A Supersized Serving of Scandipop: My Top 50 Melodifestivalen Entries, 2006-2015! (#50-#31)

Hallå, och välkommen till…um…nope, still not quite at the point where I can string together an entire introduction i Svenska. But I’ll get there. Possessing such a skill would have been ultra-appropriate today, though, given the subject matter of this post. There’s no need for me to explain it to you – the title tells you everything you need to know. Well, apart from one or two or three teeny tiny things:

  • Melodifestivalen is far and away my favourite pre-ESC national final (which may be cliché, but I don’t give a crap) so I’ll take any opportunity to celebrate its sheer sensational-ness. I’ve never posted a Melfest ranking before, so with that in mind – plus the fact that the 2016 edition of the show is creeping ever closer – I’m considering this window of time before NF season crazy-time begins as an opportunity more golden than Herreys’ shiny boots.
  • I realise that a Top 50 of Melfest spanning 1959 (the year of its inception) to present would have been more spectacular, but there’s just so much magnificent music to choose from, even limiting myself to the last ten years was a challenge. Besides, I’m far more familiar with the entries from 2006 onwards – i.e. the year I discovered the definitions of ‘Eurovision’ and ‘national finals’. You can, however, expect a more vintage view of the comp in the future.
  • There are a lot of entries from the last two/three years of Melfest in this first installment of the countdown, but I can assure you that trend does not (completely) continue in the #30-11 and Top 10 episodes. Just FYI.

Now, with that trio of housekeeping points taken care of, let’s get started! I’ve embedded some videos of the listed tracks below, but if you want to see and watch them all in one place, check out this playlist.

Sverige (and everywhere else)…vi har ett resultat.

Well, some of it, anyway.

 

Melfest50a

 

#50 | Jag Är Fri (Manne Leam Frijje) by Jon Henrik Fjällgren (2015) No, I’m not joiking. As much as I love the standard Scandipop fare Melfest predominantly serves up, it was refreshing to have something on the NF’s most recent programme that managed to be super-Swedish without *Googles the songwriters just in case* having Thomas G:son’s name attached to it. Jag Är Fri could be the theme song for a tourist campaign urging us all to visit Lapland – and it totally works on me. I wonder if I could squeeze in a side trip while I’m i Sverige?

 

#49 | På Väg by Abalone Dots (2012)

 

#48 | Don’t Stop Believing by Mariette (2015) If it hadn’t been for the extremely predictable lyrics peppering this track from Mariette – and the presence of Måns + Stick Måns in Melfest 2015, of course – I’d have happily said ‘Si!’ to Sweden sending a cool, contemporary ballad-but-not-quite kind of pop song to Vienna. My favourite thing about this is how dynamic and drama-packed it is, without ever being OTT. It’s got a great melody, and overall, isn’t half as cheesy as you might expect a song called Don’t Stop Believing to be.

 

#47 | Make Me (La La La) by Dinah Nah (2015)

 

#46 | Stay The Night by Alcazar (2009) It’d practically be illegal to put together a list like this and NOT include Alcazar, unless you’re the President of the Anti-Schlager Society. Now, I’m not exactly heading up the Pro-Schlager Party, but I’ve always found Alcazar’s sound-alike Melfest entries to be infectiously irresistible. Stay The Night (the superior version of 2014’s Blame It On The Disco) is so textbook, you could sing it in your sleep even if you’d heard a minute-long snippet and nothing more. But there’s a certain appeal in such familiarity…and in that freaking catchy chorus.

 

#45 | Stormande Hav by Timoteij (2012)

 

#44 | Begging by Anton Ewald (2013) One of several surprise successes of Melodifestivalen 2013 (both Anton and Robin Stjernberg failed to qualify direkt til final, only to emerge victorious from Andra Chansen and finish 4th and 1st respectively), Begging became a big success in the Swedish charts too, and I understand why. Produced to perfection and not as derivative as your average dance track, it’s a frantically-paced club banger that I think holds its own without Anton busting many a move to add interest – partly because in studio, his vocals don’t suffer for the sake of enthusiastic pelvic thrusting. Forget about his comeback track Natural (although I personally liked that too)…it was during his debut as a frontman that he had the best musical weapon at his disposal.

