Danny – In the Club
❗ Personal Favourite

Stockholm.01.Danny

As much as I like this song, as did the Swedish voters, I didn’t really ever seeing this as a viable Eurovision contender. I would have guessed that Danny’s voice would have given out before May but either way the juries votes were all over the plaice, only receiving one 12 from Germany. A decent second place song, but there could have been better choices…

Sara Varga – Spring för livet
❗ Personal Favourite
Stockholm.02.Sara Varga

Feel good favourite hands down. Despite the fact that it had to come through the second chance round, Sara is the most charming of all the contestants and has a song that speaks to people. It’s easy to relate to, and it’s eloquently presented. Jury wise, international people didn’t get it, but I did. This was a top 5 song to me, certainly not second last.

The Moniker – Oh My God!
❗ Personal Favourite
Stockholm.03.The Moniker

A strong third place performance from the ever-surprised pseudonym man. I’m not surprised by any means that this song was popular. It could appeal to the boyfriends of all the teeny boppers watching, but also to general population as a relatable feel good song. It has a beat and it’s happy-sounding.

Brolle – 7 Days and 7 Nights
Stockholm.04.Brolle

Words can not express how happy I am that this song crashed and burned and came dead last in the competition. First of all, how did this qualify? Second of all, did he really think that he could get on with generic rock-and-roll and a bit of charm? Thankfully people saw how I do, and international juries didn’t feel it either. Frankly speaking I never liked it, and I’m disgusted that it took another possible contender from the final.

Linda Bengtzing – E det fel på mej?
❗ Personal Favourite
Stockholm.05.Linda Bengtzing

Linda wants it so bad, but is coming across as a little desperate. She returned to a genre that she’s good at, but the Swedes didn’t really relate to it at all. Gaining points from Croatian Jury and the Russian Jury make me wonder what they were thinking, but I do like this song. If anyone would have want it the most, Linda would have come top 3 for sure, however, I thick there were stronger songs with stronger possibilities for excelling in Düsseldorf.

Nicke Borg – Leaving Home
❗ Personal Favourite
Stockholm.06.Nicke Borg

This song is mainstream and brings out the minute and unproportional man in me. It’s rough, it’s emotional, it’s exactly what it looks like, no frill either. An eigth place finish guarantees that it wasn’t a huge pull with the audiences, but even less so with the juries. only San Marino really gave it some point value, which is curious.. Never the less, it will be a radio hit, though not a Melodifestivalen winner.

Swingfly – Me and My Drum
Stockholm.07.Swingfly

This song still irritates me, and I’m baffled as to why it end up in the top 5. It seemed to get voting from a few juries, but it was the greater televising results that equalized it and brought it up. Do I think that it was better than Sara Varga, no. Do I think it was better than Linda Bengtzing, no; so what exactly was so special about this song?

Sanna Nielsen – I’m in Love
❗ Personal Favourite
Stockholm.08.Sanna Nielsen

This song grew on me, a lot. I was listening to it while out on evening walks over the last weeks and it really made me feel good inside. You know that warm feeling that you get when a song really speaks to you? Well yeah, anyways, it was well liked by the fan and the majority of the juries so it’s no surprise that it came in the top 4. People have been talking a lot more about how she’s becoming the schlager-dröttning and the dream-bot of Melodifestivalen. They are both positive things and I agree. I just feel bad that she can’t quite get the win, with all her attempts.

The Playtones – The King
Stockholm.09.The Playtones

This song still irritates me and I’m horrified that it came in sixth place out of the whole group. They got points from every jury bar Norway, and I can see how it’s a mainstream song that feels good, but the group itself really irritate me. They remind me of an egocentric me me me performance and group. More value from juries than televotes, thankfully.

Eric Saade – Popular
=> Winner
❗ Personal Favourite
Stockholm.10.Eric Saade

Well Malmös dreamboat teeny-bopper-wet-dream did it, and if he hadn’t then we’d have enough tension (sexual and otherwise) to stress out the country for another year next year. Hopefully this means that we don’t have to worry about another dreamboat next year, but who knows for sure? I think it’s a good song, and I think that it’s really catchy. It will be able to get a bunch of votes from some sure-in places, but really can being popular in Sweden spill over to being popular in the greater European communities? Only time will tell…

That brings us to the end of this year’s Swedish Preselection and the largest of it’s kind. Fantastic month long process, and fantastic songs, fantastic choreographing, fantastic hosts, fantastic musical acts.

