So, yesterday we went along to SVT’s latest Melodifestivalen press conference, to hear the announcements and to meet the artists. Yesterday evening we uploaded our interviews with Le Kid, Jenny Silver, and Anniela, and below you can read our chats with Danny Saucedo, Sanna Nielsen, and Loreen. Tomorrow comes Dilba!
scandipop: Danny – second time in Melodifestivalen, but first time on your own. Why did you decide to do it this year when you’re right in the middle of an EMD album?
Danny: Ah, you’re good! Erm, I wanted to do it because I know that EMD works well, I know that. It works, it runs perfectly. And as a former solo artist, I just wanted to know that I’d still ‘got it’. So I’m really excited to find out if I still can do the solo thing. So that’s why I’m doing this!
scandipop: I suppose you just need to re-identify yourself, don’t you? Cos it’s been two years since your last solo record.
Danny: Exactly! And as a matter of fact, EMD is a group of three solo guys, so we all have our own individual styles, and I just wanna tag my style, you know.
scandipop: Cos it is a world away from EMD isn’t it?!
Danny: Yes, it’s more edgier I would say, and I just wanna make people aware of that. So this is a great opportunity for artists to do that.
scandipop: Sort of like a ”it’s me again, remember me, I do club music, I don’t just sit perched on a stool singing ballads!”
Danny: Exactly, that’s it. I just wanna get out there again and do my thing. And right after Melodifestivalen, we’re gonna go on a tour together as EMD. And then right after that, I’m gonna do a solo tour over the summer. It’ll be a lot of both.
scandipop: You’re gonna be tired!
Danny: Yeah, I will, but I’m looking forward to it.
scandipop: And is there gonna be a third album released after Melodifestivalen perhaps?
Danny: A solo one? Yes, I’m working on it. So I’ll probably release like a half an album or something, an EP. And then do something with EMD in the autumn.
scandipop: And you’ve recorded ‘In Your Eyes’, a cover of the song by The Attic. Is that gonna be released as a single in Sweden?
Danny: Yes, it is.
scandipop: Before Melodifestivalen?
Danny: Yes, I think on Friday.
scandipop: Ah ok, I see. So ‘In Your Eyes’ is the gentle reintroduction, ‘In The Club’, your Melodifestivalen song, is the big reaffirmation, and then there’s an EP afterwards. And obviously we can tell from the title that ‘In The Club’ is gonna be quite clubby. But is it similar in sound to your first two albums, or is it gonna be something a lot different?
Danny: It’s something more urban. Actually the music that I did myself before my first album, before ‘Tokyo’, before Idol and everything, I was totally into hiphop and r&b. So I’m not changing what I have, I’m just adding the urban beats and flavours.
scandipop: And of course these days those two genres go so well together anyway, urban and dance.
Danny: Exactly. And that’s great. I’m thankful that all the Amercian artists are now copying European pop music, so now we’re doing the same, but just copying their r&b stuff!
scandipop: Ok, well I look forward to hearing it!
Danny: Thank you!
scandipop: So Sanna, it’s your return to Melodifestivalen. And it’s like a heroes return after you did so well last time with ‘Empty Room’.
scandipop: But I think everyone wants to know really, is it gonna be a ballad like ‘Empty Room’ or is it gonna be more uptempo and schlager like what people were used to hearing from you before?
Sanna: It’s not gonna be a ballad next year, no. With ‘Empty Room’ it was such a huge success, and I actually didn’t plan for this to happen. I didn’t plan to do Melodifestivalen next year because I celebrate 15 years as an artist next year, so I have other plans! But when I heard this song, ‘I’m In Love’, it is very uptempo and I just became very happy – like wow, this is exactly the song to be sung in Melodifestivalen, and also the beginning of my celebration of 15 years as an artist. And I also believe that my audience and my fans, they will enjoy this kind of music, because I get to really sing out. And from what I’ve heard from my fans, they love to hear me sing out! And to have a great melody. And the refrain in this song is so powerful. You can’t hide from it, you know, you can’t walk away from it. And that’s the greatest thing about this song. And unlike ‘Empty Room’, this is a very happy song. ‘Empty Room’ was very sad, and that was a different experience with different emotions that I had to show. But this time I get to just go out on stage and be as happy as I am!
scandipop: And with it being such an uptempo song, will it have a really energetic performance?
