The standard hurly-burly around preselections starts early in Sweden; the band Brandsta City Släckers, who were to participate in Melodifestivalen 2004, have reportedly been kicked out by the Swedish broadcaster SVT. “Bloody annoying”, says lead singer Glenn Borgkvist. “A question of who is most appropriate for the songs”, says SVT.
Brandsta City Släckers, five Scanian firemen who play together in their spare time, have been in the Swedish preselections the past two years, both times reaching the grand final. 'Well done too', one might say. 'Done too well', says SVT.
Yesterday, during their tour in Finland, the band received the joyous news that their song En gång för alla (Once and for all), penned by Gustav Eurén, Karl Eurén and Niklas Arn, had been selected. ““We just shouted out loud”, says Glenn Borgkvist. “What a terrific feeling!”
However, their happy faces wore off again when one hour later their manager called and delivered the news about expulsion. “This is the worst that has happened to us during our entire career. We're loved by the Swedish people, but apparently hated at SVT”, Glenn Borgkvist says, and adds that he and the band are losing all their interest in anything connected to the Swedish preselection.
Christer Björkman, SVT's man of hiring artists for the Melodifestivalen 2004 (and singer for Sweden in 1992), claims that nothing has yet been decided definately and does not wish to discuss Brandsta City Släckers' possible participation in the Melodifestivalen. However, he admits that SVT may very well reject artists. “A question of who is most appropriate for the songs”, he elaborates.
Glenn Borgkvist's explanation is more succinct: “some bloody mobbing here!”.