Sunday, February 18, 2007

Was it something I...never had?

No songs today--not only am I still in mourning over Magnus being eliminated, it'll be another run-down of next weekend's Melodifestivalen participants instead. I'm a lot less familiar with this coming week's participants than I was with last week's participants, so please let me know if I've gotten anything wrong or left anything important out!

1.) Magnus Uggla--I should know more about Magnus Uggla, because he's been releasing music for a long time and I think he's pretty famous, but I don't. All I know is he does rock music and Wikipedia says his lyrics are very satirical. Cany anyone fill me in? As for his song, "För kung och fosterland," it has both fast and slow parts.

To watch: the music video for his song "Värsta grymma tjejen."

2.) Emilè Azar--a session and demo singer who has yet to release any music of his own. His answer to "Was it a dream come true for you when you were asked to sing in Melodifestivalen?" was "No," so I'm not expecting much. As if that wasn't enough, his song "Vi hade nåt" is described as an R&B ballad. However, the writers behind it did do After Dark's 2004 entry "La Dolce Vita."

To watch: I can't find anything on YouTube--this really will be his first brush with fame, I think.

3.) Sanna Nielsen--despite being only 22, Sanna's pretty much a music veteran--she released her first single before she was a teenager and has already competed in Melodifestivalen three times, most recently in 2005, when she took eighth with her duet with Fredrik Kempe. Kempe, who wrote this year's "Rainbow Star" and "Cara Mia," wrote her song, "Vågar du, vågar jag," which is described as poppy schlager with a strong chorus.

To watch: her duet "Du och jag mot världen" with Fredrik Kempe at Melodifestivalen 2005.

4.) Caroline af Ugglas--the very little I've heard of her work is sort of rock-folk stuff. Her music model is Janis Joplin, and she's just released an album of Joplin covers in Sweden. If I'm understanding Expressen correctly, she entered Melodifestivalen because someone told her there was too much schlager. Her song "Tror på dig" is described as a Joplin-esque rock ballad.

To watch: the music video for her song "Egoistic."

5.) After Dark--the drag group that took third in Melodifestivalen 2004 with the aforementioned "La Dolce Vita." We can surely count on them for a good show and a good song, especially given that their entry "(Åh) När ni tar saken i egna händer" is described as "schlagerdisco."

To watch: their Melodifestivalen 2004 entry "La Dolce Vita."

6.) Sarah Dawn Finer--mainly a session/backing singer, she has also opened for Gavin DeGraw and dueted with Peter Jöback, though that might just be live. She currently has a song high up on the Swedish iTunes chart, which seems a little strange, timing-wise. The clips of the songs on her website generally sound acoustic and slow, sometimes a bit bluesy or honky-tonk, but her song "I Remember Love" is described as poppy schlager with a strong chorus.

To watch: I've got nothing.

7.) Verona--apparently a group, despite all the pictures showing only one person, Veronica, the lead singer. Veronica says her musical models are Kylie and Madonna, but given the number of female singers who would probably give that response, that probably doesn't tell us much. Still, their song, "La Musica," which is in Italian, is described as "modern euro-club."

To watch: don't actually watch this--it's one of those slideshows of pictures people set to music--but let it play and listen to it. I think this is the only song Verona has previously released, or maybe the one they're most famous for? At any rate, it's the only one I know by them, and it's a cover of "Ti Sento."

8.) Andreas Johnson--outside of Sweden, he's probably best known for his song "Glorious," but last year his song "Sing For Me" took third in Melodifestivalen. If you've heard Sebastian's song this year, a lot of people have compared it to "Sing For Me," which might give you an idea of what Andreas's music sounds like (though I can sort of see the comparison, I like "When The Night Comes Falling" a lot more than "Sing For Me"). Andreas has said his song this year, "A Little Bit Of Love," is catchy, more American, and more guitar-based. The writers of the song described it (really rough translation) as "Roy Orbison picks up the Ronettes in his convertible and drives home to Bruce Springsteen's cocktail party. And Phil Spector produces."

To watch: it would probably be more accurate, both music- and appearance-wise, to have you watch his Melodifestivalen 2006 performance (which you can see here), but, shockingly for me, I prefer the moody "Glorious" (great chorus) to the peppy upbeat "Sing For Me," so I'm going with the music video for the former.

Based on names alone, I get the impression the people likely to do well seem to be Andreas Johnson, After Dark, Magnus Uggla, and Sanna Nielsen. The artists I'm probably most looking forward to are Sanna and After Dark, though it'd be nice if one of the unknowns like Verona or Sarah Dawn Finer, based on their song descriptions, could surprise us, and I might like Andreas Johnson's song. After how amazing last week was, I think this week may be a little bit of a comedown.

Speaking of last week: Magnus Carlsson releases these super-happy songs, and mentally I've just sort of transferred the aura around those songs to him, so I imagine him as being a super-happy, maybe even happy-go-lucky guy--so seeing him teary in this interview is really upsetting. Especially sad. Sweden, what have you done? I vote for cutting some of these week's participants and replacing them with people unjustly cut earlier in the competition--it'd be a much more interesting week and maybe we could come a little closer to justice.

Sources: ESC Today, Expressen, SVT's Melodifestivalen site, P4. Huge thanks to all of these sites!

Next up: probably a song from Sweden, though I'll try to avoid spending so much time on Swedish music next week (no promises, though!)


melodimen said...

Great run down for next week.

No need to avoid spending time on Swedish music, Sweden is undoubtedly the Queen of Pop!

We're backing the lovely Sanna Nielsen and After Dark, to fill the void left by Magnus.

Jamie said...

Sanna be thy name! Sanna to me is the epitome of schlager. You can't beat her 2003 and 2005 entries for good old fashioned schlager. I'm hoping she'll be dusting down the white suit from 2003 or even the fab frock from 2005.

My other favourites have to be After Dark although quite how they'll be able to top the fabulous performance of 'La Dolce Vita' is beyond me. I'm sure they'll be fab anyhow.

Poster Girl said...

Yup, I have to agree with you--Sanna and After Dark! I have some hope that the Verona song might end up being good, though I don't think it will do very well.

How gorgeous did Sanna look in 2005? The white suit was great, too, though.

Schlagerboys said...

Sanna's getting a glittery frock out of the wardrobe for tomorrow night... can't wait to hear the song. Apparently it's a real schlager stomper... with a proper schlager key change, head turns and maybe a wind machine!