Back in the days of 7-inch vinyl, there was always the B-side. There was the hit song on the A-side, and on the B-side there was, generally speaking, a song favoured by the artist, but never likely to be a hit record.
I often quite liked the B-sides. They were often good songs. In 1977, ABBA released an “alternative version” of their song, “Why Did It Have To Be Me” called, “Happy Hawaii” (described as an earlier version of the song), which was interesting to hear. Occasionally, there were double A-side records. But generally, B-sides were the also-rans.
And that’s how I feel about Heat 3 of Melodifestivalen, the Swedish contest which chooses an entry for the Eurovision Song Contest. They were all quite good songs, but nothing really memorable.
The only song which I thought was really any good, both in the song and in the performance was “Visions”.
I think part of the problem with Melodifestivalen at the moment is the small talent pool of songwriters and singers. With a few exceptions, it’s the same people every year. Or if they’re not the same people, it’s people who look and sound like others.
Every year it’s the same. There’s a bunch of pop songs (though nothing terribly contempoary); there’s a rock band; there’s a dansband (Swedish spelling); there’s a few older people. And every year, it really comes down to two or three mostly young men competing.
I think it’s time for a revamp.