Category Archives: Idol

Darin Scores His 18th Hit


23 year old Swedish-Kurd pop singer Darin scores his 18th hit on the Swedish singles tally as “Microphone” bows at No.16. Lifted from the latest album LoveKiller, the track is used in the promotional video for the 2010 season of Idol. No stranger to that talent show, Darin was the runner-up in 2005 beaten by Daniel Lindström.

No less than five tracks have charted from his latest album. Apart from the title track, which soars 14-10 on this week’s singles tally, the following tracks have peaked so far.

  • “Viva La Vida” was performed live on Idol last October, topping the charts for two weeks. This actually beats Coldplay’s original chart performance as they peaked at No.7 in May 2008.
  • “You’re Out of My Life” was produced by Arnthor of Jennifer Lopez fame and was Darin’s entry in the Swedish leg of the Eurovision Song Contest 2010. It peaked at No.3 this March.
  • “Can’t Stop Love” was written especially for the royal wedding of Princess Victoria and Daniel Westling, peaking at No.13 in June.
  • “Microphone” bows at No.16 this week.

His LoveKiller album enters at No.2 this week, unable to knock Iron Maiden’s The Final Frontier off the top. Darin’s first three albums (The Anthem, Darin and Break the News) all made it to the top, while 2008’s Flashback peaked at No.10.

Lady Gaga Producer RedOne Launches New Super Group

Lady Gaga’s acclaimed producer RedOne made the headlines in Sweden as he recently launched the new super group Love Generation. In an interview with evening paper Aftonbladet, RedOne compares the group with Gaga who “was an unknown talent when they first met.” Née Nadir Khayat, 37 year-old RedOne will collaborate on new material on Kylie Minogue’s upcoming album and his merits includes Mary J. Blige, Sugababes, Mika, Usher as well as Michael Jackson.

The five unknown girls of Love Generation is a collaboration with the star producer and talent scouts Peter Swartling and Jonas Johnson. Swartling spent several years as a jury member of Swedish Idol.

RedOne wrote Love Generation’s first single on a Friday, the girls were hand-picked from 500 contestants last Saturday and a single was recorded the day after. 22-year old Charlie Braun admits that she hardly understands what is happening. “I’ve listened to Lady Gaga’s and RedOne’s songs for a year. Suddenly I’m in a studio with this world-known producer. It’s fantastic,” Braun says to Aftonbladet.

Download vol.2 of the WelcheMusic Compilation Playlist

It’s time for the second volume of the WelcheMusic compilation with up-coming hits. Many of the artists on the compilation have already gained exposure on the blog. Cheryl Cole’s duet with will.i.am, “3 Words,” is finally available in Sweden. Look out for Scottish rock act Biffy Clyro’s Radio 1 playlist hit “Many of Horror” that deserves lots of listenings. Also, Simian Mobile Disco has recorded the track Janet Jackson never got her hands of – “Cruel Intentions.”  The Temper Trap is also back with the follow-up to last year’s hit “Sweet Disposition.” Don’t miss it! As a bonus, we’ve added Mad Muzik’s rendition of the Mad Men Theme as well as the Jason Nevin Club Mix of Iyaz “Replay.” Please also read the posts about Jay Sean, Muse and Black Eyed Peas.

  • Click here to download the WelcheMusic vol.2 playlist
  • Just right-click on the image to download the cover art
  • Click here to download the WelcheMusic vo.1 playlist

Linda Sundblad in Command of Let’s Dance

First of all, let’s just clear the fact that Strictly Come Dancing is called Let’s Dance in Sweden.  It premiered back in 2006, when former Idol contestant Måns Zelmerlöw won the competition. Let’s Dance is back this Friday on Jan.8 and WelcheMusic is more excited about the new soundtrack than the format itself.
Linda Sundblad debuted in the group Lambretta at 15. The group had hits such as “Bimbo” and “Creep,” Her break as a solo artist came in 2006, with the album Oh My God! with producers such as Max Martin. He also co-wrote the single “To All My Girls,” which was released last autumn.
“Let’s Dance” has already reached No.5 on the Swedish iTunes chart ahead of Black Eyed Peas and Jason Derulo.
  • You can download the track from TV4 here.

He Had the Biggest Hit of the ‘00s

The biggest UK singles hit of the last decade, “Evergreen,” was performed as the winning song of Pop Idol UK back in 2002. Today, the Idol franchise produces new stars yearly around the world and was followed by X-Factor in the UK. The track was written by the Swedish songwriters Jörgen Elofsson, Per Magnusson and David Kreuger, and had already been recorded by Westlife.

It only appeared on the Westlife’s album “World of Our Own,” and was never issued as a single. The track immediately topped the UK singles chart, staying there for three consecutive weeks.  The track was included on Will Young’s debut album From Now On. That album produced the No.1 singles “Light My Fire,” and “The Long and Winding Road” as well as “Don’t Let Me Down,” which peaked at No.2.

The second biggest hit of the  ‘00s was “Unchained Melody” with Gareth Gates. He was the runner-up behind Will Young in Pop Idol, and the track succeeded “Evergreen” on the chart.

Erik Grönwall Commands Both Singles and Album Chart in Sweden

In Sweden, Idol winner Erik Grönwall remains atop of the singles chart for a second week with “Higher.” The final chart of the year shows little change as Lady Gaga’s “Bad Romance” and Darin’s “Viva la vida” remain at No.2 and No.3. Coincidentally, Pet Shop Boys enters the chart at No.32 with another cover of the Coldplay hit. The track is included on the duo’s Christmas EP, headed by the track “It Doesn’t Often Snow at Christmas.” On PSB’s new version, “Viva la vida” is mixed with “Domino Dancing.”

