Image Credit: NRK
It’s time for Heat 2 of Melodi Grand Prix!
Last week saw Ulrikke, Umami Tsunami and Alessandra Mele qualify for the final, and tonight 7 artists will be hoping to impress viewers enough to join them in the final.
Here’s all you need to know about the artists and songs competing in Heat 2.
Jone – ‘Ekko Inni Meg’
Jonas Nes Steinset – known as JONE – is a musician from Leir. Since 2020, he’s found success with songs such as ‘Eventyr’ and ‘Livet på bøgda’. His music has been compared to other Norwegian artists such as TIX (Norway 2021, ‘Fallen Angel’) and Hagel, and to the style of the Russemusikk scene (populated by electronic, dance, techno and rap music). In 2021, he was nominated in the Spellemannprisen (Norwegian Grammy Awards) for the ‘Party Music’ category. He has a bachelors degree in songwriting and production.
We spoke to Jone ahead of MGP Heat 2, and you can hear what he has to say in the video below!
‘Ekko Inni Meg’ is an upbeat electronic track, with a slick production and strong vocal performance from JONE, who also is one of the writers and producers for the song. He’s not giving too much away in terms of what we can expect from the performance, but told us that the choreography will be ‘awesome’. He’ll also be making an English version of the song – but for now, you can hear the Norwegian version (and the one he’ll be performing in Heat 2) below.
Sandra Lyng – ‘Drøm D Bort’
Mosjøen native Sandra Lyng has been known to Norwiegan audiences since 2004, when she participated & placed 4th in Idol. She released a string of hit singles such as ‘Sommerflørt’, ‘I morgen’ and ‘Dance To The Beat Of My Drum’. She’s worked across the world as a songwriter, and in recent years has trained in life management for family & education services.
Sandra’s song ‘Drøm D Bort’ is a song that represents being strong within your vulnerability, with a huge anthemic chorus. It’s also penned by Sandra herself. You can listen to her song below!
Alejandro Fuentes – ‘Fuego’
Alejandro Fuentes, who was born in Chile, has been active in the Norwegian music industry ever since he placed 3rd in Idol all the way back in 2005. His debut album ‘Diamonds and Pearls’ went Gold in Norway, and in 2006 (and again in 2009) he joined forces with Norwegian artists Askil Holm, Espen Lind and Kurt Nilsen to form The New Guitar Buddies – releasing two albums of cover songs. He competed in Melodi Grand Prix 2018 with ‘Tengo Otra’ – missing out on a place in the Gold Final.
Yeah yeah, fire! Alejandro’s song ‘Fuego’ has a distinct Latin flare, and is entirely in Spanish. It has that vibe that leaves you longing for the summer months – and with the weather in Europe starting to heat up during Eurovision season, could ‘Fuego’ be the perfect choice? You can hear his song below.
Swing’It – ‘Prohibition’
Swing’It is a Jazz band that started out as street musicians in Trønsberg back in 2014. They’ve travelled across the world to perform their music, re-introducing the sound of the 1920s to a modern day audience, becoming one of the most popular and successful Norwegian traditional jazz bands. They took part in Norway’s Got Talent in 2018, and started releasing music professionally in 2019. It’s made up of members Martin Jarl Velsin, Leif Peter Vilhelm Grahn, Edvard Bondi Knowles, Jan Ivar Ekroll, Vebjørn Mamen, Håvard Mathisen Tanner and Håkon Kvam.
‘Prohibition’ is classic Swing’It – an electro-swing song. With no other songs like it in MGP this year, they could stand out due to the songs authenticity. Their genre of music is extremely unrepresented at Eurovision – with Electro Velvet (UK 2015) being the last act to attempt the genre. Could Swing’It be the ones to bring it back to the contest? You can hear their song below and decide for yourself.
Elsie Bay – ‘Love You In A Dream’
Elsie Bay (born Elsa Søllesvik) is from Haugesund, and will be known to Norwegian audiences from the duo Elsa & Emilie. Whilst in the duo, she was nominated for the Norwegian Grammy Awards for the 2014 album ‘Endless Optimism’, which was featured on the soundtrack of hit TV show SKAM. Whilst Emilie decided to leave the industry, Elsie decided to continue – launching her career with her MGP 2022 entry – and fan favourite song – ‘Death Of Us’, which placed in the top 4.
This year she’s back with another haunting ballad, ‘Love You In A Dream’. Featuring her distinct vocal style, Elsie says that this is her most personal and honest song yet. With her success in 2022 and continuing support from fans, will this be the year where she gets the opportunity to represent Norway in Liverpool? You can listen to her song below.
Ella – ‘Waist’
Raphaela Antônia Souza Silva – known as Ella – is from Belo Horizonte, Brazil, and moved to Tromsø with her family in 2011. As a child, she began singing opera, and was a member of the Palácio das Artes choir in her hometown. Her music is a mixture of Latin & Scandinavian styles – which you can hear clearly in her 2023 MGP entry ‘Waist’.
Ella’s song is an upbeat dance track, with a deep beat in the chorus that calls for some impressive choreography in the performance. Ella’s confident nature should be able to sell this live – could she be a hit with viewers? You can hear her song below!
Bjørn Olav Edvardsen – ‘Turn Off My Heart’
Born in Tromøy but now living in Nord-Odal, Bjørn Olav Edvardsen is another artist from Idol 2005 that will be competing in this heat. Despite taking part in MGP for the first time as a performer, he’s the writer behind IMERIKA’s 2021 entry ‘I Can’t Escape’ and fellow contestant (and now finalists) Umami Tsunami’s 2023 track ‘Geronimo’. He runs his own record company, and is now ready to live his dream as the main artist on stage at MGP.
If you’re a big fan of that classic 1990s/early 2000s boyband ballad sound, ‘Turn Off My Heart’ is the perfect song for you. Lyrically heartfelt and carried by some great vocals by Bjørn, there’s a market for this that may enjoy a slower, more gentle track than some of the other songs in this heat. You can hear the song below.
Heat 2 of Melodi Grand Prix will take place live on NRK at 19:50 CET // 18:50 GMT.