No.40: "La Mia Citta" - Emma Marrone.
I was very happy to finally see Emma represent Italy at Eurovision. Whilst I enjoyed this pop-rock song with a side order of attitude, I'd have preferred something along the lines of her Sanremo winner "Non e l'inferno" which could have achieved a better result for Italy. By the way, Emma will be one of the hosts of Sanremo 2015!
No.39: "Crying For No Reason" - Katy B.
At the time this song was released I remember a few people on Twitter and various message boards suggesting that this would make a perfect ESC entry for the UK. I'm not a ballad fan at all but this is excellent and deserved more credit than it was given. And she's a redhead, which is always a wonderful thing.
No.38: "The Man" - Aloe Blacc.
Sampling is a bit of a minefield. It can either be a lazy excuse for not writing an original tune, but if you get it right then it can bring rewards. Aloe Blacc, fresh from his vocal turn on Avicii's "Wake Me Up", went on to have a solo hit with this song which sampled the "and you can tell everybody" line from "Your Song" and turned it into a radio-friendly treat. And yes, Taupin/John did get a co-writing credit.
No.37: "Let Go For Tonight" - Foxes
Yet another one of those critically-acclaimed British female solo artists with a 'band-name'. Usually I can't stand any of them, but for some reason, this song appealed to me. Florence Welch would have wrung every ounce out of this song and rendered it completely useless; Foxes kept it on the right side of drama and led it nicely to its anthemic chorus.
No.36: "Summer" - Calvin Harris
Let's go back in time again. 5 years ago I was a Calvin Harris fanatic, And then it all went horribly wrong, although he still occasionally manages to come up with a good tune which manages to sneak into the lower reaches of this blog's annual chart. Explanation over: this was one of the year's most overplayed dance anthems, soundtracking every telly montage you can think of. Yet it managed to recapture the spirit of some of his early stuff, which is probably why I like it.
No.35: "Something New" - Axwell and Ingrosso featuring Vincent Pontare.
Seen any ad breaks lately? Perhaps one for those ridiculously overpriced and unaffordable Beats headphones? Then you may already be familiar with the song which soundtracks that ad: it's this one, by the new musical project of two-thirds of the Swedish House Mafia, and it features the vocals of the brilliant Vincent Pontare. A quality dance tune.
No.34: "Bedroom" - Alvaro Estrella.
Over the course of this chart you may see a pattern developing, of this year's Melodifestivalen non-qualifiers making the 2014-50. This ended up being my favourite song from that disappointing first heat this year. Yes, the lyrics were a gleefully mucky ode to rumpy-pumpy all over the house: the chorus was "never made it to the bedroom". The song "never made it to the final" and didn't make the post-Melodifestivalen radio playlists, but my iPod tells another story.
No.33:"No Prejudice" - Pollapönk.
"Life is way too short for short-sightedness" is one of my favourite lyrics of this year's Eurovision Song Contest. The well-known singer-songwriter John Grant translated the original Icelandic version of this colourful band's song into English. I didn't really invest in this year's Söngvakeppnin the way I usually do; and before you ask, it was nothing to do with Magni's absence! (Well, not really) Anyway I couldn't get excited about too many of the songs but by the time of the final I was cheering this on and was glad it won. Even better... it made the grand final. And every time I see them, I think of my legendary Twitter pal Eurovicious ;)
No.32: "Mmm Yeah" - Austin Mahone featuring Pitbull.
Whilst on holiday in Copenhagen in May, this popped up on one of the music channels and I made a note to download it when I got home. I may be a long long way from the Mahone fanbase demographic, but sometimes I just like a daft, undemanding pop song, which this is. Oh, and damn you Pitbull, but you always manage to pop up in my annual countdown even though you continue to phone in your contribution. "Dale!" indeed.
No.31: "Waves" - Mr Probz/Robin Schulz.
This song is in my chart because it will always remind me of my holiday in Copenhagen this year. The summer feel of the song completely matched the weather when I was there. It also introduced us to German DJ/producer Robin Schulz who seems to have cornered the market in turning rather dull acoustic songs into European smashes (ditto 'Prayer in C').