Saturday, 30 January 2010

Pre-Melodifestivalen interview on Poplight

In case you're not familiar with Poplight (formerly known as Gylleneskor) it's a very good website devoted to all things Melodifestivalen and the Eurovision Song Contest.

You can find Eva-Li's nice little interview with Salem about his participation in this year's MF, at

Salem feels that 2010 will be a very good year - of course it will be!!

Salem and Sami at the Ellegalan

The annual Ellegalan recently took place in Stockholm. Here are Salem and his brother Sami both looking very stylish as ever on the red carpet....

Picture courtesy of If you go to you'll find many more red carpet pictures of all the Swedish fashion and celebrity elite who attended the event.

Thursday, 28 January 2010

TV4 "Förkväll" interview

In case you missed it, Salem appeared this week on TV4's "Förkväll" where he was interviewed about his forthcoming Melodifestivalen appearance and third album, among other things. Here is a link:

Here are some screencaps. Salem is looking very good at the moment, don't you agree? :)

(Apologies for that mouse pointer getting in the way when I was taking pictures of the show on my computer tonight!)

I'm going to Gothenburg!!!

Yesterday was such a busy day with all the news about "Ignore This", but something else happened last night - I finally booked my tickets, flights and hotel for Salem's concert on 26th March at the Gothenburg Konserthuset.

It will be exciting to see Salem play live one more time, especially when he is accompanied by the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra.

I'm living the dream again !!!! :)

Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Salem to appear at Umeå Open

Salem is among the acts announced for this year's Umeå Open which takes place over the last weekend in March. Salem will be on stage on Saturday 27th March. More details at

"Ignore This" - third album on the way!!

VERY EXCITING BREAKING NEWS! Just got some information that Salem will release his third album "Ignore This" in March.

(Of course we will not be ignoring it!!!!)

According to a press release issued today by EMI (I hope this translation is ok!) "Ignore This" is the result of 'a creative autumn, where Salem has returned to the playfulness of his debut album and does what he wants. The new album reflects enormous progress and while the sweeping melodies, rhythmic grooves and captivating harmonies remain, there is a more pulsating synthpop sound. At the same time Salem Al Fakir doesn't compromise what has made him one of Sweden's most successful artists: grand melodies, moments of sheer silence and a spring in his step - all are elements of Salem Al Fakir's incomparable ability to provide unique, engaging pop music with piercing, emotive hooks. Anyone who can't wait until March for the physical or digital album just needs to wait until the 6th February, when Salem's "Keep On Walking" will be the most welcome entry in Melodifestivalen's first heat'.

It sounds like an intriguing mix of 'old' and 'new' Salem - and if his 'Backseat' collaboration with Staygold is anything to go by, then Salem's new electronic sound will be an absolute winner, whilst keeping all the aspects of his music which we know and love, which were perfectly described in the above press release.

Salem is of course one of the most creative and prolific musicians of his generation, and I'm sure this new album will provide another window into Salem's fabulous musical world. With his forthcoming Melodifestivalen appearance it has been excellent timing to release this album which will then reach a much wider audience, many of whom will have seen him on Melodifestivalen and maybe weren't aware of his music previously.

(Interestingly, this third album sees our favourite singer billed once again as 'Salem Al Fakir' rather than 'Salem'....)

The digital version of "Ignore This" will be out on 8th March and the physical version will be in the shops on 10th March. Here is the album cover!

I don't have a tracklisting as yet, and apart from the first single to be released ("Keep On Walking" of course) I don't know which other tracks will feature but would hope that "Brooklyn Sun" will be there. (That orchestral-version at Berwaldhallen was just so beautiful....)

Monday, 25 January 2010

Some news about Salem's website...

I've just been over to Salem's official website where there is a message that the site is currently closed for rebuilding, but will relaunch this Saturday, 30th January for "the complete Salem Al Fakir experience". This sounds very exciting indeed - so remember to visit on Saturday to find out more. (And I'm hoping that Salem puts a link to Planet Salem on his new site!!)

EDIT 27.01.10 - Salem's new website is up and running, very nice it is too...and of course there is a 'fanblogs' link to Planet Salem, so thanks again to Salem and his team for that!

On to some more (personal) news - tonight I am one step closer to going to Gothenburg in March to see Salem's concert! Hoping to get tickets/flights/hotels booked very soon :)

Sunday, 24 January 2010

Salem on TV3's "Blåsningen" tonight

If you live in Sweden, don't forget to tune into "Blåsningen" tonight on TV3 at 20:00 Swedish time. This is a "Candid Camera"-style show where practical jokes are played on famous people - and tonight the joke is on Salem and Sanna Nielsen!

EDIT 25.01.2010: The show is available to watch at I watched it late last night and thought it was very funny - those waiters and waitresses were just taking the duties of their job too far :)
Here are some screencaps from the show:

Melodifestivalen: two weeks to go...

and of course I can't wait !!!! the meantime check out for a nice little video of Salem talking about his Melodifestivalen 2010 entry. There are also some fascinating facts on that page, for example there is a list of Salem's top 10 favourite songs.

There are also links on that page to all the other artists taking part in this year's Melodifestivalen.

