadba-Jazz, Stereoleto, Kazantip, etc.) We successfully promote our music on the Internet, but we are still starkly under-represented on television and radio. Hence, we owe a lot to the jury of national contest for this opportunity to contend for the Eurovision 2016 as a representative of Ukraine. We started our music career as an acoustic trio. The composition of the band varied, as well as the music genres that we tried to embrace. In December 2014, we held a number of concerts, accompanied by the chamber symphony orchestra to mark the new stage of our creative work. That period gave birth to the song “We Do Change”.

E+: What impelled you to take part in “Ukraine Eurovision Song Contest 2016”?

The thing is that over the past few years the situation on the Ukrainian pop scene had changed greatly. Quiet a bunch of the so-called underground musicians appeared in the foreground. The audience in Ukraine becomes more and more music-literate. The demand in quality and sophisticated music production grows, as well as the number of good festivals and Internet sources for the promotion of new Ukrainian music art. Notwithstanding the fact, we were surprised to become semi-finalists of Eurovision national selection. Our single “We Do Change”, issued in December 2015, commenced a new series of releases, preceding the release of our new album. We thought “Why not?” and submitted the song to the contest. Frankly speaking, we did not expect to be heard. We have been just inspired by our true fans, insisting that namely the Pur-Pur has to represented Ukraine in Eurovision.

E+: How did you feel when you knew you had qualified for the semi-final? Did you expect it?

As I said previously, we did not expect to be a success and reach so far. It goes without saying, that we are extremely happy. This fact heralds the positive changes that the modern Ukrainian musicians longed for. We DO change! Whatever the results, the participation in semi-finals itself is a unique experience.

E+: What it would mean for you to represent Ukraine?

It is a great honor to represent motherland at the international level.

E+: Can you tell us about your song? What is the story behind the lyrics?

We are the only independent authors of all our songs. The aforementioned song is devoted to the inner changes of every human, abiding self-confidence and unwavering faith in people around you. We are all affected by the severe flood of information, drawing our attention away from the important processes running inside us. The overwhelming majority of our actions and reactions are immature, puerile, and embryonic. We are getting older; we are getting new experience, we are making mistakes and we do not realize that our mission in this Universe is to change for better our world and ourselves. For the time being, it is so important to remind people that they are worth faith and trust in themselves that miracles happen and good conquers evil. It is never late to change for good and we are all able to do everything! We really Do Change! The key point is to believe and act.

E+: Why do you think your song has to be qualified for Stockholm? What are you strengths to reach the top in the competition?

We are open and honest with our audience. We do believe that everything that happens, happens as it should. The world is ready to change and we sing exactly the same.

E+: Have you started to prepare your stage performance for the Ukrainian national selection for Eurovision 2016?

Oh, yes, we started to think about it immediately after the invitation to participate in the contest. Stage performance and look are also very important media. The ideas are so numerous and the time is as always pressing. However, I am sure that we will manage to do it.

E+: Do you usually watch Eurovision? What are your favorite songs in the history of the competition?

We are always short in time that is why we are not always able follow the contest live. Nevertheless, we always examine the winner-song. We appreciated greatly Emmelie De Forest – Only Teardrops, Loreen – Euphoria, Lena Meyer-Landrut – Satellite, Alexander Rybak – Fairytale, and of course our и Ruslana – Wild Dances.

E+: If you could choose a Eurovision former participant to sing along with, who would it be?

Abba the Legendary! Abba genius songs influenced generations of outstanding musicians.

E+: Besides Eurovision, what are your plans for this year?

We are always full of plans and ideas. This year we hope to release a documentary about our orchestra tour. We also started to work over our new album. In the nearest future, you will see music video-clip to our song “We do change” and immediately after, we start shootings of the next music video.

E+: Finally, can you send a message for our readers and Eurovision fans?

Listen to the good music. Believe in good and miracles. Be patient on your way to your dream. Believe in change for good. We can do it! Let your life to be full of reasons for happiness.

E+: Thanks for your time and good luck!

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