With the highly anticipated matches of the second chance round, needless to say I was highly disappointed and shocked. Here’s why:

Sundsvall.00.01 ScoreboardQuarterfinal 1: Jenny Silver vs. Love Generation
Sundsvall.00.02 Jenny Silver & Love Generation

In by far the most contested battles of the evening, my favourite Jenny Silver lost out to Love Generation and not by much. Both songs are fantastic and it’s sad to see the classic ABBA influenced schlager go up against the dance-pop contestant. Either way I would be happy for them to go onto the final, but the road never ends up being as straightforward.

Quarterfinal 2: Loreen vs. Sara Varga
Sundsvall.00.03 Loreen & Sara Varga

Unsurprisingly Sara won this contest probably quite handily. Loreen’s song is good but it’s highly introverted that it’s almost awkward. Sara herself seems quite introverted and unsure of herself, but the song is a feel good favourite, and it’s no surprise that it beat out it’s competition.

Quarterfinal 3: The Moniker vs. Linda Pritchard
Sundsvall.00.04 The Moniker & Linda Pritchard

I am shocked beyond belief at the Swedish voting this evening. The absolutely epic ballad (no matter how better she sang before) still should have outplayed the corny happy-go-lucky song of The Moniker. I like both songs, but the power and versatility of Linda’s song puts goosebumps down my spine. Absolutely robbed in my opinion.

Quarterfinal 4: Shirley’s Angels vs. Pernilla Andersson
Sundsvall.00.05 Shirley's Angels & Pernilla Andersson

The raging homosexual in me cries out for this loss. The awesomely popular Shirley Clamp and her sexy ceorigoraphs were no match for Pernilla and her guitar. I like both the songs, but I feel like Shirley’s Angels fits Melodifestivalen a little bit more. Perhaps given the amount of English songs in the final, the Swedes needed to push something more Svensk through.

Semifinal 1: Love Generation vs. Sara Varga
Sundsvall.00.06 Love Generation & Sara Varga

This is the feel good favourite win of the year I think. The fact that Sara could fend off the popular dance song is amazing and I’m glad that the Swedish public was able to choose the better song. No matter how much it sounds like I prefer the latter, I absolutely love the former!

Semifinal 2: The Moniker vs. Pernilla Andersson
Sundsvall.00.07.The Moniker & Pernilla Andersson

As surprised as the rest of us, The Moniker becomes the second finalist tonight. It’s good, and seemingly popular, but if that’s the case, why didn’t it go directly through Globen instead of taking out the other good songs in the second chance round? :crazy:

So despite the phone number fiasco of the wrong numbers showing and SVT announcing that it didn’t affect the voting (right…! 8|), the results could have been worse. One good song gets through and likely will flop in the final for lack of excitement, and the other is okayish and will probably end up being in the top 5. Only one more week!

It’s time so make my salute to the people that lead us through our programming: Marie Serneholt and Rickard Olsson. They have both done a fantastic job at this year’s Melodifestivalen, and will continue to do so for the Andra Chansen round and the Grand Final. I did however need to take a moment to salute one of them in particular, for whom I’ve developed quite a fancy.

Luleå.00-01.Rickard OlssonGöteborg.00-07.Rickard Olsson

Rickard Olsson is a newly aquired journalist for SVT, and I welcome him with open arms. In fact, he even went so far as to show his arms in the first semifinal in Luleå. All I can say is that I like what I see. He’s funny, he’s got a great voice, he’s from Gävle (yay like mumzy!). He really cleans up too, wearing the cute suits and he can actually sing too.

Linköping.00-05.Rickard OlssonMalmö.00-01.Rickard Olsson

In the semifinal in Linköping, Rickard got nice and personal with Fredrik Kempe, sharing secrets and being a little flirty throughout, but it all got better in Malmö where he pointed right to me. I’m quite smitted. He’s a nicely aged man, very amusing, very cute, and has the most adorable ears. I recently even had the honour of getting a tweet from him (shown below).

