Born in Pristina, Istrefi debuted in 2013 as simply Era with her single ‘Mani Per Money’. Blending pop and reggae in the style of early Rihanna, the track charted in Albania and Kosovo, as did the follow-up ‘E Dehun’. Third single ‘Njo Si Ti’ charted in Belgium, but international recognition truly happened in 2015 when the single ‘Bon Bon’ became an overnight viral sensation, reaching an astonishing 133 million views on YouTube alone. Now preparing her debut album, Istrefi signed with Ultra/Sony.
Earlier, Alan Walker (no), Jaakko Eino Kalevi (fi), Namika (de), Walking on Cars (ie), Hinds (es), Jain (fr), Filous (at), Natalie La Rose (nl) and Dua Lipa (gb) were also announced as winners of an EBBA. A total of ten EBBA winners have now been announced. The Awards Ceremony will take place on 11 January 2017 in Groningen, as part of the Eurosonic Noorderslag festival.