Romanian artists find fame abroad

Several Romanian artists have started to become famous abroad, some even more famous internationally than in their home country.  They have started to work with international producers, deliver European tours and rank high in European charts, while shooting their videos abroad. looks at some of the names that got international fame.

By Alina Andriescu

Claudia Pavel (in picture) has been singing for more than 10 years, having started her career at 15 in a girls’ band called “Candy”. In 2001 she continued her musical career solo, under the name of Cream, collaborating with international producers and artists such as Fatman Scoop, Ja Rule, Fat Joe, Ryan Tedder and choreographers like Marvin Smith – who has also worked with Britney Spears, J.Lo and Janet Jackson.

Giving up the name of Cream, Claudia Pavel has recently released the single Crazy, for which she has filmed a video in the USA. Andrea Giacomini was the video director  and David Classen – the creator of Britney Spear’s „Oops I Did It Again” video- helped in creating the visual effects.  The song was composed by Niclas Molinder and Joacim Persson.

Claudia started to record songs in English, hoping that this will bring her international fame. The album “Wrong Girl For That“ was released in 2009 and has become popular internationally with songs like: “Just a little bit”, which reached the third place in the Italian charts.


Inna is another Romanian artist who has appeared in the International charts being the winner of the “Golden Disc” in France with her album” Hot”, which has sold in over 50.000 copies. She is already listed in “France Singles Chart” with „Hot”, holding the sixth place, as well as with the song “Amazing”, which got the first place in “MTV Dance Chart” in UK.

With her 2008 album „Hot”, Inna conquered the top positions in the European charts in countries such like Portugal, Moldavia, Bulgaria, Lebanon, Malta, Poland, Serbia, Spain, Syria, Turkey, Russia, Hungary, Slovakia , Greece, Czech Republic and Ukraine.

The video for the song “10 minutes” was filmed in London, being directed by Paul Boyd, who has worked with Celine Dion, Shania Twain, Tina Turner and Kylie Minogue. Her video for the song “Amazing” was filmed in Portugal.

Inna has also reached number one in the Billboard charts with the sigle “Hot” in 2009, being rated in the music industry on the same level as Jay-Z, Alicia Keys, Lady Gaga, Madonna and Akon.

Last year she signed a contract with Ultra Records, an independent label in New York, which works with artists like Armin van Buuren, Dannii Minogue, Fedde Le Grand, Kraak & Smaak, Morcheeba, Panjabi MC, Paul Oakenfold, Paul van Dyk, Tiësto, Timo Maas, Tom Novy, and with Romanians like Alina Puşcău, Akcent and O-Zone. Her music will be distributed all over America, Canada and UK.

Dan Balan

Dan Balan is another Romanian singer who has seen international fame. He first went international with the Moldavian boys band O-zone, which has ranked high not only in European charts, but went further to be recognized in Asia. Their hit “Dragostea din tei” has reached the first place in 32 European countries. The album “DiscoZone” has hit the first place in Japan, selling 12 million copies worldwide. “Dragostea din tei” has been covered by over 100 artists worldwide and translated in 12 different languages.

Another O-Zone hit was “Despre tine”, which has ranked first in five countries and topped out on the sixth place in the main European Chart. After this success, Dan Balan left O-zone, living in New York for several years and starting a solo career. He came up with another song, Crazy Loop and released the album “The Power of Shower”, which won him the Golden Disc.

Earlier this year Dan Balan released a new hit called “Chica Bomb”. He has worked with director Hype Williams, who has worked with artists like Missy Elliot, Kelis, LL Cool J, Jay Z and Janet Jackson. The song entered the European charts, landing first place in Greece.

Morandi is a Romanian boys band made of composer Marius Moga and singer Andrei Ştefan Ropcea (Randi), who have gained international success with their music.

Aside from being successful in Romania, the group ranked high in several European charts and won the MTV Europe Music Awards as Best Romanian Act, performing on stage in Liverpool.

Their hit „Beijo (Uh-La-La)” has ranked first for two weeks in most European charts ourunning sogns by artists like Shakira, U2, Coldplay. Due to their success, they signed a contract with Universal Music Romania.

Negura Bunget

Passing from commercial music to the underground music, a Romanian band called Negura Bunget delivers a patriotic and historical message. It is a folk black metal band, formed at the end of 1994. It is internationally well known on the metal music scene.

Negura Bunget wants to spread the word on Romanian folklore, history and legends around the world. After one demo, one album and one EP, three more full-length albums followed. The success of one of these albums helped the band sign a contract with ‘code666 record’ label, reaching a wider audience through several European tours.

The band uses well known rock instruments, as well as traditional and archaic instruments. One of the band’s albums,OM, ranked second best in 2006 in a top made by the British Terrorizer Magazine and was the album of the month in Legacy – Germany.

Negura Bunget is present at international festivals and has European tours in countries like Austria, Germany, Czech Republic, Holland, Hungary, England, Ireland, France, Norway, Italy, Spain.


Grimus is the name of the rock-alternative Romanian band from Cluj-Napoca formed in 2005, which has spread its wings abroad.

Their first song “Solitude” has sent them high up in tops, as well as “In a Glimpse”, being played both at Insomnia Radio UK and at a local radio station in Bruxelles where it got the first place in the charts. Grimus has played the opening for Sophie Ellis Baxtor’s concert in Bucharest.

Grimus found their luck on Myspace, the virtual social place where Adam Whittake, the producer of Amy Winehouse discovered them. The band won a prize at the “Global Battle of Bands” competition in England in 2007 and also received a bronze trophy for “The Best New Romanian Band” after playing in Cameden Underworld.

They had a mini-tour in England in August this year, with the support of the Romanian Cultural Institute in London. The band has released their new single “Started” and played as opening act for “Does It Offend You, Yeah?” in England and Moldavia.

The band has also been invited to play some tracks and answer the questions of Jack Hepplewhite in the BBC Introducing Show.

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