Twitter.01.Rickard olsson

If it isn’t already clear I’m RIckard’s biggest fan in Canada, without a doubt. He heard that I said it, and in his disbelief managed to at least tweet back. I had a famous person tweet me, I will now swoon. If there are any eurofans out there, namely people that I know people, thou must share my love with Ricke in the same way that you shared my love with a certain Danish person…!

Traveling to the southern suburb of Copenhagen, Malmö (I’m joking – well only half joking – I love you Malmö!) is the location of the final semi final of this year’s competition, highlighting the final eight songs of the thirty two.

Melody Club – The Hunter
Malmö.01.Melody Club

What can I really say about this? You’d think that a fairly well established band that tops the charts would be able to put something decent together but I really and truly don’t understand this piece. The English singing is absolutely horrendous and the text is nearly incomprehensible, plus I have to look at a main singer that looks like he’s having an epileptic shock every few minutes, while he keeps his mouth so widely open that he’d catch flies in it if it was outdoors in the summer. The song itself sounds like a glamour-rock number, but I don’t understand the chess setting on stage. The whole thing is incoherent and lacks fluidity, and reminds of a 3 minute long spas attack!

Julia Alvgard – Better or Worse
Malmö.02.Julia Alvgard

I can see on some levels how this song could have qualified from the web-joker final, but it really lacks a lot of what I consider to be important things to qualify. It’s deacon vocally, though not catchy at all. It doesn’t really display strengths of the singer, or has anything catchy about it. It’s ernest, but withholding so it’s difficult to judge really what the intent of the whole thing is. It simply doesn’t have enough of the “stuff” to make it really do anything major for me.

Lasse Stefanz – En blick och nånting händer
Malmö.03.Lasse Stefanz

I am probably going to be barking up the wrong tree in this one, but wow. I’ve read many reviews about people liking this song and thinking it’s awesome and one of their favourites, but it leaves a horrible taste in my mouth. Perhaps it’s the fact that I [u]loathe[/u] fat people. I close my eyes and the song makes me think of the great Arvingarna, but when I open them I don’t see an attractive boyband, but rather a group of old men doing a dansband song, which is cheesy and blah. Yeah I’m being incredibly superficial, but how am I supposed to feel when someone is singing and I can see their face-fat rolling around on screen? The whole thing for me was just a big mess, and I’m flabbergasted that Swedish people voted this to the second-voting round? Are you freaking kidding me?!

Linda Pritchard – Alive
=> Andra Chansen
❗ Personal Favourite
Malmö.04.Linda Pritchard

Wow; just plain wow. I liked Linda Pritchard last year and though she was robbed, and when I say robbed I mean like robbed to the greatest extent. This year she made it better, and although “You’re Making Me Hot Hot Hot!” remains my personal life-anthem (yes for real!), this is by far the best ballad that I’ve heard in a really long time. On the theme of ballads, this one outranks by a long shot my old favourite from this year (Simon Forsberg’s “Tid att andas”). This is ballsy to say the least; standing alone on stage singing a painfully and goose-bump causing song, a dress that clearly makes her look beautiful, a voice to send chills down your spine, and the clear disbelief of her qualification. Sweden has been really judgemental recently about the ballads, but thankfully the best one of the year has a chance.

Anders Fernette – Run
Malmö.05.Anders Fernette

Despite being a past winner of Fame Factory and releasing singles on a regular basis since around 2000 the song really leaves a lot to give. The song will clearly do well on the radio I think, but it’s not to my entire liking. The way he looks on stage makes me think of Joachim Bergström’s awkward choreography in 2004: a straight guy that can’t dance, ultimately (and doesn’t even try!). The best part about this song is the arial dancers and one note of the chorus, which is a little different tuning wise each time. The final commentary I have about this number is that the douche-bag aurora surrounds this guy a lot. It’s something that I can’t quite put my finger on: maybe the skin, the hair, the clothes? He appears to me, like one of those people I’d never want to encounter. Thankfully for me it crashed and burned in eighth place. Guess it’s maybe the ego?

