Loreen Linnea Olsson up where we belong

In just a few weeks she’ll compete at Melodifestivalen 2017 — five years after she won the competition before winning the Eurovision Song Contest in Baku.

But despite her hectic rehearsal schedule Loreen recently found the time to deliver an ethereal and enigmatic cover of “Up Where We Belong” for the annual Together Against Cancer gala that aired earlier this month on TV4 in Sweden.

“Up Where We Belong” — originally sung by Joe Cocker and Jennifer Warnes — featured prominently in the final moments of the film “An Officer and a Gentleman” 35 years ago. It topped the charts in the United States and performed well across Europe, Canada and Australia, in addition to winning an Academy Award, Golden Globe and BAFTA for Best Original Song made for a motion picture.

That might intimidate lesser artists, but not Loreen. She called on Swedish cellist Linnea Olsson to perform alongside her and together they took the song to a completely different world.

The original is a pop-rock ballad that acted as an encore to a hard-fought romance. Loreen’s version is decidedly lower key — and more mysterious and moving. Linnea’s melancholic strings provide a stirring backdrop for Loreen’s breathy vocals.

The gala benefitted those fighting cancer and featured other Swedish singers such as Magnus Carlsson, Tommy Nilsson, and Sabina Dbumba.

Loreen at Melodifestivalen 2017

Fans are in a flurry of excitement, as the Swedish star will perform the song “Statements” during the fourth semi-final of Melodifestivalen in Skellefteå.

When asked by wiwibloggs whether she felt pressure to repeat the explosive success of “Euphoria”, Loreen said: “We don’t have time to worry about the win…It is all about the music.”

Loreen — surname Talhaoui — rocketed to fame after winning Eurovision 2012 in Baku with the song “Euphoria”, earning a record number of douze points in the process. The song went on to top the charts in 18 countries, including Austria, Belgium, Hungary, Sweden and Russia. Since her win, Loreen has released a number of tracks including “We Got the Power”, “Paperlight (Higher)”, “My Heart is Refusing Me” and “I’m In It With You”.

At Eurovision 2016 Loreen made a special appearance at the Eurovision Party held at Tele2 Arena before the Grand Final at the neighbouring Globe Arena. She sang a few of her lesser-known tracks before regaling the crowd with “Euphoria”.

Linnea Olsson is a Swedish singer and multi-instrumentalist. She is known internationally as a cellist and a former member of the band Isildurs Bane. She has released two albums and traveled with superstar Peter Gabriel on his Back to Front tour.

For more information on how to donate to Tillsammans Mot Cancer, visit cancerfonden.se.

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dutchie
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dutchie

@an esc fan
Loreen’s army? I don’t even like her interpretation.

Why does anything said in favor of anybody immediately indicate fanboyism on this website?

an esc fan
Guest
an esc fan

I knew that Loreen’s Army will rise up, everybody knows that this song is not about death, but I still think is not the best choice. Let’s agree to disagree.

Charles
Guest
Charles

@Andy Lamp: You have actually just explained exactly why this song was performed this way by Loreen … there are so many meanings coming from all those keys words and verses you’ve just quoted. Everyone can relate in their own way to those words if everyone actually took the time to listen and let the song speak to us all and each find its own meaning for oneself … it’s an human narrative and not a mathematical equation.

dutchie
Guest
dutchie

@an esc fan
“Love lift us up where we belong” is not meant to imply “love, please kill us”.

Charles
Guest
Charles

When music speaks for itself it always wins … not those random douze … but hearts of anyone willing to slow down the pace and let emotions run through and shape within ourselves …. and that’s the true power of music, a power that needs for once to shine through at Eurovision. And when you have someone like Loreen, one understands her win in 2012 … it was more than her and her song … it was damn powerful. This performance shows and proves such power once again for such an honorable and honest reason. No Golden boys or Number… Read more »

Ron Kavaler
Editor

What a beautiful performance.

an esc fan
Guest
an esc fan

@ Purple Mask : ”As for: why this song choice – you’re best to ask the show’s producers.”

I can’t ask the producers, but Loreen could’ve said no to this song, and sing anything else.

Denis
Guest
Denis

I agree. Music for me is some form of comfort, as it is for many people. It makes things feel better and releases emotion. Don’t underestimate it!

Good on Loreen for taking the time to sing. She is still hugely popular here!

an esc fan
Guest
an esc fan

The choice of song was unfortunate, I meant about the lyrics.

Purple Mask
Guest
Purple Mask

What I like about Loreen when she does live performances like this is that it’s purely about the MUSIC, and nothing else. Outstanding arrangement. Not 100% on performance (breathing and timing issues in places), but that’s how you know it’s live.

As for: why this song choice – you’re best to ask the show’s producers.

William Lee Adams
Admin

@an esc fan mmmm having watched my father die of cancer i can say that people also take comfort in music in difficult times. that aside, loreen attracts audiences and audiences donate money. so good on her for taking the time to sing.

an esc fan
Guest
an esc fan

People with cancer face death, I don’t think they need to hear ”Up where we belong”.