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His song wasn’t initially in the running to represent Croatia at the 2024 Eurovision Song Contest but now Baby Lasagna is one of the bookies’ favourites to lift the trophy in May! Read on to find out all about this underdog, his career so far and how he might fare in Malmö.

Who is Baby Lasagna?

Baby Lasagna is the stage name of 28-year-old Marko Purišić who was born in Umag, a coastal town in Croatia. For most of his career he has served as the guitarist for the rock band Manntra, having played with them from 2011-2016 and 2018-2022. The band fuse traditional Balkan elements with heavy metal, providing the foundations for Baby Lasagna’s own solo work later on.

In 2019, Manntra entered Dora in the hopes of representing Croatia at Eurovision. Although they lost out to ‘The Dream’ by Roko, they achieved a respectable fourth place overall. You can listen to their Dora entry, ‘In the Shadows’, below:

In 2023, Baby Lasagna embarked on a solo career, releasing his debut single ‘IG Boy’ at the end of October. This was followed by the single ‘Don’t Hate Yourself, But Don’t Love Yourself Too Much’. Both singles explore the negative impact of social media, particularly its ability to create a culture of toxic positivity and narcissism, establishing Baby Lasagna as an artist who uses his music to comment on broader societal issues.

As well as making his own music, Baby Lasagna also found success in 2022 through his work with the German industrial metal band Mono Inc. He co-wrote many of the tracks on their 12th studio album ‘Ravenblack’ which reached number one in the German album charts.

‘Rim Tim Tagi Dim’ and the Journey to Eurovision

Baby Lasagna’s journey to Eurovision is the type of story one might see in Hollywood movies! Inspired by an opportunity he was given to work on a cruise ship (which he turned down), Baby Lasagna wrote and produced ‘Rim Tim Tagi Dim’ in his bedroom. It was initially only intended to be a filler track on his 2024 debut album ‘Demons & Mosquitos’ but the song surged in streams and Baby Lasagna decided to submit it to Dora as a result of this.

Given the lyrics of the song, it is perhaps unsurprising that ‘Rim Tim Tagi Dim’ proved to be so popular. The song deals with the experiences of young people who leave Croatia to pursue better opportunities abroad and “become one of them city boys.” However, it also deals with the fear (“There’s no going back/My anxiety attacks”) and feelings of homesickness (“Bye mom, bye dad/Meow, cat, please meow back”) experienced by many young economic immigrants and is therefore a song that many listeners who have left their home country or town can relate to. Speaking to Croatian publication Showbuzz about the song’s title and hook, Baby Lasagna said:

Basically, it’s about leaving the village, about a boy, a guy, who leaves his village in search of a better life, and I imagined that ‘Rim Tim Tagi Dim’ was their folk dance of that certain village, so that calls and that they all dance together to ‘Rim Tim Tagi Dim’.

Baby Lasagna on ‘Rim Tim Tagi Dim’, Showbuzz

The song was initially not selected to be one of the 24 entries taking part in Dora 2024, with Baby Lasagna being selected as one of four reserve entries. However, shortly after the line-up was announced, well-known Croatian singer Zsa Zsa withdrew from the contest for undisclosed reasons and Baby Lasagna was selected as her replacement.

The success of the song was felt immediately with Croatian audiences and eurofans both praising the entry and criticising broadcaster HRT for only choosing Baby Lasagna as a reserve act. Writing for Croatian tabloid IndexHR, Croatian journalist Marina Radoš even called for the delegation to resign, saying:

In the end, it is impossible not to wonder – who has ended up as a reserve for HRT’s Eurovision experts in the past years? How many of the former Baby Lasagna were discarded forever to listen to Mija Dimšić or the daughter of the former Croatian Prime Minister?

How many genius authors and performers were so discouraged by the expert ear of HRT that they never applied again after the competition and never recorded anything again?

Marina Radoš on Dora, IndexHR

Baby Lasagna performed in the second semi-final of Dora. Some criticised his vocal performance and ability to engage with the cameras, which the artist accepted, telling Eurovoxx that he had simply been “excited” and would be working on this for the final. Thankfully, the final saw huge improvements and as well as winning the jury vote, Baby Lasagna dominated the televote, scoring 247 points which was more than the 218 points earned by all of the finalists combined! With such an impressive score under his belt, Baby Lasagna was off to Eurovision.

How Will Baby Lasagna Do At Eurovision?

Croatia are second in the odds to win Eurovision 2024 at the time of writing. This is particularly impressive given that Croatia have failed to reach the top 10 since 2001 and their best result was fourth place in 1999 with the song ‘Marija Magdalena’. Many fans are comparing Baby Lasagna to Käärijä and are anticipating a similarly strong result with the televote.

Baby Lasagna will perform 7th in the first semi-final on Tuesday 7th May. Given the song’s strong televote appeal, the presence of neighbouring Slovenia and Serbia in the semi, and being placed between two very different songs in Poland and Iceland, ‘Rim Tim Tagi Dim’ seems to be locked in for a qualification spot. However, only time will tell.

We’ll certainly be wishing Baby Lasagna the best of luck this May!

You can follow Baby Lasagna social media:

Instagram: @the_baby_lasagna_

TikTok: @thebabylasagnaofficial

YouTube: @BabyLasagna

You can keep up to date with Phoenix on TwitterInstagramYouTube and TikTok for all the latest Eurovision 2024 news.

Our podcast, Instead We Made A Pod, is available to stream on all platforms.

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