 

#43 | Hello Goodbye by Erik Segerstedt & Tone Damli (2013)

 

#42 | Sean Den Förste Banan by Sean Banan (2012) GUILTY PLEASURE ALERT. I never wanted to enjoy this – even considering my crappy taste in movies and books, it should have been too low-brow for me – but what can I say? I’m easily swayed by an ear worm, and SDFB is nothing if not one heck of an ear worm. Also, bananas are my favourite fruit, and Sean has a penchant for them too, so…there’s that.

 

#41 | Falling by State of Drama (2013)

 

#40 | För Din Skull by Kalle Johansson (2015) The pre-comp Svensktoppen Nästa winners always get a raw deal in Melfest, methinks – never advancing anywhere (they’re lucky if they don’t come last in their semis). Still, I’m always a fan of their entries, and Kalle’s is no exception because it is adorable, dammit. Retro-flavoured pop doesn’t always float my boat, but För Din Skull (For Your Sake) is tinged, rather than soaked, with a slightly Sixties flavour, which lends itself very well to the Swedish language. I also really like the sound of Kalle’s voice, so all in all, this entry is sounding good, sugar (to me, at least).

 

#39 | I’ll Be Fine by Molly Pettersson Hammar (2015)

 

#38 | Bröder by Linus Svenning (2014) Before he informed us that Forever Starts Today, Linus proved that you don’t have to opt for a ballad if you want to move people – move them straight to the nearest box of tissues, in this case. Written for him by Fredrik Kempe about the death of Linus’ brother (hence the title), Bröder is far more rocky than most tributes to a lost loved one. It does start out in ballad territory, giving you a chance to notice how pretty the melody is, before upping the ante and turning hard(er)core. I loved Bröder from the first listen, felt the emotion behind it, and practically jumped for joy when it scored a second chance and made it to the 2014 final.

 

#37 | Around The World by Dr Alban feat. Jessica Folcker (2014)

 

#36 | Möt Mig I Gamla Stan by Magnus Carlsson (2015) A year ago, I would NEVER have considered including this song in my top fifty. After all, it was Magnus “I Can’t Feel My Face (Because of all the Botox)” Carlsson crashing Melfest yet again, with yet another been-there-heard -that schlager number. All of those things remain true, but the song has wormed its way into my brain and affections over time. Sometimes, when I’m feeling particularly superficial, all I want out of my music is a catchy tune. On that, Möt Mig I Gamla Stan delivers, and y’all can bet I’ll be singing the shiz out of it when I’m actually wandering around Gamla Stan.

 

#35 | Red by EKO (2014)

 

#34 | One By One by Elize Ryd & Rickard Söderberg (2015) Robbed of a place in Andra Chansen last year (IMO), this poperatic confection worked to a degree I didn’t expect. Sure, Rickard comes off a little too showy to be taken seriously at times, but Elize’s vocal saves the day, and the two do manage to mesh for the most part. One By One itself has a nice mix of light and shade, verses that are as interesting as the choruses, and a show-stopping money note from Rickard, prior to chorus no. 2, which gives me goosebumps.

 

#33 | Living To Die by Andreas Johnson (2015)

 

#32 | Yes We Can by Oscar Zia (2014) High School Musical met Melodifestivalen two years ago, when Oscar followed up his backing-singer-for-Behrang-Miri gig with a song about dancing in his underwear. Well, it was about other stuff too, but that was mentioned – and since it was okay for Lena to divulge the deets of her knickers to millions, I say it was okay for Oscar too. I feel like this entry is a rare one to fangirl over, but if I am one of just a few who’d say yes to Yes We Can, then so be it. This song’s epic! It packs a punch, it’s fun to sing along to…you can really let your hair down and rock out to it. And it reminds me of summer, making it a summer anthem, which automatically makes it awesome.