The Black Eyed Peas spends its 20th week on the chart with “I Gotta Feeling.” Spotify recently announced that this was the most streamed track in 2008. Idol runner-up Calle Kristiansson won an album deal as well, and his live cover version of the Marc Cohn classic “Walking in Memphis” moves 7-5.

Alicia Keys has three tracks on the singles chart this week. The Jay-Z duet “Empire State of Mind” falls 10-11, while “Try Sleeping with a Broken Heart” vaults 32-19.  “Empire State of Mind (Part II) Broken Down” enters the chart at No.59.

As expected, Erik Grönwall’s debut album Erik Grönwall immediately enters the No.1 position. The Priests are pushed back 1-3, while Melody Gardot remains at No.2 with My One and Only Thrill.  Peter Jöback’s Xmas set Jag kommer hem igen till jul tops the midprice chart, followed by Il Divo’s The Christmas Collection.

Amanda Jenssen is in Happyland

The Swedish Grammy Awards are always up for discussion. When the nominees were announced earlier this month, it was also clear that it will not be broadcasted on TV. This means, that we won’t see any scandalous behavior live – even though any incidents will be reported by the tabloids.

Back in 1993, the indie pop group Popsicle wished for the dance orchestra act Arvingarna to die in a bus crash. This year, producer Kleerup left the awards ceremony halfway through despite picking up three awards for his eponymous debut album including the UK No.1 “With Every Heartbeat,” featuring Robyn.
This year, Amanda Jenssen and Thåström earned most nominations. Amanda Jenssen broke through in Idol 2007, where she ended up as the runner-up behind Marie Picasso. Her album Happyland has so far one hit single – the title track. A Grammy Award is a surefire way of extending the length of an album’s life. The set follows her 2008 debut Killing My Darlings, including hits such as “Do You Love Me” and “Amarula Tree.”

The Grammy Awards premiered in 1969 and is arranged by the industry body Ifpi. Awards are based on the general public votes as well as a professional jury. Approximately 30,000 people have voted this year. The ceremony will be held on Jan.15, 2010.

Artist of the Year: Amanda Jenssen, Kent, Lars Winnerbäck, Mando Diao and Thåström.
Album of the Year: Colonia (A Camp), Happyland (Amanda Jenssen), Röd (Kent), Tänk om jag ångrar mig och sen ångrar mig igen (Lars Winnerbäck) and Be-bop-a-lula hela jävla dan (Thåström).
Song of the Year: “Release Me,” Agnes, “Så gör jag det igen,” Caroline af Ugglas, “Me and Simon,” Laleh, “Säg ingenting till mig,” Melissa Horn and “Dancing the Whole Way Home,” Miss Li. 

“I’m Alive” Was the Biggest Swedish Radio Hit of the ‘00s

Today, the Swedish Performing Rights Society (Stim) revealed that Céline Dion’s “I’m Alive” was the most played song on Swedish radio of the ‘00s. The announcement lists the biggest songs, written by Swedish songwriters and the Céline Dion hit was included on her A New Day Has Come album from 2002. But few remembers, or even were aware of its inclusion in the Stuart Little 2 movie. There were two versions made of the video – with or without movie scenes.

Top Airplay Chart ‘00s
1. Céline Dion: I’m Alive (Andreas Carlsson, Kristian Lundin)
2. Bon Jovi: It’s My Life (Jon Bon Jovi, Richie Sambora, Max Martin)
3. Titiyo: Come Along (Joakim Berg, Peter Svensson)
4. Robyn: Keep This Fire Burning (Remee, Ulf Lindström, Johan Ekhé, Robyn Carlsson)
5. Kent: FF (Martin Sköld, Sami Sirviö, Markus Mustonen, Joakim Berg, H Mänty, N Danino)
6. Patrik Isaksson: Hos dig är jag underbar (Patrik Isaksson, Anders Glenmark)
7. Laleh: Live Tomorrow (Laleh Pourkarim)
8. Robyn: Be Mine (Klas Åhlund, Robyn Carlsson)
9. Robyn: Don’t Stop The Music (Remee, Alexander Kronlund, Ulf Lindström, Johan Ekhé, Robyn Carlsson)
10. Takida: Curly Sue (Patrik Frisk, Tomas Wallin, Robert Pettersson, Fredrik Pålsson, Kristoffer Söderström, Mattias Larsson)

Source: Stim. Songwriters in brackets.

Agnes to Include Additional Tracks on International Edition

Agnes made her breakthrough back in 2005, when she won Idol. Her international breakthrough came with “Release Me,” which made the UK Top 3 as well as topping the Billboard dance chart. Her latest album Dance Love Pop will include an additional three tracks – “Secret Love,” “Sometimes I Forget” and “You Rain.” Two of the tracks have been re-recorded – “Big Blue Wall” as well as the new single “I Need You Now.”

“I Need You Now” only made it to No.40 in the UK and was issued in mid-November.

“Higher” Amounts to 25% of Sales

So, Xmas means a new set of Idols ready to take the world by storm. The Swedish winner, Erik Grönwall, had no problem claiming the top spot. It turns out that the winner-track “Higher” amounted to 25 percent of all singles and downloads that were sold last week. An album will be rush released on Dec.21, featuring studio recordings of tracks performed on the show.

Former Idol contestant Amanda Jensen would probably not say that losing out to winner Marie Picasso a few years back was a disappointment. Amanda Jensen racked up several Grammy nominations, which helped elevate her Happyland album 12-4. Another set of former Idols, EMD, also enjoys success with a Christmas album. Since it’s only sold through retail giant ICA (conf. Tesco), it’s not eligible to chart.