Linda Bengtzing – E det fel på mej
=> Globen
❗ Personal Favourite
Malmö.06.Linda Bengtzing

Linda is back and she’s got quite a punch this year. She turns back the clock to her older schlager hit songs and it clearly does her justice. Dressed looking like a canary in yellow, with ridiculously large boots (which I think would have been better to just wear yellow heels), she rocks the screen and wants it beyond belief. Having been disappointed in past years for various reasons: not doing well, forgotten the lyrics to her song, and doing an awkward song, she managed to learn from her experience and pack some punch. I’ve never seen someone want it so bad, and guess what? She outright won her ticket to Stockholm; congrats and best of luck, Linda!

Nicke Borg – Leaving Home
=> Globen
❗ Personal Favourite
Malmö.07.Nicke Borg

There is an elephant in the room and nobody’s talking about it. Despite being the one in the group that clearly doesn’t fit in it appears that Nicke Borg embraced his own sleaze rock genre and really presented a good song. The vocals are too raspy for me, too whiny, and yet I find myself drawn to this: no wonder people voted for it. The visuals are a bit much: tattoos aren’t my thing and being covered in them is intimidating, a guy that clearly needs a stylist to look good, and a simple song with a microphone, but it got the job done. I think towards the second verse I started thinking to myself: “My God, this could actually win?like the whole thing” and although it’s a bit outlandish to say that now, I think it’s totally within the realm of possibility. Disbelief from himself, and knowing nothing to say, I think it’s clear that the boyfriends of all the girls watching Melodifestivalen this year voted, and it’s clear for whom they voted!

Love Generation – Dance Alone
=> Andra Chansen
❗ Personal Favourite
Malmö.08.Love Generation

Holy shit, this stuff is FIERCE! I had no idea what to expect, but damn the final number of the competition packed a punch. This song is everything I could ever want in a song: fantastic vocals, amazing choreography, amazing lighting, the best outfits of the year, beautiful women, and a song with amazingly catchy tune and lyrics, and even the added bonus of a great message: dance alone. It makes me want to dance alone quite literally, and provides the beats for it. This song will be all over the radio, without a doubt, and the fact that it’s in Andra Chansen and not in the final is depressing. What makes it worse, is that Love Generation set themselves up for a direct hit in Andra Chansen with my other favourite: Jenny Silver. Cruel how the world works out isn’t it?

It was a wish-wash night, but I think it was a fantastic show in comparison to some other ones I’ve seen. It had some clear radio hits, and clear winners; but will one of them emerge as the overall champion? Only time will tell.

What can I say, I’m simply smitten! The mystery dancer of Melodifestivalen 2011 made another appearance on Saturday evening, but this time only appearing in a couple of acts. It’s so sad to only see him appear a few times, but it’s something better than nothing. If you have no idea whom I’m talking about, please see this link (click here) and view photos below.

Linköping.00-01.Mystery DancerLinköping.00-02.Mystery Dancer

As shown above, his first appearance of the evening is with Sara Lumholt’s performance of “Enemy.” He struts his stuff in a seemingly blue flight-attendant outfit, and effectively conveys himself as a competent dancer. Quite honestly, I’ve noticed throughout the last few weeks, that he’s very dedicated and one of the few dancers that are fluid, and actually seem like they are into the dancing, as opposed to just performing as a part of the act!

Linköping.00-03.Mystery DancerLinköping.00-04.Mystery Dancer

Justly so, our mystery dancer makes another appearance in Eric Saade’s number “Popular.” Although he only shows up at the end, post-glass-breaking, and without white shoes like others (snob snob), he still busts a move to make the show complete. It wouldn’t have been right to have a wet dream like Eric Saade not dance with a wet dream like the mystery dancer! The second photo is actually a mistake guilty pleasure; as you can see there is a bit more skin showing than normal, but also what looks like a pseudo-crotch grab! haa!

Okay okay enough enough I won’t be creepy any more; but I have to announce that I have found out the name of this dancer, and will create another ode to him in the near future, revealing his awesomeness to the world.

Do dancers have agents? Do they have websites or fan pages dedicated to them? If not, I think my blog just became his…