 

#31 | Euphoria by Loreen (2012)

 

 

Talk about ending on a (euphoric) high! Although, if you’re a massive Loreen fan, you might think seeing her ranked outside of the Top 10 is the lowliest of lows. In that case, don’t worry, because she might just crop up again in the countdown *insert mysterious, cliffhanger-type music here*.

 

I hope you enjoyed this supersized serving of Scandipop, with some Scandirock and Scandiotherstuff thrown in for good measure, even if you disagreed with some/all of my choices. Once again, here’s the full playlist:

 

Now’s the time for you to post your own #31-#50, or simply have your say on my song selections, in the comments below. Go on…do it for Christer Björkman.

I’ll be back in a few days’ time with more Melfest goodness – specifically, unveiling the Top 50 from #30 through to #11. As Anton Ewald would (probably) say, I’m begging *pelvic thrust* you to drop by and count them down with me!

 

 

2015sig

 

 

About Jaz

I'm Jaz, I'm 25, and I'm 110% Eurovision-OBSESSED. The contest is one big party, and I like to keep it going 365 days a year - that's why I write about anything and everything ESC on my blog. Come join the fun, and I promise you'll never have a nul-point experience! www.eurovisionbyjaz.com/

Posted on January 7, 2016, in Melodifestivalen and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. Hej hej Jaz!

    ‘So I’m back to the velvet underground, back to the floor that I love’:

    THAT IS MELODIFESTIVALEN!

    I completely agree with you on Melfest being the BEST national final selection shows in Eurovisionland for a long time now. So I am really happy about this countdown of yours, and I am always glad to see we are sharing so many of these great songs as our favourites, without knowing.

    At first I want to shortly comment on those songs that are not included in my list of favourite Mello songs from the past ten years. And then secondly, I will count down my #50 through to #31 of my Melfest top 50.

    But firstly, the ones that didn’t manage to be a part of my countdown:

    #49 Abalone Dots: That is a good song, I like it too! I am always in favour if a girls band plays some real instruments during their performance on stage (although it may be fake?!). I like the melody, I like the instruments, but somehow this was not really that stuck in my mind. I had already forgotten it, maybe because it was not super memorable to me, I don’t know?! But good to see it back in your countdown.

    #44 & #32 Anton Ewald & Oscar Zia: I am actually not a fan of them. I think they both look like little brothers of Mr. ‘Manboy’ Saade, and their songs always sound like ‘Pop Idol’ winning songs which I am almost never fond of. I also think that both of them don’t have great voices, so it’s always up to their performances and not the songs. I also hope that Oscar Zia will come up with something different than that to surprise us with his voice this year, maybe a ballad – I would like that!
    But I understand that Melfest always has something like that in their competition, because it’s a family programme that delivers something for all ages and every musical taste, and that’s a good thing!

    #42 Sean Banan: That’s probably the song I like least in your countdown. I am always biased about these fun entries, because I normally only laugh once about each one of them. The second time I hear them, I often find them boring, embarrassing or annoying. Something like that should never win Melfest, IMO! It would be a waste of greater talents and better voices, me thinks.

    #40 Kalle Johannsson: A nice attempt, but the song reminded me strongly on the cheesy Eurovision schlager of the 80’s, like the Herreys or the Bobbysocks! I also found his performance semi-professional and less experienced. And the fact that I didn’t remember that song, although it was in the competition last year, shows that I didn’t have much love for this.

    #35 EKO: I liked this one too, and I was soo close to put it up into my countdown as well. But unlikely I only had 50 places for so many good entries, this one had to jump over the ‘countdown fence’, being not included. That’s a shame, but I couldn’t take them all in, unfortunately!

    #34 Elize Ryd & Rickard Söderberg: I can’t help it, but there was something in this song that striked me. It almost sounded like ‘The Phantom of the Opera’ (just without Mr. Lloyd Webber at the piano!) and it all looked like ‘Beauty and the beast’ (although I found Rickard much more scary than the beast in the musical!). It probably was the ‘Beauty and the beast’-looks that striked me more than the rather modern ‘Phantom of the opera’-sound?!

