A1, the British-Norwegian boyband active in the UK between 1999-2002 where they scored two No.1 singles, Take On Me and Same Old Brand New You, are strongly rumoured to be participating in next year's Melodi Grand Prix, the increasingly popular contest to select Norway's Eurovision Song Contest entry. The Melodi Grand Prix format, that has most recently given us Alexander Rybak's record breaking Fairytale and the classy Hold On Be Strong by Maria Haukaas Storeng, seems to be on a roll at the moment, borrowing loosely from Sweden's Melodifestivalen format, but with an arguably wider range of musical styles on offer than the schlagerfestival that takes place in the neighbouring country. From jazz ballads, dance anthems, Celtic pop and twee Disney style offerings, the success of Melodi Grand Prix 2009, and eventual Eurovision win for Norway, mean that they must put on a great show to select a competitor worthy of following in the footsteps of Fairytale, a song so popular it even broke into the UK top ten!!!
Now a three piece following Paul's refusal to rejoin the reformed pop group, Ben, Mark and Norwegian native Christian, will be taking part in next year's MGP, hoping to represent Norway in Eurovision, and surely picking up 'Douze Points' from the United Kingdom who would wonder why on earth one of our favourite retro boybands were representing Norway and not us!!! Of course, with the likes of Venke Knutson and heavyweights Mira Craig and Maria Haukaas Storeng also rumoured to be taking part, the chances of them winning are slim. I expect they will come back with some acoustic pop number in the vein of their final single, the bland Make It Good, but fingers crossed it will be more like its predecessor, the classic mid-tempo strummer Caught In The Middle. All of this ties in very nicely with this hilariously ironic video that Ben put on Youtube a few weeks ago of him mimicking his band's dance routines. Note that the 'romantic piano' song that comes on by mistake towards the end of the video is in fact a song called Abandoned from Alexander Rybak's album! Was it a sign!?!