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From YouTube to Eurovision

Pyotr Nalich will play with his band at the Eurovision contest in Oslo in May. Igor Tabakov

Former architect Pyotr Nalich, who became a Russian YouTube phenomenon in 2007 after he recorded an amateur music video of himself and friends singing at their dacha, has been selected as Russia's entry for the 2010 Eurovision Song Contest in Norway in May.

Nalich and his band won the most votes during a national contest Sunday. Votes in the competition, which started with an initial 25 contestants, came from a jury and fans sending text messages by cell phone.

Nalich, 28, posted his song "Guitar" on YouTube in April 2007, and it was viewed more than 70,000 times within a month. He organized his six-member band in 2008 and won instant popularity on the Moscow music scene.

Moscow hosted the Eurovision contest last year after pop singer Dima Bilan won in 2008 with a performance that included Olympic champion figure skater Yevgeny Plushenko. Oslo will host the contest on May 29 after Norway's entry, Alexander Rybak, won in Moscow.

A total of 39 countries are scheduled to participate in Oslo. But Andorra, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Montenegro have decided to stay away this year for financial reasons, Eurovision said on its web site.

Nalich's original music video for the song "Guitar" is embedded below.

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