    #31 Loreen: Due to the reduced number of places, I skipped over all of the winning songs of Melodifestivalen, because we already discussed them earlier in our top 10 Swedish Eurovision entries of all-time. So this gave me the opportunity to mention some more songs from former Melfest years that are worth to review again, IMO! You know that Loreen would probably be my #1 in this countdown, but that does not mean, she won’t appear in my top 50 countdown!

    So now it’s time to start the list of my top 50 entries of Melodifestivalen from the past ten year. And here is my ‘supersized’ Mello countdown, bitte schön:

    #50 Marie Lindberg – Trying to recall (2007):
    Well, this wasn’t a favourite of mine during the Melfest final of 2007! It looked a bit like as if Christer Björkman asked his first secretary to do a little song for the Melfest competition, because there was still one place left. Her minimalistic performance wasn’t all memorable, but I liked the song. And since I never skip this song on my Melfest 58-13 CD, I think this should have a place in my countdown. For me it’s a grower, since it always reminds me of “Stay (I missed you)” by Lisa Loeb from the 90’s!

    #49 Magnus Bäcklund – The name of love (2006):
    I liked Magnus much as one part of ‘Fame’, so this is not a big surprise that I like this song of him too. I think he’s got a good voice and the right charisma for the Eurovision stage. Maybe he will return to Eurovision one day, and that wouldn’t be the worst thing, IMO!

    #48 Molly Pettersson Hammar – I’ll be fine (2015):
    100% agreement to your description! Molly looked pretty good in her dress, she’s got a powerful soul voice, amazing live vocals and a really catchy song. In two words: Eurovision package! Whatever happened that night that she didn’t go through til finalen, the qualification was robbed, maybe by that technical innovation?! I’m already pretty excited about her new song for Melfest 2016.

    #47 Erik Segerstedt & Tone Damli – Hello goodbye (2013):
    Again I agree! That was one of the lovely songs in a rather lowlight competition of 2013. I often have a soft spot for singer/songwriter ballads like this one. Tone & Erik were vocally on point and did a pretty good job on stage, IMO! If I had something to criticize, it would’ve been Tone’s white dress that looked like my grandma’s small crochet tablecloth ;).
    BTW, I also liked the re-done Erik/Mattias version of this song which worked pretty well for me too. Real friends they are, I guess!

    #46 Andreas Johnson & Carola Häggkvist – One love (2008):
    No countdown without these two Melfest veterans! I did not count how many times Andreas already tried to win this competition and go to Eurovision, probably four or five times, I guess!
    So he is one of the Swedish artists that really stands in the row to win and who would deserve a success, just like Sanna! Ridiculously he was finally overtaken by his duet partner, Miss Eurovision, in 2006. Maybe that was the start for the idea to work on a song together, who knows?!

    #45 State of Drama – Falling (2013):
    Complete agreement here too! The vocal performance stood out, and it still is a great song that I like to listen to quite often. It is one of the songs that I always remember when I think of Melfest songs. Always a favourite of mine when it comes up to Melfest compilations I do for my own pleasure! 😉

    #44 The Moniker – Oh My God! (2011):
    Okay, so now here comes my (Sean Banan) guilty pleasure song in the countdown. I actually did not like the song during Melfest 2011. But since then it probably is my strongest grower of them all.
    The song’s a bit crazy and weird in a good sense, it has a catchy melody with earworm qualities and the colourful performance was funny, IMO! Oh my God, I like it! 🙂

    #43 Linus Svenning – Bröder (2014):
    Linus is one of the very talented young artists Sweden has at the moment. I really liked his first Melfest entry from 2014, because it was authentic and the song fitted him perfectly. I also liked ‘Tomorrow starts today’, but thought that the song and the performance wasn’t the right choice for Linus last year. That entry was a bit wasted in my opinion.

    #42 Dinah Nah – Make me LaLaLa (2015):
    YEEESSS! That song is so 90’s with its mixture of Euro Dance and Techno-style. As I was a fan of both, I also like ‘Make me LaLaLa’. A perfect pop anthem that is just right for the Euroclub in Stockholm, I guess!

