Sunday, December 13, 2009

The 2009-50: No.1 - Maybe this is something bigger you can't live without

"One of the Others" - Salem Al Fakir.

So let's flashback to 365 days ago, when my 2008-50 chart ended, (as had my 2007-50 chart a year earlier) with Salem at the top:

"...but this presented me with a dilemma. To have a Salem song at no.1 for two years running would be a bit reminiscent of the Spice Girls or the X Factor getting the Christmas no.1 every year. I didn't want it to be a foregone conclusion. But then I thought about it again: the no.1 should be my favourite song of the year. And this is."

That is still the case!

"I know it's a bit early to talk about the 2009-50, but if Salem's new album lives up to the greatness of his 2007 debut, then don't be surprised to see him here again 365 days from now!!"

And so he is. The first time I heard "One of the Others", which was premiered at Salem's 2008 series of concerts with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra at Berwaldhallen in Stockholm,
(and someone kindly posted a phone-video on YouTube), the song immediately took up residence in my heart and has never moved out since. Although the orchestral setting, for me, will always be this song’s natural habitat, on record it swings and soars and is so uplifting; and when I saw him play it live in concert in April I was so happy that I thought I was going to burst!!!

The significant thing about "One of the Others", which appeared on Salem's second album "Astronaut", is that it does not sound as if it was released in 2009, but has a timeless/retro quality like much of Salem's other material. I know that I'll never get tired of this song, it's just an absolute classic.

Video: No official video as it was never released as a single, but check out a couple of unofficial phone videos - (Berwaldhallen 2008) and (Cirkus, Stockholm April 2009).

(Salem pictured above at Berwaldhallen 10.12.2009: picture courtesy of

Fast forward to 365 days from now....will Salem make it four years in a row, or will anyone out there come up with a song good enough to keep him off the top of my 2010-50? Answers same time next year!

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