Every year Sweden is having its lavish national final calls “Melodifestivalen”. In four semi finals, a second chance show and one grand final, the entire country is following this great event. Of course it all depends on the quality of the entries and the choice of singers and composer wether it’s a good year or not. This year has been quite an unusual one, as the songs were really crazy and could not all be taken seriously anymore. Maybe this is due to the fact that Sweden has been very successful with six victories, even two in this decade.
The coolest song with the most hit potential internationally has won the Swedish race: “Dance You Off” by Benjamin Ingrosso. This 20 years old guy was born in Dandery, north of Stockholm in 1997. He is the son of Pernilla Wahlgren, who is a popular singer in Sweden, who has participated in the Melodifestvalen for several times and Emilio Ingrosso a dancer and songwriter. No wonder that Emilio is inherited his talent for music and songwriting.
As a young boy Benjamin has already acted in a musical “Nils Karlsson Pyssling” and won the Melodifestivalen for Kids calls “Lilla Melodifestvalen" with the song “Hej Sofia” . He also participated in the Allsangen in Stockholm together with his mother Pernilla Wahlgren. During his youth he collected many experiences on stage. Now Benjamin is concentrating on his own music and songwriting. His first hit was “Fall In Love”. In 2017 he participated at the Melodifestivalen for the first time. His song “Good Lovin” place 5th. Benjamin Ingrosso is one of the most popular young singers in Sweden right now. He received several awards platinum and gold singles.
This year Benjamin could fulfil his dream, winning the Melodifestivalen with “Dance You Off”. Now he is going to represent Sweden at the ESC in Lisbon. The contemporary song is the perfect song for Benjamin as it’s groovy and danceable. It becomes obvious that Benjamin is a big fan of Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder and Hall & Oates. The song is perfectly fitting in our time and sets a new standard in ESC music. This entry will definitely do well in Lisbon.
Finals: 55 (12 since 2004)
Top 10: 39
Chances for Top 10: 67%
Chances for Final: 87%
Sweden had its debut in 1958 with “Lilla Stjärna” sung by Alice Babs, which made a fabulous 4th rank in Hilversum. But the first victory took a while, in 1974 ABBA could surprise the Europeans with the very contemporary song “Waterloo” for that decade. Unfortunately, the ABBA hype did not start immediately, but some years later in Sweden and Scandinavia and even beyond. ABBA made a world career, they have had many #1 songs even in the USA and Australia. The style of ABBA music has often been copied and many Swedish ESC songs sounded like ABBA and not only Swedish entries, even other countries copied that style. Not many people know that ABBA have even tried to enter the ESC with “Ring Ring” , which only came 3rd in the Melodifestivalen 1973.
After that big success the popular Swedish music, called “Swedish Schlager” has captured the entire world. Especially in Sweden there are “Schlagerkvälls” (only Swedish schlager is being played) in discotheques and bars. The Swedes are very keen on Eurovision and in particular in the Scandinavian entries. This is really worth to experience.
Over the years, Sweden has become one of the most successful countries in Eurovision. Not even the six winning songs became hits, also the lower ranked songs made it into European charts. The Swedish singer Frans could make a fabulous 5th with “If I Were Sorry” the host ESC in Stockholm 2016, but this song has become a real hit all over Europe is still being played at many radio stations. The Swedish music industry is one of the most successful in the world and the Melodifestivalen is now showing contemporary music which could be heard everywhere in the world.
6x 1st place
ABBA | Waterloo (1974)
Herrey's | Diggi-loo Diggy-ley (1984)
Carola | Fångad Av En Stormvind (1991)
Charlotte Nilsson | Take Me To Your Heaven (1999)
Loreen | Euphoria (2012)
Måns Zelmerlöw | Heroes (2015)
1x 2nd place
Lill Lindfors and Svante Thurston | Nygammal Vals Eller Hip Man Svinaherde (1966)
6x 3rd place
Carola Häggkvist | Främling (1983)
Kikki Danielsson | Bra Vibrationer (1985)
Jan Johansen | Se På Mej (1995)
One More Time | Den Vilda (1996)
Eric Saade | Popular (2011)
Sanna Nielsen | Undo (2014)
“April April” | Lill-Babs, Rank 14, Cannes 1961
“Härliga Sommardag“ | Family Four, Rank 13, Edinburgh 1972