    #41 Mickey Huskić – Izdajice /Traitors (2008):
    As I am always in favour with some good Balkan pop songs, this one belongs to my favourites of Melfest 2008. I think it’s a good mix of Balkan and Swedish pop and the artist was great in that performance where the staging reminded me a bit of “Leijla”. I also love it when Sweden shows its multi-cultural face with Melfest entries like this.

    #40 Agnes – Love love love (2009):
    This is a great pop song, too! It’s a nice reminiscence to the old 70’s disco era, and Agnes gave a perfect disco queen in her performance. I would guess that this one will come up in your countdown somewhere higher than #31?! Am I right???

    #39 Andreas Lundstedt – Move (2007):
    You are absolutely right: no countdown without Alcazar and of course Andreas Lundstedt! I also think that he would deserve a chance on Eurovision stage with so many attempts he already had at Melodifestivalen. ‘Move’ was one of his better solo attempts that I thought was catchy and groovy at the same time.

    #38 E.M.D. – Baby Goodbye (2009):
    If three great singers work together and do a great performance like this one was, it normally screams like “WINNING” song. I actually thought that Erik, Mattias and Danny were so much better than Malena Ernman who won the Melfest trophy in 2009.

    #37 Timoteij – Kom (2010):
    The name of this girl group always reminds me of that women hair shampoo called ‘Timotei’, ooops! What I like about this song is the Irish celtic/ethnic influence in it. It has a great melody and the instruments used in here are awesome. Apart from that, it sounds like an earworm I could always sing along to right after its first chorus. Compared to ‘Stormande Hav’, the one that you mentioned, I think ‘Kom’ is the better song of the two, but like both of them.

    #36 Brandur – Lullaby (2008):
    I am not a big fan of lullabies in general, but this is one I really like. Brandur from Estonia has the right voice, the looks and some very well performing backing singers for such a song. Well, sometimes I also like these silent moments on stage, when it’s performed in such a beautiful way.
    I loved Brandur’s close-up looks into the camera, his eyes are spellbinding, IMO!

    #35 Jessica Folcker – When love’s comin’ back again (2006):
    I am a fan of Jessica Folcker for many years now, ever since her debut album in the 90’s. Her song (and first hit) “How will I know (who you are)” belongs to my all-time favourite Swedish songs that I could listen to every day. This song WLCBA is another great song of her in which her soulful voice always moves me. I think she’s got a fantastic voice for songs in the likes of Edsilia Rombley, for example. I actually think that her attempt with Dr. Alban in “Around the world” lacked something, and both of their vocals were far away from being perfect. That probably was only the right song for Dr. Alban, not for Jessica, tbh! There was no reason to “Sing Hallelujah” to that! 😉

    #34 Måns Zelmerlöw – Hope and glory (2009)
    You already know, I am a Månster too! I liked all of his entries and performances at Melfest, but HAG was #3 out of 3, still one of the best songs in the line-up of 2009. But I can understand that it did not win (although much better than Malena Ernman), I would have chosen another song for Eurovision 2009 which will come up later in my countdown.
    And Måns already showed us the new slogan for Eurovision 2016, it will be: TAKE IT OFF! 🙂 with a big round of applause by Russia, since they chose it for their motto this year. But let’s face it: any other motto for the next Russian entry will be better than having another ‘love, peace and understanding’ message in their song, won’t it? ;-). At least I wouldn’t mind the Russian party (for everybody) with Sergey!!!

    #33 Sibel – That is where I’ll go (2008):
    Wow! That was an outstanding vocal performance and a beautiful ballad, too! I loved everything about Sibel and her song. That was one of my favourite moments in the Melfest final of 2008, and no doubt about that, the wind-machine was made for her (in that performance). This would’ve been a much better song for Serbia 2008 than ‘Hero’ was.