Sanna: Well because it’s so uptempo, and because I’ve been in Melodifestivalen six times now, I really really want to do something that’s totally unexpected. Not to do the expected, you know, when you do an uptempo. So we are working on that, because I do wanna give something to my fans that says, here is a new side of me that they haven’t seen yet. So we are working on that, yes.
scandipop: Is there a key change by the way?!
Sanna: In this song there is a key change, yes, ha ha ha!
scandipop: Excellent news! Ok, so this year you’ve released the new singles ‘Devotion’ and ‘Part Of Me’. And you’ve got ‘I’m In Love’ coming up too of course. Does that mean that we can expect a new album from you in March when the contest is over?
Sanna: Oh yeah, the album is ready to be released actually.
scandipop: And is that a full studio album or is it a 15 years Greatest Hits collection?
Sanna: No, this is going to be a full studio album. And it’ll be released in either February or March! And then I have a tour beginning after that, my first solo tour. It’s a celebration of my 15 years as an artist and I’m SO looking forward to that! I’ve been longing for that tour for so long.
scandipop: For 15 years!
Sanna: Ha ha, 15 years yes! But yeah it’ll be in concert halls and everything, and that’s so huge for me.
scandipop: Well, welcome back to Melodifestivalen and enjoy the next few months!
Sanna: Thank you!
scandipop: Loreen, this is your first Melodifestivalen…
Loreen: Yes, my very first Melodifestivalen!
scandipop: But it’s not gonna be your first time on the the big televised stage is it, as you were in Idol before weren’t you?
Loreen: Yeah, that was actually 5 years ago now. 6 years ago, yeah. So this is my first thing after that.
scandipop: So what have you been doing with yourself all this time?
Loreen: Developing my identity I would say. One thing that Idol taught me is that it’s very important to have an identity. To know what you wanna sing about and how you wanna sing it, with a touch of your own style. And on Idol you sing other people’s songs, so ha ha, I guess it had to take 5 years for me to find an identity of my own!
scandipop: And your own sound too of course. So what is the sound of your Melodifestivalen song, ‘My Heart Is Refusing Me’?
Loreen: It’s very much inspired by Björk. There’s a mix of organic music, house music and electro music. I mix a lot of strings too.
scandipop: Oh I love strings!
Loreen: Yeah I love strings too, ha ha!
scandipop: Especially in dance music.
Loreen: In dance music yeah. So it’s a house production and I’ve mixed it up with some strings and some piano. Particularly because this song was a ballad originally. It was a ballad and I was like, ‘’let’s put a nice beat behind it’’! So that’s the sound, a mixture of a lot of different stuff. It’s good! Ha ha! Something new, don’t you think?! Definitely new, ha ha!
scandipop: And you’re on Måns Zelmerlöw’s record label, is that right?
Loreen: Yeah, yeah. Actually they made this record company just to sign me, so I’m their first and their only signing, ha ha!
scandipop: And has he given you any Melodifestivalen tips, or have you tried to stay away from his schlager sound and just do your own thing?
Loreen: No actually, why we started to work together in the first place is that he’s a really good creator, he has a lot of great ideas and that was the way we started working. And so after that he created the whole record company and was like ‘’let’s do this’’! So he’s a really cool creator, although he’s a…ha ha….a schlager type of guy also.
scandipop: Ok. And when can we expect to hear more music from you besides Melodifestivalen? Will there be a single from you before then? Or an album directly afterwards?
Loreen: Hopefully there’ll be a single before then. And a really cool one too, a really crazy one. I think you’ll like it! If there’s time. There’s so much practice for this Melodifestivalen, it has to be perfect. But we’re a really cool team. We’re working with Bounce, the dance troupe too. So yeah we have a really cool team. And yeah, I think there’ll be an album afterwards too.
scandipop: Well thank you and good luck!
Loreen: Thank you!