Friday, 22 January 2010

Introducing...Damien Adore !!!!!

I just found out tonight that Salem appeared live on the P3 Guld awards show the other evening and sang "Backseat" which is a brilliant electro-pop collaboration with Staygold featuring Spank Rock. Salem - or should I say his new alter-ego Damien Adore - was heavily disguised in dark glasses and a funny moustache. And what about the clothes!!! :)

And just when you thought it couldn't get any better, along came Robyn!

If you haven't seen it yet, check this out. Salem is in fabulous falsetto form :))

Here are some screencaps from this show....

Thursday, 21 January 2010

An urgent request about Gothenburg Konserthuset show in March!

If anyone from Salem's management/booking agents is reading this then can you please get in touch with me? I urgently need to know if the concert at the Gothenburg Konserthuset is still going ahead on 26th March. I am planning to come over and see this concert but as you know I live outside Sweden and therefore need to know if it is going ahead (as it has not been officially announced) before I can book flights and hotel etc. Time is moving on quickly and I'd like to know what's happening :)

(I had wondered if there was any possibility that the show may be cancelled due to Salem's commitments around Melodifestivalen?)

Also if you are a regular reader of Planet Salem, can any of you let me know if you have booked tickets and are going to this show.

Thanks for your help!


Saturday, 16 January 2010

Melodifestivalen - Salem third favourite!

Sadly, Salem didn't win any awards at last night's Grammisgalan; as usual there was very strong competition which yet again proves how great the music scene in Sweden is at the moment. Congratulations to all the winners!

We now turn our attention to Melodifestivalen. Three weeks from tonight, Salem will be taking the stage in Ornskoldsvik in the first heat of this year's competition.

I came across some betting odds on the internet for this year's MF which has Darin as favourite to win, then Peter Jöback....and Salem as third favourite to win!

From an editorial point of view (and remember, this is only my view) - I can't predict how well Salem will do at Melodifestivalen. Of course I would love Salem to win, but I'm realistic enough to know that Melodifestivalen is a world of its own! I've followed the contest for many years and there are certain acts/songwriters who will maybe do better in that contest than in the critical or commercial music sphere, or vice versa. For example, acts like Alcazar, Andreas Johnson, Ola and Jessica Andersson, and songwriters like Fredrik Kempe are all established Melodifestivalen favourites so they may have an advantage, but there are also very popular artists like the long-established Peter Jöback and the more recently successful Darin competing, so it's anyone's contest. My own feeling is that win or lose, MF 2010 will be the perfect chance for Salem to showcase his musical talent to a wider Swedish and international audience.

The countdown starts here....

Friday, 15 January 2010

Grammisgalan tonight

Good luck to Salem for the Grammisgalan which takes place tonight in Stockholm.

Although the annual Swedish music awards ceremony will not be broadcast on Swedish television this year, you can see it live on the internet on Aftonbladet TV - go to for more information.

Sunday, 10 January 2010

Berwaldhallen concert on SR P4 / Melodifestivalen running order / Poll closed

Berwaldhallen on P4

If you missed the Berwaldhallen concert which was broadcast on Swedish Radio P4 last week, then it is available to listen again at P4's website - : it should be available for the next three weeks or so.

I listened to the show last Wednesday night, and of course it was excellent, but I was disappointed that the hour-long transmission had been edited to feature only six Salem songs (It's Only You Part II, Cold Shower, Brooklyn Sun, Dream Girl, Roxy and the instrumental Manfreds Dans) along with the performances by the orchestra and Jojje Wadenius.

If any of you were at any of the Berwaldhallen shows, can you tell me which songs were edited out of the radio show? I know that Salem performed "Good Song" but which other songs were not broadcast?

The edited highlights which were broadcast was excellent. Salem just gets better and better, and I just love his musical collaboration with the orchestra. The changes made to "Cold Shower" really suited the song....and as for the piano-version of "Brooklyn Sun", well this was just utterly breathtaking, and even better than the original arrangement for guitar. I hope that if this song is on the third album, that he records it in this new arrangement. And "Manfreds Dans" was as beautiful as everyone had described it - and wasn't it such an emotional moment to hear Salem playing violin in a concert setting.

Melodifestivalen Running Order

The running order for the 2010 Melodifestivalen has now been announced. Salem has a very good draw position in the first semi-final in Örnsköldsvik on 6th February, when he will sing "Keep On Walking": he will be the last of the eight acts on stage that week. (If you are a regular follower of Melodifestivalen/Eurovision then you will know that if an act is drawn near the end of the running order, then they usually have a better chance of qualifying/winning).

Melodifestivalen Poll

Thanks to all of you who voted in my recent poll, which is now closed. I wanted to know if you agreed or disagreed with Salem participating in Melodifestivalen.

Results: 85% of you agree with Salem doing MF, whilst 15% of you disagree with his decision to participate.

Friday, 1 January 2010

Aftonbladet's "Hottest Artists Of 2010" list

Aftonbladet has published its annual list of who the Swedish music industry thinks will be the hottest Swedish artists in the coming year....and Salem is in 6th position on the list! Robyn tops the list this year. Full list and more information at