    #32 BWO – Temple of love (2006):
    This maybe is the most typical song in danceable Swedish Scandipop of them all. It’s a pretty good dance track that reminds me somehow of Belgium 2004 which I also like much. And with performances like this one can see the high standard of performing in Sweden which is always big fun to watch. Very good entertainment, IMO!

    #31 David Lindgren – Skyline (2013):
    And finally another one of my favourites of 2013! David Lindgren is one of my fave Swedish artists and I like both of his albums much. Although ‘Skyline’ sounded quite similar to his first Melfest entry, it was still one of the best songs that year. I am pretty pleased that he will return on Mello stage this year with hopefully another great song. I tell you a little secret: David will also be back in my countdown, somewhere MUCH higher! 😉

    So, that’s the first part of my top 50 Melfest entries of the past ten years. I am already excited about part 2 of your countdown and can’t wait to read it.

    So hopefully read you soon and

    Liebe Grüße aus Deutschland,

    Wolf 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Well, you certainly did your Melfest homework as instructed by my bossy self ;P Much appreciated! Your reward will be en route via email. I’m happy to have someone to count down with, and I figured we’d have at least a few songs in common.

      I am as excited as you are to hear Molly PH’s comeback track! I don’t think this will be a winning year for her (Ace and Molly S etc will probably put a stop to that) but hopefully it will be a qualifying year that makes up for App-Fail-Gate. I have a feeling she’ll be twice as fierce as she was last year, so we better watch out.

      ‘Hello Goodbye’ = DEFINITELY a high point of a terrible Melfest. It’s pretty obvious that Björkman wouldn’t mind Sweden doing the double when you compare the line-up of 2013 (a ‘NO WAY, we don’t want to host again!’ edition) to 2016. Not that we’ve heard the songs…but just judging on the names they’ve recruited and/or attracted for this year, it’s clear SVT are bringing their A-game. *jumps for joy*

      So happy to see someone else squeezing State of Drama on to their list! Their second song was pretty weak IMO – or maybe it just seemed that way in a stronger field. But ‘Falling’, even though it’s always sounded to me like it should be on the soundtrack of some American TV show about rebellious teenagers who’re played by thirty-year-olds, I love. Beautiful chorus.

      I wouldn’t judge you for The Moniker. I liked both of his entries (though not enough to put either in my Top 50). They’re totally crazy and weird in a good sense – examples of non-formulaic, not-so-cliché Swedish pop.

      When it comes to Agnes, all I will say is Malena for sure. ‘La Voix’ is the only Swedish entry from the last ten or fifteen years that I hate with a passion. I would have preferred ANYTHING to beat it to Eurovision.

      Yep, we’re both die-hard Månsters, and that’s why I continue conversing with you! JK. But it does help with the whole friendship/bonding thing. ‘Hope and Glory’ would be my 3rd-placed of MZW’s three entries too. ‘Cara Mia’ was similar, but superior. And ‘Heroes’ just eclipsed everything as far as I’m concerned!

      BWO = yes yes yes. I can’t say anything more at this point…

      I have to say, I’m kind of relieved that David Lindgren will reappear in your countdown – partly because I think he’s cute and I want to talk about him again, and partly because I think ‘Shout It Out’ was a heck of a lot better than ‘Skyline’. But I respect your right to enjoy that too 

      Merci again for putting together such an in-depth Top 50. I am as eager to see the rest of yours as you are to see mine. Part 2 will be up soon!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Oooooh, nice and eclectic, Jaazzzz!(O,mG – even more multiplying letters. Lookin’ bogan, sugar!).
    I won’t attempt an MF top 50 (yet!), but will try to have my MF top 15 ready by the time you post your MF top 10. Will any of my 15 be in your 50? — Timo will teijll … 😛

    Liked by 1 person

  1. Pingback: Another Supersized Serving of Scandipop: My Top 50 Melodifestivalen Entries, 2006-2015! (#30-#11) | Eurovision by Jaz

  2. Pingback: A (Final) Supersized Serving of Scandipop: My Top 50 Melodifestivalen Entries, 2006-2015! (The Top 10) | Eurovision by Jaz

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